Skip to main content



TESCHEN (Czech český Těšín, Pol. Cieszyn), town in Silesia. Capital of the duchy of Teschen in the Middle Ages, Teschen was divided between Czechoslovakia and Poland in 1920, incorporated entirely in Poland in 1938, and redivided in 1945. Jews are mentioned in connection with the town at the end of the 14th century. It used to be mistakenly assumed that the oldest tombstone in the Jewish cemetery dated from 1392. The first Jew received permission to settle there in 1575, and in 1640 the Jewish customs collector of the duchess was permitted to acquire a cemetery for the community. In 1785 the cemetery was sold to the 88 *Familiants of the district. The community of *Ostrava buried their dead there until 1872. In 1848 the authorities expelled some of the Jews living in the town, and those living in the vicinity were attacked by the populace. Before the plebiscite determining the future of the town was held in 1918, Polish nationalists threatened the Jews with pogroms if they voted for Czechoslovakia; the Czechoslovakian government dispatched Alfred *Fuchs, then a Czecho-Jewish functionary (see Svaz *čechů-židů) to influence the Jews in favor of the Czechs. There were 1,313 Jews in the town (8.5% of the total population) in 1890; 1,666 (9%) in 1900, 2,063 (10%) in 1910, and 1,148 (10.8%) in 1930. In the Polish part of the town (Cieszyn) the Jewish community numbered 1,591 (10.4% of the total population) in 1921.

Before the outbreak of World War ii the community had two synagogues, two cemeteries, and a communal center. Two representatives of the Jewish National Party were returned to the municipal council in May 1938. The community was dissolved in September 1939. The Jews remaining there in 1943 were deported to death camps. A small congregation was reestablished after World War ii, affiliated in 1959 to the Ostrava community.


Bondy-Dworský, no. 880, 660–61; Berger, in: mgwj, 40 (1896), 37–40; B. Bretholz, Quellen zur Geschichte der Juden in Maehren im Mittelalter (1935), index; Y. Toury, Mehumah u-Mevukhah be-Mahpekhat 1848 (1968), 40–42; Židovské zprávy (March 3 and Oct. 10, 1919); B. Wasiutyński, Ludność żydowska w Polsce … (1930), 158–61; R. Iltis (ed.), Die aussaeen unter Traenen … (1959), 79; B. Brilling, in: Judaica Bohemiae, 4 (1968), 105–9, 113–4; pk Germanyah.

[Meir Lamed]

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Teschen." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . 21 Jan. 2019 <>.

"Teschen." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . (January 21, 2019).

"Teschen." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . Retrieved January 21, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.