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Sunday, June 18, 2006

“The Synagogue” ~ A house of Worship, just a house (or both) – or a Red Herring?

Fazli writes “The Synagogue – The house occupied for many years by Peter de Saram, a Retired Korale Mudaliyar at Galle Road (Sea-Side) Kollupitiya” . This is also referenced in M. Herath. (2004 ) Colonial Kollupitiya and Its Environs, Lions Club of Colombo, p 141. Is this the same building mentioned by Cecil Wikramanayake in “Jews of Old Ceylon” (reproduced as a Blog). The location appears to be similar – maybe the inscription that Cecil alluded to could tell us more. Was the building named The Synagogue because its style was believed to resemble such a building? Was it previously used for religious purposes? Walter Fischel again suggests in the Indian situation only very large Jewish communities had synagogues – most did not. So the non-existence of a religious building does not mean that there was not an observant community in SL. Any comments – can anyone photo the building and/or the inscription? Send it to me and I’ll post it up.

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