William A. Rosenthall Judaica Collection, Special Collections, College of Charleston

PILLAGE AND PLUNDER. Since the fifth century C.E., the Great Synagogue served as the primary place of Jewish worship in Aleppo. It housed the Aleppo Codex for nearly 600 years. This French postcard shows the synagogue’s open-air courtyard where prayer services took place when the weather was warm. Torah scrolls were housed in arched arks on the far side of the courtyard; one is seen in the left background of the postcard through the large white archway. In the postcard’s center stands a bema or teivah, a raised platform used for reading Torah scrolls.