Ihringen Haggadah, © The Jewish Museum, London
This beautifully illustrated book is called a Haggadah book, it is used during the Jewish festival of Passover and it describes the order of the Passover meal.
Passover is a very important festival in the Jewish faith, it celebrates how God freed the Jewish people from their slavery in Egypt by sending ten plagues to the Egyptians. The final and worst plague was the death of the first born son of all Egyptians. The story goes that God instructed the Jews to paint a cross above their doors with the blood of a spring lamb, this meant that God would know to pass over their home and spare their children. This is where the name Passover comes from.
Eventually, after the 10th plague, the Pharaoh was so afraid that he released all of the Jewish slaves from Egypt and allowed them to leave with the Prophet Moses. Moses quickly led the Jews out of Egypt and accross the Red Sea, which he parted allowing them to walk accross safely.
The Passover meal remembers these events and the story is re-told each year. The Haggadah book explains the order of the meal and can be used as a guide. This particular copy was created by the scribe Abraham Sopher in 1756. The images on the left illustrate the correct order. If you hover your mouse over the image you can zoom in on each picture and see what is going on.
You can see this book and many other objects relating to Jewish history and faith at the Jewish Museum in London.
Things to think about:
- This is a very beautiful book, can you think of any other illustrated religious books?
- Have you heard of the Ten Plagues? Do you know what they were?
- Can you work out what a Passover meal might be like from looking at the pictures?
This illustrated Haggadah book introduces students to the traditions of the Passover festival and is a great introduction to the history of the Jewish faith.
The Jewish Museum website has a section called Objects in Focus which provides teaching resources relating to their collection.
You can learn more about the Haggadah book pictured here on their site.
- A Haggadah book is used at Seder meals during the festival of Passover. Passover is an important Jewish festival that happens once a year and remembers the story of Moses. This Haggadah was created by the scribe Abraham Sopher in Ihringen, Germany in 1756. Abraham Sopher was a very efficient and professional scribe who is also the illustrator and illuminator. There are 27 parchment pages which are beautifully illustrated with water-colours.
- This beautifully illustrated book is called a Haggadah book, it is used during the Jewish festival of Passover and it describes the order of the Passover meal.