The City of Verdun has had a Jewish population since the early 8th Century, before long serving as the seat of the Rabbinate of Meuse.
The first synagogue opened in the city in 1805, on the site of the former convent of the Jacobins, but it was almost entirely destroyed following the bombings of the 1870 conflict. The building was then rebuilt and opened in 1875.
The fascination at the time with the Orient and the exoticism that went with it explains this so-called ‘Hispano-Moorish’-style architecture, which takes its inspiration from Islamic Spain and features the horseshoe arches, scripture, arabesques and even geometrical designs typical of the oriental style.
Having been desecrated by the Germans during World War II, the synagogue was restored with the help of Jewish members of the American Army.
A series of major renovation works have been carried out here since 1995, including the restoration of the Tables of Law which, having been destroyed during a storm in August 1958, are now back in their original position atop the building.