Czech 10 Stars project: Boskovice

 

Boskovice, north of Brno, has one of the most extensive and intact old Jewish quarters in central Europe. Local activists and the town itself have been working to preserve (and promote) it since the fall of communism. A summer festival was started in the early 1990s to raise money for preservation of the Jewish quarter.

The Synagogue is the only surviving synagogue in the quarter. It was originally built in 1639  by the Italian-born builder Silvestr Fiota di Chiavenna. Then it was enlarged in 1698. The elborate wall decorations date from the early 18th Century, though they were renovated after a fire in 1772. The synagogue and the wall paintings were restored, and the building reopened as a Jewish museum in 2001.

The Jewish Town Hall, or Municipal House (Bílkova No. 600) was documented in 1824. After refurbishing in 1849, the building housed the District Office (until 1855), then the Jewish Community Office and the Jewish German School (until 1920).

The permanent 10 Stars exhibit, installed both in the Municipal House and the Synagogue, deals with Former Jewish Quarters (Ghettos) in Czech Lands.

The Jewish cemetery is an easy walk away and includes gravestones dating from the 17th century.

See the 10 Stars page for Boskovice, with more photos