Damaged Festival Prayer Book

This delicately decorated North-African Festival Prayer Book (Maḥzor) suffered water damage before it arrived in the library. Its text block is detached from the binding and most of its pages are loose. Due to the water damage and the corrosion caused by the iron-gall ink, the text is very faded. Luckily, the pages were just about sturdy enough to photograph (with extreme care). Although the physical item is too fragile to handle, thanks to digitisation it can now be studied online.  

Festival Prayer Book

North Africa, 15th century
Gaster Hebrew MS 740
Folios 25b - 26a

Folios 25b-26a: beginning of the prayer Kol Nidre (All Vows). A bird in red ink in the outer margin.

Folio 3b from Gaster Hebrew MS 740,  featuring a pen-flourished initial-word panel.

Initial-word panel with pen flourish in red at the beginning of Rosh ha-Shanah.

Crop from folio 10b, Hebrew MS 6, showing an initial-word panel decorated by red filigree penwork.

Initial-word panel in the Sephardi Rylands Haggadah, (Hebrew MS 6, folio 10b).

Same type of pen flourish without water damage.