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CULTURE Florence to Remember the 1966 Flood Which Destroyed over 90 Torah Scrolls  

floodBy Pagine Ebraiche staff
On November 4, 1966, after a long period of rain the Arno river flooded Florence causing widespread devastation. Over 100 people were killed and many monuments and art collections were destroyed.
Not being spared the Jewish community was deeply affected as well. The flood waters reached the synagogue and damaged 92 Torah scrolls and 15,000 books and documents which belonged to the Rabbinical School of Florence. The vast majority of the Torah scrolls were considered beyond repair and buried in the Jewish cemetery of the city, according to the Jewish tradition.
The Community will mark the 50th anniversary of the flood with an exhibit at the National Library of Florence with pictures and original documents. Among the organizers is the Fondazione per I Beni Culturali Ebraici in Italia (Foundation for the Jewish Cultural Heritage in Italy), and the Opera del Tempio Ebraico di Firenze, an organization pivotal to the preservation and restoration of Jewish sites in the region.  
The Opera, headed by architect Renzo Funaro, is also carrying on the restoration of the Jewish cemetery.
The exhibition, which will be inaugurated in the fall, will be one of the many initiatives to commemorate the flood.