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Obj. ID: 38111
Hebrew Illuminated Manuscripts
  JMNY Shalom Italia Engraved Esther Scroll with Lions, Amsterdam, 1640s

© Dagmara Budzioch, Photographer: Budzioch, Dagmara, 11.2015

Lavishly decorated Esther scroll adorned with an engraved border designed by Shalom ben Mordecai Italia (also known as Shalom D'Italia).

The scroll opens with a symmetrical decoration based on a semicircle that is composed of six birds (a pair of peacocks, parrots, and) with... that fits the shape of the right edge of the first membrane. Next to it, there is a decorative rectangular frame with a mask and two peacocks. Possibly it was planned for an inscription by an owner of the manuscript but it is empty. It is followed by a flower-filled vase. On its brim, an inscription by the engraver can be seen. The belly of a vase is flanked by a squirrel and a monkey or an ape.

The same engraved metal plate was used for all membranes; therefore, the decorative scheme repeats along with the entire length of the scroll. The Hebrew text of the Book of Esther is inscribed within elaborately decorated arcades (eight per sheet) on which ornamentation of the upper margins is placed. They are filled with repetitive elements: two lions facing each other flank flower-filled vases placed inside the pediments. Between each pair of lions a vase with flowers if placed. In the elongated cartouches placed at the top of the arches, various land- and cityscapes are included. Full figures of four Esther story protagonists are placed in the niches between the text panels; every figure of Ahasuerus, Esther, Mordecai, and Haman appears twice on each sheet. They stand on small octagonal pedestals on which eight different land- and seascapes are depicted.

Summary and Remarks

13 image(s)

sub-set tree:

Name/Title
JMNY Shalom Italia Engraved Esther Scroll with Lions | Unknown
Object Detail
Monument Setting
Unknown
Date
1640s
Synagogue active dates
Reconstruction dates
Artist/ Maker
Italia (d'Italia), Shalom ben Mordecai (engraver in Amsterdam)
(Engraver)
{"2322":"ca. 1619, Mantova \u2013 1655 or 1664) was one of the most creative Jewish artists of the 17th century. After he left Italy, he settled in Amsterdam in 1641, where he was active for just over a decade; later he returned to his home country. During his stay in Amsterdam, he designed borders for two printed ketubbot, engraved portraits of a few eminent Jewish personalities, and created several lavishly decorated engraved and hand-drawn borders for Esther scrolls, most of which are based on architectural frames and motifs."}
Historical Origin
Unknown
Community type
Unknown |
Congregation
Unknown
Location
Unknown |
Site
Unknown
School/Style
Unknown|
Period
Unknown
Period Detail
Documentation / Research project
Unknown
Material/Technique
Ink on parchment
Material Stucture
Material Decoration
Material Bonding
Material Inscription
Material Additions
Material Cloth
Material Lining
Tesserae Arrangement
Density
Colors
Construction material
Measurements
Height
Length
Width
Depth
Circumference
Thickness
Diameter
Weight
Axis
Panel Measurements
Languages of inscription
Unknown
Type of grave
Unknown
0
Ornamentation
Custom
Contents
Codicology
Scribes
Script
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
Coin Series
Coin Ruler
Coin Year
Denomination
Signature
Colophon
Scribal Notes
Watermark
Hallmark
Group
Group
Group
Group
Group
Trade Mark
Binding
Decoration Program
Suggested Reconsdivuction
History/Provenance

The scroll belonged to the private collection of a merchant from Danzig, Lesser (Eliezer) Gieldzinski (Giełdziński) that arrived in New York in the summer of 1939. See e.g. Izabella Rejduch-Samkowa, Lesser Giełdziński – pierwszy kolekcjoner i organizator Muzeum Żydowskiego w Gdańsku, [in:] Żydzi i judaizm we współczesnych badaniach polskich. Materiał z konferencji, t. 1, red. K. Pilarczyk, S. Gąsiorowski, Kraków 1995, pp. 383–393. 

Main Surveys & Excavations
Bibliography

Danzig 1939: Treasures of a Destroyed Community, red. S. Schwartz, Detroit 1980, pp. 80-81, object no. 48.

Short Name
Full Name
Volume
Page
Type
Condition

The manuscript is well preserved.

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
Documenter
Dagmara Budzioch | 2021
Author of description
Dagmara Budzioch | 2021
Architectural Drawings
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Computer Reconstruction
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Section Head
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Language Editor
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Donor
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Negative/Photo. No.