Segments in this Video

Inspiration for this Film (00:54)


The film maker was inspired to shoot a documentary on the Sephardic history in Segovia after discovering restoration projects in the old Jewish quarter.

Toledo: The Jerusalem of Spain (02:07)

The Sephardic Jewish community contributed to a rich cultural history in Toledo. The first Jewish settlers came at the time of the construction of the Temple of Solomon in search of raw materials.

Challenges in Identifying Jewish Structures (04:11)

There are few traces of a Jewish past in modern Segovia. Street signs and business names are the only outwardly visible clues marking a historical Jewish neighborhood. Some architectural features such as arches remain within buildings.

Educating the Public (02:51)

A strong network of individuals and organizations promote public exposure of Spain's Jewish history. We take a tour through an interpretative center in Segovia with a non-Jewish staff. The emphasis of the exhibit is on education, remembrance and respect.

Renewed Interest Among Spaniards (01:43)

Since the shift to democracy in 1980, many Spanish people are interested in determining whether or not they have Jewish ancestry based on family customs passed down over generations.

Medieval Persecution and Segregation (03:27)

From their arrival to Segovia in the 11th or 12th century to the 1400s, the Jewish community was integrated in all parts of the city. In 1412 they were ordered to relocate outside the city walls. Many people converted from Judaism to Christianity as a consequence. The restoration of Segovia's first major synagogue in the Corpus Christi church serves as a reminder of the Jewish ancestry of many Segovians.

Spanish Architecture: a Fusion of Elements (03:13)

Spanish art and architecture are influenced by the confluence of Muslim, Christian and Jewish culture. Isolating one specific cultural or religious style is complicated as a result.

Restoration Challenges (01:54)

During the 20th century, a renewed interest in Jewish history resulted in projects to uncover and restore old structures. A major challenge has been working with antiquated materials.

Tour of a Restored Jewish Home (03:02)

We tour a restored Jewish home, including a cellar that had been sealed off for 500 years. Judaism, Christianity and Islam are represented in the finished project, revealing a renewed interest in multi-cultural medieval Segovia among modern residents.

Exile and Return (03:50)

Historical accounts of the 1492 Sephardic Jewish exile of Segovia and Spain have inspired current authors to give a voice to the exiled. The community retained their language and customs abroad over centuries, facilitating a return to Spain among some members.

Jewish Community in Contemporary Spain (01:56)

Prior to the 1492 Expulsion, Segovia had approximately 300 Jewish families and five Synagogues. Today there are 40,000 Jews living in thirteen communities in Spain.

Credits: The Sephardic Legacy of Segovia, Spain: Pentimento of the Past (02:12)

Credits: The Sephardic Legacy of Segovia, Spain: Pentimento of the Past

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The Sephardic Legacy of Segovia, Spain: Pentimento of the Past

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Jewish culture has been present in Spain for centuries, but it is not always visible. In the ancient city of Segovia, layers of urban development have largely concealed a rich Sephardic heritage. This program explores that legacy and documents recovery and restoration efforts in Segovia’s Jewish quarter. Combining interviews with scholars, historians, and residents with footage of medieval architectural features, the film vividly illustrates the long-term influence of the city’s age-old Jewish community. Special attention is given to the cultural impact of the Edict of Expulsion in 1492—an event that interrupted but did not erase the Sephardic tradition in Spain. (Portions in Spanish with English subtitles, 33 minutes)

Length: 34 minutes

Item#: BVL36488

ISBN: 978-1-4213-6028-7

Copyright date: ©2006

Closed Captioned

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