Object Description

The fine and intricate Megillah case showcases some of the finest work of the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design, the most celebrated artistic school in Jerusalem of the early 20th Century. Founded in 1906, the aim of its founder, painter Boris Schatz, was to blend European styles of art with Arabic and Middle Eastern decorative traditions. This Megillah, or scroll case containing the Book of Esther, represents a particularly fine example of the early era of Bezalel. It is cylindrical in form and built from ornate filigree silver, a technique involving the interweaving of small threads of silver, popular among Asian metalworkers because it achieves the intricate effect of lace. The case is decorated extensively with scrolling patternwork, with the Star of David featured to the centre, and the top of the case formed as a crown. The scroll can be pulled out to reveal the Book of Esther written in Hebrew script, and can be rewound by twisting the handle. The Book of Esther is read during the Jewish festival of Purim and tells the ancient Persian story of Esther and King Ahasuerus.

Object Classification

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Sunday
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