Saturday, March 28, 2009

13th -14th century Torah Scroll




13th -14th century Torah Scroll An extremely important scroll of utmost rarity; the earliest example of the complete Yemenite Pentateuch tradition
Containing the text of the Pentateuch and written by hand on specially prepared animal skins by a trained scribe, the Torah Scroll is the most sacred ritual artifact of the Jewish faith. The execution of a ritually fit scroll depends on a great many factors. In addition to the rules concerning the materials to be used there are numerous requirements concerning the actual text of the Torah. These are authoritatively detailed in the Mishneh Torah, the comprehensive code of law written by Moses Maimonides in the 12th century. Among the issues Maimonides addresses are majuscular and miniscular letters, the shapes of particular letters, the formatting of specific sections of the biblical text, the layout of columns and certain individual lines, the demarcation of each paragraph as either "open" or "closed," the "dotting" of certain letters and the spelling of certain words as plene or defective. Maimonides cites the Aleppo Codex, written by the 10th century Masorete, Aaron ben Moses ben Asher as authoritative in all these matters.
Although Maimonides was highly respected by Jews the world over, his support of the Yemenite community resulted in his achieving an almost saint-like status. Consequently, Maimonides' halakhic rulings were venerated and adhered to with a particular passion amongst Yemenite Jews.
Title: Torah Scroll
Country of Origin: Yemen

Age: Scroll is undated but has been examined by experts and is estimated to have originated in the 13th-14th Century. Evidence for this includes style of Hebrew alphabetic characters, and the leather used.

Size: Scroll is approximately 20" high with 221 columns of 50-52 lines of text per column.

Condition: Wear includes some stains, a few unstable letters, expected breaks and age holes, antique letter repairs (to preserve kosher status), kosher minor small patches, some holes to edges, some tears, and a few places in which the ink is hard to read due to the darkened parchment. Includes several-hundred-year-old restoration marks. However, it is generally clear to read and considering age, wear is very minor. Most sheets are still tightly sewn together.

Description: Handwritten on red deer parchment called "gvil," this scroll has dark ink lettering and contains all five books of Moses, handwritten on the leather by one scribe, except for a few sheets which have been used as replacements throughout the years. Scroll is not a compilation, but is also not guaranteed to be kosher. The unusual letter shapes used to help determine the scroll's age include (1) Hebrew letter alef has different legs (2) Hebrew letters zain and nun has legs from the side (zain from the right) (3) Hebrew letter chet is the old Rashi style (4) Many double pei (5) No tags. A scroll with similar lettering style sold on Sotheby's in December 2007 for $193K. http://www.sothebys.com/app/live/lot/LotDetail.jsp?lot_id=159415173

Accompanied with - Certificate of Authenticity from the Christian Heritage Museum
An extremely important scroll of utmost rarity; the earliest example of the complete Yemenite Pentateuch tradition
Containing the text of the Pentateuch and written by hand on specially prepared animal skins by a trained scribe, the Torah Scroll is the most sacred ritual artifact of the Jewish faith. The execution of a ritually fit scroll depends on a great many factors. In addition to the rules concerning the materials to be used there are numerous requirements concerning the actual text of the Torah. These are authoritatively detailed in the Mishneh Torah, the comprehensive code of law written by Moses Maimonides in the 12th century. Among the issues Maimonides addresses are majuscular and miniscular letters, the shapes of particular letters, the formatting of specific sections of the biblical text, the layout of columns and certain individual lines, the demarcation of each paragraph as either "open" or "closed," the "dotting" of certain letters and the spelling of certain words as plene or defective. Maimonides cites the Aleppo Codex, written by the 10th century Masorete, Aaron ben Moses ben Asher as authoritative in all these matters.
Although Maimonides was highly respected by Jews the world over, his support of the Yemenite community resulted in his achieving an almost saint-like status. Consequently, Maimonides' halakhic rulings were venerated and adhered to with a particular passion amongst Yemenite Jews.
Title: Torah Scroll
Country of Origin: Yemen

1 comment:

graciegirl said...

have fun reading this one Shmooy Girl Love Ya Mom