the former

Edinburgh New Hebrew Congregation


Richmond Street Synagogue

Edinburgh, Scotland





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congregations throughout the British Isles and Gibraltar, both past and present.

It is currently uncertain whether the two congregations listed below are actually the same congregation, or whether one congregation is the successor to the other or whether they are two distinct congregations. The data is being presented in the present format, pending receipt of more definitive information.(i)

1st Congregation Data


Edinburgh New Hebrew Congregation(iii)


Richmond Court, Edinburgh(iv)

Date Formed:

By 1898(v)

Final Status:

Based upon listing in Jewish Year Books the congregation would appear to have ceased in about 1900(vi), but may have developed into the Richmond Street Synagogue (see below).


Ashkenazi Orthodox


None known


None named, but Rabbi Jacob Rabinowitz (see below) is believed to have served the congregation since about 1900.



1898-1901 - G. Shirwinter 


1898-1901 - F. Lepitz


1898-1900 - M. Levitus

1900-1901 - J. Claar

Notes & Sources - see foot of page.

2nd Congregation Data


Richmond Street Synagogue(xi)


North Richmond Street (or Richmond Street), Edinburgh(xii)

Date Formed:

The Jewish Year Book notes that the congregation was formed in 1902(xiii), but this could be incorrect and could, for example, be referring to the move to new premises and the congregation may have been the successor to the Edinburgh New Hebrew Congregation (see above)

Final Status:

Closed about 1921(xiv)


Ashkenazi Orthodox


None known

Ministers & Readers:
(To view a short profile of the minister - hold the cursor over his name.)

Rev. Jacob Mendel Teitelman - reader from about 1902 until 1911(xvii) 

Rev. Simon Anekstein - reader 1914 until date uncertain(xviii)

Rabbi Jacob Rabinowitz - minister until about 1918(xix)

Rev. Samuel Kibel - officiated at synagogue in 1919(xx)



1904-1905 - B. Bloan

1905-1908 - no data

1908-1911 - S. Shirwinter

1911-1913 - C. Rifkind

1913-1915 - H. Poliwansky

1915-1921 - P. Oppenheim


1904-1905 - S. Shirwinter

1905-1908 - no data

1908-1911 - S. Shirwinter

1911-1921 - H. Poliwansky


1909-1910 - S. Shirwinter

1910-1921 - H. Poliwansky

Notes & Sources - see foot of page.


Cemetery Information

See Edinburgh Jewish Cemeteries Information on Edinburgh home page.


Notes & Sources ( returns to text above)

  • (i) The Jewish Year Books (first published for 1896/97) lists the "1st Congregation" in the editions for 1898/99, 1899/1900 and 1900/01. There is then a break of three years and the "2nd Congregation" is then listed in the 1904/05 edition (with a note that it was founded in 1902). There is then another break of three years and the listing of the "2nd Congregation" is resumed in the editions from 1909 through 1921.

  • (ii) Reserved.

  • (iii) This was the name under which the congregation was listed in Jewish Year Books 1898/9 through 1900/01. Also see next note

  • (iv) The Jewish Experience in Scotland by Dr. Kenneth Collins (2016) p.31 states ".....in 1896. At about the same time the Edinburgh New Hebrew Congregation, in Richmond Court, reflected the customs of the most recent, and more religious, arrivals.".

  • (v) See previous note. However, it is possible that the congregation was established some years prior to the 1896 date.

  • (vi) The last listing of an Edinburgh congregation under the name New Hebrew Congregation was the 1900/1901 edition.

  • (vii) Data extracted from Jewish Year Books. Note the appearance of the unusual surname "Shirwinter" in the list of officers for both congregations. These dates are only approximate. Where an officer is first listed in a year book in a particular office, it has been assumed that his term office commenced in the year of publication of the relevant year book, which was generally towards the end of the year prior to year appearing the the title of the year book and that he continued in office until the commencement of office of his successor, unless the office was stated as vacant (e.g. if he is first in Jewish Year Books 1905 through 1910, it is assumed that he commenced office in 1904 and continued in office until 1910). However, it should be noted that this is only an assumption and accordingly the actual years of office may differ from those shown here.

  • (viii) to (x) Reserved.

  • (xi) The Jewish Year Book listings from 1904 never give a specific name for the congregation, referring to it as Synagogue or "Minor Minagogue, followed by the address Richmond Street.

  • (xii) Although the address of the congregation in the Jewish Year Books is given simply as Richmond Street, The Jewish Experience in Scotland by Dr. Kenneth Collins (2016) pp.29 and 70, refers to the congregation as being in North Richmond Street, which appears to be correct. The street does not exist today.

  • (xiii) The Jewish Year Book 1904/05.

  • (xiv) Based upon the last listing of the congregation being in the Jewish Year Book 1921. However, as there was no change in data provided in Jewish Year Books from 1915 through 1921, it is possible that the congregation ceased to exist some years earlier, notice of which had not been communicated to the publication.

  • (xv) and (xvi) Reserved.

  • (xvii) Jewish Chronicle reports. He was listed as M. Teitelman (minister) in the Jewish Year Book 1904/5 and as Rev.J. Tutelman (reader) in the Jewish Year Books 1909 and 1910.

  • (xviii) Based on Jewish Chronicle reports. Rev. Anekstein served until, at the very latest, 1918.

  • (xix) Although listed (under the name "Rabbinovitch") as minister of the congregation in Jewish Year Books 1911 through 1921, he is believed to have been a minister in Edinburgh from about 1900 and left in 1918.

  • (xx) Jewish Chronicle report of 4 July 1919.

  • (xxi) See note (vii) above.

Edinburgh Jewish Community home page

Jewish Communities and Congregations in Scotland home page

Page created: 6 October 2005
Data significantly expanded and notes added: 12 May 2020
Page most recently amended: 20 October 2022

Research and formatting by David Shulman

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