Menu

Longest of Dead Sea Scrolls to Tour North America

The longest of the Dead Sea Scrolls is scheduled to go on display in a Cleveland museum next year in its first appearance in the United States.

A traveling exhibition featuring the Temple Scroll, which measures 28 feet, will make its first stop at the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage in suburban Beachwood, The Plain Dealer newspaper reported Saturday. The ancient manuscript dates back to the time of Christ.

The exhibition, which runs from March through August, also includes other artifacts from the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, including the burial box of Caiaphas the High Priest who, according to the New Testament, delivered Christ to the Romans for execution.

Officials at the Maltz Museum said the exhibition will later travel to two other North American museums, which have not been announced.

The Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered in a desert cave in 1947. From 1947-56, scrolls were found in 11 caves dotting the hills above the Qumran area of the West Bank — 800 documents in all, written in Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek.

The scrolls contain Old Testament texts, psalms, commentaries and other works, some of them written in code. Many scholars believe that the scrolls were written at Qumran by the Essenes, a breakaway Jewish sect.