The long-derelict 19th century synagogue in Kőszeg, western Hungary, is reopening to the public after a full-scale renovation that took place over the past two years. The synagogue, which is owned by the state, will become a cultural centre but also will be able to be used for religious services.
JHE’s Ruth Ellen Gruber is on the program of its first public event, Sunday August 28-29 — the opening of an exhibition about Philip (Fülöp) Schey (1798-1881), a Jewish philanthropist born in Kőszeg (known in German as Güns), who had grown rich as a textile merchant and later became a banker for the Hapsburgs. In 1859, Emperor Franz Joseph raised Schey to the Hungarian nobility — he was the first Jew to receive this honor and took the title Philip Schey von Koromla.
The exhibit is called “A Kőszeg Success Story: the Schey Family,” and it presents Philip Schey’s family, life and work: his economic and philanthropic activities, as well as his founding of institutions.
It begins at 3 p.m. and is organized by iAsk — the Institute of Advanced Studies in Kőszeg, which has played a role in the restoration of the building.
The opening is part of a two-day series of events, “Synagogue Week in Kőszeg,” including concerts, lectures, guided tours, and book presentations.
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