The first column of the text (sheet 1) surrounded by a decorative painted border. It starts with an enlarged opening word of the Megillah (ויהי) framed in an oval flanked by stylized acanthus leaves. In the upper margin, the medallion with the bust of the king is placed and in the lower margin, the feast is represented. At the table men and women are sitting together, therefore possibly it joins two episodes - the feast of the king (Es. 1:3-8) and the feast of the queen (Es. 1:9). Two servants are approaching the table.
The length of the sheets in the scroll: 1) ca. 530 mm, 2) 505 mm, 3) 205 mm.
Dimensions of the selected details in the scroll:
- text panel: 130x85 mm;
- upper margin: 35 mm;
- lower margin: 45 mm;
- an average illustration: 40x85 mm + shell motif on either side;
- spaces between the text panels: ca. 27 mm (width).
An average letter is 2 mm high, whereas the letters in col. 11 are 5 mm high.
The space between the subsequent lines of the text is 2 mm high.
The rod: 400 mm.
The pull bar: 395 mm.
Esther, Book of (following the order of the story) | Vashti's banquet (Es. 1:9)
Esther, Book of (following the order of the story) | *Esther's Story Characters (depicted not in narrative scenes): | Ahasuerus, the king
Portrait | Portrait medallion
Ornamentation: | Initial word, framed
The Book of Esther in Hebrew
The scroll is formed of 3 sheets containing 12 columns of the text with 28 lines, except for col. 1 with 22 lines (+ initial) and col. 11 with 11 lines divided into two parts.
The text is inscribed in the Hebrew Ashkenazi square script in light black ink, on the flesh side of parchment sheets that are rather thin. The flesh side is more smooth and brighter than the blank side that is rather suede and darker, however, the color of the sheets is not the same.
The opening word of the Megillah (ויהי) is written in enlarged and bolded letters, framed in an oval flanked by stylized acanthus leaves.
The letter ע in the final word of the book is highlighted by an elongated left arm and the lower component of the letter is decorated with a long stroke that is bent to the right.
The letter ח (Es. 1:6) is highlighted by its form - it is composed of two parts joined with a roof; its legs end with small hooks. The letter ת (Es. 9:29) is highlighted by its size. Other enlarged and diminished letters are included in col. 11.
In general, the ruling is almost invisible on both sides of parchment sheets. The lines made with a stylus can be discerned on blank parts of the 11th text panel and in the decorations between the text panels. This shows that both lines - upper and lower - were made along with the sheets.
There are hardly any margins in the text panels.
The membranes are stitched.
In institutional and private collections several similar examples are held; in the Index see ID 37731.
For a short English description of similar scrolls see: Sotheby's