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Ancient mikvah discovered in Spain

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MADRID (JTA) — A 15th-century mikvah was discovered in Catalonia, Spain.

A recent archaeological dig uncovered the Jewish ritual bath at the site of the last synagogue in the old Jewish quarter of Girona. The find further highlights the importance of the town’s rich Jewish heritage.

On Monday, the Israeli ambassador to Spain, Alon Bar, attended the public presentation of the finding along with Catalonia’s culture minister, Ferran Mascarell, and Girona Mayor Carles Puigdemont.

“I commend the discovery of more evidence of a Jewish presence and want to encourage this cultural treasure in order to maintain links between our peoples,” Bar said.

Girona, near Barcelona, was known for its thriving Jewish community before the expulsion of Spain’s Jews in 1492, the year the synagogue was abandoned. The synagogue, founded in 1435, now houses the Museum of Jewish History in Girona.

Few preserved mikvahs remain in Europe.

 

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