Monday, February 02, 2009

Dead Sea Scrolls for Sale

Jim Davila on PaleoJudaica reports that two Dead Sea Scrolls fragments are for sale by Michael R. Thompson, Booksellers, at the 42nd California International Antiquarian Book Fair later this month at their display. This is the description from Thompson's catalogue (see his blog):

29. [DEAD SEA SCROLLS]. Original fragment from Daniel, Chapter 5, Verse 13-16. Found at Qumran, on the Dead Sea, in Cave 4, some time between 1952 and 1956. The fragment itself dates between 50 BC - AD 68 (the Roman destruction of Qumran). 32 mm. x 30 mm., written in Hebrew on brown animal hide. Preserved between glass, and enclosed in cloth chemise, in full black morocco clamshell slipcase. $275,000
Includes the verse translated in English as: "Art thou that Daniel, which art of the children of the captiuity of Iudah..."

30. [DEAD SEA SCROLLS]. Original fragment from Exodus, Chapter 18, Verse 6-8. Found at Qumran, on the Dead Sea, in Cave 4, some time between 1952 and 1956. The fragment itself dates between 150 BC - AD 68 (the Roman destruction of Qumran). 11 x 34 mm. written in Hebrew on brown animal hide. Preserved between glass, and enclosed in cloth chemise, in full black morocco clamshell slipcase. $145,000
Includes the verse translated in English as: "Moses told his father-in-law all that the Lord had done to Pharoah and to the Egyptians for Israel’s sake, all the hardship that had befallen them on the journey, and how the Lord had delivered them.”

Davila concludes:

"I don't know if these are genuine or not, but if they are, it is unfortunate to find them like this in the public marketplace, although I suppose it's better than their being lost entirely. If you should happen to be in the position to buy these, I hope you will consider donating them (or at least be willing to sell them) to a museum, preferably one in Israel. If you must keep them, please, please be willing to make them available for specialists to study. It will do no harm to the value of the fragments and it will insure that the contribution they can make to history is not lost."

2 Comments:

Daniel Buck said...

"Original fragment from Daniel, Chapter 5, Verse 13-16. . . written in Hebrew."

No kidding? Is this the only ms of Daniel 5 in Hebrew?

Jame said...

You can get the artifact validated with Sotherby's or Christie's free of charge. Have you had them validated as authentic? and how did you decide on value?
Please contact me at giannaprimadonna@gmail.com
Thank you