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Paradesi Synagogue, Kochi


Paradesi Synagogue or the Jewish Synagogue boasts to be the oldest synagogue in the Commonwealth Nations. It also happens to be the oldest active synagogue. Built in 1568 by the Malabar Yehudan, the place has withstood the ravages of time. The synagogue is located in the Jew Town that forms a part of Fort Kochi. Paradesi Synagogue houses the famous Scrolls of the Law. It also is the proud owner of a number of gifted gold crowns, brass-raised pulpit and Belgian glass chandeliers. Visitors can also see the copper plates of privileges that were received by Joseph Rabban. The writings on the plates are in Tamil.

The synagogue is a supreme example of ancient architecture; the floor of the place is made of hand-painted porcelain tiles. Each of these tiles is unique in its craftsmanship and art. One can see an oriental rug spread on the floor; the rug was a gift from the last Ethiopian Emperor.


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