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The 1615 pediment

Bouxwiller has the privilege of possessing, on the arch of a cellar entrance, rue du Canal, one of the oldest Hebrew inscriptions in Alsace. Unlike most inscriptions, perpetuating the name of the initial owner, we have here the reminder of a specific day in the year 1615, probably corresponding to an inauguration. Hypothesis reinforced by the initials Zaïn - Lamed, for "Zekher Lemikdash" , "Remembrance of the Temple (destroyed)", reference to the obligation to temper, by this reminder, the joy of a happy event. Entrance to a Mikwe (ritual bath), a Beth Midrash (house of study)? There is nothing to tell.


The inscription on the pediment and its transcription

(to the right)

This inscription risked being damaged or disappearing in the renovation of the facade, planned by the owner, Mr. Sorg. The Association of Friends of the Judeo-Alsacien Museum of Bouxwiller ( AMJAB ), whose statutory objectives also cover the protection of the Judaism heritage of Alsace, proposed in 2001 to bring in - at its expense - a specialist, not only to restore the inscription covered with paint, but also to consolidate and reconstitute all the stone work: the arch was dislocated from year to year and the uprights, corroded by humidity, fell into dust...


The AMJAB entrusted this work to an old friend: Laurent Quilici, master stonemason, "Meilleur Ouvrier de France", "Compagnon du Devoir"... He had already cut in the solid sandstone the splendid replicas of the tombstones of 'Ettendorf, dated 1608 and 1610, visible in the Museum. With meticulousness, masterfully, Laurent Quilici led this restoration, under the admiring eye of the neighborhood kids, to the greatest satisfaction of Mr. Sorg... and the AMJAB. Happy example of a collaboration between an owner aware of the value of these traces of Judaism and an Association ready to provide support...

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