Title:
Open-face mezuzah
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An Open-Face Mezuzah, which goes beyond the utilitarian purpose of a standard mezuzah for several reasons. First, this Open-Face Mezuzah contains the Biblical script of Deuteronomy 6:4-5 inscribed on the exterior of the mezuzah itself rather than on a scroll placed inside, or behind, a traditional mezuzah. Thus, it more exactly embodies the command to “write [the words of Deuteronomy 6:4-5] on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Second, the Open-Face Mezuzah makes the message of Deuteronomy 6:4-5 understandable to non-Hebrew speaking people because the words, although first rendered in Hebrew, are also rendered in English below the Hebrew. Third, the Open-Face Mezuzah conveys to the guest entering the house that the family within the house believes in both the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. In addition to citing the Old Testament verses of Deuteronomy 6:4-5, it also cites the New Testament verses of Mark 12:29-30, which is a New Testament quote of Deuteronomy 6:4-5. Fourth, within the Pharisaic tradition, it is necessary to ensure that the scroll of Biblical verses be maintained in good condition. Hence, it is necessary to periodically remove the scroll and examine it to ensure it has not deteriorated. If it is deteriorated, it must be replaced. The Open-Face Mezuzah has no such requirement because the words are inscribed in metal, or other hard material, and do not easily deteriorate. In the chance event that the words do become damaged, it is readily evident because the words are on the outside.



Inventors:
Richard III, Henry Harris (Springfield, VA, US)
Application Number:
09/862198
Publication Date:
12/19/2002
Filing Date:
05/22/2001
Assignee:
HARRIS RICHARD HENRY
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
428/34.1
International Classes:
A47G33/00; G09F7/00; (IPC1-7): A44C25/00
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
BAHTA, ABRAHAM
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Richard H. Harris III (Springfield, VA, US)
Claims:

What I claim as my invention is:



1. An Open-Face Mezuzah, made from metal, glass, wood, ceramic, or other hard material, containing the traditional Hebrew letter (shin) together with the externally-inscribed words from Deuteronomy 6:4-5 in Hebrew and in English, and holes for mounting.

2. An Open-Face Mezuzah, made from metal, glass, wood, ceramic, or other hard material, containing the traditional Hebrew letter (shin) together with the externally-inscribed words from Deuteronomy 6:4-5 in either Hebrew, English, or a combination of both languages, and holes for mounting.

3. An Open-Face Mezuzah, made from metal, glass, wood, ceramic, or other hard material, containing the traditional Hebrew letter (shin) together with the externally-inscribed words from Deuteronomy 6:4-5 in either Hebrew, English, or a combination of both languages, and without holes for mounting. Mounting to be otherwise contemplated.

4. An Open-Face Mezuzah in accordance with claim(s) 1-3 that is substantially shaped as shown in FIG. 1, or in any other geometric shape, or in the shape of a scroll.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] Not Applicable

STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT

[0002] Not Applicable

REFERENCE TO MICROFICHE APPENDIX

[0003] Not Applicable

BACKGROUND OF THE INVESTIGATION

[0004] U.S. C1 . . . 428/3

[0005] Field of Search . . . 428/3; 206/19, 232; D99/25

[0006] References: 1

U.S. PAT. NO. DOCUMENTS
5,906,868Akin428/3430,395McCarthy428/3
4,004,547Todd428/3235,683Jeanne428/3
2,876,559Sloan428/3170,218Atterbury428/3
2,650,445Randall428/36,006,900Hasten206/19
2,520,661Stanley428/32,347,681Goudrean206/19
2,354,622Schwartz428/32,514,739Brennan206/19
1,983,742Dicks428/32,637,438Menz, et. al.206/19
1,239,405Koptschny428/31,573,663Warren206/232
1,128,884Lind428/3D. 419,746CharnyD99/25
1,112,640Mix428/3D. 166,400LawskyD99/25

[0007] Numerous mezuzahs are known in the art and they currently enjoy widespread usage throughout the world by those who closely follow Biblical instructions contained in the Old Testament of the Bible. While historically mezuzahs have been used primarily by those of the Jewish faith, the past several decades have witnessed a growing movement for other groups (e.g. Messianic Jews, Messianic Nazarenes, and many Christian groups) to use them as well.

[0008] The primary Biblical instruction pertaining to the use of mezuzahs is Deuteronomy 6:9, wherein is contained the commandment, “And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.” The “them” to which the commandment pertains are the words contained earlier in Deuteronomy 6:4-5, “Hear, O Israel: The LORD1 our God2, the LORD1 is one: And thou shalt love the LORD1 thy God2 with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength.” A similar instruction is given again in Deuteronomy 11:20. ≢1“LORD” is rendered as “” in the Open-Face Mezuzah. It is the Hebrew rendering for God's Name. 2“God” is rendered “Elohim” in the Open-Face Mezuzah. It is the English transliteration of the Hebrew “

[0009] The sect of the Pharisees—which came to be the predominant Jewish sect after the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans—adopted the practice of inscribing the words on a scroll rather than on the actual doorpost or gate. The scroll was then rolled and put inside, or behind, a case (usually glass, wood, or metal) which is mounted to the doorpost or gate. Although the Hebrew word “mezuzah” technically means “doorpost,” the case containing the Biblical script has come to be known as a “mezuzah.” A mezuzah is almost always inscribed with the Hebrew letter (shin) and very often decorated with Judaic artwork.

[0010] There are four chief drawbacks to the traditional mezuzah, which the Open-Face Mezuzah will remedy. The first drawback of the traditional mezuzah is the fact that the words of Deuteronomy 6:4 are not visible to those coming into, and going out of, a house with such a mezuzah. Thus, unless a visitor is familiar with the traditions of Pharisaic Judaism, he/she will not even know that the words are there at all.

[0011] The second drawback of traditional mezuzahs is the fact that the scrolls, if they are seen, are written only in Hebrew and not able to be understood by people who do not understand Hebrew.

[0012] The third drawback of traditional mezuzahs is that they only indicate that the owner of a house displaying them believes in the Old Testament of the Bible. They give no indication that the owner of the house displaying them might also believe in the New Testament of the Bible, a significant shortcoming for many New Testament believers. The fourth drawback of traditional mezuzahs is the fact that the scrolls, themselves, tend to deteriorate over time and must be replaced. This necessitates having to remove the traditional mezuzah from time to time to inspect and, if necessary, to purchase a new scroll to replace the deteriorated one.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0013] The mezuzah of the present invention goes beyond the utilitarian purpose of a standard mezuzah for several different reasons. First, this “open-face” mezuzah contains the Biblical script of Deuteronomy 6:4-5 inscribed on the exterior of the mezuzah itself rather than on a scroll placed inside, or behind, a traditional mezuzah. Unlike a traditional Pharisaic mezuzah, this “open-face” mezuzah more exactly embodies the command to “write [the words of Deuteronomy 6:4-5] on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” It clearly displays the words for all to see, rather than having them hidden in a rolled scroll behind a casing. Thus, it clearly conveys to any observer entering a house that the house is dedicated to the God of the Bible.

[0014] Second, the “open-face” mezuzah makes the message of Deuteronomy 6:4-5 understandable, to non-Hebrew speaking people because the words, although first rendered in Hebrew, are also rendered in English below the Hebrew.

[0015] Third, the “open-face” mezuzah conveys to the guest entering the house that the family within the house not only believes in the Old Testament of the Bible, but in the New Testament as well. In addition to citing the Old Testament verses of Deuteronomy 6:4-5 as the origin of the words, it also cites the New Testament verses of Mark 12:29-30, which is a New Testament quote of Deuteronomy 6:4-5.

[0016] Fourth, within the Pharisaic tradition, it is necessary to ensure that the scroll of Biblical verses be maintained in good condition. Hence, it is necessary to periodically remove the scroll and examine it to ensure it has not deteriorated. If it is deteriorated, it must be replaced. The “open-face” mezuzah has no such requirement because the words are inscribed in metal, or other hard material, and do not easily deteriorate. In the chance event that the words do become damaged, it is readily evident because the words are on the outside.

[0017] To the unknowing eye, the Open-Face Mezuzah might appear to resemble a normal plaque or wall hanging. However, the Open-Face Mezuzah is no more a plaque or wall hanging than a U.S. monetary coin is a normal medallion. When the words, “The United States of America,” “In God We Trust,” and a value designation are added to an otherwise round medallion, it is transformed into a coin of currency and no longer a medallion. Similarly, a mezuzah is readily distinguishable from a plaque or wall hanging for three reasons (please see attachment at p. 9 for several samples of regular mezuzahs). First, the Hebrew letter (shin) inscribed at the top of the mezuzah to identify it as a mezuzah and distinguish it from a normal plaque or wall hanging. Almost every mezuzah produced has the letter (shin) inscribed near its top (see for example U.S. Pat. No. 6,006,900 and U.S. Pat. Des. 419,746). Second, the “open-face” mezuzah, like all other mezuzahs, has 2-4 holes bored all the way through it—specifically for the purpose of mounting it on doorposts and gates, in accordance with the Biblical r commandment of Deuteronomy 6:9. Third, the utility of the “open-face” mezuzah, like all other mezuzahs, comes from the necessity to fulfill the Biblical commandment of Deuteronomy 6:9 with respect to the words of Deuteronomy 6:4-5. The “open-face” mezuzah specifically cites “Deuteronomy 6:4-5,” clearly defining it as a mezuzah and not a normal plaque or wall hanging.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWING

[0018] In the accompanying drawings, I have illustrated two embodiments of the invention, it being understood that various other embodiments are contemplated.

[0019] FIG. 1 shows the front view of the “open-face” mezuzah embodying the various features of the present invention;

[0020] FIG. 2 shows a side view of the mezuzah of FIG. 1;

[0021] FIG. 3 shows a front view of a modification;

[0022] FIG. 4 shows a side view of the mezuzah of FIG. 3.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0023] An Open-Face Mezuzah embodying various features of the present invention is illustrated in FIGS. 1-4.

[0024] With reference to FIGS. 1 and 3, the Hebrew letter (shin) 10 is inscribed at the top of the mezuzah to identify it as a mezuzah. There are 3-4 holes 15 bored all the way through the mezuzah—specifically for the purpose of mounting it on doorposts and gates, per the Biblical commandment of Deuteronomy 6:9. The words from Deuteronomy 6:4-5 are inscribed, both in Hebrew 20 and in English3 25. The Biblical citations of “Deuteronomy 6:4-5” 30 and “Mark 12:29-30” 35 are both inscribed at the bottom. 3See footnotes 1 and 2.