Love of the Land

For the week ending 5 September 2009 / 15 Elul 5769

Tsefat The Abuhav Synagogue

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
The Color of HeavenArtscroll

The Abuhav Synagogue in the Old City of Tsefat has a fascinating background.

Rabbi Yitzchak Abuhav, author of the classic Menorat Hama’or who lived in Spain during the 14th century, was the owner of a Sefer Torah which tradition says was brought with the victims of the Spanish expulsion and ended up in Tsefat. There it was housed in a synagogue that was given the name Abuhav.

In the earthquake of 1759, which destroyed all the buildings in Tsefat, the only survivor was the wall of the Abuhav Synagogue — which contained the Holy Ark and the Abuhav Sefer Torah in perfect condition.

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