HEBREW PSALTER

Spain, late 15th century, 3 7/8 x 5 3/8 in. (9.8 x 13.7 cm), MS. Opp. Add. 8° 10, fol. 119b

Micrography, the use of minute script to create designs, is a type of decoration often found in Hebrew manuscripts. Here the final verses of Psalm 149 and part of Psalm 150 are framed by interlaced bands of tiny text. The braided pattern of words, hardly discernible without a magnifying glass, comprises the "masorah" (critical notes on the biblical text). The overall effect is similar to that of richly ornamented Islamic carpet pages.



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