Tuesday, December 8, 2009

My Progress #4: Megillat Shir Hashirim

I finally managed to finish my Megillat Shir Hashirim, which took some 4 months to write. I had a very tough time writing this one since the klaf was quite bad, specially in the very first column, and this dragged the process more since I couldn't write as fast as usual.

This highlights how important it is to look for top-quality klaf; if you can't get it, wait until you find a good one. I couldn't erase mistakes properly and I even did the capital sin of a Sofer - I made a small hole while trying to correct something. It doesn't matter so much since I managed to "place it" just in between two words - look in the last line of the forth column.

Additionally, I used a computerized Tikkun (from which I copy the Megilla layout) which was awful - I was forced to stretch and squash words in almost every line. Now I know: only buy copies of hand-written Tikkunim.

But Shir Hashirim is fun to write, since I can use it every week (there's a minhag of reciting it every Shabbat-eve) and it's shorter than Megillat Esther. Now my next project is to write a large Mezuza - stay tuned!

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zalmannh said...

Your Ksav is very nice. I really enjoyed looking at the pictures.

How often do you sharpen your kulmus to keep the letters so nice and sharp?

YK said...



I write with a plastic kulmus, since I work and I need something easy to use and sharpening the kulmus took too much time. I do make changes in the plastic kulmus I buy, and the biggest advantage is that the ktav is always the same size.


Yudi B said...

even with the bad klaf, your ktav is beautiful-wow! i especially like how you did tagin that are next to each other...yasher koach!

YK said...


Tks. My next post is actually about the importance of a nice ktav - I will post it soon. The tagim arrangement is not my idea - many sofrim do that when they come next to each other because this way they don't touch each other and of course, because it looks nice.


zalmannh said...

How much time does it take you to write a line/column? Is the writing any quicker using a plastic kulmus?

YK said...


I'm not the fastest writer, and I'm a perfectionist by nature, so it takes me time to write. I would say 3 lines every 25 mins. But everyone has a comfort zone and it might take more or less time for you..


zalmannh said...

Do you think it would it take longer if you weren't using a plastic kulmus?

YK said...

The actual writing would probably be faster with a normal kulmus.

But the time you spend preparing the kulmus is eliminated by the plastic kulmus, so for an occasional Sofer like me, I end up saving time this way.

Avraham Chaim Bloomenstiel said...

When you decided to write Shir HaShirim, did you do any research on Ben Asher vs. Berditchev tikun? I am starting to assemble sourced on this now and am looking for some more leads.

Lovely work!

OneDay said...

YK, very nice ksav, how long can you write with a plastic kulmus before having to change it, just got a pack for a megillas ester i want to write.

YK said...

I don't know much about that. Since it was one of my first works, I just bought the tikkun I found in a Stam shop. But I would be interested in knowing more, so if you get any references please pass on to me.

I sharpen the plastic kulmus every 4 lines on average, and after sharpening it 3 times I dispose it.
Plastic is not the best but it works well for me because it saves me time, and being that this is a hobby for me, my time is scarce. If you write professionally, I don't know if it's the best option but give it a try.


Unknown said...

Nicely done. There’s a mistake: it should say כלך יפה רעיתי. You are missing the Chav Sofit.

YK said...

Thanks for your comment! It's ironic that the next words are וּמוּם אֵין בָּךְ
Chag Sameach