Sunday, 27 October 2013
In Cordoba two years ago we visited a synagogue, museum and restuarant each of which reflected the Spanish (which is all that 'Sephardic' means) tradition prior to the Jewish expulsion at the end of the fifteenth century. We learnt that many of those expelled found refuge in the parts of north Africa and then further east where they were tolerated under Ottoman rule. So it closed an interesting circle to find in Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem, which came under Ottoman control at the beginning of the sixteenth century, a whole group of Sephardic synagogues established in the seventeenth century.
The furnishings (from Italian synagogues) and decorations are, however, all new. These synagagues were trashed in 1948 and restored after 1967.
As this last pair of pictures shows in particular; in each case the 'before' picture hangs on the walls of the synagogue today.