20th Century Torah Yad (Pointer)


Left-handed pointer curves gracefully from extended pointer finger and hand to become a man holding a Torah scroll.  The top of each roller has an eyelet for stringing a chain that is suspended from the Torah staves.

This yad was created by Kansas City sculptor, David Malin in October of 1990. 

Identifer: CJF.2009.001.234


Torah & Its Ornaments

University of Cincinnati Hillel Collection

The pointer, developed in response to the rabbinic ruling that, the Torah, because of its sanctity, should not be touched by bare hands.  So a pointer was fashioned to follow the text without touching it.  The form developed for this purpose in most countries was a rod terminating in an outstretched finger.  It is therefore called a yad (Hebrew for hand).  As a standard item among Torah ornaments, the yad is distinguished by a myriad of designs and supplementary adornments. It may therefore be seen as a work of art as well as a ritual object.

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