The paper scroll was issued in the Basel printing house of Wilhelm Haas. It opens with a panel consisting of two frames including figurative scenes from the Book of Esther narrative between which three initial benedictions are placed. The illustrations are printed as woodcuts and they are believed to be based on the Biblical scenes designed by a Swiss engraver Mattheus Merian The Elder (1593–1650). The scroll and the text panels are framed by a band embellished with a design resembling the vertical parallel carvings.
*Manuscripts and Printed Books | Esther scroll (megillat Esther) | with printed border
*Manuscripts and Printed Books | Esther scroll (megillat Esther) | in ha-melekh layout
*Manuscripts and Printed Books | Esther scroll (megillat Esther) | with benedictions
*Manuscripts and Printed Books | Esther scroll (megillat Esther) | with piyutim
The scroll is well preserved although its opening section was torn in several places and was repaired.
The paper of the opening part of the scroll is yellow and its remaining part is white.
The Book of Esther in Hebrew with the initial and final benedictions and the liturgical poem Asher Heni
The scroll is formed of 10 sheets containing three initial benedictions + 17 text columns with 20 lines per each + the final panel with the benediction and the liturgical poem. Col. 14 is planned for 11 lines divided into two half-columns.
William Gross says: "In a rather extraordinary event in the history of Hebrew printing there existed in the first quarter of the 19th century a Basel printer of Hebrew texts at a time when there was hardly a market for these creations in Switzerland. it is interesting to note that almost all of his productions had illustrated elements, usually at the beginning of the publication. this example is a scroll of Esther published in a scroll form as one of the few such printed Esther scrolls recorded up to this period. until this time printed Esther texts were published almost exclusively in codex format."
The text panels are numbered in the upper-right corners in tiny Arabic numerals from 1 to 17; the initial and final panels contain no numbers.
The text in the scroll is vocalized and in some places, between the text panels, alternative vocalization of words appears.
No bibliography on the scroll is available.
Joseph Prijs, Die Basler hebraeischen Drucke (1492–1866), Olten–Freiburg 1964, 435-437, 445, object 301.