France / Bourgogne-Franche-Comté


Sens. Photo by François Goglins – Wikipedia

The city of Sens is famous for its cathedral and many other ancient buildings.

The Jewish presence in Sens seems to go back a very long way, as an 11th-century document mentions their expulsion in 876. Their settlement in Sens was officially recognised by King Louis VII in 1146, who also granted them the right to build a synagogue there.

The Jews of Sens were sometimes protected and sometimes expelled, depending on the royal and religious leaders. They resettled there in 1198 and opened a synagogue a decade later. Most of the Jews lived in rue de la Petite juiverie . Among them were eminent tossafists. Following the expulsion of 1306, there was no Jewish life there for the rest of the Middle Ages.

The synagogue was demolished in 1750. A small community of Senonese continued to live there, numbering around fifty on the eve of the Second World War. This number was restored in the 1960s after the Shoah, thanks to the arrival of Jews from North Africa.

Sources : Encyclopaedia Judaica

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