The history of the Jews in Anatolia started more than 2000 years ago with the arrival to this land of Romaniot, Mizrahim and Karaits followed later by Ashkenazim and Sephardic Jews. In this tour we will examine different ancient synagogues like the Sardis synagogue from the 4th century as well as the Ahrida Synagogue from the 15th century plus a number of important Jewish settlements and cemeteries. Relevant historical figures like Sabetai Sevi, the Camondo family, Donna Grasya and Joseph Nasi and their impact in the community will be explained.
We will continue with a mention of WWI and WWII in Turkey from the Jewish perspective. Sephardic cuisine and music, Judeo Spanish language, ethnographic and liturgical objects with an Ottomanish style from the museum collection will also be showcased. Finally we will explore today’s vibrant Jewish life in Turkey with its current numbers and remaining institutions.