Erfurt Synagogue

Erfurt, Germany

The Erfurt Synagogue was built c. 1094. It is thought to be the oldest synagogue building still standing in Europe. Thanks to the extensive preservation of the original structure, it has a special place in the history of art and architecture and is among the most impressive and highly rated architectural monuments in Erfurt and Thuringia. The synagogue was constructed during the Middle Ages on the via regia, one of the major European trade routes, at the heart of the historical old quarter very close to the Merchants Bridge and the town hall. Many parts of the structure still remain today, including all four thick outer walls, the Roman­esque gemel window, the Gothic rose window and the entrance to the synagogue room.

After extensive restoration, the building was reopened in 2009. On display in the exhibition rooms is an collection of medieval treasures discovered during archaeological excavations. This includes 3,140 silver coins, 14 silver ingots, approx. 6,000 works of goldsmithery from the 13th and 14th centuries and an intricately worked wedding ring of the period, of which only two others are known to exist anywhere in the world. A mikveh (Jewish bath) has been excavated close by (13th/14th century). The Old Synagogue, the Small Synagogue and two Jewish cemeteries together form a network of historical buildings and sites which vividly portray the role of Jewish life in the history of Erfurt.



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Fischmarkt 22, Erfurt, Germany
See all sites in Erfurt


Founded: c. 1094
Category: Religious sites in Germany
Historical period: Salian Dynasty (Germany)


4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Muhammad sarosh Ali (7 months ago)
Was able to find the entrance to the museum fast enough. Had a student card, the entry was free in the museum. There were a lot of historical jewelry, coins and similar stuff inside the building. Also on display was a wedding ring from around 600 years ago. There was a restaurant open in the vicinity of the Synagogue. A special looking restaurant with bamboos used for decorating or its construction.
Marek Falkowski (10 months ago)
Very interesting place with quite detailed view of (quite short-lived) history of Jewish community in Erfurt. I really appreciated matter-of-fact explanation of their lives and why they were expelled. Treasure discovered during excavations is real treat. Frankly, I don't get why you can't take photos inside. It's silly rule. I won't be challenging your merchandise, I want to have some memories of your good museum... One star less for this.
Eric Zimmerman (11 months ago)
Historical. Beautiful. Inviting.
Eugene Rosenbloom (15 months ago)
Very small but informative.
Amir Nakar (2 years ago)
Small museum, I took the audio guide in English. Interesting, but not amazing. Well kept, but you can't take pictures. OK.
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