The Kennicott Bible

This very fine Hebrew Bible was made for a wealthy young patron, Don Isaac, and is the product of rich scribal and artistic traditions. The scribe, Moses Ibn Zabarah, wrote the text in a square Sephardi script, adopting a standard two-column format. For Psalms, he adopted an older tradition, whereby combinations of long and short lines, centred and right-justified lines, are arranged in single columns. Each psalm is set apart from the previous one by the central placing of the first line. The artist, Joseph Ibn Hayyim, adorned the text with carpet pages, panels and numerous decorative motifs. The treatise pictured here, the Sefer Mikhlol by Rabbi David Qimhi, was added before and after the biblical text, and here Joseph Ibn Hayyim gave free reign to his lively and fertile imagination. The Bible is in its original box binding, made from wood covered in goatskin, which is blind tooled with interlacing geometric designs on all six sides.


In the hand of Moses Ibn Zabarah; miniatures by Joseph Ibn Hayyim

Biblical text preceded and followed by a grammatical treatise, Sefer Mikhlol, by Rabbi David Qimhi (1160-1225)

In Hebrew, on parchment; 461 leaves, 300 x 235 mm