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Historical sights

Turnov the synagogue

At present, several significant artifacts remind the Jewish commune in Turnov. Firstly it is the object of baroque synagogue, incorporated into matrix of the Jewish quarter in Krajířova street. Presence of the Jewish nation in area of Turnov is documented from beginning of 16th century. With respect to incompleteness of written resources from that period, first reference to Jews in Turnov originates from the year 1527, when a Jewish hatter Mojžíš is mentioned. The community, which lived in Turnov in that time, had their houses scattered throughout the town, and did not form a single quarter.

From a bought woody house in the Jičínská street they built the first known synagogue in Turnov (1627) and founded own cemetery (1625). But shortly after a small Jewish enclave began to constitute along the Hruštická street, where the synagogue was moved in 1636. However, a fire in the year 1643 devoured all houses there. A new ghetto was built near Trávnice, where in 1647 a third synagogue appeared. By unfortunate coincidence this ghetto was sixty years later destroyed by a fire, too. During first half of 18th century appears in Trávnice, along the stream of Malá Jizera, another isolated Jewish ghetto. Its today's groundplan corresponds with small varieties only to that from the end of 18th century. In that time it had 21 houses and (not numbered) brick synagogue, finished in the very early January 1719. Later more houses were built around the synagogue. Since November 2008, its building serves as a cultural room and as a seasonal exposition of Jewish culture in the region.

The cemetery, another remnant of the rich former times of local Jews, suffered mainly at the end of 80ties of 20th century due to construction of road scaffold-bridge. Then one of the bridgings obscured northern part of cemetery. In years 1995–2010 proceeded gradual revitalization of the place. Gravestones, preserved in number of 560 pieces and their fragments, were expertly restored, as well as cemetery's wall and house, in which was opened at May 8th, 2002 exposition about history of Jews in Turnov and surroundings. Inside the house a unique stone table for catharsis of the deceased has been preserved.

GPS position

N 50° 35.244', E 15° 9.237'



Geopark UNESCO Český ráj
Jiří Vlasák