Great Synagogue (Iași)

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The Great Synagogue

The Great Synagogue of Iași (Romanian: Sinagoga Mare) was built in 1671 and is the oldest surviving synagogue in Romania.[1] It is listed in the National Register of Historic Monuments.[2]

The building has round-arched windows, and two wings. One wing is two stories high and capped by a barrel-vaulted ceiling. The other is a tall, single-story hall with a 32' diameter dome capped with a lantern. The dome was added to the building in the early 20th century.[3]

Of the more than 110 synagogues in Iași before World War II, only the Great Synagogue remains as a result of the Holocaust.[4] It is a free standing building in a small garden off Cucu Street (once called Sinagogilor Street for the many synagogues located on it) just north of the city center in the old Jewish neighbourhood of Târgu Cucului. The synagogue underwent major renovations in 1761, 1822 and 1864. It was partly restored in the 1970s and a major restoration was begun in 2010.[5] The Women's Gallery houses a small museum of the Jewish community of Iași. The synagogue is one of only two which continues to serve the dwindling Jewish community of Iași.


  1. ^ Samuel Gruber's Jewish Art & Monuments, Romania: Iași Synagogue in Restoration, May 31, 2010 [1]
  2. ^ The Romanian Register of Historical Monuments (page 1616, entry 1248)
  3. ^ Synagogues of Romania, Aristide Streja, Lucian Schwarz, Editura Hasefer, 1997, p. 111.
  4. ^ Itic Svart-Kara (1997). "Contributions to the History of Jews in Iaşi". Bucharest. pp. 65–88. Retrieved 2011-07-11. 
  5. ^ Ruth Elen Gruber (2010-05-20). "Romania -- Historic synagogue in Iaşi under restoration". Retrieved 2011-07-11. 

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Coordinates: 47°09′55.90″N 27°35′31.80″E / 47.1655278°N 27.5921667°E / 47.1655278; 27.5921667