The Land of the Jews and the Cabrais birthplace, Belmonte is a part of a defensive line which, prior to the signature of the Alcanizes Treaty in 1297, protected Alto Côa.
Central Portugal’s Museums are waiting for you all year long! Today we will show you Belmonte Jewish Museum, which a major success case. In less than 2 years it has already been visited by over 16.000 people.
Known since 1214, the Castelo Branco Jewish community, associated with commercial and craft traditions, quickly developed.
In the wool city, Jews and New Christians were closely connected with the development of the wool industry and some members of this community stood out during the Age of Discovery. Two of them were Master José Vizinho and Francisco Faleiro, renowned Covilhã cosmographers.
A part of the Jewries Rout, which also includes Belmonte, Covilhã, Gouveia, Linhares da Beira, Celorico da Beira, Trancoso, Pinhel and Penamacor, the Jewry of Guarda is one of the most genuine corners of the medieval city.
The construction of the Christian Portugal has led the former Portuguese kings to have contact with the existing Jewish communities, accepting their help (they had a decisive role on King Afonso Henriques’s side when Lisbon was taken from the moors in 1147) and giving them some benefits as a reward for their help in the
Come and discover Portuguese Jewish History and tradition in Beira lands!
Among the mediaeval streets which cross the castle area, you will discover traces of the old Penamacor Jewry.
Belmonte is, perhaps, the Portuguese town with the strongest Jewish presence and it stands out because it was a unique case, within the Iberian Peninsula, where Hebrew culture and tradition have lasted since the early 16th century until today.
A very rare example of a medieval Jewish temple and of pre- Renaissance Portuguese art, the Tomar Synagogue is the only one of its kind from this period to have been fully preserved in Portugal. It was built in the mid-15th century specifically for religious purposes, evidence of the financial resources of the resident Jewish community
The medieval town of Trancoso is strongly influenced by its ancient Jewish presence.