Between the 16th and the first half of the 17th centuries, when the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth was one of the largest and most tolerant countries in Europe, a lot of Jews settled in Poland. The country was known as paradisus Iudaeorum (Latin for “Paradise for the Jews”). Just before World War II, more than 3.3 million Jews still lived here, at that time the largest Jewish population of Europe and second largest in the world. Also around Łancut many Jews lived and left there traces. They built a wonderful synagogue in the heart of the centre.
The Baroque synagogue in Łańcut built in 1761 is one of the most spectacular synagogues preserved in Central Europe. The temple was financed by Stanisław Lubomirski, the leading protector of Jews in Łańcut. It is located on the Jan III Sobieski square near the castle of the Lubomirski and Potocki families.
Uncover the beautiful interior of the synagogue, decorated with 18th century ornaments, wall paintings and stucco, depicting biblical scenes, floral motifs, animal, and Hebrew inscriptions. There is also authentic bimah. Pay attention to numerous gravestones, collected from Jewish cemeteries which were damaged by the Nazis.
The city of Łańcut is located on the Chassidic Route linking 30 towns in the Podkarpackie and Lubelskie Voivodships. Following this route you will see the most valuable monuments of Jewish culture in south-eastern Poland. A map of the Chassidic Route can be found here.
In Łańcut there are two Jewish cemeteries. The older one, founded in the 17th century, is located on a hill on Moniuszko Street. Only a few gravestones or their fragments preserved till today. There are also two ohalim, structures covering some Jewish grave as a sign of prominence of the person buried within. The bigger ohel protects the tomb of the deceased in 1827 Rabbi Naftali Zvi of Ropshitz. The second ohel covers the grave of Eleazar Szapiro, Rabbi in Łańcut from the year 1841.
The new Jewish Kirkut (Cemetery) was founded in the year 1860 on Traugutta Street. A part of the gravestones of these cemeteries is stored inside the synagogue.
The owner of the Łańcut synagogue and cemeteries is the Foundation for Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Poland.
Jan III Sobieski Square 16
You can visit the synagogue everyday from May till September. Off-season you should contact the Foundation for Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Poland by mail: (e-mail: email@example.com).
Foundation for Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Poland (Fundacja Ochrony Dziedzictwa Żydowskiego)
2/44 Grzybowska Street