This marriage contract for two members of the wealthy Gallichi family is adorned with a richly colored border composed of flowering vines and biblical verses relating to the bride and groom: “I now know what a beautiful woman you are” (Gen. 12:11) and “I now know that you fear God” (Gen. 22:12). The ketubbah is surrounded with the text of psalm 128, which gives elegant expression to the biblical ideal of family life. The groom, Solomon Gallichi, would go on to dedicate an elaborate, carved wooden bimah (reader’s desk) to the synagogue in Siena in 1755, thirty years after his wedding. This bimah remains extant in Siena to the present day.
Decorated ketubbot from eighteenth-century Siena are exceedingly rare, and few, if any, are as lavishly ornamented as the present example.
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