No bidders for rare Torah

By Lucy Morris, July 8, 2010

Does anyone want to buy a Sefer Torah for £200,000? Nobody did on Tuesday, when a rare medieval Spanish Torah was left unsold at a Sotheby's Western Manuscript and Miniatures auction.

The Sephardic Torah - believed to belong to a private owner in North America - was made in Toledo and is one of only two or three which were produced in Spain in the 13th century. It is remarkable that the scroll has survived in near-perfect condition - just one sleeve had to be replaced at a later date.

The 90 sheets of scroll, each consisting of 44 lines of punctilious writing, is said to have been written by Israel ben Isaac.

The Torah is particularly admired for its large script, which makes it easy to read.

Last updated: 1:39pm, July 8 2010