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                                                                  in copper and gold. There are 34 pages of illustrations, similar
                                                                  to the style of gothic manuscripts, but with old testament
                           Book Review Corner                     scenes of creation Bereishit through the death of Moses
                                                                  Moshe Rabbeinu; but it is uniquely Judaic. The book has wine
                                                                  stains as evidence it was actually used at seders throughout
                      By Andy Allen, Art Director SCOPE           the centuries. There are other illuminated haggadot, as the
                                                                  Golden Haggadah, which dates a bit earlier, origin Catalonia,
                                                                  Spain circa 1320, but the Sarajevo Haggadah’s uniqueness lies
                                                                  in its travels and “close-calls” with destruction.













      Growing up in the “mid-century,” my family, like many other
      Jewish suburban families used the all too familiar Maxwell
      House Haggadah. As we grew older, these worn books, with
      wine and horseradish stains and matzah crumbs were replaced                                  The Sarajevo Haggadah
      with newer versions clad in handmade covers made by me. As
      the resident “artist” of the family, I silkscreened a white dove
      and olive branch on a navy-blue cover stock, and bound them in-  The Alhambra Decree of 1492, expelling the Jews from Spain
      dividually to our collection of haggadot. These “fancy” haggadot   along with the Holy Inquisition tried to carry out the total
      were admired by my folks and relatives for a number of seders   elimination of our Jewish history. This included destroying
      going forth.                                                prayer books and burning anything that was considered “her-
                                                                  etic.”  The Church’s systematic destruction towards Jews and
      In my grown-up years, a family of my own, we recited the Pesach   Muslims, reached all throughout Europe. The Sarajevo Hagga-
      seders with the new and improved Artscroll Haggadah and usu-  dah shows evidence of being in Italy in 1609, mysteriously with
      ally added a special Haggadah by an artist such as Arthur Szyk,   authoritative markings and a seal, in the margins, stating it
      or Mark Podwal or an Eli Wiesel rendition to the table. No matter   was not a heretic book, thus allowing it not to be “burned.”
      what Haggadah you and your family may use…they all contain
      the same beautiful dialogue, magid, the retelling of the story of
      Exodus.
                                                        shdn
      wohrmns tgrtc tb,vct ukft hs thbg tnjk tv
                                       /kfhhu h,hh ihpfs kf
                                     /jxphu h,hh lhrms kf

      Retelling the Story
      This is the bread of affliction which our ancestors ate in the land
      of Egypt; let all those who are hungry, enter and eat; and all who
      are in need, come and celebrate the Passover.
      This year while preparing this issue of SCOPE, I began extra
      early in my research. Each year I wish to create a “new and
      improved” cover for the magazine. This year I illustrated a seder
      plate with the parting of the sea, and watercolors of the maror,        Map of the Sarajevo Haggadah’s journey, crossing
      charoset, matzah et al, to make our magazine stand apart from           many countries and many years. (Map inserted in
      other publications. Along the way I began reading Geraldine                      preface of People of the Book, 2008.)
      Brooks’ fictional novel, The People of the Book, which is the
      intriguing story of the Sarajevo Haggadah.                  Geraldine Brooks’ fictional narrative takes real-life heroes
                                                                  and incidents and “fills in the gaps” with a beautifully woven
      This Haggadah presently resides in the National Museum of Bos-  story. Her “history” may be of artistic license, but it makes
      nia and Herzegovina in Sarajevo, but its origin is Barcelona, Spain   the mystery of its owners who hid it from certain destruction,
      circa 1350. It is handwritten on bleached calfskin and illuminated   come alive with tales of “near escape.”


                                                   SCOPE Magazine Passover 2022    9
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