The Foundation for Jewish Heritage has been supporting the work of the Kiriaty Foundation and the local Jewish community in seeking to preserve the astonishingly rich Jewish heritage of Izmir, formerly Smyrna, in Turkey. The Jewish story in Izmir goes back over 2,000 years and the community was substantially increased when it became home to many thousands of Jews expelled from Spain post-1492.
The Kiriaty Foundation has recently completed a beautiful publication presenting the conclusions of a six year project focused on preserving the textiles of the community. These were used as decoration as part of synagogue worship in a number of the striking, centuries-old, historic synagogues of the city. The book is called ‘A Legacy Revealed – The Izmir Collection of Ceremonial Synagogue Textiles’, written by Prof Bracha Yaniv and Dr Tamar Shadmi of Bar-Ilan University, and it has been produced in English, Turkish and Hebrew.
The Kiriaty Foundation is eager to ensure the book is widely read. They have asked us to publicise it, which we are delighted to do, and the English version can be read below.
The Kiriaty Foundation owns the copyright.