Stone head. Carved limestone, forgery attributed to Moses Wilhelm Shapira. [Palestine, 2nd half of 19th century].
Moses Wilhelm Shapira (1830-1884), an antiquities collector and dealer who lived in Jerusalem in the second half of the 19th century. He was known as a purveyor of fake artifacts as a result of two famous cases - he faked a collection of Moabite stone artifacts, and scrolls that were supposedly discovered in the Dead Sea region in 1883. The Hebrew text of the scrolls hinted at a different version of Deuteronomy. Tests carried out by The British Museum researchers and other researchers, reached the conclusion that the scrolls were forged. The scrolls were announced as fake. Shapira left London and committed suicide in 1884.
The stone head offered here belongs to a group of stone sculptures and reliefs attributed to Shapira (named "group B"). This group contains limestone sculptures which were covered with artificial patina in different colors, probably, inspired by Nabataean sculptures from sites in Transjordan. The group of fake artifacts consists, mainly of men's heads. The sculpting of faces was done in schematic lines: all have a high forehead, and faces resemble each other as if created according to an identical model.
The stone head offered here was exhibited in the exhibition "Truly Fake - Moses Wilhelm Shapira Master Forger" (see list of lenders to the exhibition).
Height: 31 cm, width: 15 cm. Fair condition. Cracks, restored breaks. Missing pieces.
For further information see:
1. Fakes and forgeries, from collections in Israel. Exhibition catalogue, Eretz Israel Museum, Tel-Aviv, 1989. Curator: Gusta Lehrer-Jacobson. pp.23-24.
2. Truly Fake, Wilhelm Moses Shapira Master Forger. Exhibition catalogue, the Israel Museum, Jerusalem, 2000.
Provenance: Collection of Dotan family, Jerusalem
Bookends made of olive wood. [Palestine, 19th century].
Flat wooden board, inscribed ”ירושלם Jerusalem”. Hinged, fold-down panels, for supporting books. On the right panel appears an engraved image of the Dome of the Rock and on the left panel - the Western Wall. The right panel, with part of the wooden base can be pulled out to allow more storage space.
34.5X14 cm. Max. height: 14.5 cm. Good condition. Some stains and some damages.
Wide bowl with floral decorations, created in the Karkashian-Balian workshop.
Clay, painted and glazed. Signed: "Palestine" and with the workshop logo.
Diameter: 48.5 cm, height: 13 cm. Restores breaks.
1. Death mask of Rabbi Ya'akov Maze, created by the Russian sculptor Sergey Merkurov. Plaster relief. [Russia, 1924].
Length: 40 cm, width: 28 cm, max. height: 15 cm. Good condition. Iron wire for hanging.
2. Ink-stamp of Rabbi Ya'akov Maze, inscribed " Iakov Isaevich Maze" (Russian).
Cast brass, 2.5X3 cm. Wooden handle. Height: 6 cm.
Rabbi Ya'akov Maze (1859-1924), rabbi, author and Zionist activist, born in Mogilev. From an early age he was involved in Zionist activities. As a student he was a member of "Chibat Zion" and in 1884 was one of the founders of "Bene Tsiyon" society together with Menachem Ussishkin and Yehiel Tschlenow. In October 1893 he was appointed as chief rabbi of Moscow. In the same year, with his encouragement, a group of "lovers of the Hebrew language" was founded in Moscow. During the Beilis trial he was summoned to testify as an expert witness, and his brave testimony played an important role in the defense of Beilis. He died in October of the same year in Moscow and was buried in Dorogomilovskaya cemetery.
Sergey Merkurov (1881-1952), a Russian sculptor, "People's Artist of the USSR", director of the "Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts" in Moscow between the years 1944-1949. Merkurov created some of the most important monuments in Russia in honor of Stalin and Lenin. Was famous for the death-masks which he created for Lev Tolstoy, Maxim Gorky, Vladimir Mayakovsky, Lenin and other public figures.
Ceramic plate, painted by hand, commemorating the author Isaac Leib Peretz (1851-1915), a leading Yiddish and Hebrew author and forefather of the revival of Hebrew literature.
Signed on the reverse D.S. and dated 1919.
The plate is richly painted. In the center appears a portrait of I. L. Peretz, surrounded by candles and topped with a Menorah and the inscription "ז"ל". On the margins appears an inscription in Yiddish: "ayner fun di greste dikhter fin der idisher literature" [one of the greatest authors of Yiddish literature].
Diameter: 24 cm. Good condition.
Route de St. Petersbourg [Route of St. Petersburg]. plaster relief, cast and hand-painted. [France, early 20th century].
Plaque with a relief of an elderly Jewish couple, a man and a woman, marching. The man carries a satchel on his back and a walking stick (wooden). Above them is a sign with the inscription "Route de St. Petersbourg" [French: St. Petersburg Road] and an arrow pointing in the direction which the couple are leaving behind. Signed: Leemans.
21.5X37 cm. Good condition. Slight damages.
Silver bracelet, designed by Ze'ev Raban, inspired by Isaiah's End Time prophecy. Marked: Jerusalem, St. 925. Jerusalem, [2nd or 3rd quarter of 20th century].
The bracelet is composed of eight links. The inscription "It shall come to pass in the last days" (Isiah 2) appears on the first link, and on the other links appear scenes based on chapter 11 in the Book of Isaiah.
Length: 17 cm, width: 1 cm.
Literature: Raban Remembered, Jerusalem's Forgotten Master, exhibition catalogue, "Yeshiva University", New-York, 1982, item 114, p. 107 (photographed).
Two plaques awarded by Jewish sports organizations in Europe [1920s-30s].
1. A plaque in the shape of a shield, commemorating twenty years to the establishment of the sports club "Macabi Krakow", 1929. Approx. 8X11 cm.
2. A plaque of the Makkabea sports organization. Approx. 4.5X6.5 cm.
Fifteen plaques - medals awarded as a prize for winning sports competitions, on behalf of "HaKoach Vienna" Jewish sports organization, 1923-1935.
Most were awarded for swimming competitions. An enamel decoration is integrated in two plates - emblem of "HaKoach Vienna". Enclosed is a plaque from 1936 - it is possible that it is not of "HaKoach Vienna".
Total of 16 plaques. Size and condition vary.
Ten pins and badges.
* Enamel pin with Star of David, open book inscribed with the years "1946-1947", flame and additional elements [Ort Organization?]. * Two different enamel pins of the Zionist Youth movement. * Pin of the Dror HaBonim Movement. * Pin of the Dror Movement. * Two different enamel pins of the Bnei Akiva Movement. * Pin with emblem of the HaShomer HaTzair Movement and the slogan "Hazak VeEmatz" (Be Strong and Courageous). * Enamel pin with emblem of the Betar Movement. * Pin with the Hebrew initials "Gimel Mem Heh" [Hebrew Scouts Movement?].
Size and condition vary. Some of the pins are missing clasp.
17 Tzedakah Boxes. Palestine and the United States, [early 20th century through mid 20th century]. Among the boxes: Tzedakah boxes of "Bikur Holim" hospital and Yeshivah and Talmud Torah "Etz Haim", "Shomrey Hachomot" Kolel, Talmud Torah and Yeshivat "Chayei Olam", Diskin Orphanage, "Tomchey T'mimim" Yeshivot Lubavitch, in memory of Rabbi Meir Ba'al HaNess, "Yeshivat "Beit Yossef" in Mezritsh, "Keren HaYeshuv" of Agudat Yisrael Youth, General Girls Orphanage in Jerusalem, as well as three JNF "Blue Boxes".
Size and condition vary.
"Kofer Ha Yishuv" - two rings, a pin and two tokens.
1-2. Two rings with the inscription "Kofer HaYishuv", one for a man and one for a woman.
3. A pin inscribed "Kofer HaYishuv - Matat Tachshitim [Jewelry Donation] - 1938-9", designed by Moshe Moro (missing clasp).
4-5. Two tokens, "Kofer HaYishuv, 1/2 Mil", 1939.
"Kofer HaYishuv" was a fundraising operation for security purposes during the riots of 1936-1939. As part of the "Jewelry Donation" operation people donated their best jewelry in return for substitutes made of inexpensive metals.
Size and condition vary.
Two coins of 100 Mils, 1934. One is in XF-VF condition; the other is in XF condition, with corrosion.
1. 5 Mils Coin, 1942. Bronze. With Error - Imprint on Defective Token
2. 20 Mils Coin, 1944. AU, almost new.
Coins in Values of 1-100 Mils, 1927-1946.
All the coins (59 in all) minted under the British Mandate in Palestine.
Arranged in an album.
Condition: VF-XF, most are cleaned.
Collection of Coins in Values of 1-100 Mils, 1927-1946.
* 26 Coins of 1 Mil: 1927 (two coins), 1939 (5 coins), 1941 (3 coins), 1942 (7 coins), 1943 (6 coins), 1944, 1946 (2 coins).
* 26 coins of 2 Mils: 1927 (4 coins), 1941 (8 coins), 1942 (9 coins), 1945 (2 coins), 1946 (3 coins).
* 12 coins of 5 mils: 1927 (3 coins), 1934, 1942 (2 coins), 1944 (5 coins), 1946.
* 45 coins of 10 mils: 1927 (5 coins), 1933, 1934 (2 coins), 1935 (3 coins), 1937 (4 coins), 1939 (6 coins), 1940 (8 coins), 1941 (3 coins), 1942 (5 coins), 1943 (3 coins), 1946 (5 coins).
* 14 coins of 20 mils: 1927 (5 coins), 1934, 1935, 1940, 1942 (3 coins), 1944 (3 coins).
* 28 coins of 50 mils: 1927 (6 coins), 1931, 1934 (2 coins), 1935 (11 coins), 1939 (2 coins), 1940 (4 coins), 1942 (2 coins).
* Ten coins of 100 mils: 1927 (4 coins), 1933, 1935 (3 coins), 1939, 1942.
Total of 161 coins. Condition varies.
Two banknotes from the British Mandate in Palestine, 20 April, 1939.
1. One Palestine Pound. Fine condition, used.
2. 500 Mils. F-VF condition.