Portekiz Synagogue

Konak / İzmir

Portekiz Synagogue

The Portugal Synagogue is the only synagogue in Izmir which identifies the origin of its founders in its name. It is one of the six synagogues known to have existed in the period of Chief Rabbi Joseph Escapa, i.e., as of 1620s. It is referred to be the largest synagogue in Izmir for its period.

This synagogue, which became the focus of Sabbatai Zvi's 'messiah movement' in the 19h century, has witnessed a series of historical events. The Portugal Synagogue, considered to be the stronghold of the Sabbatai opponents, closed its doors to Sabbatai Zvi when his movement expanded. Years later, Sabbatai and his supporters broke into the synagogue and chased the rabbis, who were the leaders of their opponents.

Sabbatai Zvi, who had previously declared himself 'the Messiah of the Jews', also declared the day liberation with this raid, and the Portugal Synagogue became the center of the Sabbataist movement with new participants.

The Portugal Synagogue, which burned down in 1976, was restored in 2018 to serve as a social activities center.


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