Make a powerful impact with this stunning piece of Moroccan Jewish history. This ornately decorated vintage Moroccan Jewish Mizrach is like nothing we have ever seen before. In the center is a large cut silver metal menorah, hand-engraved with decorative repousse.
Above the menorah is an engraved and repousse silver Star of David, with a decorative brass hamsa hand (for protection) in the middle. Under the menorah is another hand-engraved and repousse silver hamsa hand, this one with a Star of David on the palm.
To each side of the menorah are raised cut-metal silver doors with scalloped edges, extensively engraved with a Star of David with a flower in the middle. Open the doors and the Ten Commandments is in Hebrew writing underneath, all carefully created using repousse with punched metal embellishment. Above the writing is a Star of David with a Hebrew character in the middle.
This incredible piece of Judaica is further decorated with raised cut-metal and engraved silver cocks, silver fish (for abundance), lions (for strength), plant leaves, horns, and additional Stars of David. The tray is finished with extra large brass and silver rivets, a frequent symbol in Morocco to provide strength and protection.
This Moroccan Jewish mizrach is entirely handmade, with all elements securely welded on. The item is brass with some light patina; all attached elements are silver, likely tin or a silver melange. There is a large hook on the back to hang on the wall. Very large and heavy--a very impressive housewarming present or gift.
Discovered in an area called Ijoukak, this item is likely from the city of Taroudant, Morocco, where many Jews settled. It likely dates to the pre-1950s, but could be much older. Although the Jewish population in Morocco now dates only in the thousands, at one time there were significant numbers and numerous communities, with evidence of settlements as early as the fourth and fifth centuries. When the State of Israel was created, life got much harder for Jews in Morocco, and the vast majority migrated to other countries, leaving behind relics such as this.