Caption=Town hall of Kuldīga
othernames= _de. Goldingen
Kuldīga (audio|Kuldigapronunc.ogg|pronunciation) is a city in western
Latvia. It is the center of Kuldigas Countywith a population of approximately 13,500.
Kuldīga was first mentioned in 1242. It joined the
Hanseatic Leaguein 1368. In the 17th century, Kuldīga (along with Jelgava("Mitau") was one of the capitals of the Duchy of Courland.
The main sight in Kuldīga is
Ventas rumba, a 249-meter wide natural rapidwhich is the widest in Europe.
One of the largest buildings in Kuldiga (1905 street 6) known for its splendorous interior in marble with gilded details, is the Jewish synagogue. Documents in ancient Hebrew describing the construction of the building in 1875 are located in the Kuldiga District Museum. It was built during the reign of the tsar Alexander II and was the centre of a vibrant Jewish community. The synagogue was part of a larger complex with an adjacent prayer house, the Jewish sepulchre, and Jewish school, which can still be seen today. The Jewish community had been active since the settlement in the duchy of Courtland in the 16th century. Most of the first immigrants came from north western German territories, but around the mid-17th century unrest in Poland caused an influx of Jews from that region. By the 18th century, the Jewish population of Kurzeme played an active role in the economic life of the province. In 1941 the synagogue became a trap when all of Kuldigas’ Jews were imprisoned in the synagogue and held there for several days by Nazis and Latvian sympathizers, before being divided into smaller groups and shot in the nearby forests. Shortly after the extermination of Jews, Germans set up food storage in the synagogue. Later during the first years of the Soviet Union a grain house was set up inside, and later abandoned for a couple of years. In 1958 the synagogue was transformed into the cinema Kurzeme. It contained 450 seats and a reading room. It remained a cinema until 2003, after the reinstatement of Latvian independence. In later years there was also a café and night club. In the present there are plans for of its transformation into the central library of Kuldiga.
* [http://www.kuldiga.lv Kuldiga webpage]
* [http://www.visit.kuldiga.lv/?setlang=2 For Visitors]
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Look at other dictionaries:
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Kuldiga — Original name in latin Kuldga Name in other language Goldingen, Kuldiga, Kuldigas, Kuldyga, Kuldga, Kuldgas, Кулдига State code LV Continent/City Europe/Riga longitude 56.97399 latitude 21.95721 altitude 28 Population 13289 Date 2013 06 28 … Cities with a population over 1000 database
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