Still in use today, the cemetery in Via Sorio is the seventh of the Jewish burial grounds which have been identified in the history of Padua. It was opened in 1864 and replaced a burial ground near the previous Jewish cemeteries – around Via Campagnola – which had been in use from 1820 – 1864.
Alongside numerous tombstones, most of which are traditional and tidy-looking, stand several more monumental tombs. These are built in chapel or aedicule form, reflecting late 19th century and early 20th century tastes, and are typical of the Jewish emancipation era.
In 1955, a mass grave was dug, in order to transfer remains from the old cemetery in the Codalunga area, which had been destroyed when Maximilian of Hapsburg’s army invaded the city in 1509. A tombstone commemorates the notable figures Jeuda Mintz, head of Padua’s first yeshivah from 1460 on, and Don Itzchaq Abravanel, who died in Venice and was buried in Padua in 1508.
Illustrious personages buried in Via Sorio include Rabbi Samuel David Luzzatto, SHaDaL (1800-1865). He was a great academic and exegete and one of the leading teachers at the Rabbinical College of Lombardy-Venetia, which opened in Padua in 1829. His vast output includes works of textual commentary, translation and grammar, and he also supported and posthumously published works by other authors.
Via Sorio, 124
Guided tours can be booked through the Jewish Community of Padua
tel. +39 049 8751106