Lviv district, Lviv region
|Both Jewish cemeterys of Svirzh were destroyed. This only fragment of matseva on Old cemetery, 2019
- Russian Jewish encyclopedia
- Virtual Shtetl. Świrz
- European Jewish Cemeteries Initiative. Published by Center for Jewish art
- Albin Friedrich. Biblioteka Narodowa Polona. Zamek w Świrzu
- Wikipedia. Svirzh Castle
Svirzh (Ukrainian: Свірж; Polish: Świrz) is a village located in Lviv region.
Svirzh was first mentioned in 1416 as Szwyrzsz, and then later as Swerz (1443), Swyrz (1456), Swierz (1578) and so on. It initially belonged to the Lwуw Land in the Ruthenian Voivodeship of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth and to the Świrski noble family and was referred to as an oppidum (market town).
The castle was built in the 16th century.
|Svirzh Castle, 1892-1897
||Svirzh Castle, 2022
||Svirzh Castle, 2021
First mentions of Jews settling in Svirzh can be found in historical sources dating back to 1563. Jewish people living in the town established an organised community and had a synagogue with impressive, multi–level menorah surrounded by a depiction of the legend of origin.
There were 381 Jews living in the town in 1948 – 19.6% of the total population. After WWI, however, their number sharply decreased – it dropped to 184 in 1921, primarily due to a wave of migration to the United States.
The community lived mostly off trade, which intensified during fairs, held once a month in the interwar period. Jews also worked as blacksmiths, tailors, butchers, shoemakers, and keepers of inns selling alcoholic beverages.
Throughout the history of Svirzh, the relationship of Christians and Jews remained cordial. Their peaceful coexistence was put to a halt in July 1941, when the German army entered the town. Germans immediately started to persecute Jews and established the Jewish Council (Judenrat).
In November 1942 Jews from Svirzh were transported to ghettos in Bibrka and Peremyshlyany, where they shared the fate of other prisoners and fell victim to the Holocaust.