Esther Scroll (XVI.2)
Hand-drawn and painted border; unsigned but bears close relationship to the work of Aryeh Leib son of Daniel of Goray (Goraj, Poland) (אריה ליב בן דניאל מגורייא) Ink and gouache on parchment, 4 membranes, benedictions + 9 text columns, 28 lines per column 240 × 1760 mm (9.5 × 69.3 in.) Turned wooden roller with protective strip silk fabric 380 mm (15.0 in.)
The scroll opens with the benediction sheet that is joined to the scroll. The blessings were written in three frames and set within a decorative background that consists of plants, angels and birds. The text of Megillah is written in large square columns that are enframed and all available space around them is filled with various decorative elements. Along the upper margin are roundels containing the busts of major and minor characters of the Purim story, their names are inscribed below the figures in Rashi script: Ahasuerus, Vashti, Mordecai, Esther, Haman, Zeresh, Hegay, Shaashgaz, Bightan, Teresh, Carshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena, Memucan. The borders are filled with scrolling foliate vines held aloft by angels. The lower margin contains illustrations enclosed in lozenge frames.