Jewish synagogue

The Paradesi Synagogue is the oldest active synagogue located in Kochi, Kerala, constructed in 1568. This synagogue is located in the quarter of Old Kochi known as Jew Town and is the only one of the seven synagogues in the area which is still in use. The Malabari Jews (also known as Cochin Jews) formed a prosperous trading community of Kerala, and they controlled a major portion of worldwide spice trade. In 1568, the Jews of Kerala constructed the Paradesi Synagogue adjacent to Mattancherry Palace, Cochin, now part of the Indian city of Ernakulam, on the land given to them by the Raja of Kochi. The Malabari Jews' first synagogue in Cochin was destroyed in the 16th century by the Portuguese persecution of the Jews and Nasrani people. The second, built under the protection of the Raja of Cochin along with Dutch patronage, is the present synagogue, which is still in use for worship. It is called Paradesi synagogue because it was built with Dutch patronage; this contributed to the informal name: Paradesi synagogue or \"foreign\" synagogue.\"

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