During the Middle Ages, Vienna was home to a thriving Jewish community – one of the largest and most important ones in Europe. Famous rabbis taught and lived in the city, thus turning Vienna into a center of Jewish knowledge. The years 1420/21 put an abrupt end to Jewish culture in Vienna when Viennese Jews were expelled and/or brutally murdered. The remains of a medieval synagogue, which was excavated in 1995 at today’s so-called Judenplatz (Jewish Square), bear witness of a once thriving Jewish community and its extinction.
In the year 2000, the Museum at the Jewish Square (German: Museum Judenplatz) opened its doors to the public as one of the two branches of the Jewish Museum of Vienna. On that occasion, the Holocaust memorial for the victims of the Shoah was inaugurated, which had been crafted by Rachel Whiteread. Over the last decade, novel resources, new scientific insights, and architectural discoveries have offered fresh insights into Jewish life in medieval Vienna. As part of its new permanent exhibition, the Museum Judenplatz is proud to present an animated virtual tour of Jewish life in the 14th century that addresses many different aspects of Jewish life, ranging from the development of Jewish communities to the everyday routines of Jews in the Middle Ages. The virtual tour allows us to walk through a 14th century reconstruction of the city and showcases the Jewish festivals and customs of the time, making for a lively depiction of life in this medieval Jewish community.
For more information, please visit: http://www.jmw.at/museum-judenplatz