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DRAGUIGNAN: (Var département, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azu région) PDF Print E-mail

The 1999 population was 32,829. The city is 42 km from St. Tropez and 80 km from Nice. The existence of this important Jewish community was known toward the end of the 13th century and numbered 250 persons in 14th century with numerous Jewish doctors. The poet Isaac Gorni, who visited it in the beginning of the fourteenth century, complained bitterly of the rich Jews of Draguignan, who did not know enough to appreciate his talent. He called the place "dragon's lair". In 1427 the Jews of Draguignan were persecuted and compelled to wear a badge in the shape of a wheel on pain of being fined twenty-five silver marks. In 1475, however, they were authorized to maintain a synagogue on condition of paying four pounds of wax annually to the Bishop of Fréjus.  In 1489, the Jews of Draguignan were the first victims of expulsion from Provence. This is a community principally composed of North Africa Jews now. Synagogue, Centre Communautaire, ACI - 15, rue de l'Observance - 83300 DRAGUIGNAN [January 2008]


A cemetery exists in Draguignan and may be part of the municipal cemetery. [January 2008]

Rhone American Cemetery and Memorial: This American WWII cemetery may have Jewish burials. The cemetery covers 12 acres within the city of Draguignan and is named for the Rhone river and its watershed, where most of most of those interred fought and died. The cemetery adjoins the civilian cemetery of the city of Draguignan. It was started during WWII combat operations in 1944, with the memorials, landscaping, and improvements added after the war. The cemetery was built and is operated by the US Government, with support from France. Those interred died mostly in the summer of 1944 during Operation Dragoon, the Allied invasion of Southern France from the Mediterranean, which followed the Allied invasion of Normandy. [January 2008]

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