Brodsky Synagogue (Odessa)

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Brodsky Synagogue
Brockhaus and Efron Jewish Encyclopedia e12 054-0.jpg
The Brodsky Synagogue
Religion
AffiliationOrthodox Judaism
LeadershipRabbi Avraham Wolff
Location
LocationZhukovskoho 18, Odessa, Russian Empire, now Ukraine
Architecture
Architect(s)Joseph N. Kollovich
StyleGothic Florentine
Groundbreaking1860 (1860)
Completed1863

The Brodsky Synagogue in Odessa was built by the Jews from Brody in 1863 in Odessa, Ukraine. It was the largest synagogue in the south of the then Russian Empire. People came from all over the world to hear cantors sing there.[1][2][3][4]

History[edit]

Early 1800s[edit]

In the early 1800s Jewish immigrants began to stream into Odessa from Europe, many of them came from the town of Brody.[5][6]

In the 1840s the “Brodsky” Jews leased their first synagogue, at the corner of Pushkin and Postal (now Zhukovsky) in a relatively small house from the wealthy Greek businessman Ksenysu.[7] The Cantor was Rabbi Nissan Blumenthal, who also came from the town of Brody.[8][9][10]

One of the documents from the Office of Novorossiysk and Bessarabian Governor-General, dated 1852, states: "All the educated people of the Jewish community in Odessa are going there. Their school leases a house, but it is deliberately arranged. The hall is quite extensive, there is also a gallery for the women…”[11]

The new synagogue[edit]

In 1860 they received permission to begin building a new synagogue. It was designed by the famous architect Joseph N. Kollovich in the Gothic Florentine style, built with local limestone, and completed in 1863. It was the largest synagogue in the south of the then Russian empire.[12]

Many famous composers and singers performed in the synagogue. Among them the composer Novakovsky,[13] and Cantor Minkovsky.[14]

The synagogue is mentioned in writings of Babel, Sholem Aleichem, and Ivan Bunin (first Russian writer to win the Nobel Prize for Literature). Ze'ev Jabotinsky, and Meir Dizengoff, former Mayor of Tel Aviv, are among the many Jews associated with this synagogue.[15][16][17]

Odessa, Ukraine at one point boasted the second-largest Jewish population (after Warsaw) according to YIVO. In 1897, Jews made up 34.6% of the city's population.[18]

Synagogue in the Soviet era[edit]

In 1920 all the synagogues in Odessa were taken away from the Jewish community. The Brody Synagogue was transformed into the “Rosa Luxemburg Workers Club”, as recorded in YIVO archives, which was a meeting place to push socialist propaganda. The Ten Commandments over the synagogue's ark were covered with a photo of Vladimir Lenin.[19][20][21]

During WWII[edit]

In 1939 the Jewish population had numbered 80,000 to 90,000, but by 1945 only 5,000 remained.[22]

During the war, Hitler requested Romanian leader Ion Antonescu to occupy the Ukrainian territory between Dniester and Bug Rivers. In those days, the Odessa State archive was located in the basement of the Uspensky cathedral. The Romanians moved the archive into the “Brodsky” synagogue.[23][24]

Today[edit]

Local and national landmark[edit]

In August 1985, the Odessa Regional Council established the Brodsky Synagogue as a monument of local importance. In June 2006, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Ukraine included the building in the State Register of Monuments of Ukraine.[25][26]

Today the building is on the verge of collapse. It has not been renovated for many years. The walls are being held by the bookshelves inside.[27][28][29]

Restoration[edit]

As of February 2016, the Brodsky Synagogue has been returned to the Jewish Community of Odessa. The decision was reached by a decisive majority of the regional council who voted to transfer the building taken from its community nearly 100 years ago.[30]

The building, once restored, will house the Chabad Lubavitch Congregation[31] and the Odessa Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center.[32]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Та Одесса. Бродская синагога в очереди на уничтожение (фото)". timer-odessa.net. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  2. ^ Калинин, Игорь. "Одесские достопримечательности — Бродская синагога". www.odessaguide.net. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  3. ^ "Бродская синагога, XIX век". Вся Одесса. Исторические фотографии.
  4. ^ "Tales from the Pale Odessa Synagogue Has Storied Past, but Its Building's Foundation is Shaky". Jewish Telegraphic Agency. 2004-08-13. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  5. ^ "YIVO | Odessa". www.yivoencyclopedia.org. Archived from the original on 2014-10-15. Retrieved 2016-05-15.
  6. ^ Walden, Joshua S. (2015-11-19). The Cambridge Companion to Jewish Music. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9781107023451.
  7. ^ "Jewish Ukraine: 6 facts about the Jews of Odessa - Jewish News". Jewish Ukraine: 6 facts about the Jews of Odessa - Jewish News. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  8. ^ "ODESSA - JewishEncyclopedia.com". www.jewishencyclopedia.com. Retrieved 2016-05-15.
  9. ^ Kirshenblatt-Gimblett, Barbara; Karp, Jonathan (2013-02-11). The Art of Being Jewish in Modern Times. University of Pennsylvania Press. ISBN 9780812208863.
  10. ^ "CHOIRS". Jewish Virtual Library. American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise.
  11. ^ "Та Одесса. Бродская синагога в очереди на уничтожение (фото)". Новости Одессы – Таймер (in Russian). January 11, 2010. В одном из документов канцелярии Новороссийского и Бессарабского генерал-губернатора, датируемым 1852 годом, сказано: «Тут собираются все люди образованные из общества евреев в Одессе. Их школа в нанимаемом доме, но нарочито к тому устроенная. Зала довольно обширная, имеет так же галерею для женщин…
  12. ^ Khanin, Vladimir (1998-01-01). "A RABBINICAL REVOLUTION? RELIGION, POWER AND POLITICS IN THE CONTEMPORARY UKRAINIAN JEWISH MOVEMENT". Jewish Political Studies Review. 10 (1/2): 73–91. JSTOR 25834416.
  13. ^ "Nowakowsky, David, 1848-1921 - LC Linked Data Service | Library of Congress". id.loc.gov. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  14. ^ Walden, Joshua S. (2015-11-19). The Cambridge Companion to Jewish Music. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9781107023451.
  15. ^ "БРОДСКАЯ СИНАГОГ – АГОНИЯ РАВНОДУШИЯ" (PDF). The World Union for Progressive Judaism. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-08-06.
  16. ^ Astaire, Libi (2015-08-17). "Beyond The Pale: Jewish Ukraine (Part II)". The Jewish Press. Retrieved 2016-05-15.
  17. ^ Administrator, Super. "The Brodsky Synagogue". www.edrs.org.uk. Retrieved 2016-05-15.
  18. ^ "YIVO | Odessa". www.yivoencyclopedia.org. Archived from the original on 2014-10-15. Retrieved 2016-05-15.
  19. ^ "YIVO | Odessa". www.yivoencyclopedia.org. Archived from the original on 2014-10-15. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  20. ^ Yodfat, Aryeh Y. (1973-01-01). "The closure of synagogues in the soviet union". Soviet Jewish Affairs. 3 (1): 48–56. doi:10.1080/13501677308577146. ISSN 0038-545X.
  21. ^ "The Montreal Gazette - Google News Archive Search". news.google.com. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  22. ^ "YIVO | Odessa". www.yivoencyclopedia.org. Archived from the original on 2014-10-15. Retrieved 2016-05-15.
  23. ^ "Jewish World: Odessa Remnanats". The Jerusalem Post | JPost.com. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  24. ^ "Одесский облсовет готовится строить пристройку для архива, архивисты недовольны : Одесса : Новости : Викна-Одесса". Викна-Одесса: Художественная интернет-галерея. Retrieved 2016-05-11.
  25. ^ "RTRFoundation". www.rtrfoundation.org. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  26. ^ "General Information on Ukrainian Jewish Organizations". eajc.org. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  27. ^ "БРОДСКАЯ СИНАГОГ – АГОНИЯ РАВНОДУШИЯ" (PDF). The World Union for Progressive Judaism. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-08-06.
  28. ^ "Religion The Brodsky Synagogue". Ukrainian Jewish Encounter.[permanent dead link]
  29. ^ "Руководство Одесского облархива обещает найти спонсора для ремонта нового помещения : Одесса : Новости : Викна-Одесса". Викна-Одесса: Художественная интернет-галерея. Retrieved 2016-05-11.
  30. ^ "Brodsky Synagogue Is Returned to Odessa's Jewish Community". jpupdates.com. Archived from the original on 2016-02-25. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
  31. ^ Sukhopleshchenko, Kateryna (2016-02-16). "The building of the former synagogue will be returned to the Jewish community". The Odesa Times. Retrieved 2016-05-10.[permanent dead link]
  32. ^ "Одесская еврейская община готова принять здание Бродской синагоги : Одесса : Новости : Викна-Одесса". Викна-Одесса: Художественная интернет-галерея. Retrieved 2016-05-11.

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