The works displayed will include pieces from the first century up to the modern times century, including the use of the Menorah as part of the crest of the State of Israel.
Divided into three key stages, the exhibit walks visitors through different ages and genres, with the first stage divided into three different sections: Visualizing the Menorah; The Menorah in the temple and in Jewish art: iconography and symbology; and The Menorah in ancient art from Jerusalem to Rome.
The second stage is divided into four sections, and focuses on the Menorah From late antiquity to the 14th century; The Renaissance; The pictorial fortune from the 600s to the 19th century; and Jewish Menorah in applied arts from the late Middle Ages to the beginnings of the 20th century.
While the first stage focuses on the story of the Menorah, its presence in the temple of Jerusalem and its dispersal throughout Rome in both ancient and modern times, the second stage provides an analysis on the Menorah in Christianity, particularly liturgical candelabras, as well as the Menorah’s consistent presence as a strong unifying symbol for Jewish identity throughout history.
In the third stage, the exhibit focuses on the theme “From the First World War to the 21st century,” and offers a panorama of the various representations of the Menorah throughout the 20th and 21st centuries.
More than 20 museums throughout the world have lent pieces to the exhibit, including the Louvre in Paris, the National Gallery of London and the Albertina Museum of Vienna.
During the presentation attention also turned to speculation as to the current whereabouts of the solid gold Menorah taken from the temple in Jerusalem by the Romans during their siege in 70AD, but which has gone missing for the past 1,500 years.
The Menorah was originally taken from Jerusalem when its temple was destroyed by the Roman general Titus, who became emperor nine years after that victory. Rumors throughout history have said the Menorah was lost during the Vandal’s Sack of Rome in 455, while others say it was buried in a cave, hidden in the Vatican or thrown into the Tiber, where it still rests.
However, despite the various theories, Di Segni said “nobody knows what had happened” since it disappeared from Jerusalem.
Present at the exhibit instead will be the ancient the Magdala Stone, which was found in 2009 during an archaeological excavation that uncovered an ancient synagogue on the shores of the Sea of Galilee.
But regardless of the legends, Di Segni said “it will be very interesting to see how people will visit, what they would say and how they will be impressed.”
(Story continues below)
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
At Catholic News Agency, our team is committed to reporting the truth with courage, integrity, and fidelity to our faith. We provide news about the Church and the world, as seen through the teachings of the Catholic Church. When you subscribe to the CNA UPDATE, we'll send you a daily email with links to the news you need and, occasionally, breaking news.
As part of this free service you may receive occasional offers from us at EWTN News and EWTN. We won't rent or sell your information, and you can unsubscribe at any time.
“The reaction of the public” is also important, he said, “so we are waiting for this moment.”