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Obj. ID: 5203
Hebrew Illuminated Manuscripts
  AEJM Gaster II Type Esther Scroll, Venice (?), second half of the 17th century

© Center for Jewish Art, Photographer: Radovan, Zev, 2000

This scroll is decorated in the Gaster II style (for the explanation of the name see "Additional Remarks"). These lavishly decorated megillot were produced in a mixture of print and manuscript techniques: the decorative border is partly printed but also features copper engravings and hand-colored illuminations. In this style, the Hebrew text of the Book of Esther is penned by a scribe. The main part of the pattern consists of a series of arcades, under which the text of the Megillah is inscribed. The text panels are interspersed by columns whose bases are decorated with a flower. They separate rectangular frames in which figurative scenes that chronicle the narrative of the Book of Esther are depicted. Upper margins are filled with a balustrade on which are placed flower-filled vases and pairs of roosters and turkeys. The scrolls end with symmetrical decoration composed of foliate and floral ornaments. The general layout of the decoration is the same in all exemplars of the scrolls. However, particular manuscripts differ in detail; their opening decorations especially vary (for a similar opening part see ID 34123).

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Name/Title
AEJM Gaster II Type Esther Scroll | Unknown
Object Detail
Date
second half of the 17th century
Synagogue active dates
Reconstruction dates
Artist/ Maker
Unknown (Unknown)
Origin
Italy | Veneto | Venice
| (?)
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 and paints 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
Condition
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
The Book of Esther in Hebrew
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
None
Scribal Notes
Watermark
Hallmark
Group
Group
Group
Group
Group
Trade Mark
Binding
Decoration Program
Summary and Remarks

The decorative scheme of Gaster II scrolls shows common features with the Griselini and Griselini-Related scrolls (see "Griselini scrolls" and "Griselini-Related scrolls" in the Index), whereas the narrative scenes are the same as in the scrolls representing Klagsbald type (see IDs 31, 38212).

For another scroll representing the same type of ornamentation see ID 34123. 

The scroll may have been accompanied by a decorated benedictions sheet and a bag (or piece of green fabric).

Suggested Reconsdivuction
History/Provenance

According to the museum card: "Donated by Mrs. Ada and Prof. Gino Sacerdote of Turin in memory of the grandmother Emilia Leblis of Pugliese, born in Casale 1856 and buried there in the old cemetery in 1932." Donated on February 25th, 1996. ["dono dei Sigg. Ada e Prof. Gino Sacerdote di Torino in memoria della nonna Emilia Leblis in Pugliese nata a Casale 1856 e ivi sepolta nel vecchio cimitero nel 1932. di pertinenza del Museo d' Arte e Storia Antica Ebraica di Casale Monferrato e successivamente passato alla Fondazione Arte, Storia e Cultura Ebraica a Casale Monf.to e nel Piemonte Orientale ONLUS"]

Main Surveys & Excavations
Bibliography

The scrolls representing the same or similar pattern are discussed in:

Mendel Metzger, "The Earliest Engraved Italian Megilloth", Bulletin of the John Rylands Library, 48:2 (1966), 381‒432.

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, 1:124-134, 322.

The scrolls representing the same or similar pattern are discussed in:

F. J. Hoogewoud, "Louis Hirschel, List of Unique and Rare Items from the Bibliotheca Rosenthaliana," Studia Rosenthaliana, 38/39 (2005/2006), 73-99.

Dagmara Budzioch, The Decorated Megillot Esther in the Moses Gaster Hebrew Manuscript Collection at the John Rylands Library: a comparative analysis with reference to Eighteenth-century Italian scrolls, Journal of Semitic Studies Supplement Series [in print].

Hebrew and Judaic manuscripts in Amsterdam public collections Catalogue of the manuscripts of the Bibliotheca Rosenthaliana, University Library of Amsterdam eds. L. Fuks and R. G. Fuks-Mansfeld, Leiden 1973.

Short Name
Full Name
Volume
Page
Type
Documenter
Dagmara Budzioch | 2020
Author of description
Dagmara Budzioch | 2020
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.