Controversial Markings and Edited Additions to the Scroll

In many editorial markings (added after the scroll was enscribed) and altered letters, there are numerals, and masoretic punctuation, and masoretic vowel marks and red ink marks that are controversial because they are anacronistic, if a date of storing the scroll is given as corresponding with the end of the Essene community to whom they originally belonged. Most of these markings are more consistant with the Middle Ages than with the Macabbean or Hasmonean period to which the scrolls have been ascribed. We list just a few of them below.

1. Page 6 line 25 3rd from last word: The Masoretic Text had written me:i'm (mem ayin Mem) which is a preposition meaning simply "from". The phrase would be "from YHWH your God." An editor later changed the original ayin to an aleph. The edited addition is obvious. With this addition the phrase reads "from the mother of your God." Some have read it so. Some point to this and other similar seeming Romanisms as evidence of a mediaeval origin of the later editors.

2. Evidence of another mark that may indicate late origin. On page 44 these seems to be the numeral 29 or 27 in the top margin of the page The presence of Arabic numerals does not seem possible before the ninth century in the East nor the 12th century in the West.

3. There is red ink on three letters on page 44. Under what appears to be a finger print and along side the large red stain which looks like a careless spill of a later editor; Find in the first word on top two letters n h (nu and he) have been over-written in red ink. In the word below it the waw is over-written in red ink. Of course this can not be seen in black and white,

4. For more red marks that are also micrography see page 39 lines 27 to 29, in the first words on each line where there is a red dot over a shin in line 29. In line 27 above it there is something written in very red ink that had structure and some see it as a letter beth. In line 28 if you look closely you will see a red stroke inside the left stroke of the ayin. These colors show up as bright red under a magnifying glass in the color plates.

5. On the same page 39 on the line above (28) the word sheKol, which has the red dot, mid way on line 28 find the word sheKol (repeated as the first word in line 29) and see that there is a numeral 3 written over it in line 28. As mentioned above, Arabic numerals are not consistent with any date earlier than the 9th century A.D. In modern script Hebrew (as cursive is ion English) the tsade resembles a 3. The anacronistic problem still exists if this is a tsade. In the enlarged picture of the same word notice that the lamed has been tampered with too. See the altered lameds in items 7 and 8 just below.

6. There is a great deal of Micrography in the scroll which points to a mediaeval origin of those additions. See the section on in the Introduction Miniature Notations

7. One of the most controversial marks is the hidden 3 and x which can be seen when two blurred lameds are magnified. The 3 is in the left lamed and the x is clearer in the right lamed. Some say this is a midiaeval code for the trinity. A similar attempt to alter a double lamed can be seen on scroll page 44 line 10 but it is not as clear. The word altered is "He was wounded"

Compare the double lamed on page 44 line 10

Another altered lamed with what looks like a 3 on top may be seen on scroll page 41.

8. On scroll page 32 line 5 and the 7th and 8th words there appears to be a 53 edited in the text, which is "all my bones." Some believe an editor has pointed this to Isaiah 53. See the 3 in the top of the lamed and notice that the ayin had been altered from its original shape. Does it look like a 5 to you? The 53 points to a mediaeval origin for the editing since Arabic numerals were not used in the West until after they were invented by the Arabs in the 6 to 8th century.


Also see other photos of 53 and perhaps tagiym over a letter on page 1 line 13.


8a. Also find a 3 edited on the top of another lamed on page 41 line 21 just under the word with hiriq described in the next entry where it can be seen as well.

9. In the Isaiah Scroll Yod is often added to 2fem sing suffix to indicate that it is feminine. See this explained fully in section on Yod Added above. In scroll page 41 and line 20 the 4th word is "in your heart." This is a good example among very many of masoretic vowel pointing in the scroll. There is a hiriq under the 2 fem. sing. kaph last letter in this word. The suffix is contextually 2nd fem sing. It appears that a scribe made certain that the suffix is fem. by the addition of the hiriq to indicate the missing yod. The hiriq is clearly seen in the photo below. You can also see it on page 41 on line 20. Finding masoretic vowel pointings in the scroll is controversial since the vowel pointings are said to have been invented centuries after the apostolic period.

10. The addition of masoretic vowels is controversial because the masoretic pointings are not thought to have been used before the fourth or fifth century. One example of the use of qamets can be seen below in Isaiah 25:3 on scroll page 19 line 29. The word is city or town, spelled qiryath, The unpointed Hebrew form could easily be mistaken for village or the pronunciation qiriath. To make the pronunciation of qiryath certain an editor placed a clear qamets under the yod. There are many examples of masoretic pointings in the scroll. You can see many more of them in a section on vowel markings

11. Another 3X can be seen in Scroll Page 4 in line 17 under the 4th word "aniy" look under the yod and see the "3" and to the right there is an X. This can be seen in the page itself but is more easily seen in the enhanced figure below.


12. See the difference in sewing between the scroll pages 49 and 50. No explanation to why or when?