The Synagogue in Mir
The Synagogue in Mir
Churches, katolik churches, сathedral, monasteries
An urban-type settlement of Mir is well-known far abroad due to a masterpiece of Belarusian architecture – the Mir castle. It was built in the XVI century. It is recommended to visit the museum “Mirskoy Posad”, where you can get acquainted with the history of the settlement and castle, and also learn many interesting facts about the history and culture of the Jewish people and their main buildings - synagogue and yeshiva.
The name of the settlement corresponds to the current religious situation. Mir is a place where Christians and Jews have lived in peace for centuries. Every religion has its own shrine. For example, in the heart of the town, you will find the Orthodox Church of the Holy Trinity, built in 1533, the Catholic Church of St. Nicholas, and the largest Jewish architectural ensemble, called Synagogue’s yard.
The history of the synagogue in the town of Mir
The history of the Synagogue’s yard in Mir begins in the XVIII century. A “cold” worship house is the main object of the ensemble, made in the classical style, was built in 1896. What do you think, why did the synagogue get that name? The building had no heating and was intended only for religious holidays for all the Jewish people. In the postwar period, there was a vocational school. In 2015, it was restored and a hotel “Mirskoy Posad” was opened. Here you can spend time, dine or celebrate holidays in a cozy restaurant.
A bright building has been preserved in the former merchant's synagogue, built in the XIX century. The roof of the worship house is green and the red brick facade has arches.
The Synagogue in Mir is one of the main attractions
The Synagogue’s yard also includes cheder and yeshiva – educational buildings where Jewish children were taught. The former building of the cheder (the Jewish elementary school) is now occupied by a library. The yeshiva, or institution of higher education for future rabbis, was one of the most famous in the Russian Empire times. Students studied the Talmud – a set of Jewish religious laws. The yeshiva in Mir was the second by the number of students after Volozhin. Most of the students came to Mir from foreign countries, such as Ireland, England, Canada, Germany, Africa, Belgium, and America. Nowadays, a post office occupies the former building of the famous yeshiva. Where are all the students and followers of the yeshiva? In 1939, students with the leader Finkel moved to Vilnius, later, they were evacuated in China. However, it is not the end of the story about the yeshiva in Mir. The leader and his followers created religious departments in the United States and Israel. The yeshiva with a new name “Mir” has become one of the largest Jewish institutions of higher education.
Come to the town of Mir on excursion!
What other monuments of architecture can be found in Mir? Near the Mir Castle mentioned above, visitors can see a roadside chapel of the Zaslavsky family, built in 1909. The tomb of the Svyatopolk-Mirsky dynasty is located in the English park. Its main facade is decorated with a mosaic “Christ Pantocrator”.
You may see historical objects on your own or take part in guided tours.