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Obj. ID: 8853
Jewish Architecture
  Great Beit Midrash in Jonava, Lithuania

© “Synagogues in Lithuania: A Catalogue” Archives, Photographer: Kazakauskaitė, Evelina, 2007

According to the interwar photograph, the building was based on a rectangular ground plan with a prayer hall in the east and a two-storey western part, and covered with a saddle roof on an east-west axis. Large extensions were attached on either side of the western façade. The prayer hall was lit by fourteen pointed windows: six on the eastern, five on the southern, and presumably another five on the northern side. A smaller pointed window was situated in the center of the eastern wall directly beneath the cornice – higher than the side windows. It provided a shaft of light above the Torah ark. The corners of the eastern façade were stressed by rusticated pilasters terminating in small turrets. The central bay of the gable was framed by pilasters topped with turrets; it was crowned with a Neo-Baroque pediment. This bay was pierced by three windows – a large central trefoil one and two smaller pointed side windows.

 

Today (2006) the eastern façade is concealed by later annexes, which leave only the gable with the two pilasters visible. The gable’s openings were bricked up, but are still discernible from the attic. On all the façades the pointed windows were replaced by rectangular ones and their upper parts were bricked up. The western façade can be described only in its present appearance. It has a doorway in the center, with two small rectangular windows on either side. On the first floor there are four rectangular windows – a pair above the door, and one above those of the ground floor. The main axis of the façade is stressed by the cornice, the central part of which is a segment-headed arch. The gable’s middle bay is flanked by lesenes. It is pierced by a small triangular window, but on the interior three bricked-up openings are still discernible. 

Two extensions protrude on both sides of the western façade; they have rounded, chamfered corners in their lower parts. Both have a large rectangular window in each tier and small doorways in the narrow wall facing the entrance. On the lateral northern and southern façades the extensions protrude as well, and today only the southern side has a small rectangular window. There was another entrance to the extension on the western side of the southern façade, as can be seen in a photograph from the 1930s.

 

The northern façade today has a low lean-to annex with a small porch next to the original extension. There are three tall rectangular windows, as well as a doorway and a small window in the eastern annex. 

In the interior, which is currently divided by new partition walls, four cast-iron columns that once surrounded the bimah have survived. The fluted columns stand on high pedestals. Two of them are now incorporated into the new partition walls. 

In the Soviet period the Great Beit Midrash was converted into a bakery, which operated there until 2000. Today (2006) the building stands abandoned. A plaque reads: “A monument of Jewish culture. In the interwar period the building housed a Jewish synagogue (prayer house).”

78 image(s)

sub-set tree:

Name/Title
Great Beit Midrash in Jonava | Unknown
Object Detail
Date
1850?
Synagogue active dates
Until WWII
Reconstruction dates
After 1945
Artist/ Maker
Unknown (Unknown)
Historical Origin
Unknown
Community type
Congregation
Unknown
Location
Lithuania | Kaunas County | Jonava
| 3 Sodų St.
Site
Unknown
School/Style
Historicism| Neo-Baroque
Period
Unknown
Period Detail
Collection
Unknown |
Material/Technique
Material Stucture
Material Decoration
Material Bonding
Material Inscription
Material Additions
Material Cloth
Material Lining
Tesserae Arrangement
Density
Colors
Construction material
Brick
Measurements
Height
Length
Width
Depth
Circumference
Thickness
Diameter
Weight
Axis
Panel Measurements
Iconographical Subject
Unknown |
Condition
Extant
Documented by CJA
Surveyed by CJA
Present Usage
Abandoned
Present Usage Details
Condition of Building Fabric
C (Poor)
Architectural Significance type
Historical significance: Event/Period
Historical significance: Collective Memory/Folklore
Historical significance: Person
Architectural Significance: Style
Architectural Significance: Artistic Decoration

Iron cast columns.

Urban significance
Part of shulhoyf
Significance Rating
2 (Regional)
Languages of inscription
Unknown
Type of grave
Unknown
0
Ornamentation
Custom
Contents
Codicology
Scribes
Script
Number of Lines
Ruling
Pricking
Quires
Catchwords
Hebrew Numeration
Blank Leaves
Direction/Location
Façade (main)
Endivances
Location of Torah Ark
Location of Apse
Location of Niche
Location of Reader's Desk
Location of Platform
Temp: Architecture Axis
Arrangement of Seats
Location of Women's Section
Direction Prayer
Direction Toward Jerusalem
East
Coin
Coin Series
Coin Ruler
Coin Year
Denomination
Signature
Colophon
Scribal Notes
Watermark
Hallmark
Group
Group
Group
Group
Group
Trade Mark
Binding
Decoration Program
Summary and Remarks
Suggested Reconsdivuction
History/Provenance
Main Surveys & Excavations
2007
Bibliography

Cohen-Mushlin, Aliza, Sergey Kravtsov, Vladimir Levin, Giedrė Mickūnaitė, Jurgita Šiaučiūnaitė-Verbickienė (eds.), Synagogues in Lithuania. A Catalogue, 2 vols. (Vilnius, 2010-12)
Short Name
Full Name
Volume
Page
Type
Documenter
|
Author of description
|
Architectural Drawings
|
Computer Reconsdivuction
|
Section Head
|
Language Editor
|
Donor
|
Negative/Photo. No.