From the Museum of Turkish Jews: ´Puntero (Yad)´The ´Puntero (Yad - Pointer)´ selected from the Quincentenial Foundation Museum of Turkish Jews collection...
'Puntero' (the Ladino word for 'pointer') is a Jewish ritual object, used for following the text during reading the Torah from the Torah scrolls and it is also known as the Torah pointer.
As the Torah is so sacred that it cannot be touched, 'Puntero', besides being a practical tool to show the letters, also ensures that the Torah scroll is not touched. Touching the scroll with fingers damages the inscription. Therefore 'Puntero' is used while reading.
While the word 'puntero' means pointing in Spanish, in the Ashkenazi tradition the word 'yad' meaning hand is used.
Puntero can be made from any material. However, especially silver is used to crown the puntero. This ritual object is usually in the shape of a long stick capped by a hand with only its index finger pointing.
The 'Puntero' shown above is embroidered with filigree on silver and decorated with coral stones. It can be seen in the Ethnography section of the Quincentenial Foundation Museum of Turkish Jews.