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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

The scroll from the AEJM collection represents the type called Gaster II (see "Additional Remarks") that are produced in a mixed technique - the fragments of the decorative border are printed as copper engravings that are colored by hand while its other parts are executed by hand and 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; especially their opening decorations 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
Unknown |
Location
Unknown |
Site
Unknown
School/Style
Gaster II scrolls|

The family of Italian Esther scrolls from the second half of the 17th century named by Mendel Metzger after Judaica collector, Moses Gaster (1856–1939), 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). It includes Esther scrolls produced in mixed technique in which decorative border is partly printed and colored by hand while the Hebrew text of the Book of Esther is inscribed by a scribe. Main part of the decorations consists of a series of arcades, under which the text of the Book of Esther was inscribed. The text panels are interspersed by columns whose bases are decorated with flowers that separate rectangular frames with figurative scenes chronicling the Book of Esther. Upper margins are filled with a balustrade on which are placed flower-filled vases and pairs of roosters and turkeys. These details are present in all exemplars of the scrolls, however, particular manuscripts differ in detail. The decorative scheme of Gaster II scrolls shows common features with Griselini scrolls.

Period
Unknown
Period Detail
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
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 by 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, Dekorowane zwoje Estery z Żydowskiego Instytutu Historycznego w Warszawie na tle tradycji dekorowania megillot Ester w XVII i XVIII wieku. Zarys problematyki, Warszawa 2019, 1:124-134, 322.

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

Short Name
Full Name
Volume
Page
Type
Documenter
Dagmara Budzioch | 2020
Researcher
Dagmara Budzioch | 2020
Architectural Drawings
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Computer Reconsdivuction
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Section Head
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Language Editor
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Donor
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Negative/Photo. No.