There was some strange Runic-looking graffiti along the southern entrance to Efrat that I saw a number of times on the way to the Trampiada before finally identifying it. I eventually recognised the rightmost symbol of the large text as being the Hebrew letter yod (י) in an ancient Hebrew script (כתב עברי). The script we use today is a variant of the Assyrian script (כתב אשורי; or “square script”) adapted from that borrowed from Imperial Aramaic around the Babylonian Exile.
After recognising the first letter, I realised that I could identify (with confirmation online) that this large text was actually the Tetragrammaton, in Judaism the ineffable and most sacred name of God, albeit that its letters were highly stylised. Altogether, we have the phrase “יראת ה’“, “fear of God”.
Now because, for those who can read it, the graffiti includes the Name of God, does this mean it cannot be erased as would usually be the case with this four-letter name? (more…)