King Solomon, the Queen of Sheba, Simeon the Doctor, Ahizar the Servant—these figures belong to the Bible story Solomon and the Queen of Sheba and they bring the great times of the Israelite kingdoms back to life.
Käte Baer-Freyer created the figures out of plywood in 1924 and painted them. An accompanying book by her husband Albert Baer was published with the stories in rhyming verse.
The couple supported the Zionist movement and wanted to use their puppet show to prepare children for a possible emigration to Palestine.
Read along: Biblical Puppet Show
Dearest children, rejoice as one!
For I am King Solomon
A great king both in power and might
My palace splendid, large and bright
I’m wise in judging rights and wrongs
As well as writing beautiful songs
I never err, I rule so well
In Judah and in Israel
King Solomon, the queen of Sheba, Simeon the physician, Ahisar the servant - puppets bring the times of the great Israelite kingdoms back to life.
Käte Baer-Freyer made and painted these plywood puppets in 1924. There was a stick to hold each figure and three wires to move the arms and head. There was also a book to go along with the puppets, written in rhyme by her husband, Albert Baer. Curtain up!
With children’s riddles and a touch of slapstick, the young audience experienced the meeting between the wise King Solomon and the legendary Queen. The biblical story tells how the Queen of Sheba comes to Jerusalem with gold and precious stones, with a view to testing Solomon's legendary wisdom. When he answers all her questions correctly, she praises his God, hands over to him her riches and is presented with a gift in return.
The verses were intended to bring Bible into the lives of the younger generation and, ultimately, prepare them for a potential emigration to Palestine, which was Käte and Albert Baer’s own plan. They emigrated to Palestine with their children in 1933.
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Core Exhibition: 13 Objects – 13 Stories (13)
13 Objects – 13 Stories
A Torah shield, a sculpture, a cushion: 13 unusual objects tell 13 stories of Jewish life. One of the tours of the JMB app leads right through the exhibition to eye-catchers of all kinds, some small, some big. What would a museum be without its many objects, each rich in meaning? You can get a sneak peek of the objects here on our website.
L’amitié au coeur (Friendship of the Heart)
by Étienne-Maurice Falconet (1716–1791), Paris, 1765, marble
Finds from the Memmelsdorf Genizah
Memmelsdorf (find site), ca. 1725–1830, paper, ink, fabric, leather, porcelain
donated by Isaak Jakob Gans (1723–1798), Hamburg, 1760–1765, silver
Shevirat ha-Kelim (Breaking of the Vessels)
Anselm Kiefer, 1990–2019, lead, iron, glass, copper wire, charcoal, Aquatec
Manheimer Family Portrait
by Julius Moser (1805–1879), Berlin, 1850, oil on canvas
King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, Käte Baer-Freyer (1885–1988), Berlin, ca. 1924, plywood, metals
“ISRAELI, JEW, and now SEVERELY DISABLED ...,” Daniel Josefsohn (1961–2016), Berlin, 2014/15, textile
Silver Formerly Owned by Jews
Provenance: up to 1939 unknown Jewish owners, 1939 Hamburg Tax Authority
Bruno Heidenheim, Album to bid farewell to Margot (1913–2010) and Ernst (1898–1971) Rosenthal, Chemnitz, 1936
Manufacturer: S. & D. Loewenthal, Frankfurt am Main, 1895/96, silver
No Longer in the Country
Unclaimed membership cards for the Jewish community Frankfurt am Main, 1949
by Otto Freundlich (1878–1943), 1938, tempera on cardboard
of the Lehmann family, Berlin, 1941–1945
Digital presentation of our archive collections on different topics, video projects, and more
At a Glance…
Jewish Life in Germany: Past and Present
More about our core exhibition
since Aug 2020
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