Dead Sea Scrolls: Digitized

By Elizabeth Weingarten

What's the ultimate convergence of ancient and modern? Googling 'Dead Sea Scrolls' and then reading them online. The digitization project of the scrolls, sponsored by the Israel Antiquities Authority in collaboration with the Google R&D center in Israel, plans to upload the entire collection -- some 900 manuscripts and about 30,000 Dead Sea Scroll fragments -- onto the internet. Users will soon be able to scroll through the scrolls, searching the text in different languages and formats.

It is the first time that the collection of Scrolls will be photographed in its entirety since the 1950s.

The images will be equal in quality to the actual viewing of the Scrolls, according to the Antiquities Authority.

"We are establishing a milestone connection between progress and the past to preserve this unique heritage for future generations," said Shuka Dorfman, director of the Israel Antiquities Authority. "At the end of a comprehensive and profound examination, we have succeeded in recruiting the best minds and technological means to preserve this unrivaled cultural heritage treasure which belongs to all of us, so that the public with a click of the mouse will be able to freely access history in its fullest glamour."

Read the full story at JTA.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2010/10/dead-sea-scrolls-digitized/64793/