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Obj. ID: 36308  JMP Isaac ben Moshe Baruch HaLevi of Kassel Esther Scroll, Germany, ca. 1720

© Jewish Museum in Prague (JMP), Photographer: N/A, -.

5 image(s)

Name/Title
JMP Isaac ben Moshe Baruch HaLevi of Kassel Esther Scroll | Unknown
Object Detail
Date
ca. 1720
Synagogue active dates
Reconstruction dates
Origin
Historical Origin
Unknown
Community
Unknown |
Location
Unknown |
Site
Unknown
School/Style
Unknown|
Period
Unknown
Period Detail
Collection
Category
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
The scroll: 335x2920 mm.
Height
Length
Width
Depth
Circumference
Thickness
Diameter
Weight
Axis
Panel Measurements
Hallmark
Condition
The manuscript is preserved in perfect 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
Description

The scroll opens with initial benedictions written in three medallions arranged vertically. All sheets are lavishly decorated in brown ink and although unsigned, on the basis of its style it can be attributed to the scribe and artist Isaac ben Moshe Baruch HaLevi of Kassel. Text columns are written within arcades adorned with elaborate foliate decoration of flowers and acanthus leaves. These pen-and-ink drawings, colored by hand, fully fill all the available space on the upper margin and between the text columns. The lower margins are decorated only with the bases of the columns. The text starts with an incipit of large hand-drawn letters flanked by flowers. Additionally, three words in the text: איש (Es. 2:5), ומרדכי (Es. 8:15), and כי (Es. 10:3) are enlarged and enclosed in frames. They begin the sentences which are recited aloud by the congregants during the reading of the Megillah.

Custom
Contents

The Book of Esther in Hebrew proceeded with the initial benedictions

Codicology

The scroll is formed of 4 sheets containing 12 columns of text with varying numbers of lines, e.g. 20, 25, 30, 31. Col. 10 containing the names of Haman's sons is inscribed in 11 lines divided into two half-columns.

The text is inscribed in Hebrew square Ashkenazi script in dark brown-black ink on parchment membranes, which are rather suede.

Each sheet contains 3 columns of the text; the first also contains the benedictions.

An incipit is made of large hand-drawn letters.

The letter ח (Es. 1:6) and ת (Es. 9:29) is highlighted by its size - it is enlarged and bolded. Other enlarged and diminished letters are included in col. 10. The letter ח is additionally highlighted by its form - this is the only letter ח in the scroll that is not composed of two elements joined with a roof. 

The letters of the Tetragrammaton are enlarged and bolded (cols. 2, 5, and 6).

Col. 8 includes numerous elongated letters.

The length of the lines of the text varies and they fit the lunette frames exactly.

The sheets in the scroll are glued together.

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
Signature
Colophon

None

Scribal Notes
Watermark
Binding
Decoration Program
Summary and Remarks

The name of Isaac ben Moshe Baruch HaLevi, possible maker of the scroll, is known through other megillot Esther and manuscripts which he has decorated in this same characteristic style. Other scrolls featuring similar ornamentation are held in the Magnes Collection of Jewish Art in Berkeley (67.1.11.8) and belong to the Braginsky Collection in Zurich (BCM 103). One of his manuscripts is dated 1718. 

History/Provenance
The former number of the manuscript: Ms 327.
Main Surveys & Excavations
Bibliography

The scroll is described in:

Jiřina Šedinová, From the Mss. Collections of the State Jewish Museum in Prague. The Scrolls of Esther, "Judaica Bohemiae" 1979, nr 15/2, 85.

Olga Sixtova, O svitku / Form of the Scroll [katalog k výstavě konané v Galerii Roberta Guttmanna Židovského muzea v Praze od 22. června do 26. července 2006], Praha 2006, 34-35.

The Precious Legacy. Judaic Treasures from the Czechoslovak State Collections, ed. David A. Altshuler, p. 271, object 276.

Images of the scroll are available on http://collections.jewishmuseum.cz/index.php/Detail/Object/Show/object_id/221253 (accessed on 9.11.2020).

Another scroll featuring a similar pattern is described in:

Schöne Seiten. Jüdische Schriftkultur aus der Braginsky Collection, eds. Emile Schrijver, Falk Wiesemann, Evelyn M. Cohen, Sharon Liberman Mintz, Menahem Schmeltzer, Zurich 2011, 284-285.

Short Name
Full Name
Volume
Page
Type
Documenter
Dagmara Budzioch | 2020
Researcher
Dagmara Budzioch | 2020
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