The Great Isaiah Scroll (detail)
C. 100 BCE
L 7.34m (24 ft)
The Isaiah manuscript A is one of seven scrolls discovered in Qumran in 1947. In subsequent years some 950 scrolls, most of them fragmentary, were found in this region. Of these, 200 are biblical (i.e. Old Testament) and represent all the books of the Bible, many in numerous copies, except the Books of Esther and Nehemiah.
This is the largest and best preserved scroll, and the only biblical book that survived in its entirety. The 54 columns contain all 66 chapters, without a marked division between what modern scholarship regards as First and Second Isaiah. The scroll is one of the oldest Dead Sea Scrolls – it dates from about 100 BCE and is older by about 1000 years than the oldest biblical manuscript known prior to the Qumran finds.