Orthodox synagogue

The synagogue is the only synagogue in Prešov still used.

It was built in 1898 by the company Kollacsek and Wirth as a two-storey building without towers in the Moorish style based on the design of a synagogue built in the town of Tokaj. The interior features an almemor and Torah ark of a great value. The whole interior is decorated with beautiful ornamental paintings, which, despite considerable damage done to the building, have so far retained the original saturation, expressiveness and shape. The relatively austere neo-Romanesque-Moorish façades hide architectural treasures. The synagogue served its purpose until 1942. In the spring and summer of that year, together with the adjoining area, it became a meeting place for Jews of Prešov before the deportations began. Several thousands were sent to concentration camps. During the occupation of Prešov, the German army set up stables and garages in the synagogue. After the necessary repairs, the synagogue was consecrated in October 1948. Richly decorated interiors with fully preserved inventory are among the most attractive Jewish monuments in Slovakia. In period between 1989 and 1990, Jews from Los Angeles tried to acquire and transport the synagogue to the United States. In August 1991, a monument to more than 6,000 Holocaust victims from Prešov and the surrounding area was unveiled in the courtyard in front of the entrance to the synagogue in the presence of the high-ranking Slovak state officials.
The building is still used as a prayer house. The synagogue also features the so-called Barkány’s Judaica collection – exposition of the Museum of Jewish Culture. The synagogue is part of a valuable complex of Jewish communal institutions (prayer house, cheddar – Jewish school, rabbinate, ritual slaughterhouse), which were built by the Orthodox community in the area behind the city walls during the 1880s.

Informations

How to get there

You will find the synagogue hidden in a side street leading off the main street. It is a 3-minute walk from the bus stop “Trojica”. The entrance is from Okružná Street. Please, contact the administrator before visiting.

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