Most Ancient Tombstones

Newly exhibited for the first time on this website

These tombstones were neglected for decades until 1997 when they were restored to a dignified manner. Some of these tombstones are broken and therefore are not easy to read. In any case, we feel it is best to present them here in order for people to appreciate them as a genealogical resource. They are located in the area of the cemetery shown in the photo below:

2 rows of ancient burial stones

[new stones]

The following is a sample of the most ancient tombstones of the Jewish cemetery of Rhodes. They were photographed by Aron Hasson and translated into English by Yitzhak Dekel (a member of the Joseph & Sarina Tarica family).

Moshe Sidi (1593)
Translation: Burial stone of the dear, the honor of our master, Moshe Sidi, departed to the house of his world, and was buried the 22nd day of the month of Av, the year 5353 (1593). May his soul be bound in the bond of life. (In Greek: MENΩ ΘPAΣYMHAEYΣ = I Live Thracimilefs)
1655-hasson Nerassiah Hasson (1655)
Translation: Burial stone, for a doe of beauty, Nerassiah, the daughter of the dear, and distinguished Avraham Hasson, her soul in paradise, died the 7th day of Adar, the year 5415 (1655). May her soul be bound in the bond of life.
1662-nahmias Moshe Nahmias (1662)
Translation: I shall mourn with a bitter voice, I will not keep quiet over a righteous man, as a date tree, the man, Moshe… something was said about Moshe; Praise and cry in the bitterness of mourning Moshe,…after the death of Moshe, the torah cried in bitterness, the torah that gave without….and the torah of Moshe is the tombstone of wise and elevated, hassid and humble, chasing charity and the needy, Moshe Nahmias, the memory of a righteous man is a blessing, departed to the house of the worlds on the 5th day of the month of Elul, the year 5422 (1662) since creation.
1666-hacohen Yehudah HaCohen (1666)
Translation: The death stone of the master, Yehudah HaCohen, may his soul be in Eden, died the beginning of the month of Elul, the year 5426 (1666). May his soul be bound in the bond of life.
1670-nehemiah Dalessiah Nehemiah (1670)
Translation: Burial stone of the dear daughter, Dalessiah… of the dear husband, Yekutiel Nehemiah, departed to the house of the worlds, the beginning day of the month of Tivet, the year 5430 (1670) since creation.
1671-carmona Dona de Carmona (1671)
Translation: Burial stone of the humble Mrs. Dona, wife of the honorable elder, Avraham de Carmona, departed on Tuesday, the 10th of the month of Sivan, 5431 (1671). May her soul be in Eden (paradise). (Carmona is a small city near Seville in the southern part of Spain.)
1727-halevi Yaacov HaLevi (1727)
Translation: Burial stone for the dearly departed of young age, Yaacov Halevi, departed on Wednesday, the 29th day of the month of Sivan, the year 5487 (1727), since creation. May his soul be bound in the bond of life.
1739-ashkenazi Shlomo Ashkenazi (1739)
Translation: Burial stone to the dear, wise and elevated, honorable master, Shlomo Ashkenazi, he was taken to the house of the world, on the 14th day of the month of Tishreh, the year 5499 (1739), since creation. May his soul be bound in the bond of life.
1746-sourmani Yitzhak Surmani (1746)
Translation: Burial stone for a dear student, the pleasant, Yitzhak Surmani, he was taken to the house of eternity on the 6th day of the month of Tivet, the year 5506 (1746).
1763-benveniste Hazdiah BenVeniste (1763)
Translation: Look at this marker, which is the burial stone of the wise, and high as a mountain, Hazdai Veniste, he was taken to the house of eternity, on the 16th of the month of Tamuz, the year 5523 (1763). May his soul be bound in the bond of life.
1766-franco Yitzhak Franco (1766)
Translation: Because of a jar (urn) of his remains was embedded here. Soul friend, youthful charm chosen and wise as a hill, Yitzhak Franco, his soul in paradise, was taken to the house of his world on the 24th day of Tamuz, the year 5526 (1766). May his soul be bound with God.
1768-codron Yaakov Codron (1768)
Translation: On the death of a dear son, the young man and steady as a hill, Yaacov Codron, was taken to the house of his world on the 4th day of the month of Sivan, the year 5528 (1768). May his soul be bound in the bond of life.

Leave a Comment

8 Responses to “Most Ancient Tombstones”

  1. April 4th, 2015

    Jack Jason:

    Hello. Jack Jason here. Son of Benjamin (Abrevaya) Jason (Hasson) and Sarah (Shemaria). My Grandfather was Isaac (Yitzhak) Shemaria born in Rhodes in 1893 and who died in the US in 1935. We know his Grandfather was Itzhak Shemaria, married to Hanula Pelossoff.

    I wondered if there is a translation for the headstone for Itzhak Shemaria in the file above who died in 1862 . I think this may be my Grandfather’s grandfather (my Great Great Grandfather), seeing as it was customary to name a grandchild after a grandfather. Thank you. Jack Jason

  2. January 26th, 2015

    Arlene Baldwin:

    Regarding Yaakov Codron. Can anyone tell us what the symbols on his headstone are and what they mean? Thank you.

  3. August 14th, 2014

    Rebecca (becky) Cohen Beke:

    What a wonderful job! Thank you.

  4. March 12th, 2014

    Alhadeff Chayim ben Reuven:

    Please give me more info about Alhadeff, Yosef 1873 Alhadeff, Yosef 1873; the grave of Yosef Ben Moshe Alhadeff from 1918 is shown in a cememtery in Kfar Saba

    I am looking for tombstones of Yosef alhadeff and his wife Miriam; who are the parents of my grandfather Shlomo “Mavro” Alhadeff and my grandmother Leah burred in Rhodes Island.

    Thank you, and if possible what is the genealogical tree for Alhadeff, Yosef 1873 => the grave of Yosef Ben Moshe Alhadeff from 1918 is shown in a cememtery in Kfar Saba.

  5. September 20th, 2013

    Amy Albert:

    These translations are so beautiful, I cannot thank you enough.

  6. April 21st, 2013

    Janice Bienstock:

    I greatly admire the time, dedication and love that went into the translations of these tombstones. The memory of each departed soul is illuminated through the photographs and the translations. What a glorious gift to those like me who can now connect on a more profound level with those Jews buried here. B”H

  7. February 18th, 2012

    Sarah Kline-Roege:

    Hi I have researched your website before, back in 2000. This time I was just reconfirming the data about Caden Linda Pilosof, my great great grandmother. I plan to do more research, I would like to find info about her parents. (Tamar?) any info would help. Thank you…you have done such wonderful a job at gathering all this wealth of information!

  8. April 10th, 2010

    Lorraine Ashkanase:

    thank you.