Because of the Second Commandment prohibition against making "graven images," human figures in illuminated Hebrew manuscripts were sometimes given animal heads.

Halakha, Jewish religious law, is based on the 613 Biblical commandments, rabbinical decisions and local customs. It provides norms for personal behavior, deals with civil and criminal law, gives rules for worship (daily prayers, the observance of the Sabbath and the festivals), for marriage and divorce and for business transactions. Kashrut, the dietary laws, forbid the consumption of certain foods such as pork and shellfish and the eating of milk products during meals containing meat.

Ambrosian Bible; Southern Germany, 13th century