It was founded in the second half of the 16th century on the request of a Spanish Jewish community (and probably also by the Marranos and​ Ponentini Jews ) wh​o were fleeing from the Iberian peninsula. They were welcomed by the ​Serenissima which had proved favorable to the integration, partly due to Spaniards huge economic potential. ​It then seems to have been completely rebuilt a century later with solutions that recall the works of ​Baldassare Longhena​, a probable architect of the Levantine Scola, but the data found is not sufficient to confirm the hypothesis.

The synagogue has a large white facade adorned with a wooden door with five arched windows symbolising the Torah's books sticking out of it, even though its majesty appears to be almost suffocated by the houses that surround it in the Campiello delle Scuole. A simple plaque placed under the windows in the early post-war years commemorates the more than two hundred Venetian Jews who were deported to extermination camps; the names are then listed on the monument to the Holocaust in the Ghetto Nuovo.

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