Megillah: Scroll of the Book of Esther
A megillah is the common name for the biblical book of Esther written in scroll format. Publicly read during the celebration of the Jewish festival of Purim, the work commemorates the triumph of the Jews of the Persian Empire over their archenemy, Haman, in the 5th century BCE. Flanking each section of three text columns are full-length figures of the story’s main characters, while below each section, text illustrations set within elaborately framed panels depict salient features of the plot. A series of distinct cityscapes, likely alluding to the vastness of the Persian Empire, embellish the areas above the text sections. The entire scroll is generously decorated throughout with images of animals and floral motifs interspersed with dozens of animated cherubs.
Currently on View at Stephen A. Schwarzman Building
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