Romania is a country rich in Jewish heritage. The first Jews arrived as part of the Roman legions (Legion Judaica) that invaded Dacia in 101 A.D. During the Middle Ages, Jewish immigrants began settling in Walachia and Moldova, with ever-increasing numbers arriving after Spain's expulsion of the Jews in 1492. By the early 16th century, their number again increased by immigrants fleeing from Cossack uprisings in Poland and the Ukraine.
During the 15th and 16th centuries, Polish Jewish merchants set up storehouses, trading posts, and eventually, permanent settlements. During the region's domination by the Turks, the Romanian Jewish Community evolved into a prosperous middle class.
Today, there are poignant reminders of Romania's Jewish heritage and roots. 111 Romanian synagogues survived the WWII. A handful are still active, while some others are being lovingly restored by Jews and non-Jews alike. More than 800 cemeteries scattered throughout Romania.
In Bucharest and elsewhere, there are Sunday-morning programs on topics of Jewish interest Talmud Torah classes for youth and television programs and centers for historical studies. The community supports a publishing house, HaSefer, and puts out a bimonthly newspaper, Realitatea Evreiască.
Jewish-Romanians in the Arts:
Playwright Eugene Ionesco; actors Molly Picon, Edward Robinson, John Houseman and Maia Morgenstern; conductor Sergiu Comissiona; opera star Alma Gluck; pianists Clara Haskil, Theodor Fuchs and radu Lupu, writers Isaac Peltz and Elie Wiesel are some of the internationally known Jewish-Romanian personalities in the artistic world. Violinist Miriam Fried, now an Israeli citizen, was born in Romania, as was Saul Steinberg, an artist best known for his New Yorker drawings.
Historical Fact / The Origins of Pastrami:
Little Romania in lower Manhattan was a neighborhood within a neighborhood, tucked into the blocks bound by East Houston Street, Allen Street, Grand Street, and the Bowery. When the Romanian-born writer Marcus Ravage arrived in New York in 1900, he found the area thriving; restaurants had opened everywhere, he recalled in a memoir, and the first Romanian delicatessens were displaying "goose-pastrama and kegs of ripe olives".
"Goose-pastrama" was the starting point for American pastrami. The Jewish immigrants who settled in Little Romania brought with them a traditional technique for preserving goose by salting, seasoning, and smoking the meat. In America, however, beef was cheaper and more widely available than goose, so pastrama was made with beef brisket instead. Later the name became pastrami—perhaps because it rhymed with "salami" and was sold in the same delicatessens. By the time Little Romania dispersed in the 1940s, New Yorkers from every ethnic background were claiming expertly sliced pastrami as their rightful heritage.
Source: New York Public Library
Jewish Heritage sites of particular interest are located in:
Arad, Barlad, Brasov, Botosani, Bucharest, Cluj, Dorohoi, Falticeni, Galati, Iasi, Oradea, Piatra Neamt, Radauti, Roman, Satu Mare, Sibiu, Sighetu Marmatiei, Siret, Suceava, Targu Mures, Tecuci, Timisoara, Tulcea
Note: Some of the synagogues and cemeteries can be visited by appointment only.
Contact the local Jewish Community or a local guide to make all arrangements prior to your arrival.
Jews settled in Arad in the early 18th century, reaching a total population of about 10,000 before World War II. During the 19th century, the town became the center of Reform Judaism under the leadership of Rabbi Aaron Chorin. The community survived the Holocaust and most of the families moved to Israel. Fewer than 300 Jews remain today in the city, served by a retirement home, a youth club and a kosher canteen. Arad has several Jewish cemeteries. The largest is the Neolog (Reformed Judaism) Cemetery (address: Str. Zimandului 9), home to the Aaron Chorin Mausoleum.
Address: Str. Tribunal Dobra
Rabbi Aaron Chorin officiated at this magnificent synagogue built in 1828-34 and featuring a high, richly decorated dome. Today, the synagogue is used for worship and as a venue for classical concerts.
Arad Jewish Community
Address: Str. Tribunul Dobra 10
Telephone: (+4) 0745 104.048
Barlad Synagogue / Great Temple or Grain Dealers Synagogue
Templul cel Mare or Sinagoga Cerealistilor Address: Str. Sfantul Ilie 5 (formely Paloda)
Phone: (+4) 0235 412. 001
Barlad Jewish Community
Comunitatea Evreilor Barlad
Str. Sfantul Ilie 5
Phone: (+4) 0235 412. 001
Barlad Jewish Cemetery
18th century, over 150 graves
Strada Tutovei 4
Phone: (+4) 0235 412. 001
Barlad Jewish Heritage more info
Bucharest is home to one of the oldest and most important Jewish communities in Romania. Sephardic Jews arrived here in the 16th century. Around the beginning of the 17th century, during the Cossack uprising, the first Ashkenazi Jews came from Ukraine and Poland. A sacred brotherhood, a charity box and a prayer house were registered in 1715. Some of the synagogues built during the 18th and 19th centuries also featured ritual baths (mikve). By 1832, ten holy houses had been established, their number increasing significantly before the end of the century. Almost every one had its own Rabbi and cult performers. At the beginning of the 20th century, Bucharest's Jewish population numbered 40,000 with 70 temples and synagogues. From this great number, only a few survived the brutality of history - fascism and communism – and two still serve the city's present Jewish community.
Dr. Moses Rosen Museum of the History of the Jewish Community in Romania – Holocaust Museum
Address: Str. Mamulari 3
Tel: (+4) 021 311.08.70
Open: Mon. - Wed. & Fri. - Sun. 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.; Thu. 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Housed in the magnificently preserved Great Synagogue (1850) in the city's historically Jewish neighborhood, this museum traces the history of Romania's Jewish population. The displays include a collection of books written, published, illustrated or translated by Romanian Jews; a small collection of paintings of and by Romanian Jews (many of the same artists' works hang in the National Museum of Art) and memorabilia from Jewish theaters, including the State Jewish Theater. The museum also contains a large collection of Jewish ritual objects from Romania, collected by Rabbi Moses Rosen (1912–1994), the late Chief Rabbi of Romanian Jewry.
Address: Str. Sfanta Vineri 9
Tel: (+4) 021 312.21.96
Built in 1867, this red brick temple is noted for its choir loft, organ and magnificent Moorish turrets. It is the largest active synagogue in Bucharest.
Yeshoah Tova Synagogue
Address: Str. Tache Ionescu 9
In a busy side street heading toward Piata Amzei from Magheru Bulevard stands the only other active synagogue in the city. Built in the 1840s, its lush interior features Moorish details and an elaborate Aron ha-Kodesh, or Holy Ark. Services take place at Sabbath hour on Friday and Saturday evenings.
Bucharest Jewish Theatre
Teatrul Evreiesc de Stat
Address: Str. Iuliu Barasch 15
Phone: (+4) 0741.271.200
Keeping Alive a Haven for Yiddish Culture in Modern Romania
By KIT GILLET, The New York Times
BUCHAREST, Romania — Just a few minutes on foot from the bustle of downtown Bucharest, the State Jewish Theater, down a small side street in the Romanian capital, cuts a forlorn figure. Yet the theater is one of the few vestiges of what was once a large Jewish community in Romania, and one of the few professional Yiddish-language theaters left in Europe. More
Sephardic Jewish Cemetery
Address: Sos. Giurgiului 162
Telephone: (+4) 021 335.86.10
Open: Mon. – Fri 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.; Sun. 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.; Closed Sat.
Jewish Cemetery Filantropia
Address: Bd. Ion Mihalache 91–93
Telephone: (+4) 021 224.03.27
Open: Mon. – Fri 8 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.; Sun. 8 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.; Closed Sat.
Sephardic Jewish Cemetery
(Part of the Bellu Spanish Cemetery)
Address: Calea Serban Voda 249
Bucharest Jewish Community
Address: Str. Sf. Vineri 9 -11
Tel: (+4) 021 313.17.82
Jews settled in this historic market town in northeastern Romania in the 17th century and by the 19th century, the community had become one of the largest in the province of Moldova. Approximately 11,000 Jews were living in Botosani before World War II. Most emigrated to Israel at the onset of the war, with only a few dozen remaining.
Great Synagogue "Hoihe Sil"
Address: Str. Marchian 1
The only remaining synagogue in the city and one of the oldest and most richly decorated in Moldova, the Great Synagogue of Botosani was built in 1834. The interior features lovely naïve representations of scenes of Jerusalem, biblical animals, and symbols representing the tribes of Israel. Intricate chandeliers adorn the lofty ceiling and a lavishly carved and brightly painted Aron ha Kodesh overhangs the sanctuary.
Address: Str. Mihai Eminescu 403
Botosani's large Jewish Cemetery includes a newer section with tombstones dating from the 19th century and an original old section which has wonderfully carved tombstones.
Botosani Jewish Community
Address: Str. 1 Decembrie 54
Tel: (+4) 0231 514.659
Jews have lived in Brasov since 1807, when Rabbi Aaron Ben Jehuda was given permission to live in the city, a privilege until then granted only to Saxons. The Jewish Community of Brasov was officially founded 19 years later, followed by the first Jewish school in 1864 and the building of the Synagogue (address: Str. Poarta Schei 27) in 1901. The Jewish population of Brasov expanded rapidly to 1,280 people in 1910 and 4,000 in 1940. Today, the community has about 230 members, as many families left for Israel between World War II and 1989.
Brasov Jewish Community
Address: Str. Poarta Schei 27
Telephone: (+4) 0268 511.867
The New Synagogue
Address: Str. Horea 21
The original grand Moorish-style synagogue, better known today as the Memorial Temple of the Deportees (in memory of those who died in World War II), was designed by architect Hegner Izidor and opened on September 4th, 1887. Ruined 40 years later by the Iron Guard, a nationalistic Fascist organization of the time, it was restored in 1951 with the support of Romania's Jewish community.
Cluj has three Jewish cemeteries, located on Badescu, Turzii, and Somului strets.
Cluj Jewish Community
Address: Str. Tipografiei 25
Telephone: (+4) 0264 596.600
Only one of the two remaining synagogues is still in use in this little Moldovan town where Jews from Poland settled in the 17th century. By the beginning of World War II, some 5,300 Jews were living here, with Hasidism becoming a major force. On November 11, 1941, the majority of families were sent to labor camps in Transnistria. Today, fewer than 50 Jews live in Dorohoi.
Dorohoi Jewish Community
Address: Str. Spiru Haret 95
Telephone: (+4) 0231 611.797
This small industrial city was home to some 13 Jewish houses of worship and 4,000 Jews before World War II. It was also the hometown of Moses Rosen, Romania's postwar Chief Rabbi. Today, the small remaining community is served by the only standing synagogue, the Great Synagogue, built in the 19th century on the site of the town's first synagogue from 1792.
Faltceni has two Jewish cemeteries. The newer one, with tombs dating from the 19th century, is located at the end of Brosteni Street, not far from the town center. The older cemetery, established in the 18th century and closed down during the 19th century, is located on nearby Victoriei Street. Most of the tombs here are overgrown and sunken into the earth.
Falticeni Jewish Community
Address: Str. Dr. Barbulescu 5
Telephone: (+4) 0230 540.090
Galați jewish population was first documented in the 17th century. The population of Jews increased as a result of the city's dynamic economy and, reached over 19,000 in 1930 (20% of the city’s population). A Jewish community association was created in 1895 and was acknowledged as a legal entity in 1906. The religious life of Galati's Jewish Community was complemented by the creation of synagogues, Jewish cemeteries, Jewish hospitals and primary schools, craft guilds, charity societies, ritual baths, Hevra Kadishah. From 1881 until 1919, Galați was the center of the Zionist movement in Romania; the Revisionist Zionist organization of the country was set up in Galati in 1926.
Craftsmen Temple or Synagogue of Artisans
Address: Strada Dornei 7 - 11
Telephone: (+4) 0236 413.662
Built in 1875, soon after the Association of Jewish Craftsmen was established, the Craftsmen Synagogue is the only temple to remain standing in Galati, out of the twenty-three that were active here during the 1930s.
Galati Synagogue more info
Galati Jewish Community Website
In the 19th century, Iasi was one of the great Eastern European centers of Jewish learning, famous for its scholarly rabbis, intellectuals and skilled craftsmen, as well as for its Jewish schools, hospitals, publications and various organizations.
In 1855, the city was the home of the first-ever Yiddish-language newspaper, Korot Haitim, and the birthplace of the Israeli national anthem. The world's first professional Yiddish-language theater was opened here in 1876 by Avram Goldfaden, who later founded New York's first Jewish Theater. From 1949 to 1964, Iaşi was also home to a second company of the State Jewish Theater.
Jewish merchants from Poland settled here in the 15th century and their numbers swelled with further waves of Russian-Jewish and Galician-Jewish immigration into Moldova. By 1930, Iasi was home to more than 30,000 Jews and some 127 synagogues. Today, only two synagogues remain open.
During the early years of World War II, Iaşi was the scene of a pogrom by the Iron Guard, a nationalist Fascist organization. The majority of the city's Jewish population was killed or deported. A monument to the victims of the 1941 pogrom stands outside the Great Synagogue.
Address: Str. Sinagogilor 7
The Great Synagogue of Iasi, currently undergoing renovations, is the oldest surviving Jewish prayer house in Romania and the second oldest synagogue in Europe. It was founded in 1670, reportedly at the initiative of Rabbi Nathan (Nata) ben Moses Hannover, author of Yeven Mezulah. Located on Synagogues Street (so dubbed because of the many synagogues once found here) in the old Jewish neighborhood of Targu Cucului, the synagogue was built in an eclectic style with strong late baroque influences. Over the centuries, the Great Synagogue has undergone a number of major renovations.
Although called "the great," the synagogue's size is actually very modest. The floor is located below street level in keeping with a widespread tradition found in many Central and Eastern European synagogues. Jewish religious tradition requires that synagogues be the highest buildings in their neighborhoods but because Jews were not permitted to build high structures for their prayer houses, lowering the floor of synagogues represented an ingenious compromise between the two demands by creating an interior that is higher than the exterior elevation of the building. It also serves as a reminder of Psalm 130 ("de profundis"): "Out of the depths have I cried unto Thee, o Lord."
Today, the Great Synagogue continues to serve the Jewish community of Iasi. It has been recognized as a historical monument.
Iasi Jewish Cemetery
Address: Sos. Pacurari
Access: bus and trolleybus connections from Piata Eminescu
Many of the victims of the 1941 pogroms were buried in the Jewish Cemetery, located outside the city on Dealul Munteni. Over 100,000 graves, some dating from the late 1800s, stretch across the hillside; burial records date from 1915 to the present day and are kept in the community center. Iasi's second, smaller synagogue is also located here.
Iasi Jewish Community
Address: Str. Elena Doamna 15
Tel: (+4) 0232 313.711
The first Jews settled in Oradea as early as the 15th century, making Oradea the site of one of the oldest and most important Jewish communities. Jewish people helped establish the city's chemical and milling industries as well as its transportation, communications and banking infrastructure. They also played important roles in the medical, academic and artistic institutions. Oradea's striking collection of turn-of-the-century art nouveau buildings remind viewers of the once-flourishing Jewish businesses.
By the 1940s, Oradea had 27 synagogues and a population of around 30,000 Jews. Annexed by Hungary during World War II, Oradea became the site of two ghettos, with the majority of the members deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau.
Address: Str. Independentei 22
A grandiose Neolog temple, it was designed by David Busch, the town's chief municipal architect at the time, and constructed in 1878.
Address: Str. Mihai Viteazu 4
The Moorish-style red brick and stucco design of the synagogue, built in 1890, is similar to that of the synagogue in Satu Mare.
Chevra Sas Synagogue
Address: Str. Crinului 2
The smaller, built in 1882, still serves the local Jewish community, which currently numbers around 500 members and is one of the most active in the country. Nearby is the 1920s Teleki Synagogue, the last to be built in Oradea (address: Str. Tudor Vladimirescu 18).
Oradea has two large Neolog and Orthodox Jewish cemeteries.
Oradea Jewish Community
Address: Str. Mihai Viteazul 4
Telephone: (+4) 0259 434.843
Located at the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains, the historic town of Piatra Neamt boasts one of the most legendary synagogues in Romania, the Wooden Synagogue. Thousands of Jews settled here in the 17th century, fleeting Poland following the Chmielnicki Uprising in the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. Several tombstones dating from 1677 discovered here provide strong evidence of an old Jewish community in the area. Before World War II, the local community numbered close to 8,000, though most left for Israel at the onset of war.
Piatra Neamt has two Jewish cemeteries. The old one (address: Str. Orhei 10) is home to tombstones dating back to the 17th century. After the old cemetery was closed in 1860, a newer one was established on Str. Petru Movila 4.
Wooden Synagogue (Cathedral Synagogue)
Address: Str. Dr. Dimitrie Ernici
Built of wood in 1766 on the site of an earlier masonry synagogue, the Cathedral Synagogue is surrounded by the legend of Ba'al Shem Tov. It was said to be here that the mysterious founder of the Hasidic movement worshipped for a while.
Address: Str. Dr. Dimitrie Ernici
Located next to the Wooden Synagogue, the Great Synagogue was built in 1839 and reconstructed after a damaging fire in 1904. Also known as the Leipziger Temple, its architecture is similar to other folk-style Moldovan synagogues. The interior is decorated with vivid frescoes featuring Holy Land themes.
Piatra Neamt Jewish Community
Address: Str. Petru Rares 7
Tel: (+4) 0233 223.815
A twin-towered synagogue, currently closed down, and a cemetery with hundreds of elaborately decorated old tombstones evoke a former vibrant Jewish presence in this northern Romanian market town located near the Ukrainian border. Before World War I, the town numbered some 5,000 Jews. Today, only a few remain.
Radauti Jewish Community
Address: Aleea Primaverii 11
Tel: (+4) 0230 561.333
The town of Roman once boasted 17 synagogues; today, only one remains. Known as Leipziger Synagogue (address: Str. Bradului 16), because of the commercial ties to the German city of Leipzig, this small dynsagoue dates from the second half of the 19th century and features a wooden Aron ha-Kodesh, elaborately decorated with floral and animal motifs. The Jewish cemetery on Str. Bogdan Dragos features laminated photographs of the deceased.
Roman Jewish Community
Address: Str. Suceava 131
Tel: (+4) 0233 726.621
For more information please visit: www.jewishgen.org
During the 19th and 20th centuries Satu Mare was the seat of the Teitelbaum and Gruenwald Hasidic Jews, who lived there until World War II and now reside in New York City, Jerusalem, London, and other places.
Jews first settled in this northwestern Romanian town, bordering Maramures County, around 1700. During the 19th and 20th centuries, the population grew, reaching approximately 13,000 before World War II. Back then, the community was served by some eight synagogues, a yeshiva, and a Hebrew painting house. In May 1944, the Nazis deported most of the local Jewish population to death camps. A memorial to the 18,000 Jews from around Satu Mare murdered in the Holocaust stands between the two remaining synagogues. Tombstones in the Orthodox Jewish Cemetery (address: Str. 9 Mai) still show bullet holes and damage from World War II.
Nearby there is also a Neolog Cemetery.
Address: Str. Decebal 4-6
Built in 1890s, in similar design to the synagogue in Oradea, it remained closed for decades until the community reopened it as a concert hall and cultural venue.
Saar Ha Torah Synagogue
Address: Str. Decebal 4-6
Built in the 1920 and located next to the Great Synagogue, it is the only remaining working synagogue. A small prayer room is used for regular services.
Satu Mare Jewish Community
Address: Str. Decebal 4A
Telephone: (+4) 0261 713.703
Although documents attest the existence of Jews in Sibiu since the 12th century, the Jewish community of Sibiu was never among the largest in Romania. In 1940, the town had some 1,300 Jews, three synagogues, three rabbis, two cemeteries and two ritual baths managed by the Sephardic and Orthodox communities. Today, the handful of Jews who remain in Sibiu hold weekly and holiday services at the Great Synagogue.
Address: Str. Constitutiei 19
Built by architect Szalay Ferenc in 1899 with funds collected by Sibiu's small Jewish community, this synagogue boasts a neo-gothic façade. Inside, it has a basilica aspect with three naves mounted by lofts.
Sibiu Jewish Community
Address: Str. Blanarilor, 15
Telephone: (+4) 0269 216.904
Elie Wiesel Memorial House (Casa Memoriala Elie Wiesel)
Address: Str. Tudor Vladimirescu 1
Telephone: (+4) 0240 513.249
Open: Tue. – Sun. 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Closed Mon.
Located at the corner of Dragos Voda and Tudor Vladimirescu streets, not far from the Wijnitzer Klaus synagogue, the house where 1986 Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel was born is now a museum dedicated to the victims of the Holocaust and the Jewish way of life in Sighet before World War II. Born here in 1928, Elie Wiesel is the author of over 40 books, the best known of which is Night, a memoir that describes his experiences during the Holocaust and his imprisonment in several concentration camps.
Wiesel writes candidly of his childhood in Sighet, where his parents were shopkeepers like many other Jewish townspeople. The town was annexed to Hungary in 1940. In 1944, Elie, his family and the rest of the Jewish community were placed in one of the two ghettos in Sighet. The Wiesel family lived in the larger of the two, on Serpent Street. On April 19, 1944, the Hungarian authorities deported the town's Jewish population to Auschwitz–Birkenau.
Wijnitzer Klaus Synagogue
Address: Str. Basarabia 10
Before World War II, eight synagogues served the local Jewish community. Today, only one, built in 1885 in an eclectic Moresque style, is still standing and in use.
Old Jewish Cemetery (Cimitirul Evreiesc)
Address: Str. Szilagiy Istvan
Note: You can purchase admission tickets at the Jewish Community Center.
Sighet was a center of Hasidism and pilgrims from around the world still gather here to visit the tombs of the tzadikim (righteous ones) in the Old Jewish Cemetery.
Sighetu Marmatiei Jewish Community
Address: Str. Basarabia 8
Telephone: (+4) 0262 311.652
Three beautiful Jewish cemeteries (with some tombstones dating back to 1560) lie in the center of Siret, where Jewish merchants from Galicia settled beginning in the 16th century. By 1880, Jews made up for half of the local population. During the years 1912- 1918 the mayor of Siret was a Jew, and several Jews were even on the City Council. With the start of World War l many Jews fled from the city, which was occupied twice by Russians: during 1914 and 1916.
Before World War l there were 10 prayer houses in the community, a Mikwe tehara, cattle slaughterhouse and slaughterhouse for chickens. The community held "Talmud Torah" for four classes. Many Jewish children studied in private Cheders. In 1936, Rabbi Baruch Hager of the Wiznitz Hassidic dynasty was appointed head of the Siret rabbinate. He founded yeshiva "Beit Israel and Tomchei Orieta" in Siret and nearby - a boarding school for the yeshiva boys who studied Torah and trades.
1941 marked the infamous year of deportation to the labor camps in Trasnistria. Rabbi Baruch Hager supported emigration to Israel. After World War ll he himself emigrated to Israel, settled in Haifa, and established a yeshiva there.
An elaborate Aron ha Kodesh and a memorial to the Holocaust victims can be seen in the only standing synagogue, the Great Temple of Siret (address: Str. Teiului 4). It is believed that the last Jew to have lived in Siret passed away in 2000.
The Old Jewish Cemetery in Siret is one of the oldest in Moldova and features richly carved 18th century tombstones. Two newer cemeteries are located across the main road.
For more information please visit: www.jewishgen.org
One of the earliest sites of Jewish settlement in the region, Suceava was already home to an established community at the beginning of the 16th century. Some 18 synagogues and small Hasidic prayer rooms were in use before World War II, the majority of them taken down during the 1950s' communist "urban renewal" period. Only one synagogue stands today, beautifully preserved, along with two Jewish cemeteries.
Impressive tombs from the late 19th and early 20th centuries can be seen in the newer Jewish Cemetery (address: Str. Parcului 6). The Old Jewish Cemetery (address: Str. Stefan Tomsa 18), with its elaborately carved tombs bearing traditional Jewish symbols, dates back to the 16th century, making it one of the oldest in Moldova.
Address: Str. Dimitrie Onciul 7
Richly decorated on the interior with symbolic representations of the Tribes of Israel and views of Jerusalem, this is the only remaining active synagogue.
Suceava Jewish Community
Address: Str. Armeneasca 8
Telephone: (+4) 0230 213.084
Jews settled in Targu Mures in the 19th century, though Jewish communities existed much earlier in nearby villages. The area's oldest Jewish cemeteries, dating to the 18th century, are located in the hamlet of Nazna, about three miles away.
The Great Synagogue
Str. Aurel Filmon 21
A large, highly ornate structure, built for the Status Quo Ante community between 1899 and 1900, was designed by the Viennese architect Jakub Gartner. Seating more than 550 people, it is lavishly decorated with stained glass, frescoes and intricately carved detail.
Targu Mures Jewish Community
Address: Str. Aurel Filimon 23
Telephone: (+4) 0265 261.810
Even though Jewish presence in the Banat region dates back to the 2nd century AD, the first written mention of the Jewish community in Timisoara occurred in 1716, when the Turkish army commander surrendered the town to the Austrian Prince Eugeniu of Savoia.
In the Old Sephardic Cemetery (address: Str. Linistei 3), graves dating to the Turkish occupation may be seen, the oldest belonging to Azriel Assael, a Rabbi and surgeon who died in 1636. A century later, Rabbi Meir Amigo and four followers from Istanbul were allowed to settle in the city. Following the implementation of citizen rights acts in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Timisoara's Jewish community flourished, reaching a population of almost 7,000. Six synagogues were built in the city after 1867, the year of the Austro-Hungarian reconciliation. Today, three remain, with one still active.
New Synagogue in Fabric (Sinagoga din Fabric)
Address: Str. Splaiul Coloniei 2
One of the most beautiful buildings in Timisoara, the synagogue in the Fabric district was built in 1899 by Hungarian architect Lipot Baumhorn in a traditional Moorish style. It is currently closed for structural repairs.
Great Synagogue (Sinagoga Cetate)
Address: Str: Resita 55
This Neolog-rite synagogue, built in Oriental style in 1865, resembles the great synagogue in Oran, Algeria. One of the largest synagogues in Europe, it is currently closed for structural repairs.
Orthodox Synagogue in Iosefin
Address: Str. Maniu Iuliu 55
Built between 1906 and 1910, this Orthodox Synagogue is the only one in service at this moment.
Timisoara Jewish Community
Address: Str. Gh. Lazar 5
Telephone: (+4) 0256 201.698