We will present an interesting case of cooperation between conservators, scholars and scientists concerning the conservation, preservation and reading of 1Q Hodayot Scroll.


Professor Hartmut Stegemann began his reconstruction of the Hodayot {Thanksgiving) Scroll in the 1960's and succeeded to determine the sequence of numerous fragments. He gave gave us – the staff of the DSS Conservation Laboratory of the IAA a copy of his invaluable reconstruction of the scroll.


The Thanksgiving Scroll consists of four substantial fragments (col.1-4; 5-8; 9-12; 14-16) and numerous small and at times tiny fragments, differing in shape and size, badly preserved and heavily gelatinized.
Later on, these fragments were glued on paper became rigid and cringed and this is how they were kept for many years until we began treating them in our laboratory.


After treatment their physical condition improved considerably and their mechanical strength was increased, but unfortunately, the process of gelatinization is irreversible. Since it was impossible to recover the original appearance of the fragments, they still remained illegible.
In the mid 1990's, Dr. Greg Berman, a scientist from NASA came to our aid with a camera with an infrared lens which he developed especially for the decipherment of illegible scroll texts. The camera is attached to a computer, thus when placing the illegible fragments under the lens, the completely invisible texts come to life.


The additional advantage of working with such a unit is that once on the screen and in the computer, both scholars and conservators can manipulate the fragments, the first, to decipher and the latter to match and join the various fragments. 


The combination of Prof. Stegemann's reconstruction, together with Berman's infrared photos of the fragments enabled us to rejoin the broken fragments and then to incorporate them in their place within the larger four restored fragments.


The treated and preserved fragments are now exhibited alternately in the Shrine of the Book among all of the other manuscripts restored by the Dead Sea Scrolls laboratory of Israel Antiquities Authority.