Art Alone

Img. ID: 347084

© Biblioteca centrale della Regione siciliana "Alberto Bombace", Photographer: N/A, -

The third sheet contains the opening decoration and three panels (nos. 7-9) with six columns of the text (nos. 13-18):

Frame 13 (text panel 7 - upper margin): On the right, Haman is hanged on the gallows (Es. 7:10). A ladder leans against it and three guards, holding spears, stand on the left. At Haman's feet, there is a dog that is looking at him. On the left, Ahasuerus sits on the throne topped with a canopy and extends his scepter to Esther who kneels at his feet and touches the tip of the scepter. Mordecai stands in the background and watches the scene (Es. 8:1-4). This depicts either the moment when the king gives Haman's properties to Esther (Es. 8:1) or when Esther is pleading to annul Haman's decree (Es. 8:3-4).

Frame 14 (text panel 7 - lower margin): On the right, Ahasuerus sits on a throne under a canopy and extends the scepter to Esther who kneels at his feet and touches the tip of the scepter. Behind the throne stands a man (Mordecai?) and in the background, two king's scribes sit at a table and write the king's decree (Es. 8:9). On the left, two mounted messengers ride towards a walled city on the far left (Es. 8:14).

Frame 15 (text panel 8 - upper margin): On the right, Ahasuerus sits on a throne topped with a canopy and holds a scepter in one hand and with the other hand, he points at Mordecai, who stands before him wearing a turban and an overcoat and bows slightly before the king (Es. 8:15). In the center, figures are fighting in a field; two men are lying on the ground. This is one of the moments when Jews battle their enemies but it is difficult to determine which particular verse is illustrated here (Es. 9:5-12). On the left, five men sit around a laid table. The scene most likely depicts the happiness of Jews at the news of the king's new decree (Es. 8:16-17).

Frame 16 (text panel 8 - lower margin): Several figures are depicted fighting in a field flanked by buildings. Four soldiers holding spears emerge from the left and several bodies already lay on the ground. The scene can depict either Jews who battle their enemies (Es. 9:5-12) or an additional day of the Jews fighting against their enemies (Es. 9:15-16).

Frame 17 (text panel 9 - upper margin): On the right, Ahasuerus sits on the throne under a canopy and holds a scepter. The crowned Esther kneels before him and she is attended by her two maid-servants. On the left, Haman's ten sons are hanging on the same gallows and on either side of it, a guard with a spear in his hand is standing (Es. 9:14).

Frame 18 (text panel 9 - lower margin): Seven men in turbans on their heads who sit around a long laid table are depicted. Two servants carrying trays go out of the room from both sides (Es. 9:17).

BCRS Klagsbald Type Esther Scroll | Unknown
Object Detail
sheet 3 (text panels 7-9)
Second half of the 17th century
Synagogue active dates
Reconstruction dates
Artist/ Maker
Unknown (Unknown)
Italy | Veneto | Venice
| (?)
Historical Origin
Community type
Unknown |
Unknown |
Klagsbald scrolls|
{"211":"The family of Italian Esther scrolls from the second half of the 17th century named by Mendel Metzger after Judaica collector, Victor Klagsbald, of whose collections an exemplar of this manuscript formed a part (see M. Metzger, \u201cThe Earliest Engraved Italian Megilloth\u201d, Bulletin of the John Rylands Library 48:2 (1966), 381\u2012432, esp. 390). It includes Esther scrolls produced in mixed technique in which decorative border is printed and colored by hand while the Hebrew text of the Book of Esther is penned by a scribe. The opening and final section of the scrolls are filled with a rich decoration formed from tendrils, flowers, and animals (the latter contains no animal figures). The upper and lower margins are adorned with repeating endless knot motifs framed in rectangles alternating with rectangular frames enclosing more than thirty scenes chronicling the Book of Esther. The text panels including two text columns (the last panel includes a single text column) are interspersed by floral decoration. The same scheme repeats on all four sheets forming each exemplar. Is shows many common details with Gaster I scrolls."}
Period Detail
Documentation / Research project
Material / Technique
Ink and paints on parchment (handwritten text, printed and hand-colored border)
Material Stucture
Material Decoration
Material Bonding
Material Inscription
Material Additions
Material Cloth
Material Lining
Tesserae Arrangement
Construction material
Panel Measurements

In general, the manuscript is preserved in fair condition, but the text is well preserved.

The opening decoration is seriously damaged; its parts are missing and the membrane is torn in several places.

Coloring in some parts of the decoration is faded (e.g. in the final section of the scroll).

The floral decoration of the benediction sheet is poorly preserved.

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
Textual Content
Unknown |
Languages of inscription
Shape / Form

The Book of Esther in Hebrew, accompanied by a separate benedictions sheet with initial and final benedictions and portions of the piyut Shoshanat Yaakov.


The scroll is formed of 4 sheets containing 19 columns of text with 24 lines each, except for col. 16 which has 11 lines divided into two half-columns.

Sheets nos. 1-3 contain 3 columns of the text, and sheet no. 4 contains a single column.

The text is written in Hebrew square Italian script in black ink on parchment membranes.

The letters ח (Es. 1:6) and ת (Es. 9:29) are enlarged. Other enlarged and diminished letters are included in col. 16.

The membranes in the scroll are stitched together.

Benedictions – every formula starts with enlarged and bolded opening word ברוך. The name of God is replaced by 2 letters י and a ligature of א and ל letters. In their text, a ligature of א and ל letters is included too.

The text is copied in a different handwriting than the scroll itself.

Number of Lines
Hebrew Numeration
Blank Leaves
Façade (main)
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 Series
Coin Ruler
Coin Year


Scribal Notes
Trade Mark
Decoration Program
Summary and Remarks
The Klagsbald scrolls are a family of Italian Esther scrolls from the second half of the 17th century, named by Mendel Metzger after Judaica collector, Victor Klagsbald, of whose collections an exemplar of this manuscript formed a part (see M. Metzger, "The Earliest Engraved Italian Megilloth", Bulletin of the John Rylands Library 48:2 (1966), 381‒432, esp. 390). The scheme features numerous common details with the scrolls representing Gaster I type; however, one of the distinctive features is the motif of endless knot that in Klagsbald scrolls are not joined together.
Some parts of the border are uncolored (e.g. on the second membrane).

The frames on the upper margins are numbered with Arabic numerals.

On the blank side of the benediction sheet, a seal of the Library, as well as two numbers (III.D.17 and 194232), can be seen. 

Suggested Reconsdivuction
Main Surveys & Excavations

Bibliography concerning this manuscript is unknown but other scrolls sharing the same pattern are described e.g. in:

Mendel Metzger, Eine illustrierte Estherrolle der zweiten Hälfte des 18. Jahrhunderts im Historischen Museum Frankfurt am Main, mit einem Anhang über Megilla-Hülsen, „Schriften des Historischen Museums Frankfurt am Main”, 13 (1972), 95–116.

Dagmara Budzioch, The Decorated Esther Scrolls from the Museum of the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw and the Tradition of Megillot Esther Decoration in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries – An Outline [Polish: Dekorowane zwoje Estery z Żydowskiego Instytutu Historycznego w Warszawie na tle tradycji dekorowania megilot Ester w XVII i XVIII wieku. Zarys problematyki], Warsaw 2019, 1:119-128.

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