Jewish Heritage Report
Vol. II, Nos. 1-2 / Spring-Summer 1998
Spanish Synagogue in Prague

Prague’s Spanish Synagogue Enters Final Restoration Phase
The Jewish Museum in Prague reports that building and restoration work in the 19th-century Spanish Synagogue has now entered the final phase.  At present, work is being completed on the restoration of protected murals and on the painting of the whole area of the synagogue.  Window-panes have been restored and refitted, and work is continuing on the restoration of the Torah Ark.  New wooden panels are being installed in the main nave and restorers are busy applying new stencil decoration on the basis of the original.

In 1935, the south section of the synagogue was enlarged with an extension (the area behind the front entrance to the synagogue), which until the Second World War, was used as a winter synagogue.  Repair work is also taking place in this significant example of Modern synagogue design.  A new heating system is being installed, interior finishes are being restored, and the floor Torah Ark is being repaired.  After the reopening, the hall and the small gallery of the winter synagogue will be used to house temporary exhibitions.

As part of the overall refurbishment of the Spanish Synagogue, the rare organ dating from 1880 is also being restored and repaired.  After it has been installed, it will once again be used at planned concerts.

Prague, Czech Republic.  Spanish Synagogue interior
finishes prior to restoration.  Photo:  Ruth E. Gruber, 1990

 

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