Most history of the Jews in the Netherlands was generated between the end of the sixteenth century and World War II. The Netherlands was once part of the Spanish (Catholic) empire, but in 1581 the northern Dutch provinces declared independence because they wanted to practice Protestantism, which was forbidden under Spanish rule. The ensuing religious tolerance in the Netherlands attracted many Jews, who were oppressed elsewhere in the world.

Prominent Dutch Jews include Baruch Spinoza, a 17th century philosopher; Aletta Jacobs, a 19th century feminist; and Henri Polak, who founded both the socialistic political and socialistic labour union movement. The large majority of Jews used to live in Amsterdam, where they formed one-eighth of the population.

In Maastricht:

Visit the website of the Jewish Community in Maastricht to find out about Judaism and synagoges in the Maastricht region.

In Tilburg:

Tilburg Synagoge

Willem II Straat 20, Tilburg

013-535 2271


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