The Severus Scroll
was a lost scroll
A scroll is a roll of parchment, papyrus, or paper, which has been drawn or written upon.Scroll may also refer to:*Scroll , the decoratively curved end of the pegbox of string instruments such as violins...
containing the Torah
Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five books of the bible—Genesis , Exodus , Leviticus , Numbers and Deuteronomy Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five...
. A very few sentences of it have been preserved by Rabbinic literature
Rabbinic literature, in its broadest sense, can mean the entire spectrum of rabbinic writings throughout Jewish history. However, the term often refers specifically to literature from the Talmudic era, as opposed to medieval and modern rabbinic writing, and thus corresponds with the Hebrew term...
This scroll was allegedly taken to Rome by emperor Titus
Titus , was Roman Emperor from 79 to 81. A member of the Flavian dynasty, Titus succeeded his father Vespasian upon his death, thus becoming the first Roman Emperor to come to the throne after his own father....
as part of the booty after the Fall of Jerusalem, AD 70, and one century and half later the emperor Severus Alexander gave it as a gift to a synagogue he allowed to be built in Rome.
Variants of this scroll from the Masoretic text
The Masoretic Text is the authoritative Hebrew text of the Jewish Bible and is regarded as Judaism's official version of the Tanakh. While the Masoretic Text defines the books of the Jewish canon, it also defines the precise letter-text of these biblical books, with their vocalization and...
are contained mainly in "Genesis Rabbati", and are similar to the ones quoted by Rabbi Meir
Rabbi Meir or Rabbi Meir Baal Hanes was a Jewish sage who lived in the time of the Mishna. He was considered one of the greatest of the Tannaim of the fourth generation . According to legend , his father was a descendant of the Roman Emperor Nero who had converted to Judaism. His wife Bruriah is...
, who thus probably knew this Torah scroll.
The variants from the Masoretic text are thirty-three, most minors differences due the weakening of gutturals. Some relevant variants are "garments of light"
in place of "garments of skin"
in and "he sold his sword"
in place of "he sold his birthright"