Skip to: Site Menu | Main content


"First, …recognize that it's a penny": Report on the "Newark" Ritual Artifacts




Limits are the framework of a writing system and enclose the writing zone Our modern writing limits are Quattro linear, that is, four lines, with the outer limits marking the upper limit for ascenders (e.g., "h") and lower limit for descenders (e.g., "y"). Graphs are written between the limits. Quattro linear limit systems are tri linear limit systems moved down one limit-line to accommodate ascenders. Writing systems on the eastern side of the Ancient Near East used tri linear limit systems. Tri linear limits are dynamic; graphs are written within the limits and permit the graphs to move up and down and from side to side in imitation of words as-spoken. Bilinear scripts and fonts fill the entire space between the upper and lower limits. Because the graphs fill the writing zone, bilinear limit systems are static. The main purpose of bilinear limit systems is to "freeze" the written words into an unchanging form to preserve the "magic" power of speech. Bilinear limit systems are favored by religio-mystico societies.

Any document written using bilinear limits indicates that the text is meant to be "frozen" and said exactly as written.

CONSOLIDATED SCRIPTS AND FONTS:

A script design is a closed system that functions as an independent and coherent whole within the complete writing system. Consolidated fonts are the exact opposite of conglomerate fonts. While both scripts use graphs from other script designs, they share no other features. Conglomerate fonts make no attempt to merge two or more different designs into a coherent whole. Instead, a conglomerate font displays a haphazard assortment of graphs from different designs within one word or phrase.[41]

As xenographic exchange[41] depends upon the strict adherence to a coherent font within the body of a text, conglomerate fonts are a meaningless mixture of graphs and are a definitive sign of a forgery.

Consolidated fonts are designed to merge graphs from different designs to create a coherent whole. These fonts are difficult to design because the final sub-system must frequently incorporate graphs from far different script systems. All consolidated designs start from a base script, that is, an existing script design is used as the base and the graphs from the other script systems are modified to match and merge with the existing base.

While not as common as single script designs, consolidated fonts are not rare and already appear under Sargon I of Sumer and Akkad. Among the Dead Sea Scrolls, 11QPs, the large Psalm scroll from Cave 11 in the general vicinity of Khirbet Qumran, is written in a consolidated Paleo-Square Script design. Paleo-Hebraic does not have serifs. This font incorporates features of Monumental Paleo-Hebraic and formal Square Script designs to make a formal sans-serif font. The base script is the Monumental Paleo-Hebraic. The font is carefully designed to use Monumental Paleo-Hebraic in xenographic exchange.

The graphs from the square script have been modified to match the base-script. The left leg of the "shin/sin," for example, imitates the exact angle of the uprights of monumental Paleo, as do the uprights on the "ayin." The right-hand angles imitate exactly the down-strokes, as on the Paleo-Hebraic "heh" (Figure 5).[42]

Fig. 5: The consolidated font of 11QPs

Constantine's Uncial script is a consolidated font intended to unite the Greco-Roman Empire by creating a new official script design that incorporates graphs from both Latin and Greek script systems into one matching whole.

Consolidated fonts are used as "standard" fonts; thus, the fact that a document is written in a consolidated font does not tell us anything about the status of the document as genuine or fake. On the other hand, close examination of the elements used in a consolidated font frequently yields otherwise inaccessible data.

GRID FONTS:

A "grid" font is geometrically based. A grid of squares, all of the same size, is laid out, then the graphs, always starting with the "A" (or "aleph") of the base-script, are squared off to outline a given "box" on the grid.

Each graph is then modified to approximate the desired appropriate symbol but filling the limits of a square. Grid fonts frequently result in the distortion of standard graphs to meet the coherence required in a font design. Nevertheless, grid fonts are useful when the consolidated font must combine graphs from many areas or ages and must be written without descenders or ascenders.

Grid fonts frequently are used with the incantation format.

SHAPE:

The shape of the Mosaic, or arch-topped, tablet derives directly, and practically unchanged down the millennia, from the shape associated with the architecture of Mesopotamian "House of God" buildings.[43] While the interpretation of the arch is dependent upon a culture (high and rounded, flattened and broad, "cloud," or pointed), the arch always is a symbol that whatever is presented under the arch is backed by the word of a god. Today the shape is frequently referred to as the shape of a "tombstone." This is backwards: the tombstone is shaped to imitate the narrow high arch associated with the Mosaic code; the shape symbolizes that the deceased has been entrusted to God. This use dates back to the earliest Christian grave markers and is used with the same symbolism on Moslem graves.[45]

Any article in the shape of a Mosaic tablet should contain a law or imply the law code handed down "at Sinai" by God.

COLOR:

While most people are aware that the color (or lack of color really) white indicates purity, not many are aware that, in antiquity, the color of the law was black. In fact, the color of the law is black to this day.

Because the contents of the phylacteries represent laws on wearing signs on hand and head, phylacteries are required by religious law to be black.

MATERIAL:

A symposium on the artifacts was held on Nov. 6, 1999. At the request of Patti Malenke, curator of the museum, Kenneth Bork and David Hawkins of Denison University examined the stone on which the "decalogue" is inscribed (and from the lithograph and description also the lost companion piece) and found it to be a black limestone in which "a fossil crinoid stem is visible on the surface.[45] "The "stems" (or "tests") of the marine creatures (both extinct and living) are "limy" and white.[46] The flow detector, cup, and case for the "yad" piece are made of novaculite.

An article made of stone is necessarily pure according to Rabbinic halachic rules.

THE SCULPTURE:

The figure on the bas-relief sculpture, enclosed within the shape of "The" Law, is the classic Semitic profile pose that, when a ruler or member of the elite is portrayed, is usually enclosed within an arch. The Semitic pose is quite distinct from the classic Egyptian pose, which combines a frontal body with a profile head.[47] In the Semitic pose, the entire body is portrayed in profile. This pose dates back to the oldest surviving stele from Akkad (ca. 2371-ca. 2255 BCE); the profile pose enclosed in an arch reappears down the millennia. In the classic Semitic pose, the figure is in profile, one hand is raised or the arm is bent forward pointing at something or holding something.

A sculpture in this classic pose indicates a Semitic model.

RESULTS OF THE ANALYSIS:

PHYLACTERIES:

The two phylacteries are made of black material, which is in accord with the rabbinical law that phylacteries must be black in color. Although contrary to Palestinian and Babylonian rabbinic rulings in the second century CE, the use of a condensed "decalogue" is in accord with a known prior tradition. That other traditions continued to exist alongside the Palestinian and Babylonian tradition is known from the Dead Sea Scrolls, papyri from Egypt, and was also was mentioned by Jerome.

PASS

FORMAT:

The two phylacteries are written in the incantation format (Figure 6). As they are, in fact, incantation texts meant to be recited exactly as written, the format matches the text -- and the purpose of the artifact.

Fig. 6: The incantation format on the back of the hand phylactery: (photo, J. Huston McCulloch)

PASS

WRITING LIMITS:

The texts on the two phylacteries are written between bilinear limits, that is, the text is "frozen." Incantation texts are intended to be frozen and are written between bilinear limits The limit system is in accord with the incantation format used on the two artifacts.

PASS

SCRIPTS:

The font used on these two phylacteries is a consolidated grid font. The base script is a Late-Medieval Hebrew "squared" font where the "aleph" is a three-sided "box" open at the bottom. Of the 21 symbols ("tet" is not used), 12 graphs are directly from the base-script: aleph, bet, dalet, heh, chet, khaf, nun, samech, peh, resh, shin, and taf. The shin and bet are squared off standard graphs from the base script. The "yod" is a single line that runs full height of the square; full height yods have been used in various Hebrew script systems since the late BCE period. Qof has a descender and caused a problem in this design. The designer used the top part of the qof and incorporated the descender into a tail that wraps around the bottom of the grid square.

Incorporated into the font are one cuneiform-type composite graph (ca. 16th BCE) that appears to have been the model for numerous descendants both in North and South Semitic script systems; one South-Sinaitic graph (ca. 16th-15th BCE), two South-Semitic graphs, one Nabatean graph; one Neo-Sinaitic graph, and one Hebraeo-Phoenician graph that dates to ca. 10th BCE (Figure 7).

Fig. 7:
(a) Modern Hebrew -- Formal typeface and cursive;
(b) The Late-Medieval Hebrew Base-script;
(c) The Consolidated Grid font on the phylacteries;
(d) South Sinaitic;
(e) Nabatean;
(f) South-Semitic;
(g) Neo-Sinaitic;
(h) Hebraeo-Phoenician

  (click on image for larger view)


As there can be neither ascenders or descenders in this design (or the graphs will not fit between the limits and will intrude on the incantation spiral), the designer created a variant form to indicate a final (sofit) graph on the "khaf" by leaving a space. Variant forms are also used to distinguish "shin" from "sin" and "taf" from "dhaf."

We should also note that the ancients were "thrifty." Graphs were used not only as themselves, but to indicate special purpose. Xenographic exchange is one example of multiple use; variant forms are another. Just as Phoenician territorial scripts used variant forms of "aleph" to indicate which vowel phone was attached to the consonant, this design includes four variant forms of "aleph." Each variant form has a different "vowel" attached to the specific location and shape of the left-hand leg of the "aleph." The technique of denoting instructions on the left-hand leg of an "aleph" or an "A is well attested.[48]

Multiple use is also seen in the tzadik. The tzadik is a cuneiform-type composite and appears to be the class model for both North and South Sinaitic graphs. As the mutations of this graph are found in both branches of Semitic script systems, the composite graph antedates the earliest descendants and is from ca. 16th or 15th centuries BCE.[49] The "V"of the tzadik appears in Aramaic and Hebrew Square Script systems from at least the fifth century BCE onwards and can be seen in the Medieval Hebrew base-script [b]); the "V" on the "tzadik" is still used in the modern formal typeface [a]. In South-Semitic scripts systems [e, f, g], the tzadik appears with a rounded upper graph along with a second form that indicates a "tzadik sofit." The "mem" is a squared off South Sinaitic graph, as old as the tzadik. These two graphs may be "magic" letters, for the designer did not include final forms of either the "tzadik" or "mem." Whether "magic" or not, it is clear that these graphs were to be copied without change -- which they were.

We should note that somewhere down the fifteen centuries or more of copying this decalogue text, the "vav" and "zayin" became interchanged. What is placed in the "vav" position is a South Semitic "zayin"; in the "zayin" position is the third form of Hebraeo-Phoenician "vav." While the two graphs were interchanged, again, it is clear that the "vav" was to be copied without change.

The lamed is a Nabatean graph that was the model for the Neo-Sinaitic, and later, the Kufic scripts.50 Two forms of "taf" ("t" and "dh") are also used in Nabatean and appear as variant forms in the Nabatean script systems. The "crossed" gimel is Neo-Sinaitic. The "ayin" is a South Semitic graph that dates to ca. 10th-century BCE. (The North Semitic "ayin" at this date is a circle, i.e., "o [h].) The symbol at the center and front of the inscription may be some type of religious emblem or it may be an identification of sect affiliation. We cannot, at this juncture, know its purpose.

The text is written in a consolidated grid font, which is what we would expect for use in an incantation format.

PASS

SHAPE:

The hand phylactery is the shape of a Mosaic tablet and it does indeed contain a "law" code. In fact, it contains a condensed version of "The" Law code.

PASS

COLOR:

Phylacteries are black under the "halacha mosheh misinai" [laws given to Moses at Sinai].

PASS

MATERIAL:

Stone as the materials used for the set follows rabbinic halachic rules on purity. Both the black stone for the phylacteries and a different stone for the purification ritual of washing are in accord with these rulings.

PASS

THE SCULPTURE:

The pose on the sculpture is the classic Semitic pose.

In 1861, the appearance of the bas-relief on the hand phylactery led Rabbi Lederer, editor of the "Israelite," to class the artifact as "not Jewish" because the making of images of anything in the sky, on the earth, or in the sea contravenes Exodus 20: 4.51 Exodus 20: 5, however, is the second half of the injunction in Exodus 20:4 and explicitly states that such images should not be worshipped as gods. This further statement can be interpreted as not applicable to anything that is not worshipped as a god. It is rather apparent that the second half in Exodus 20:5 was so interpreted in some communities. There is nothing "god-like" in this "portrait" of Moses.

The word "Moses" (Moshe) is inscribed above the head of the figure, which is just as well or we would not know who was depicted. In medieval Christian art, Moses is rendered with a stern expression; a long, flowing beard and hair; and voluminous sweeping robes that descend from the shoulders and also from which depend wide flowing sleeves. Moses is always depicted as holding tablets with the high rounded-arch shape of "The" Law. This Moses, however, wears a benign expression; his hair is completely covered, his beard is the neatly trimmed beard of late medieval portraits, his robe is loose, but not flowing, and he is wearing a short tunic with close fitting sleeves. Tucked under his arm is a tablet in the triangle "arch" shape of "The" Law used by the North Central and Northwest Semitic peoples in the Dan-Edom area.52

More specifically, Moses' clothing consists of a robe, a short tunic, a hat with a tight band, and a girdle. From the bulk at the shoulders, he may also be wearing an ephod.53 This ensemble, of course, is the description in Exodus 28 of the priestly garments to be made for Aaron. All in all, his clothing most closely resembles Josephus' word picture in Ant. III, vi, 3. We should note that the entire ensemble has been depicted with a decided South Semitic bent.

The "hat" may originally have been an interpretation of the "priestly" headwear;54 but here it more closely resembles the identifying hat of an Arabic Ollamh, a professor of the law.55 Similarly, the robe worn by the figure of Moses may have been an interpretation of the priestly garments described in Exodus.56 Again, in this sculpture, we find the type of robe worn by "teachers of the law" in the Moslem world. The neatly trimmed beard, in direct contrast to the usual flowing beard on Moses in other medieval portraits is a mark of late-medieval provenance. The sculpture bears all the signs of a late-medieval interpretation of a Semitic profile portrait. The workmanship is more likely to be Spanish than French because of the decided Arabic influences, although we cannot rule out the possibility that a Spanish artisan worked in France. There is little doubt as to the ca. 11th-13th centuries date of this sculpture. The workmanship and style date the sculpture to the same period as the late-medieval base-script used for the consolidated font.

PASS

CONCLUSIONS:

The artifacts could not possibly have been created in the nineteenth century; nobody had the knowledge necessary to do so. Indeed, nobody who previously examined these artifacts has recognized that two of the artifacts are inscribed in the ancient incantation format. Nor has anyone previously realized that the "peculiar" font is a consolidated design or that it is a grid font typical of scripts and fonts used with incantation formats. It is rather clear that no one until today has recognized the Late-Medieval Hebrew script that is the base-script of this consolidated grid font.

The inclusion of ancient Sinaitic graphs in the consolidated grid font is an indication that these particular "letters" were considered "magic" and had to be copied exactly. Nor could they be modified much to suit the script design. There are other indications that the tzadik is a "magic" graph. As has been noted, the tzadik is a cuneiform-type composite -- a graph of which mutations were incorporated into both North and South Semitic script systems adapted for dry surface writing. There are many abbreviations in the text. In accord with the typical practice of multiple use, this composite stands as both a "tzadik" and as the symbol for "Sinai."

The first words running down the left hand side of the artifact are not the "decalogue": they are a condensation of Exodus 20:2, which reads: "asher hotzetecha m'eretz mitzrai'im" (confirm [that I] brought you from the land of Egypt). The first three letters of "Hotzetecha" are "heh-vav-tzadik;" but that is not what is written on the artifact. What is written on the artifact is "heh-resh[half grid space] tzadik/Sinai." "Heh-resh" is "har and means "mount." The line reads: "asher har Sinai/tzetecha m'eretz[sinai] mitz[sinai]rai'im." (Confirm [that I] [at] mount Sinai brought you [at Sinai] out of the land of Egypt [at Sinai].)

Perhaps it should be explained that, when asked what script would have been used for the tablets described in Exodus 32:15, more than one expert on ancient Semitic scripts will reply that an educated guess would be Sinaitic. The preservation of one Sinaitic graph in the symbol-set used on the hand phylactery, as well as the preservation of the "V" of the composite "tzadik" in Hebrew script systems down the millennia, is the first tiny bit of concrete evidence that the description of the Mosaic code as inscribed on tablets, no matter how many embellishments accrued, is based in fact.

The preservation of one Hebraeo-Phoenician graph suggests that this graph was considered another "magic" letter that had to be copied exactly for the incantation to work. It also represents a small piece of evidence that the texts of the first four books of the Pentateuch were written down early in the Monarchial period in the 10th century BCE.

The large number of South-Semitic graphs (six out of twenty-one) are strong evidence that the older tradition of including the decalogue in the phylacteries was continued among a group of religious Jews living in South Semitic countries long after the tradition was forbidden by the Palestinian and Babylonian Rabbis in the second century CE. Equally strong as evidence is the sculpture with its distinctly Semitic pose and Islamic-influenced clothing. These aspects that show clear South Semitic influence indicate that the set was commissioned by a Sephardic Jew and, as the set is clearly intended for use when traveling, probably by a merchant-trader. From details on the sculpture, the most likely site for the place of production is Spain. If at the earliest range for the date (11th CE), the set may have been produced in Catalonia. If the later date range (13th CE), the set was possibly produced in Cordoba or Toledo during the time of Alfonso X of Castille. Nor can we ignore the possibility that the set was produced in France; Sephardic Jews handled the trade between the Holy Roman Empire and the Moslem world.

While the words in the phylacteries are linked to both identification and protection, there is no direct evidence that the words were linked to magic. On the other hand, evidence that certain graphs were linked to "magic" signs can be seen in the format and symbol-set used on the late-medieval hand phylactery inscribed with the "forbidden" condensed decalogue. The inclusion of "antique" graphs in the consolidated script design tends to support the school that maintains that the texts of Exodus and Deuteronomy which refer to the wearing of signs on hand and on forehead may have been meant literally. These graphs also link phylacteries with the ancient "magic" letter/signs inscribed on protective charms and amulets -- and, possibly, literally inscribed on the skin of the left hand and the forehead.

The fact that the hand piece was still in its case, while the bowl, flow detector, and head piece were not, gives us further information. The head piece clearly was bound to the skull; thus, we know that the flow detector and bowl had been used. We now also have evidence that the older tradition of donning the head piece first was carried on among some Jewish communities for many centuries after the Rabbinical ruling that the hand piece be placed first.

The use of the condensed decalogue on the hand phylactery gives us concrete evidence that, although as of the second century CE, the decalogue was forbidden to use in the Palestinian and Babylonian traditions, the older tradition of a "fifth" text, the decalogue itself, was alive and well among other Jewish communities. We do have some indications as to the age of this older tradition. The finds at Qumran, the Nash Papyri, and this hand phylactery, make it clear that the condensed "decalogue" was not a Samaritan concept as had been previously assumed. Samaritans do not use phylacteries, although a similar condensed version appears on Samaritan stone mezzuzahs. The use by Samaritans of a similar condensed "decalogue" indicates that the tradition of this condensed "decalogue" dates to before the rift between the Samaritan and Jerusalem communities, which may be as early as the 7th-6th BCE.57 The rift certainly was indicated by the fifth century BCE in a letter from Elephantine.

We have, however, further indications as to the antiquity of the tradition of reciting this condensed decalogue, which pushes the probable date back to the 9th century BCE. Although the hand phylactery is shaped as the familiar high-rounded arch of the Jerusalemite tradition and although the sculpture is encased in another Jerusalemite arch, the tablet that Moses is holding is not the high rounded-arch of the Southern Kingdom. The tablet is the shape used in the Phoenicianized northwest and north central corner of the area in that period. The tablet, in fact, is the same shape as the "Beit David"stele found at the Tel Dan archaeological site (Figure 8).58

Fig. 8:(a) Shape of the tablet tucked under the arm of Moses  
  Fig. 8:(b) Shape of the "Beit David" stele found at Tel Dan

We will never be able to date this "portrait" of Moses: the shape of the tablet he is holding indicates a very ancient tradition in the Northern Kingdom with regard to interpretations of the instructions in Exodus. On the other hand, with the evidence of the "Newark" hand phylactery, we can now state with confidence that an older tradition of reciting the decalogue daily continued for at least another 1100 years among some Sephardic Jewish communities.59 It also seems that a compromise on the contested point was arrived at, albeit many centuries before the question was even raised: a condensed version of the decalogue avoids the exact repetition of the words said by Moses. Indeed, the bas-relief of a benign Moses would appear to lend his countenance to the saying of the condensed decalogue.

The Newark Ritual artifacts date to the Late Medieval period, as is made clear from stylistic features on the bas-relief sculpture on one of the artifacts and the Late Medieval Hebrew base-script used for the consolidated grid font that appears in the inscriptions on two of the artifacts. The artifacts are authentic, if not what they were thought to be in the 19th century, and, unfortunately, even today.60

Claims of modern forgery based on the "peculiar" script, or "spelling" errors (of which there is precisely one after 1500 years or more of copying the text),61 or the pose of the figure on the bas-relief are equally erroneous and have no basis in actuality. The fact that black limestone with crinoid stems can be found in Ohio also has been claimed as evidence that the artifacts are forgeries. Black limestone containing crinoid stems, however, is available throughout the world. The material may be found, for example, in Belgium, England, France, Hungary and Spain. It may also be found in Idaho and the Dakotas as well as in Mercer and Muskingum Counties Ohio.62 The artifacts pass all visual forensic analysis tests. They also pass the materials examination as far as the availability of the material at the probable site(s) of manufacture. That black limestone can also be found in Ohio is irrelevant.

Archaeology as a soundly based field only came into being in the 1880's. That in the 1860's claims that the artifacts were forgeries, although the evidence at the site and expert opinion was against this, can be excused. Claims today that these artifacts are forgeries and not "old" enough for where they were found are unacceptable; such claims ignore both basic archaeological standards and the evidence. We can never know whether the artifacts were deposited during the "pirate treasure hunt" phase or sometime shortly after 1832 when the workmen removed 144,000 cartloads of stones from all the stacks at the site. There is, though, little doubt: this set of ritual artifacts was deposited at the two sites during the early part of the nineteenth century. As Dr. Fischel pointed out in 1861, these artifacts are medieval and European and had been stolen from a European settler.

The "Newark" Ritual artifacts are neither forgeries nor relics of "Ancient America." They are, however, very important concrete evidence of Ancient and Medieval Israelite practices. The ancient graphs included in the consolidated script on these phylacteries are also our first small pieces of concrete evidence that a factual basis underlies Exodus 32:15. The shape of the tablet held by Moses as well as the condensed "decalogue" inscribed on the hand phylactery is concrete evidence of the types of authoritative and theological disputes that divided the Northern and Southern Kingdoms. In addition, these artifacts also give us some hints as to the continuation of Jewish traditions among the peoples displaced after the Northern Kingdom was destroyed. This particular penny is far too important to leave in the obscurity of a wrangle between two extremist sides, both of whom ignore the evidence.

If an American penny finds its way onto the Acropolis in Athens or the Colosseum in Rome, we dismiss the question of how it got there as too obvious to be worth asking. This set of late-medieval ritual artifacts found their way to these sites in the United States because they were brought there, as so many family heirlooms were, by a settler from Europe searching for a new home in the new world.

Many thanks to Scott E. Meyer of Northwestern University for supplying me with the Alrutz article (which I could not acquire for myself) and then for digging out further information on Dr. Arnold Fischel after the provocative (and incomplete) reference in the Alrutz article. My gratitude must also be expressed to Herb Basser of Queens University for his erudite comments on Hebrew and Mishnaic sources. Obviously, any errors that may remain are mine.

|Page 2|



Notes

[40] For a discussion of conglomerate fonts, see Altman, Temple Tablet.

[41] Xenographic (foreign graph) exchange is the use of Font B in a text written in Font A. Dating back to Akkad, the use of italics to denote "book title" or "foreign word" is a modern use of xenographic exchange..

[42] For further information on the design of the consolidated font used in 11QPs, see, Altman, "The Writing World of the Dead Sea Scrolls." Lecture: St. Mary's School of Divinity, University of St. Andrews, Fife, Scotland, 2001.

[43] For discussions on the "shape of the law," see Altman, Temple Tablet; Altman, Absent Voices, 33-35.

[44] Interesting aspects of the grave markers used in Islam are 1) a marker is placed at both head and feet -- which may refer to the two tablets as is written in Exodus; and 2) pairs of Islamic "cloud" arch and "Mosaic" arch tablets appear, but on different graves.

[45] For both the Symposium, Nov. 6, 1999, and Bork and Hawkins. See: The Newark Ohio Decalog Stone and Keystone, by J. Huston McCulloch." (http://www.econ.ohio-state.edu/jhm/arch/decalog.html)

[46] Existing class Crinoidea, phylum Echinodermata include sand dollars, star fish, and sea urchins.

[47] Both poses appear to have something to do with the concept of the "eyes as the mirror of the soul." The oldest known sculpture, the "venus" head from the Magdalene period (ca. 22,000 BCE) is lifelike, but where the eyes should be are two concave "blanks." These same concave "blank eyes" appear in archaic Greek sculptures-in-the-round. Cave paintings from ca. 5,000 BCE show rounded, lifelike figures, usually in perspective, but their backs are to the viewer. A similar taboo on depicting the eyes, though not concave, appears to operate in the late archaic Greek frontal pose. The subject warrants further research.

[48] The replacement of the left-leg on an "A" with a cephalicus neume to indicate, for example, which of three singers was to lead the congregation can be seen in BN MS. Lat. 8824 and in St. Gall MSS. 329 and 359. See, Altman, Absent Voices, Chapter 10.

[49] Many of the South Sinaitic graphs are adaptations of cuneiform graphs, minus "wedges," for use in dry surface writing.

[50] The Nabatean language was the formal Aramaic of Achamaenid Persia. Their script systems were a territorial variant. The modern Arabic script systems descend from the Nabatean.

[51] See Alrutz, "Tragedy," 44.

[52] The "triangle arch" led people to believe that the item was a "breastplate," although a breastplate would be in the center, not tucked under an arm.

[53] While the ephod is described in detail, nobody knows exactly what the item is, and it is not translated.

[54] The "priestly" hat in this sculpture seems to follow the description in Josephus, Ant. III. vi, 3 rather closely..

[55] The identifying hat worn by European lawyers during the period also has a tight band, but it has a crown and the hair is free in the back above the band..

[56] Again, the robe seems closer to the description in Josephus, Ant. III, vii, 1 than to the one in the MT.

[57] The Samaritan Chronicles relate feuding between Zerrubabel (the builder of the Second Temple in Jerusalem) and Sanballat, the Samaritan priesteven while in Babylon during the exile (6th BCE). (See, Paul Stenhouse, The Kitab al Tarikh of Abu'l-Fath Sydney: Mandelbaum Trust, 1985.)

[58] The appearance of the "Phoenician" triangle arch used on this hand phylactery gives external corroboration that the "beit david" stele found at Tel-Dan is the correct "shape" for the area and is authentic. Its use also has very important implications in respect to the differences in interpretative traditions between the Northern Kingdom and the Southern Kingdom..

[59] The hand piece also makes it patent that the tradition of reciting the decalogue, albeit in a condensed form, continued for at least 1100 years after it was forbidden in the Babylonian and Tiberian communities in the 2nd century CE..

[60] See above, footnotes 5 and 6.

[61] The interchange of the "vav" and the "zayin" cannot be classed as "spelling errors." Once the two graphs were interchanged, they were used consistently to represent the opposite graph..

[62] "Stems" on fossil crinodea come in a variety of shapes: circular, v-shaped, and irregular. The "stems" embedded in the artifact would have to match the "stems" in the black limestone from these Ohio counties; the structural granulation from the way the limestone was formed would also have to match. These tests are performed by "thin-sections," that is, thin "wafers" or cross sections of stone are cut and then glued to a glass slide. The wafer is ground and polished until the structure and fossil contents can be seen through a microscope. These tests have not been done, although such tests are crucial to asserting that the artifact is a forgery and that the material comes from Ohio.