Obbene Shul


Obbene ShulAfter the Great Synagogue had been built in 1671 it soon proved too small. Which is why a start was soon made on a Second Synagogue, known as the Obbene Shul. It takes its name from its location on the upper (obben) floor.

The area beneath the synagogue began life as a meat market. This originally wooden structure was located in the inner courtyard on Nieuwe Amstelstraat, which had been purchased by the Jewish community in 1671.

In 1685 the wooden building was demolished and a long, narrow building erected in its place. The area below served once again as a meat market, and the room above as a synagogue.

Plattegrond van de situatie in 1685

The synagogue had two galleries one above the other, both for men rather than women. The synagogue originally seated 390.

Noticeably fewer illustrations of the Obbene Shul are known than of the Great Synagogue.
This is because the people who attended the Obbene Shul (like the Dritt Shul) were from less affluent sections of society than those who went to the Great Synagogue.

synagogedienst in Obbene Sjoel, Bernard Picart, 1725The best known depiction is an engraving by Bernard Picart of 1725 titled Yom Kippur among the Ashkenazi Jews.

The upper gallery was soon extended along the back wall to the left side. Later, seating was arranged for women on the lower gallery.

As synagogue attendance dropped and Jews moved to the new suburbs in the early twentieth century, the Obbene Shul fell into disuse and from 1924 served principally as a classroom for the Tiferet Bachurim religious society.

The seventeenth-century Ark and the galleries were plundered during the Second World War.

Foto gemaakt tijdens de opmeting van de Obbene en de Dritt Sjoel, 1963 In 1966 the building was restored by architect J. Schippers and the galleries were rebuilt.

 When the building was rebuilt as a museum in 1976-1987 the floor was lowered. The two modern galleries on the right and back walls are lower than their original predecessors.

The Obbene Shul served from 1987 till 2005 as the museum shop and café.

In 2006 the Obbene Shul was completely renovated and now houses the new JHM Children's Museum.

De Obbene Sjoel werd in 1987 museumcafe en -shop