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Katrin Kogman-Appel

Hebrew Bible (Jerusalem, National.. Library of Israel., MS. Heb 4°790, and a single page in Toledo, El Transito Synagogue and Sephardic Museum), copied c. 1260, perhaps in Toledo by Menachem ben Abraham ibn Malikh for Isaac bar Abraham Hadad, both members of known and documented Toledan families. At some later stage further decorations were added, apparently in Burgos. The Damascus Keter is an outstanding exemplar out of approximately 120 decorated Bibles from Iberia and belongs to a group of three very similar codices from the middle of the 13th century, produced in Toledo. It thus represents a rich tradition of Jewish art flourishing between the 13th and the 15th centuries. These Bibles were used either by scholars for private study, or for biblical readings during synagogue services.

Typical of numerous Bibles from the Middle East and the Iberian Peninsula, the decoration consists of numerous carpet pages executed in Micrography and enriched by painted embellishments. This is a technique typically used in Hebrew decorated books and harks back to Middle Eastern manuscripts of the 10th century. Apart from the carpet pages, the Damascus ...

Article

Sheila S. Blair, Jonathan M. Bloom, Jerome Murphy O’Connor, and Michael Turner

[Heb. Yerushalayim; Arab. al-Quds]

City sacred to the three monotheistic religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, now in Israel. It is built on limestone hills in the central plateau of Judaea, and limited by the Kidron Valley on the east and the Hinnom Valley on the west and south.

Following Jerusalem’s inclusion in the Roman and Byzantine empires, Muslim forces captured Jerusalem in 638 and ruled it until 1099, when European Crusaders captured the city and transformed many of its Muslim monuments. They held it until 1187, when Saladin reconquered the city for Islam. Subsequently held by the Mamluk (to 1516) and Ottoman sultans, the city became the administrative centre of the British mandate in Palestine during World War I. In 1949 Israel declared that [west] Jerusalem was its capital city; following the annexation of East Jerusalem in the 1967 Six-Day War, Israel unilaterally declared that [undivided] Jerusalem was the capital of Israel, although Palestinians continue to maintain that East Jerusalem must be the capital of a future Palestinian state....