Welcome to the “Proof of Concept” Preview of “Maps of God” - The Ilanot Portal

On this site, we welcome you to explore the “Maps of God” Ilanot Portal in its dynamic development. This site is updated nightly to reflect any new content and features that have been implemented by our collaborating teams at the University of Haifa and the University of Göttingen.

Please note that this site was created for internal use and is open to the general public as a courtesy. The development and implementation of the feature-rich end-user site is currently underway and is expected to be completed by 2024.

“Maps of God” (MoG) is the flagship digital humanities initiative of the Ilanot Project, dedicated to the research of Jewish kabbalistic diagrams known as ilanot (“trees,” being intricately inscribed parchment scrolls dedicated to mapping the divine realm). The MoG platform presents scientific editions of the great ilanot using an innovative linked-data approach to enable scholars and laypeople to explore these fascinating artifacts for the first time.

The development of this “proof of concept” platform has been funded by the Volkswagen Foundation-funded Niedersächsisches Vorab: Research Cooperation Lower Saxony – Israel scheme. Basic research on the materials edited on this site was funded by Israel Science Foundation Personal Grant 1568/18.

Below you will find manuscripts that are in various stages of preparation at this time.

Here is provided a how-to guide for the search functions available on the portal.

The Magnificent Parchment - MS Hunt. Add. D

Oxford, BL, MS Hunt. Add. D. is a particularly fine, early, and well-preserved witness of a family of large manuscript rotuli ("ilanot") to which we have given the name "The Magnificent Parchment." Only one witness (London, BL, MS Or. ...

The Magnificent Parchment - Private Collection, Tel Aviv-London

This witness of the Magnificent Parchment, found today in an anonymous private collection, is a fine, early, and well-preserved paper copy of a family of large manuscript rotuli ("ilanot") to which we have given the name "The Magnificent ...

The Grand Venetian Parchment of R. Elijah Menaḥem Ḥalfan and R. Abraham Ṣarfati

The Grand Venetian Parchment of R. Elijah Menaḥem Ḥalfan and R. Abraham Ṣarfati was crafted as a collaborative project of these two kabbalists in 1533.

Brescia - Biblioteca Queriniana - MS L FI 11

The Brescia parchment was likely written by a Spanish scribe around the late fourteenth century. The text has been attributed to Rabbi Joseph Gikatilla (1248–ca. 1305). It deploys a distinctive rota-augmented ...

Vatican City, BAV, MS Vat.ebr. 530 III

The striking ilan preserved in the Vatican library exhibits a top edge cut in a manner that retains the natural contours of the animal skin while suggesting something like a peaked roof. According to the colophon on ...

Vatican City, BAV, MS Vat.ebr. Borg.ebr. 21 Ilan

This seventeenth-century Italian copy of a classical ilan that goes back to the fourteenth century demonstrates the ongoing relevance of such artifacts even in an era typically presumed to have been dominated by ...

Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Hunt. Add. E

Early in the sixteenth century, an old ilan was acquired by the Italian humanist and philosopher Cardinal Egidio da Viterbo (1472–1532). The text it bore was the idiosyncratic introduction to the sefirot Iggeret ...