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A cache of silver and bronze objects from the 17th to 20th c enturies—hidden away from Nazis during World War II—has been rediscovered a nd restored. These works of art are on display in America for the first tim e in Lost Treasure of the Jewish Ghetto of Venice. The MFAH presen tation is complemented by Venetian paintings from the same time period.

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Jewish residents played a valuable role in the economy of Venice from the time of the Renaissance. In 1516\, the Venetian Senate segregated Jews in a six-acre area that housed several thousand people and five synagogues\ , at the site of a former foundry (geto).

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The objects in < em>Lost Treasure of the Jewish Ghetto of Venice\, made by master craft smen using traditional silversmithing and bronze-casting methods\, represen t an in-depth look at Venetian Jewish silver from the 1600s to early 1900s. When Nazis invaded Italy in 1943\, two elderly Jewish religious leaders st ored the pieces in a secret hiding place within a Venetian synagogue. The t reasures remained untouched for more than 60 years\, until they were accide ntally discovered\, and they have now been restored by Venetian Heritage In c.

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The exhibition comprises predominantly liturgical works\, includ ing wooden Torah cases\, silver Torah crowns\, and lamps of silver and bron ze. Among the objects that relate to dining traditions are silver vegetable plates\, used during Passover Seders\, and a silver ewer and basin\, used for the washing of hands prior to eating. Also on view are Venetian paintin gs from a private collection and from the collections of the MFAH and Houst on's Sarah Campbell Blaffer Foundation.

DTEND:20130428 DTSTAMP:20140923T114714 DTSTART:20130221 GEO:29.7253082;-95.3897064 LOCATION:Museum of Fine Arts\, Houston (Beck Building)\,5601 Main Street \n Houston\, TX SEQUENCE:0 SUMMARY:Lost Treasure of the Jewish Ghetto of Venice UID:261044 END:VEVENT BEGIN:VEVENT DTEND:20130221T210000 DTSTAMP:20140923T114714 DTSTART:20130221T100000 GEO:29.7253082;-95.3897064 LOCATION:Museum of Fine Arts\, Houston (Beck Building)\,5601 Main Street \n Houston\, TX SEQUENCE:0 SUMMARY:Lost Treasure of the Jewish Ghetto of Venice UID:261045 END:VEVENT END:VCALENDAR