Simon Attias Synagogue
The Simon Attias Synagogue is a nineteenth-century synagogue in Essaouira, Morocco, formerly known as Mogador, Morocco. It is also known as the Bet Ha-Knesset Simon Attias, M'sod Attias and Shaarei T'filah. The synagogue was built in 1882.
The synagogue forms one wing of a masonry, courtyard building that also contained the home of Simon Attias. A single, large door set into a Horseshoe arch leads into the suite of buildings. The synagogue is on the second floor. The ground floor once held shops. The third floor contained the offices of Jewish courts, which heard both commercial and personal cases. The synagogue proper is a space two stories high, with large, rounded-arch windows and a women's gallery.
The interior woodword was carved in London. The large, wooden Torah Ark featured columns and a rounded pediment, and is decorated with floral carvings. A large number of memorial lambs survived in 1993, including one to the memory of Simon Attias, who died in 1892. In 1993 the synagogue was in sound condition. In 2009 it is closed and is now undergoing restoration and conversion to a museum.
- Zack, Joel, The Synagogues of Morocco; An Architectureal and Preservation Survey, Jewish Heritage Council and World Monuments Vund, New York, August, 1993, pp. 25 ff.
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