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(June 15-21, 2007)

Patricio Armijo

Cyberlibrary Municipal - Biblioredes

Ricardo Araujo

The First Synagogue Built in the New World - Kahal Zur Israel Synagogue

Recife, PE, Brazil

June 16, 2007 - 13:30 local time

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© 2007 Ricardo Araujo, All Rights Reserved.

This reconstructed synagogue is built on the foundations of the original Kahal Zur Israel synagogue, built in the 1640s when Recife was ruled by religiously tolerant Holland. With the end of Dutch rule in 1654 many of Recife's Jews fled to New Amsterdam (later New York), and the synagogue was confiscated and sold. Over the centuries, evidence of the temple all but disappeared. In the late 1990s, traces of the old synagogue were discovered in the form of a mikve, or ritual bath. The reconstructed building is not a replica of the original but more a monument that honors the Jewish community in Recife. The museum tells the history of Jews in Recife. On the ground floor you can see the remains of the 17th-century temple. The second floor houses the actual synagogue; and if you aren't familiar with Jewish traditions, a guide will show you around. The third floor has a TV lounge where staff will play an excellent documentary (with English subtitles) on the history of the Jews in Recife and the rebuilding of the synagogue. (The New York Times)
Camera: Nikon D200 Lens: Nikkor Fisheye 10.5mm Panhead: Agnos TCPShort

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