Fortifications and the Synagogue: The Fortress of Babylon and the Ben Ezra Synagogue, Cairo

Fortifications and the Synagogue: The Fortress of Babylon and the Ben Ezra Synagogue, Cairo

by Phyllis Lambert
     
 

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The Ben Ezra Synagogue, in Cairo, is best known as the synogogue in which the 'Cairo Geniza' was found—an astonishingly rich store of ancient books, manuscripts, correspondences, and records dating back to the tenth century. Copiously illustrated with plans, engravings, and photographs, Fortifications and the Synagogue describes the recent restoration

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Overview

The Ben Ezra Synagogue, in Cairo, is best known as the synogogue in which the 'Cairo Geniza' was found—an astonishingly rich store of ancient books, manuscripts, correspondences, and records dating back to the tenth century. Copiously illustrated with plans, engravings, and photographs, Fortifications and the Synagogue describes the recent restoration of this ancient synagogue, as well as the historical and archaeological research essential to its preservation and to an understanding of the religious communities that founded modern Cairo. The work is unprecedented in its comprehensive examination of the subject, presenting the first measured survey and photographic study of the fortress and synagogue, the first thorough study of the Geniza manuscripts, and a complete history of the synagogue from the Geniza period to the present.

Editorial Reviews

Jewish Book World
Fortifications and the Synagogue is a book worth acquiring and reading and a significant contribution to the history of the Jews of Egypt.
George Cohen
Cairo's Ben Ezra Synagogue, for a millennium the site of Jewish worship, dates back to around 950, the probable date of its probable original foundations, though the present structure was rebuilt in 1892. The synagogue is best known for its Geniza, an archive that contained 200,000 fragments of vellum, parchment, and paper documents that form an important source for the medieval history of the Mediterranean. They constitute a collection of discarded religious and secular texts, including manuscript fragments of the Bible, the Talmud, and miscellaneous correspondence. The Fortress of Babylon (site of the synagogue), known today as Old Cairo, is still defined by its Roman walls and towers, though it is now partly buried or demolished. This opulent book, with 45 color and 160 black-and-white photographs and countless architectural drawings, is the story of the restoration of the synagogue from January 1988, to Aug_. 1991. The text, edited by Lambert, is written by a team of renowned archaeologists, architects, and historians and is unprecedented in its study of the subject.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780297833390
Publisher:
Orion Publishing Group, Limited
Publication date:
04/01/1995
Pages:
240

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