Inkstand at Princes Road Synagogue

16 December 2008 to December 2009

curator placing objects in a display case

Museum of Liverpool on the road

Part of the 'on the road' programme, which toured objects to different locations while the Museum of Liverpool was constructed.

Location: Princes Road Synagogue

Synagogue Chambers, Princes Road, Liverpool, L8 1TG

This inkstand went on display in Princes Road Synagogue's introductory exhibition about the history of the Liverpool Old Hebrew Congregation. Tours of the exhibition and the Grade 1 listed building are by appointment with the synagogue only. Further details are on the Princes Road Synagogue website.

Object: Presentation inkstand from Princes Road Synagogue, 1881

Accession number MMM.1997.3

ornate silver inkstand shaped liked a building with a domed roof

Liverpool Old Hebrew Congregation presented this ornate inkstand to Reverend Professor Rabbi Prag in 1881 to celebrate his 25 years of service.

Members of the Jewish community began to settle in Liverpool from around 1750. The first purpose-built synagogue in Liverpool opened on Seel Street in 1807. As the community grew in size and status, a bigger and more impressive synagogue was built on Princes Road.

detail of front panel of inkstand with synagogue picture

Rabbi Prag was the first minister to serve in Princes Road Synagogue when it opened in 1874 and the distinctive building is engraved into this inkstand. W and G Audsley designed the building and described it as being;

"from both Eastern and Western schools of art, and blended together with enough of the eastern feeling to render it suggestive, and enough of the western severity to make it appropriate for a street building in a western town."

The front panel of the inkstand shows the outside of the synagogue and the dazzling interior is depicted on the back. Inscriptions in Hebrew and English express the thanks of the congregation for Rabbi Prag's long and distinguished service.

detail of plaque on inkstand

The plaque on the front is engraved:

"Presented to the Rev'd Professor Jacob Prag by many members of the Liverpool Old Hebrew Congregation in recognition of his services as their minister during 25 years. 5615 - 5640. 1855 - 1880. April 10th 1881"

The inkstand has been loaned with a shofar made from a ram's horn by pupils of King David Primary School, Liverpool.

Further information