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Jewish Rivne

This city was part of Poland for a long time (until 1793, and from 1920 to 1939). And although for the first time in the documents the Jews of Rivne were mentioned as early as 1566, the mass settlement of the city by Jewish families began after it came under the rule of the princes of the Lubomirski brothers. The charter of 1749 expanded the rights of Jews in Rivne, allowed the construction of synagogues and cemeteries. According to the census, in 1765 there were 890 Jews in the city.

In 1801, when Rivne was part of the Russian Empire, the number of Jews was already 2,140, ​​including 10 merchants. In the future, the Jewish community of the city grew rapidly - as of 1847, there were already 3,788 Jews in the city, and in 1897 - 13,780, which accounted for more than 56% of the total population.

By the end of the 19th century, Rivne became a major center of the Haskalah (Jewish enlightenment) movement. Private schools began to open in the city, teaching in which was conducted in Hebrew, as well as one of the first cheders (primary Jewish school) of a new type in the Russian Empire.

During the civil war in Russia, the Jewish population of Rivne repeatedly suffered from pogroms.

From 1920 to 1939 the city was under Polish jurisdiction. During this period, Rivne was considered one of the major Jewish cultural and social centers in Poland. Several Tarbut schools (secular high school), public kindergartens were opened, in which children were taught Hebrew.

According to the census conducted in Poland in 1931, 22,737 Jews lived in Rivne. Before the outbreak of World War II, Rivne was already part of the USSR and over 25,000 Jews lived in it.

German troops entered Rivne at the end of June. Only a few of the Jewish families managed to escape to the eastern regions of the USSR by that time. In December 1941, most of the Jews (more than 15,000) were shot, only those whose professions were needed by the German city authorities were left alive. The rest of the Jews were placed in the ghetto and subjected to numerous requisitions: money, jewelry, furniture, clothes were confiscated. In July 1942, the Germans liquidated the ghetto in Rivne - the prisoners were shot near Kostopil.

After the liberation of Rivne by Soviet troops in 1944, Jews gradually began to return to the city, having been evacuated to the east of the country before the occupation. The Jewish community was restored, it then numbered about 1200 people. The synagogue also began to function.

Most of the Jews living in Rivne in the 1970-90s left for Israel and the countries of the West. Today the city has a small Jewish community, a synagogue and a Sunday school.