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© Bayerische Staatsbibliothek , Photographer: Unknown, 2008

Vol. I, fol. 9v: the title Lekh-Lecha (לך לך, Get thee out) of this parashah (Gen. 12:1-17:27) is written above the illustration in gold leaf on a blue ground below the explicit (חסלת אלה תולדות נח) and its haftarah (ומפטירין בישעיה רני עקרה).

The panel is a conflation of two scenes depicted on a magenta ground, illustrating the biblical text and the commentary (Gen. 12:5; I:9v), as well as the text of the following parashah and its commentary (Gen. 19:24; I:16), the destruction ofSodomon the right and Abraham leavingHaranon the left. On the right, the winged angel destroying a building by fire illustrates the destruction ofSodom(Gen. 19:24). He is wearing a blue tunic and a green pallium. On the left another winged angel is leading Abram, Sarai and Lot out ofHaran(Gen. 12:5). The angel is grasping Abram's hand pulling him to the left. Sarai is turning her head to the right and the head of the youthfulLotis seen behind them. Abram is dressed in a short greenish-blue tunic and a red and yellow chlamys;Lot's bare leg suggests he was similarly dressed. Sarai wears a long light blue garment with a kerchief round her head. The angel is wearing a green tunic with a red collar, and a blue pallium is draped round his waist and leg.

Hardly discernible plummet inscriptions in Latin by a 13th-century hand and by a later hand in Hebrew square script:

  • Left of panel next to the angel's waist: V[eneruntque]duo an[geli] (Gen. 19:1).
  • Left of :חסלת  לך לך(Lekh-Lecha). 
Name/Title
Munich Rashi's Commentary on the Bible | Unknown
Object Detail
Vol. I, fol. 9v
Date
1232/33
Synagogue active dates
Reconstruction dates
Artist/ Maker
Historical Origin
Unknown
Community type
Congregation
Unknown
Site
Unknown
Period
Unknown
Period Detail
Collection
Germany | Munich | Bayerische Staatsbibliothek (BSB)
| Cod. hebr. 5/I-II (Steinschneider 1895, No. 5)
Documentation / Research project
Unknown
Material/Technique
Brown and black ink, gold leaf and green, blue, yellow, red and magenta.
Material Stucture
Material Decoration
Material Bonding
Material Inscription
Material Additions
Material Cloth
Material Lining
Tesserae Arrangement
Density
Colors
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Measurements
Height
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Weight
Axis
Panel Measurements
35 x (49-52) mm.
Condition
Effaced faces revealing parchment and a colour turned shining silver. The gold leaf of the letters has flaked off.
Extant
Documented by CJA
Surveyed by CJA
Present Usage
Present Usage Details
Condition of Building Fabric
Architectural Significance type
Historical significance: Event/Period
Historical significance: Collective Memory/Folklore
Historical significance: Person
Architectural Significance: Style
Architectural Significance: Artistic Decoration
Urban significance
Significance Rating
Languages of inscription
Unknown
Type of grave
Unknown
0
Ornamentation
Custom
Contents
Codicology
Scribes
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Number of Lines
Ruling
Pricking
Quires
Catchwords
Hebrew Numeration
Blank Leaves
Direction/Location
Façade (main)
Endivances
Location of Torah Ark
Location of Apse
Location of Niche
Location of Reader's Desk
Location of Platform
Temp: Architecture Axis
Arrangement of Seats
Location of Women's Section
Direction Prayer
Direction Toward Jerusalem
Coin
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Colophon
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Summary and Remarks

The unique combination of Sodom's destruction with Abram, Sarai and Lot’s departure from Haran in our illustration stems from Rashi's commentary on Parashat Lekh-Lecha. At the beginning Rashi elaborates on God's order: "Get thee out of thy country" (Gen. 12:1; fol. 9v). Then the commentary proceeds with the separation between Lot and Abram, and Lot's residence in "Sodom before God destroyed it", although he was aware that its people were evil (fol. 10v, columns 2, 3). Using the iconography of Lot and his family leaving Sodom in haste prompted by two angels (Gen. 19:16; Parashat Vayera), our artist changed it slightly: instead of Lot's daughters, a youth appears, and Lot's angel pulls Abram, Lot and Sarai out of Haran, alluding to God's command (fig. 1). The story of Sodom (Gen. 19) is not included in Parashat Lekh-Lecha. Fig. 1: Abraham leaving Haran for Canaan and the destruction of Sodom Munich Rashi's Commentary on the Bible Munich, BSB 5, I:9v Metzger (Metzger 1974, p. 542) rejects the interpretation of this scene as Lot departing from Sodom and suggests the artist was requested to depict the departure of Abram using as a model the scene concerning Lot, with some changes. Klemm (1998, p. 200) interprets the scene as the destruction of Sodom and the departure of Lot from the town led by an angel. Frojmovic (2008, pp. 296, 301) includes the scene (labelled as ‘The Destruction of Sodom’) in a list of misplaced scenes and factual errors. A depiction of Abram, Sarai and Lot leaving Haran is found in a Mosan Miniature Cycle of c.1150 from Liège or Stavelot (fig. 2). The three protagonists, inscribed by a 12th-century hand, are accompanied by servants and "all their substance that they had gathered" (Gen. 12:5), without a prompting angel. Fig. 2: Avram, Sarai and Lot leaving Haran Mosan Miniature Cycle Liège or Stavelot c.1150, fol. 1 Berlin, Kupferstichkabinett inv. no. 78 A 6, fol. 1 (Cf. I:21v, fig. 1) (Klemm 1973, fig. 1) The iconography of Lot and his family being rescued from Sodom while the city is being destroyed (fig. 1) appears in Christian illustrations, sometimes in several scenes, for example in the Book of Hours, Cursus Sanctae Mariae of Hedwig of Silesia from Bamberg (?) 1204–1219 (fig. 3). In the lower register is the destruction while Lot and one daughter escape and his wife turns into a pillar of salt. Fig. 1: Abraham leaving Haran for Canaan Fig. 3: Abraham leaving Haran for Canaan and the destruction of Sodom and the destruction of Sodom Munich Rashi's Commentary on the Bible Book of Hours of Hedwig of Silesia Munich, BSB 5, I:9v Germany, Bamberg (?) 1204-1219 New York, PML, M.739, fol. 11, lower register http://corsair.morganlibrary.org Another destruction of Sodom and flight of Lot, his wife and one daughter are depicted in a glossed illuminated Psalter from north-east France, c.1200 (fig. 4). Fig. 4: The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah and the flight of Lot from Sodom The Morgan Psalter North-east France, c.1200 New York, PML M.338, fol. 196v (Deuchler 1967, figs. 146-47) This scene is divided into two panels relating to Psalm 50 (Vulg. 49) showing in one the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah and in the other the flight of Lot led by two angels. This is contrary to our illustration which conflates two episodes from two different parashot: Lekh-Lecha and Vayera. In the North French Hebrew Miscellany of c.1280, two panels are dedicated to the Sodom episode: one shows two angels burning the city (fig. 5), while the other portrays Lot and his family escaping from Sodom with two winged angels, each taking one daughter by the hand (fig. 6). On the right Lot's wife is turned into a pillar of salt. Fig. 5: The destruction of Sodom Fig. 6: Lot, his two daughters and wife The North French Hebrew Miscellany, c.1280 The North French Hebrew Miscellany, c.1280 London, BL Add. 11639, fol. 119 London, BL Add. 11639, fol. 119v (Schonfield, facsimile 2003, p. 85) (Schonfield, facsimile 2003, pp. 85-86) On a further two folios of the same Miscellany the scene is repeated, though the iconography is different and does not include angels. In the first image the burning Sodom is devoured by the mouth of a dragon (fig. 7); in the second (fig. 8) Lot is taking one of his daughters by the hand and the other follows them, while his wife becomes a pillar of salt. Fig. 7: The destruction of Sodom Fig. 8: Lot and his wife The North French Hebrew Miscellany, c.1280 The North French Hebrew Miscellany, c.1280 London, BL Add. 11639, fol. 740v London, BL Add. 11639, fol. 741 (Schonfield, facsimile 2003, p. 106) (Schonfield, facsimile 2003, p. 106)

Fig. 1: Abraham leaving Haran for Canaan and the destruction of Sodom                       Munich Rashi's Commentary on the Bible Munich, BSB 5, I:9v  Fig. 2: Avram, Sarai andLotleaving Haran Mosan Miniature Cycle Liège or Stavelot c.1150, fol. 1

Berlin, Kupferstichkabinett inv. no.78 A6, fol. 1

(Cf. I:21v, fig. 1)

(Klemm 1973, fig. 1)

   
 

Fig. 3: Abraham leavingHaranfor Canaan and the destruction of Sodom Book of Hours of Hedwig of SilesiaGermany, Bamberg (?) 1204-1219New York, PML, M.739, fol. 11, lower register

http://corsair.morganlibrary.org

 
   
 Fig. 4: The destruction ofSodomandGomorrah

The Morgan Psalter

North-east France, c.1200                     

New York, PML M.338, fol. 196v 

(Deuchler 1967, figs. 146-47)

 

Fig. 4a: The flight of Lot fromSodom          

The Morgan Psalter

North-east France, c.1200                     

New York, PML M.338, fol. 196v 

(Deuchler 1967, figs. 146-47)

   
 

Fig. 5: The destruction ofSodom

The North French Hebrew Miscellany, c.1280                                   

London, BL Add. 11639, fol. 119

(Schonfield, facsimile 2003, p. 85)
 

Fig. 6:Lot, his two daughters and wife

The North French Hebrew Miscellany, c.1280

London, BL Add. 11639, fol. 119v

(Schonfield, facsimile 2003, pp. 85-86)

   
 Fig. 7: The destruction of Sodom The North French Hebrew Miscellany, c.1280 London, BL Add. 11639, fol. 740v (Schonfield, facsimile 2003, p. 106)  Fig. 8: Lot and his wife The North French Hebrew Miscellany, c.1280  London, BL Add. 11639, fol. 741 (Schonfield, facsimile 2003, p. 106)
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