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IV Synagogue Architecture and Ornamentation

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Chapter Summary

Avi-Yonah proposed three types of synagogue plans based on chronology: (1) the earliest - the Galilean and Golan type, dating from the second to the third centuries CE, with an ornamental façade and a portable wooden construction serving as the Torah Shrine; (2) the transitional type, from the fourth and fifth centuries CE, sometimes called 'broadhouse'. In this type three new principles appear: a fixed Torah Shrine in the Jerusalem-oriented wall; changes in the style of ornamentation - from relief to increased use of mosaic pavements; (3) the latest type, dated to the fifth to eighth centuries CE, with a basilical plan and mosaic pavements. This chapter provides characteristic features and a comparison of Galilean and Golan Synagogues.

Keywords:façade; Galilean synagogues; Golan synagogues; synagogue architecture; synagogue ornamentation; Torah Shrine



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