The Synagogue

“For the first time I could really envision what archaeological ruins must have looked like. Entering that synagogue is like traveling thru time.” – A visitor to Nazareth Village.

While tourists visit many ruins of synagogues in the Holy Land, Nazareth Village is the only place where they get to see what these ruins looked like where they were still in use. It is small comparing it to most synagogues, like the one in Capharnaum, but as it is modeled after the one discovered in Masada, its size meets the needs of such a small community of a fortress. Ruins of synagogues of this size can also be found in Herodium, Gamla, and Magdala which is the latest first century synagogue to be discovered.

The completed synagogue at Nazareth Village - exterior. Completely made of only first century materials including stone, wood, and a mud mixture

The completed synagogue at Nazareth Village – exterior

 

The interior of the synagogue. The stone columns support the beams of wood on top of which a wall is built. This wall has windows in it, and it supports the roof for the middle part of the synagogue.

The interior

 

Man sitting outside the synagogue

Man standing outside the synagogue with the door half closed

The seats in the synagogue are in the form of stone steps forming benches. The highest seats are agains the walls of the synagogue while the lowest is closer to the center of the synagogue

The seats

 

Majd Shufani