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Judaism monuments

Szeged Synagogue, Hungary
Szeged Synagogue / Gabi Agu, Flickr / CC BY 2.0

WorldBlue Described Judaism monuments

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Judaism is one of the oldest active religions in the world – it is considered to be more than 3000 years old. This religion originated in Israel and Judea and Judaists believe that God revealed his laws and commandments to Jewish religious leader Moses. These revelations are called Torah – and were presented by God in written (Torah) and oral form (Talmud).

Capernaum synagogue, Israel
Capernaum synagogue / Eddie Gerald, Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

Judaism is religion which identifies also nationality – person converting to Judaism is considederd to be a Jew.

In Judaism the concept of the house of prayer differs from most other religions. Jews consider that their true temple is the almost totally destroyed Temple (Palestine, West Bank, Jerusalem). Nowadays only the giant Western Wall (Wailing Wall) remains of it.

Other Jewish houses of prayer – synagogues – are built for gatherings, prayer and education and are not considered to be temples. Thus synagogues are adjusted to local styles of architecture of different countries of the world.

Many synagogues around the world serve as fascinating monuments to the rich history of Jews – such as El Ghriba Synagogue (Tunisia, Djerba) or legendary Old New Synagogue (Czech Republic, Prague).

WorldViolet Top 25 Judaism monuments

Africa

El Ghriba synagogue

Tunisia

One of the oldest synagogues in the world. It houses the oldest Sefer Torah – handwritten Torah.

El Ghriba synagogue

Asia

Temple Mount

Palestine

A sacred site of huge importance for many millennia. This has been a sacred site for Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Roman paganism. According to Judaism some aspect of Divine Presence is present here. On the mount has been built Al Aqsa Mosque – a third most sacred site for Muslims and Dome of the Rock with Foundation Stone (the most important site for Judaists), as well as several more valuable structures. Also – one of the most contested religious sites in the world, especially between Judaists and Muslims. Here started the development of Jerusalem in the 4th millennium BC. Under the Temple Mount is a maze of underground passages.

Temple Mount in Old Jerusalem
Dome of the Rock

Palestine

A Muslim shrine, constructed in 691 AD over the Second Jewish Temple and refurbished many times since then. Intended as a shrine for pilgrims and not a mosque. The building is not typical for Islamic architecture (in Byzantine style) as this was an attempt to compete with Christian and other architecture in Jerusalem. At the heart of this building is Foundation Stone – the most sacred site for Judaists. The large, gilded dome of this building is one of the most noticeable features in the Jerusalem skyline. A model for Templar churches around Europe.

Dome of the Rock
Dura-Europos synagogue

Syria

Ruins of one of the oldest synagogues in the world, built in 244 AD. This building is adorned with wall paintings.

Tomb of the Prophets Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi

Palestine

Rock cut tombs – catacombs, where the last Hebrew Bible prophets might be buried. Created around the 1st century BC. In the cliff are hewn two concentric passages with 38 burial niches.

Beth Alpha synagogue

Israel

Remnants of an ancient synagogue, built in the 6th century AD. The building has a very interesting floor: it is covered with inscriptions and mosaics that include the Zodiac Wheel and the sacrifice of Isaac by Abraham.

Beth Alpha synagogue
Sidon Synagogue

Lebanon

One of the oldest synagogues in the world, built in 833, possibly in the site of an older synagogue. According to Bible here or nearby preached Jesus.

Western Wall (Wailing Wall)

Palestine

An important Jewish religious site, it is the only remaining part of the Second Temple that was constructed around 19 BC. Throughout history, this also has been an important site for the politics of the Near East, due to different events related to the access of the Jews to this wall. Wall is exposed for 60 m, additional 485 m are available along with a Western Wall Tunnel. Contains Western Stone – 517 tonnes heavy monolith, one of the largest building blocks in the world.

Western Wall, Jerusalem
Beit El Synagogue

Palestine

Important centre for the kabbalistic studies, established in 1737.

Shalom Al Yisrael Synagogue

Palestine

Synagogue from Byzantine times, from the late 6th or the early 7th century AD.

Kfar Bar’am synagogue

Israel

Ruins of an ancient synagogue that was built in the 2nd – 4th century AD. The synagogue is preserved up to the second-floor level. Interesting artwork here is a sculptural group of two lions.

Kfar Bar'am synagogue
Wadi Qelt Synagogue

Palestine

The oldest known synagogue, from 70 – 50 BC. Simple building.

Europe

Dohány Street Synagogue

Hungary

The largest synagogue in Europe with seats for 3 000 people. This ornate building was constructed in Moorish Revival style in 1859.

Dubrovnik Synagogue

Croatia

The oldest Sefardic synagogue in use in the world, second oldest synagogue in Europe. Established in 1352, still serves for worship.

Santa María la Blanca

Spain

Oldest standing synagogue building in Europe, although not used as synagogue. Built in 1180 in ornate Moorish style.

Mole Antonelliana

Italy

Very tall building for its time of construction. This 167.5 meters tall structure was planned as a synagogue but upon its completion, it was turned into a museum.

Old New Synagogue

Czechia

The oldest active synagogue in Europe, constructed in 1270 as one of the first Gothic-style buildings in the city. Linked to legends about Golem.

Szeged Synagogue

Hungary

Enormous and impressive synagogue in Ecclectic style, built in 1907.

Subotica Synagogue

Serbia

Beautiful synagogue that was built in Art Nouveau style in 1901 – 1902.

Subotica Synagogue, Serbia
Spanish Synagogue in Prague

Czechia

A beautiful structure, built in 1868 in a Moorish Revival style. Synagogue has got very ornate interior.

Old Synagogue in Kraków

Poland

The oldest existing synagogue in Poland that was built in Gothic style in the 15th century. Fortified building.

Vilnius Kenesa

Lithuania

One of the last Karaite synagogues, an ornate building with an onion dome. Built in 1911 – 1923.

Vilnius Kenesa
Trakai Kenesa

Lithuania

One of the few surviving Karaite synagogues in the world, a wooden structure built in the 18th century.

North America

Mikve Israel-Emanuel Synagogue

Curaçao (country in Kingdom of Netherlands)

The oldest synagogue in Americas, built in 1692 and reconstructed in 1732.

Nidhe Israel Synagogue

Barbados

One of the oldest synagogues in Americas, originally built in 1654 and rebuilt in the first half of the 19th century.

WorldYellow Recommended books

Judaism


In Judaism, by Israel Abrahams, the writer has attempted in this Jewish history text to take up a few of the most characteristic points in Jewish doctrine and Jewish practice and to explain some of the various phases through which they have passed, since the first centuries of the Christian era.


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