Courtesy Israel Antiquities Authority/Photographer Tsila Sagiv

A DISTINCTIVE LAMED. The early Herodian script on this Hosea commentary (4Q166) matches that of more than 50 other Qumran texts and one from Masada. Yardeni analyzed each letter’s form, describing the lamed as the “most characteristic letter of this scribe, with its curved body, which opens to the left, creating a long, concave base … [I]n the calligraphic book hand of this period, the letter usually lacks a base … [A]t the top of the ‘mast,’ it has a small triangular loop or a thickening created by an additional stroke.” This commentary on Hosea interprets a passage involving analogies between God as the husband and Israel as the unfaithful wife.