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Parratarna of Mitanni and Shamsi-Adad I

Published December 18, 2017 by amaic
Image result for mitannians

by

 Damien F. Mackey

 

[A] lack of due information for Parratarna and other early Mitannian kings has compelled the likes of professor Gunnar Heinsohn and Emmet Sweeney to look for alternative explanations.

  

 

Introduction

 

The kingdom of Mitanni, estimated to have coincided with the Old Babylonian Kingdom [OBK], is considered to have become a superpower by the time of Egypt’s Eighteenth Dynasty.

Yet there is a disturbing lack of archaeology, and also of documentation, for the Mitannians.

Mirko Novák, following a conventional line that would well separate in time OBK from Eighteenth Dynasty Egypt, tells of the generally perceived archaeological situation for Mitanni:

 

MITTANI EMPIRE AND THE QUESTION OF ABSOLUTE CHRONOLOGY: SOME ARCHAEOLOGICAL CONSIDERATIONS

 

When the Hittite king Hattušili I started his forays to Northern Syria, a certain “King of the Hurrians” appeared as one of his main opponents. Nowadays it is widely accepted that this person must have been one of the first rulers of the political entity later known as “Mittani” …. Therefore, the formation of this powerful kingdom must have taken place

during the latest phase of the Old Babylonian Period and predated the sack of Babylon by the Hittites under Hattušili’s grandson Muršili I by at least two generations …. From an archaeological point of view there must be a significant overlap of what is called “Old Babylonian” and “Mittani” Periods in Northern Mesopotamia, although they appear in nearly all chronological charts as succeeding one the other with a distinctive break in between.

Still, until today archaeology has failed in establishing a stratigraphical and chronological sequence of late Old Babylonian and early Mittanian layers on sites in the core area of the kingdom, the so-called Habur-triangle”. …. One reason for that may be that none of the major urban capitals of the Mittani Empire has been excavated or investigated in a serious degree. Even the locations of its political centres Waššukanni … Ta‘idu … and Irride … are still uncertain. ….

 

Mitanni’s great king, Parratarna (or Parshatar), Idrimi’s contemporary, has apparently left us pitifully few records (https://wikivisually.com/wiki/Idrimi):

 

…. Parshatatar – Parshatatar, Paršatar, Barattarna, or Parattarna was the name of a Hurrian king of Mitanni in the fifteenth century BC. Very few records of him are known as sources from Mitanni are rare, most information we have about the kingdom, especially its early history and kings come from records outside of the state. Dates for the kings can be deduced by comparing the chronology of Mitanni and other states, especially ancient Egypt, at a later date, information is found in the biography of Idrimi of Alalakh. Parshatatar conquered the area and made Idrimi his vassal, Idrimi becoming king of Aleppo, Mitanni in his time probably extended as far as Arrapha in the east, Terqa in the south, and Kizzuwatna in the West. Parshatatar may have been the Mitannian king the Egyptian Pharaoh Thutmosis I met at the Euphrates River in an early in his reign. Information about his death is mentioned in a record from Nuzi dated to the death of king Parshatatar, possibly around 1420.

 

This lack of due information for Parratarna and other early Mitannian kings has compelled the likes of professor Gunnar Heinsohn and Emmet Sweeney to look for alternative explanations.

 

Connecting with Assyria

 

Emmet Sweeney, for example, has explained in his article, “Shalmaneser III and Egypt”: http://www.hyksos.org/index.php?title=Shalmaneser_III_and_Egypt):

 

We see that, without exception, the Mitannian levels are followed immediately, and without any gap, by the Neo-Assyrian ones; and the Neo-Assyrian material is that of the early Neo-Assyrians, Ashurnasirpal II and his son Shalmaneser III. Now, since the last Mitannian king, Tushratta, was a contemporary of Akhenaton, this would suggest that Ashuruballit, who wrote several letters to Akhenaton, was the same person as Ashurnasirpal II, father of Shalmaneser III.

The end of the Mitannian kingdom is documented in a series of texts from the Hittite capital. We are told that Tushratta was murdered by one of his sons, a man named Kurtiwaza. The latter then feld, half naked, to the court of the Hittite King, Suppiluliumas, who put an army at his disposal; with which the parricide conquered the Mitannian lands. The capital city, Washukanni, was taken, and Kurtiwaza was presumably rewarded for his treachery.

The region of Assyrian was a mainstay of the Mitannian kingdom. A few years earlier Tushratta had sent the cult statue of Ishtar of Nineveh to Egypt. So, if Kurtiwaza was established as a puppet king by Suppiluliumas, it is likely that his kingdom would have included Assyria.

….

The “Middle Assyrians” were a mysterious line of kings who ruled Assyria before the time of the Neo-Assyrians and supposedly after the time of the Mitannians. Yet we know of no Assyrian stratigraphy which can give a clear line from Mitannian to Middle Assyrian to Neo-Assyrian. On the contrary, as we saw, the Mitannians are followed immediately by the Neo-Assyrians of Ashurnasirpal II and Shalmaneser III. This can only mean that the Middle Assyrians must have been contemporaries of the Mitannians, and were most likely Mitannian kings using Assyrian names. We know that ancient rulers often bore several titles in accordance with the various nations and ethnic groups over which they reigned. Since the Mitannian royal names are Indo-Iranian, and therefore meaningless and probably unpronounceable to the Semitic speakers of Assyria, it is almost certain that they would also have used Assyrian-sounding titles.

That the Middle Assyrians were in fact contemporary with the Mitannians is shown in numberless details of artwork, pottery, epigraphy, etc. (See for example P. Pfalzner, Mittanische und Mittelassyrische Keramik (Berlin, 1995) ….

 

Emmet’s conclusion about Idrimi’s powerful Mitannian contemporary, Parratarna – that he was the ‘Assyrian’ king Shamsi-Adad I (our biblical Hadadezer contemporary of David’s) – would now appear to make chronological – and probably geographical – sense.

And it is also now likely that, as we read above: “[Parratarna] Parshatatar may have been the Mitannian king the Egyptian Pharaoh Thutmosis I met at the Euphrates River in an early in his reign”. For, according to this present series, pharaoh Thutmose [Thutmosis] I was a late contemporary of king David’s.

Whilst Shamsi-Adad I is quite well known, I have wondered why we know so little about his long-reigning son, Ishme-Dagan I (c. 1776 BC – c. 1736 BC, conventional dating). Sweeney has duly suggested that Ishme-Dagan I was the Mitannian, Shaushtatar, son of Parratarna. Conventional date figures given for the reign of Shaushtatar are c. 1440 BC – 1415 BC.

 

As we would expect, if Parratarna was Shamsi-Adad I (= David’s for, Hadadezer), then the Mitannian king would be no ally of Idrimi (= David’s ally, Adoniram = Hiram). And, indeed, we learn of Parratarna’s (initial, at least) “hostility” towards Idrimi, with possible “warfare”: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Idrimi

 

…. Edward Greenstein’s and David Marcus’s translation of the inscription on lines 42-51 revealed that despite Parratarna’s hostility to Idrimi while he was in exile in Canaan, he actually respected Idrimi’s coalition, maybe submitting to Idrimi out of fear that his social outcast army could overthrow him. Idrimi said that King Parshatatar for “seven years … was hostile to me. I sent Anwanda to Parrattarna, the mighty king, the king of the Hurrian warriors, and told him of the treaties of my ancestors … and that our actions were pleasing to the former kings of the Hurrian warriors for they had made a binding agreement. The mighty king heard of the treaties of our predecessors and the agreement made between them and … read to him the words of the treaty in detail. So on account of our treaty terms he received my tribute … I … restored to him a lost estate. I swore to him a binding oath as a loyal vassal.”.[16] Here, possibly influenced by the nature of Hittite oaths, Idrimi swore loyalty to Parshatatar after seven years despite him overthrowing his father on the throne in Aleppo. He made his request to the throne peacefully by restoring [Parattarna’s] estate and swore him an ultimate Hurrian loyalty oath, which was the first step to Idrimi regaining his power again.

 

The inscription in lines 42-51 of Greenstein and Marcus’s translation described Idrimi’s capture of Alalakh as a peaceful effort to appease Parrattarna with tributes of restoring his estate and swearing a loyalty oath unto him rather than using warfare to capture the city. Marc Van de Mieroop mentioned that Idrimi “captured” Alalakh implying a warfare approach that the inscription doesn’t give. Author Paul Collins described Idrimi’s maneuver as a “greeting-present, the traditional form of establishing and maintaining friendly relations between rulers, even those of different rank, and reminded him (Parrattarna) of earlier oaths sworn between the kings of Halab (Aleppo) and the kings of Mitanni.” Also, Collins mentioned that Parratarna had accepted Idrimi’s tribute to him as a loyal vassal ruler. He only allowed Idrimi limited independence of making his own military and diplomatic decisions just as long as it didn’t interfere with Mitanni’s overall policy. This further allowed Idrimi to set his sights on his diplomatic and military aims in Kizzuwatna and act as an independent ruler.[17] Idrimi’s “capture” of Alalakh was evidenced in his statue inscription and Collins’ analysis as a peaceful movement rather than a military movement”.

 

King Arthur not real – a composite character

Published December 15, 2017 by amaic
Image result for king arthur

 

“Arthur, as he first appears, in the book that launched his international career, is no more than an amalgam. He is a Celtic superhero created from the deeds of others”.

 

Have we not found this to have been the case with so many supposedly historical personages – that ‘they’ are in fact a fantastic mix of real (often biblical) persons? For, according to this article: http://theconversation.com/here-are-the-five-ancient-britons-who-make-up-the-myth-of-king-arthur-86874Here are the five ancient Britons who make up the myth of King Arthur”:

 

Arthur, in the Historia [Regum Britanniae], is the ultimate composite figure. There is nothing in his story that is truly original. In fact, there are five discrete characters discernible within the great Arthurian mix. Once you detach their stories from the narrative, there is simply nothing left for Arthur.

 

Though I think that the roots of the Arthurian legend may go back considerably further than the ancient Britons. That the colourful biblical King David of Israel would have had a significant influence on the Arthurian legends has been noticed at the following blog: http://community.beliefnet.com/dondiegodelaveva/blog/2009/08/17/a_king_arthur__king_david__comparison

 

 

A KING ARTHUR  & KING DAVID – COMPARISON

   

One of the more obvious simarities between the story of King Arthur & his court and the themes and element of the Bible, are many. There’s obvious parallels between some of the stories of the Bible & of Arthur is that of King David in the Old Testament.

    The Arthur legends seem to take on similar elements of the story of King David in aspects of content, theme, character parallels, and morals. 

 

LET’S  COMPARE:

The coming of age: both had to go through their right of passage to prove themselves worthy to their own people. Arthur was destined by a higher power. David is [anointed] to be king by Samuel when David killed Goliath–Arthur proved his worth by removing the sword from the stone. Samuel can be paralled to Merlin in many ways which we won’t get into.

A common theme between David & Arthur is that of a correlation between the king’s action & their dominions’ state. At their beginning both began to conquer surrounding kingdoms [1 Sam. 5:6-25] and [Malory 6-17]. The Mighty Sword Excalibur is representative to the Ark of the Covenant in some respects. Both men were great warriors & visionaries, performed good deeds & had a loyal following. Both were of royal ancestry, both were the product of illigit relations [sic] & both true parentage were hidden from their father. Both are listed as the “elect of God,” & were appointed through supernatural means, showing divine intervention & appointment. Both kings were young & inexperienced, both needed to fight their own people as well as formidable enemies before they could assume full control over their respective countries. Both fought a giant & killed it with one blow, both giants were beheaded & put on display. Both men are [presented] with a sword: David got Goliath’s, & Arthur got Excalibur from the Lady of the Lake.

Both were great soldiers, both very human, both sinned in sexual matters, both were referred to as “everlasting kings.” Both tried to create a new order out of the chaos of the time, they both united their nations, both were [known] as “Men of Blood.” Both were hero’s who had come from an underdog position. Both are someone we can relate to & strive to emulate. Their responsibilities change with the times, but their ideas remain the same: unity under justice.

The Bible has the strongest influence on King Arthur legends. The story of King Arthur is very Christian – synchronized.

 

With this in mind, we can now take a look at the article “Here are the five ancient Britons who make up the myth of King Arthur”:

 

King Arthur is probably the best known of all British mythological figures. He is a character from deep time celebrated across the world in literature, art and film as a doomed hero, energetically fighting the forces of evil. Most historians believe that the prototype for Arthur was a warlord living in the ruins of post-Roman Britain, but few can today agree on precisely who that was.

Over the centuries, the legend of King Arthur has been endlessly rewritten and reshaped. New layers have been added to the tale. The story repeated in modern times includes courtly love, chivalry and religion – and characters such as Lancelot and Guinevere, whose relationship was famously immortalised in Thomas Malory’s 1485 book Le Morte D’Arthur. The 2017 cinematic outing, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, is only the most recent reimagining.

But before the addition of the Holy Grail, Camelot and the Round Table, the first full account of Arthur the man appeared in the Historia Regum Brianniae (the History of the Kings of Britain) a book written by Geoffrey of Monmouth in around 1136.

We know next to nothing about Geoffrey, but he claimed to have begun writing the Historia at the request of Walter, archdeacon of Oxford, who persuaded him to translate an ancient book “written in the British tongue”. Many have concluded, as Geoffrey failed to name his primary source and it has never been firmly identified, that he simply made it all up in a fit of patriotism.

Whatever the origin of the Historia, however, it was a roaring success, providing the British with an heroic mythology – a national epic to rival anything written by the English or Normans.

 

Story teller

As a piece of literature, Geoffrey’s book is arguably the most important work in the European tradition. It lays the ground for not just for the whole Arthurian Cycle, but also for the tales surrounding legendary sites such as Stonehenge and Tintagel and characters such as the various kings: Cole, Lear and Cymbeline (the latter two immortalised by Shakespeare).

As a piece of history, however, it is universally derided, containing much that is clearly fictitious, such as wizards, magic and dragons.

If we want to gain a better understanding of who King Arthur was, however, we cannot afford to be so picky. It is Geoffrey of Monmouth who first supplies the life-story of the great king, from conception to mortal wounding on the battlefield, so we cannot dismiss him entirely out of hand.

A full and forensic examination of the Historia Regum Britanniae, has demonstrated that Geoffrey’s account was no simple work of make-believe. On the contrary, sufficient evidence now exists to suggest that his text was, in fact, compiled from a variety of early British sources, including oral folklore, king-lists, dynastic tables and bardic praise poems, some of which date back to the first century BC.

….

In creating a single, unified account, Geoffrey exercised a significant degree of editorial control over this material, massaging data and smoothing out chronological inconsistencies.

Once you accept that Geoffrey’s book is not a single narrative, but a mass of unrelated stories threaded together, individual elements can successfully be identified and reinstated to their correct time and place. This has significant repercussions for Arthur. In this revised context, it is clear that he simply cannot have existed.

Arthur, in the Historia, is the ultimate composite figure. There is nothing in his story that is truly original. In fact, there are five discrete characters discernible within the great Arthurian mix. Once you detach their stories from the narrative, there is simply nothing left for Arthur.

Cast of characters

The chronological hook, upon which Geoffrey hung 16% of his story of Arthur, belongs to Ambrosius Aurelianus, a late 5th-century warlord from whom the youthful coronation, the capture of York (from the Saxons) and the battle of Badon Hill is taken wholesale.

Next comes Arvirargus, who represents 24% of Arthur’s plagiarised life, a British king from the early 1st century AD. In the Historia, Arthur’s subjugation of the Orkneys, his return home and marriage to Ganhumara (Queen Guinevere in later adaptions) parallels that of the earlier king, who married Genvissa on his return south.

….

Constantine the Great, who in AD 306 was proclaimed Roman emperor in York, forms 8% of Arthur’s story, whilst Magnus Maximus, a usurper from AD 383, completes a further 39%. Both men took troops from Britain to fight against the armies of Rome, Constantine defeating the emperor Maxentius; Maximus killing the emperor Gratian, before advancing to Italy. Both sequences are later duplicated in Arthur’s story.

The final 12% of King Arthur’s life, as recounted by Geoffrey, repeat those of Cassivellaunus, a monarch from the 1st century BC, who, in Geoffrey’s version of events, was betrayed by his treacherous nephew Mandubracius, the prototype for Modred.

All this leaves just 1% of Geoffrey’s story of Arthur unaccounted for: the invasion of Iceland and Norway. This may, in fact, be no more than simple wish-fulfilment, the ancient Britons being accorded the full and total subjugation of what was later to become the homeland of the Vikings.

Arthur, as he first appears, in the book that launched his international career, is no more than an amalgam. He is a Celtic superhero created from the deeds of others. His literary and artistic success ultimately lies in the way that various generations have reshaped the basic story to suit themselves – making Arthur a hero to rich and poor, elite and revolutionary alike. As an individual, it is now clear that he never existed, but it is unlikely that his popularity will ever diminish.

 

Part Two: Also like Constantine XI

 

 “The inability to locate the emperor’s [Constantine XI’s] body led to myths that he had not died. Just as King Arthur is taken to Avalon before he can die so he can be healed of his wound and allowed to return again, so Constantine is preserved from death so he can return. In one such legend, an angel rescues the emperor as the Ottomans enter the city”.

 Tyler R. Tichelaar

 

According to Tyler R. Tichelaar, similarities can also be detected between King Arthur and Constantine XI Palaeologus (also spelled Palaiologos), considered to have been the last of the Byzantine emperors (1449-1453 AD, conventional dating):

https://childrenofarthur.wordpress.com/2012/03/26/constantine-xi-king-arthurs-last-mythical-descendant/

 

Constantine XI: King Arthur’s Last Mythical Descendant

….

I recently returned from a wonderful trip to the beautiful country of Turkey. I knew Turkey was filled with ancient history—the ruins of Ephesus, Troy, etc.—but I have always been most fascinated with the Byzantines, or the Greeks or Romans, as they called themselves. I am also struck by the similarities between Camelot and Constantinople, and particularly between King Arthur and Constantine XI, the last Byzantine Emperor. Just as Camelot was the brief shining moment before Britain was conquered by the Saxons, so Constantinople was the last remnant of the great Roman Empire which had once ruled most of the known world, including Britain. The city’s fall to the Turks in 1453 marked the end of the Roman Empire, which had stretched on for over 2,000 years.

Constantine XI, the last emperor, had a tragic ending that inspired great myths similar to those of King Arthur, so while the two were not necessarily related, although Constantine XI was named for Constantine the Great, and Arthur is often believed to be a relative or descendant of Constantine the Great, Constantine XI may be deemed a mythical or literary descendant of King Arthur in how they are both depicted as leaders who may come again.

Constantine’s tragedy lies not only in the Fall of Constantinople, but that he was the last emperor, without even an heir. He had two wives but no children, his second wife dying in childbirth. Similarly, Arthur had no children who survived him. His end is more tragic in that his son, Mordred, and he slew each other, but nevertheless, both leaders’ endings spelled the end of an era.

The people of Constantinople, the city being all that was left of an empire, held out under siege by Mehmet II for fifty-three days before the city finally fell. In the city’s last hours, Constantine would have prayed inside Hagia Sophia before going to fight with his people as the city walls were beaten down.

….

What happened to the emperor once the city fell has become the stuff of legend. The emperor’s body was never found, or if it were, it was not recorded. One source states that Constantine’s last words were, “The city is fallen and I am still alive,” and then he tore off his imperial ornaments so he could not be distinguished from the other soldiers and made a final charge at the enemy. According to Roger Crowley in his wonderful book about the Fall of Constantinople, 1453, Constantine was very aware that he would go down in history as the emperor who let the city fall, so he may not have wanted to be identified because of the shame he felt, and he also would not have wanted to be taken alive and forced into shameful positions of submission before the conqueror, Mehmet II.

One story claims that Constantine was identified by his purple boots, and that his body was decapitated and his head sent around Asia Minor as proof of Mehmet II’s victory, but more likely, his body was never identified and he died in a mass grave with the rest of his soldiers.

The inability to locate the emperor’s body led to myths that he had not died. Just as King Arthur is taken to Avalon before he can die so he can be healed of his wound and allowed to return again, so Constantine is preserved from death so he can return. In one such legend, an angel rescues the emperor as the Ottomans enter the city. The angel turns Constantine into marble and places him under the earth in a cave near the Golden Gate where he waits to be brought back to life to re-conquer the city for the Christians.

Just as the British have hoped for Arthur to return in their hour of greatest need—during World War II, the myth was especially prevalent—the Greeks have held onto the dream of Constantine’s return.

….

During the Balkan Wars and Greco-Turkish War in the early twentieth century, the name of the then Greek King, Constantine, was used to see him as part of a prophetic myth that Constantine had returned. Although Constantine XII failed to return Constantinople to Christian hands, similar British efforts have been made to recreate King Arthur through another monarch of the same name, such as King John’s nephew in the thirteenth century being named Prince Arthur, to the brother of Henry VIII who was also Prince Arthur, and even the speculation that current Prince William will use his middle name Arthur when he someday ascends the throne of Britain.

Constantine’s return seems very unlikely to me, especially when Istanbul is a thriving busy city of nearly 20 million today, and a largely Westernized if Turkish city. Had Constantine not been the last emperor, doubtless one soon after him would have been, but his myth speaks to the affection his people had for him, that they did not wish him ill or blame him for the loss of Constantinople, but rather they see him as a tragic hero, just as Arthur lives affectionately in the British people’s bosoms.

________________________

Tyler R. Tichelaar, Ph.D. is the author of King Arthur’s Children: A Study in Fiction and Tradition, available at www.ChildrenofArthur.com

Croesus and Montezuma. Part Two: Montezuma and early Genesis

Published December 14, 2017 by amaic
Image result for king montezuma and flood

 

by

Damien F. Mackey

 

“The first days of the world … were happy and peaceful days.”

Then came a great flood, “from which Montezuma and the coyote alone escaped.

Montezuma became then very wicked, and attempted to build a house that would reach to heaven, but the Great Spirit destroyed it with thunderbolts.”

 

 

As strongly hinted at in this series, both king Croesus of Lydia and Montezuma (Moctezuma), the emperor of the Aztecs, are fictitious characters.

And that impression becomes more manifest as we learn that a Montezuma of native American (Apache) tradition was a Genesis-like composite figure (Adam, Noah, Nimrod). For example: https://111booksfor2011.wordpress.com/2016/09/28/montezuma-and-the-great-flood/

 

Montezuma and the Great Flood

….

The Great Mystery Power created the Earth and created a big hole. He created a shape out of clay and dropped it into the hole. Out of the hole came Montezuma, followed by all the Indian tribes. Montezuma taught them the things that they should know, how to make baskets and so forth. The Earth was good. There was no winter and not a lot of anything bad to speak of.

Coyote told Montezuma that there would be a flood and that he should make a canoe for when it happened. The flood did happen, and luckily, Montezuma had made his canoe and so did Coyote. They found a piece of land sticking up and both went to it. They looked in the west, the east, and the south, only to find no dry land anywhere, but they found some in the north. The Great Mystery Power began to make people again, as they had died, and put Montezuma in charge of them all.

After a time, Montezuma decided he was a divine power himself. He should rule everything. Coyote was not his equal, but below him. Montezuma said he was the great creator power and that there was no Great Mystery Power. He commanded the people to build a tall tower for him. It went up and up and up.

Things started to change. Good turned to evil. The sun was pushed further away as a warning to Montezuma from the Great Mystery Power and now there was winter. The grand house rose higher and higher, but the Great Mystery Power made the Earth tremble and the house collapsed. When the tower fell, no one could understand each other or the animals. Montezuma vowed that he would tell the people not to worship the Great Mystery Power or to make sacrifices to it. The Great Mystery Power sent men over from a strange land to take over the land of Montezuma. These men came with metal and they were hairy and that was the end of Montezuma’s reign. ….

 

Similarly, Emmet Sweenet tells:

http://www.hyksos.org/index.php?title=Vortigern:_Legendary_Tyrant_King_of_Early_Britai

 

In Atlantis: The Antediluvian World, his wonderful compendium of lore and speculation, Ignatius Donnelly comments on a legend of the Apaches, which spoke of the world’s creation. “The first days of the world,” we are told, “were happy and peaceful days.” Then came a great flood, “from which Montezuma and the coyote alone escaped. Montezuma became then very wicked, and attempted to build a house that would reach to heaven, but the Great Spirit destroyed it with thunderbolts.” (Donnelly, Atlantis: The Antediluvian World, pp. 117-118. From Bancroft, Native Races, Vol. 3, p. 76)

 

The “house” which Montezuma attempts to build “that would reach to heaven” is elsewhere encountered in Native American tradition where it is specifically identified as a tower, and it is clear that in this story the Apaches have pieced together elements of recent history – including recent history not directly theirs – and combined these with an extremely ancient tradition, one dating from shortly after the Deluge. In biblical tradition, the Tower of Babel (the account of which directly precedes the Abraham narrative) is built in the years after the Deluge. ….

 

The following article also shows just how Genesis-based are some early traditions of America:

http://wyattmuseum.com/mythsof-the-americas/2011-591

 

“Myths”of the Americas

 

…. the mythology, religious beliefs and legends passed down through the ages (especially those about the creation of man and a massive flood) are absolutely fascinating and present evidence that is impossible to explain except in the context of the Biblical account.

“The tradition of Paradise and the Fall has been disseminated in one form or another among virtually all the races on earth since time immemorial. It should not be forgotten that the idea of evolution is only a thing of yesterday, unconnected with the thoughts and verbal traditions of past peoples and periods and diametrically opposed to the ideas of primitive races still alive today.” (MGM, p. 70).

Knowledge of the True Creator

 

Soon after arriving at Plymouth Rock, Edward Winslow was authorized, on March 22, 1621, to negotiate with the Indian “king” Massassoit and form a treaty. In later discussions with the Indians: “When Winslow told the natives of the God of the Christians they replied that this was very good, because they believed the same things of their own god, Kiehtan. Kiehtan… was the creator of all things and dwelt far away in the western skies. He also created one man and one woman, and through them the whole of humanity, but it was not known how mankind had become so widely scattered.” (MGM, p. 94).

More was learned about the religion of the natives of the Americas, and these beliefs were recorded BEFORE any missionaries had come to “enlighten” the “poor savages”. The Alacaluf who inhabited the islands at the southern tip of South America “believed in a supreme being whom they called Xolas or Kolas. The word Xolas means “star”… The Alacaluf’s supreme being is a pure spirit. God, who has never possessed a body, existed before the creation of the world, plants, animals and human beings, and is an independent, self-sustaining spirit. The Alacaluf believed in the perpetuity of this supreme being and in his fundamental kindliness.” (ibid., p. 115).

The Selknam (South America) spoke of their high god, Temaukl, with deep sincerity and great conviction. He is also referred to as “The One in heaven” or “That One There Above”, who, being a spirit, requires no food, drink, sleep, etc. He lives above the firmament, beyond the stars and never comes down to earth; yet he knows all that happens. “He created the earth and the empty void, but the various forms of existence were created by the first man, K’enos” (Adam). (It seems as if somewhere along the line, Adam got credit for actually “creating” when in actuality all he did was “name” everything). They further believe that their god “gave his people laws, precepts and commandments which were transmitted to them by K’enos”. And that “All men’s subsequently acquired knowledge and abilities were transmitted to them by K’enos”. (MGM, p. 118, 1190).

“Among the native peoples of the American continent, a firmly anchored belief in the supreme being exists principally among tribes whose culture has preserved its ancient cast.” (Ibid., p. 87) “The Deity of the Pawnees is Atius Tirawa (father spirit). He is an intangible spirit, omnipotent and beneficent. He pervades the universe, and is its supreme ruler. Upon his will depends everything that happens. He can bring good luck or bad; he can give success of failure. Everything rests with him. As a natural consequence of this conception of the Deity, the Pawnees are a very religious people. Nothing is undertaken without a prayer to the Father for assistance. (George Bird Grinnell, “Pawnee Mythology”, Journal of American Folk-Lore, VI, 1893, p. 114.)

In the myths of the Wiyot, the supreme being, Gudatrigakwitl, (Above Old Man), is the creator, who needed “no sand, earth, clay or sticks for the creation of man. God merely thought, and man was there.” God also “thought” a woman for him. They also believe the first men were bad and had to die. “God still lives today”, they say. He is immortal. (MGM, p. 88).

The East Pomo of northern California called the supreme being Marumda. He lived alone in a house of clouds in the North and created all things. But, the first men were evil and had acquired too much power- “they could fly”. So, Marumda summoned the great waters and only a few families escaped destruction, and God admonished these to “do better in the future”. (ibid., p. 89).

The Thompson Indians, the Lillooet and the Shuswap all have a profound belief in the supreme god whom they call the “Old One”, or “Old Man”. They also referred to him as the “Great Chief” or “Mystery”. Their beliefs go a step further (as do many others) and include a “mediator” called “Coyote”.

There is literally no end to the list of native people, from the Eskimos in the far north to the natives at the south end of South America, whose original beliefs were of a god who can only be the True God, the Creator. Yet, these people had no contact with the rest of the world when these beliefs were first discovered by the Europeans.

The Flood and the Tower of Babel

 

The Aztec nation, located in southern Mexico, claimed they had lived somewhere in northwestern Mexico or the southwestern US for over 1,000 years before migrating south …. Most of our knowledge of these people comes from the Aztec sacred books, known as “codices”, which were kept in their temples and which the native Aztec historians used when they wrote their chronicles. In the first half of the 1500’s, the Aztec chieftain Ixtlilxochitl, wrote “Ixtlilxochitl Relaciones”, a history relating the archives of his family and the ancient writings of his Aztec nation. He claims they were descendants to the Toltecs, who had passed down the following tale. In this account, Ixtlilxochitl presents the most complete and accurate account of the flood and events at Babel that have ever been found in ANY ancient civilization other than the Biblical account:

“It is found in the histories of the Toltecs that this age and first world, as they call it, lasted 1716 years; that men were destroyed by tremendous rains and lightning from the sky, and even all the land without the exception of anything, and the highest mountains, were covered up and submerged in water “caxtolmolatli” (translated to read “fifteen cubits”); and here they added other fables of how men came to multiply from the few who escaped from this destruction in a “toptlipetlocali;” that this word nearly signifies a close chest; and how, after men had multiplied, they erected a very high “zacuali”, which is to-day a tower of great height, in order to take refuge in it should the second world (age) be destroyed. Presently their languages were confused, and, not being able to understand each other, they went to different parts of the earth….

The Toltecs, consisting of seven friends, with their wives, who understood the same language, came to the parts, having first passed great land and seas, having lived in caves, and having endured great hardships in order to reach this land;… they wandered 104 years through different parts of the world before they reached Hue Hue Tlapalan, which was in Ce Tecpatl, 520 years after the Flood.” (IR, vol. Ix, pp. 321,322.)

This is MORE than an absolutely AMAZING account! Not only is the flood, the ark and the tower at Babel recalled, the number of years related is extremely close! The Biblical account places the flood at 1,656 years after creation week, while this account places it 1,716 years into the “first age”, a mere +60 years off. Then, this account states that it took 104 years for the 7 friends to reach their new location, not stating where they left from, BUT that they BEGAN THEIR JOURNEY WHEN THE LANGUAGES WERE CONFUSED. Then, it states that they arrived 520 years after the flood. Since they journeyed 104 years, that means began to travel 416 years after the flood. Now, we have no way to compare these dates EXCEPT in the context of the statement about the earth being “divided” during the “days” of Peleg. The Biblical account indicates that Peleg died 338 years after the flood, which makes the time of their departure only about +78 years off. And since their date for the flood is +60 years late, if we correct their departure date by +60 years, we find it to be only +18 years off. Absolutely incredible! An account written in the 1500s, relating information in Aztec records of events over 3,500 years ago, mixed in with all the other pagan myths and legends of their religion, and it is the most accurate account found anywhere else on earth that I have been able to find.

 

Papago Indian Story of the Tower at Babel

 

In 1875 and 1876, Hubert Howe Bancroft wrote a 5 volume encyclopedia on the American west, the largest collection of information on this subject, entitled “The Native Races of the Pacific States of North America”. In here, he relates another of the rare instances when the remembrance of the Tower at Babel lives on in the legends of an ancient people, the Papago Indians of Arizona: “The wild Apaches, `wild from their natal hour’, have a legend that `the first days of the world were happy and peaceful days;’ then came a great flood from which Montezuma became then very wicked, and attempted to build a house that would reach to heaven, but the Great Spirit destroyed it with thunderbolts.” (Native Races… vol. iii, p. 76.) Also in this legend mention is made of the fact that the earth was warmer in “those days” (before the flood); that all men, as well as animals shared a common tongue; and that Montezuma and his friend, the coyote were saved from drowning in a boat.

 

Story of the Rainbow After the Flood

 

The “rainbow” is included in the flood legend of the Chibcha Indians of South America. “Bochica” came from the east and traveled the earth, creating all things and imposing laws. He then disappeared into the west leaving his footprint on a rock. Following him was “Chie” whose teaching contradicted his own and who urged men to rejoice and make merry. “Bochica” then turned the evil “Chie” into an owl as punishment. But in retaliation, “Chie” helped “Chibchachum” bring a great flood. When the flood came, many people prayed and “Bochia” came and opened a breach in the earth to allow the waters to escape. When he appeared, he was sitting on a rainbow. (WM, p. 486.)

After the Flood, A Freezing, Snowing Cold Country

 

There is also a legend which gives solid evidence of the snow and cold after the flood. In 1836, Constantine Samuel Rafinesque wrote a work on the “Lenni-Lenapi” or Delaware Indians and their legends. It is called “The American Nations” and is found today in “The Lenaapae and Their Legends”, translated by Daniel Garrison Brinton, published by Scholarly Press, 1972. This particular legend begins by telling of a time “when there was nothing but sea-water on top of the land,” followed by the creation of the sun, moon, stars and man. Then, came the “golden age” followed by “the fall: “All were willingly pleased, all were easy-thinking, and all were well-happified. But after a while a snake-priest, Powako, brings on earth secretly the snake-worship (Initako) of the god of the snakes, Wakon. And there came wickedness, crime and unhappiness. And bad weather was coming, distemper was coming, and death was coming. All this happened very long ago at the first land, Netamaki, beyond the great ocean Kitahikau.”

Next follows “the Song of the Flood”, of which the following is an excerpt…. “Much water is rushing, much go to hills, much penetrate, much destroying.” After telling of “Nana-bush” who “becomes the ancestor of beings and men”, the next song tells of the condition of man after the flood.: “It freezes was there; it snows was there; it is cold was there.” They go to a milder region divide into tillers and hunter. It makes perfect sense that we should find reference to the snow, freezing and ice among these people- they traveled through it, while those nearer to Babel may not have even been aware of its existence.

 

A Belief in “Resurrection”

 

In writing about the Algonkin tribes in a letter dated August 16, 1683, William Penn wrote:

“They believe in a God and Immortality, for they say, there is a King that made them, who dwells in a glorious country Southward of them, and that the Souls of the Good shall go thither, where they shall live again. (MGM, p. 94).

One of the Thompson Indian myths relates the following:

“The Old Man says to the Coyote: `Soon I am going to leave the earth. You will not return again until I myself do so. You shall then accompany me, and we will change things in the world, and bring back the dead to the land of the living.” (Ibid., p. 91.)

In 1922, Sir James George Frazer wrote of an experience he had with the Incas of Peru- he wrote that they:

“took extreme care to preserve the nail-parings and the hairs that were shorn off or torn out with a comb; placing them in holes or niches in the walls; and if they fell out, any other Indian that saw them picked them up and put them in the places again. I very often asked different Indians, at various times, why they did this, in order to see what they would say, and they all replied in the same words, saying, `Know that all persons who are born must return to life’ (they have no word to express resurrection), `and the souls must rise out of their tombs with all that belonged to their bodies.’”.

In the same paragraph, he writes of a virtually identical belief held by the people who today inhabit the exact same area that Noah and his family lived:

“Similarly the Turks never throw away the parings of their nails, but carefully stow them in cracks of the walls or of the boards, in the belief that they will be needed at the resurrection. The Armenians do not throw away their cut hair and nails and extracted teeth, but hide them in places that are esteemed holy, such as a crack in the church wall, a pillar of the house, or a hollow tree. They think that all these severed portions of themselves will be wanted at the resurrection, and that he who has not stowed them away in a safe place will have to hunt about for them on the great day.” (GB, p. 236).

In the Americas, we also find most of the ancient myths and legends to contain a tremendous amount of sheer nonsense, full of mythical monsters and gods in the forms of animals. But much can be learned from their legends concerning their original beliefs as to where they came from, the flood, creation, and etc. As Solomon said, “There is no new thing under the sun.”- only variations on a theme. By studying the ancient beliefs of the Americas, we can clearly see they began with the knowledge possessed by the ancestors of these people who originated with Noah and his descendants.

 

“There is No New Thing Under the Sun”

 

Solomon wrote: ECC 1:9 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and THERE IS NO NEW THING UNDER THE SUN. 10 Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? It hath already been of old time, which was before us. All knowledge possessed by mankind comes from 2 sources- that which is of God, and the corruption of true knowledge, passed on by Satan to those who will listen. ECC 7:29 Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.

Why does man “seek out” his own “many inventions”? Men (and women), “puffed up” with pride and the belief that they possess “great wisdom and knowledge”, have led great masses of people to their eternal destruction. ISA 9:16 For the leaders of this people cause them to err; and they that are led of them are destroyed. And still today, as down through the ages, man still looks to the “learned men” to tell them “what is truth”.

Satan Wanted to Be Like God- So Do Men

 

The root of Satan’s fall was that he wanted to be like God: ISA 14:12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! 13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: 14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Satan wanted, and still wants, to be worshiped as God; and he “inspires” men to desire the same. Down through the ages from the very beginning, there have been those who, even though they claimed to be followers of God, were unsatisfied with His Truth and who sought to “change” it into something pleasing to them: MAT 15:9 But in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. And once a person has given up his love for the truth, God’s Spirit no longer strives with them and they are unable to distinguish His Truth from Satan’s lies: ROM 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate [without or void of judgment] mind,… Satan puts whatever he wants into the minds of those who “love not the truth”, and the poor souls think they are brilliant and wise. And there are always a multitude ever ready to follow them: MAT 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

Satan’s desire to be “like God” fuels his hatred towards all mankind, even those whom he has successfully deceived. Once we understand his motivation, we can see the “whole picture”- the corrupted ancient myths reflect Satan’s frantic effort to completely eradicate all knowledge of the True God from earth. They as well demonstrate man’s wholehearted cooperation in this evil work all the while convinced of their own superior “intelligence”, as Paul here explains: ROM 1:21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and four footed beasts, and creeping things. Nothing demonstrates this quite so well, I believe, as studying the history books- the “learned scholars” of our present “enlightened age”, with their “superior knowledge”, go to great lengths to try to explain the ancient civilizations, “analyzing” the psychology behind their “myths” of creation, the great flood, the tower at Babel, and so on. Solomon also wrote something else: ECC 10:1 Dead flies cause the ointment of the apothecary to send forth a stinking savour: so doth a little folly him that is in reputation for wisdom and honour.

 

Horrible Histories: Unreal Urartians

Published December 13, 2017 by amaic

Exotic Eastern Anatolia & the Urartians (Lost Kingdom)

by

Damien F. Mackey

 

Very little is known about this ancient place and the origins of its people.

Who were they? Where did they come from? The earliest documentary mention of the land of Urartu can be found in Assyrian sources”.

 

 

Recurring words historians will use to describe the ancient Urartians and their kingdom of Urartu (or Ararat) are “mysterious” and “enigmatic”.

For instance: http://www.ancientpages.com/2014/06/22/mysterious-lost-kingdom-of-urartu-and-its-enigmatic-history/

 

Mysterious Lost Kingdom Of Urartu

And Its Enigmatic History

 

Sutherland – AncientPages.com – The lost kingdom of Urartu is shrouded in mystery because very little is known about this ancient place  and the origins of its people.

This time our journey takes us to ancient Armenia where we look for traces of the mysterious lost kingdom of Urartu as it was called by the Assyrians.

The Hebrews referred to it as Ararat and in more modern times it has been named Kingdom of Van.

 

Mackey’s comment: it was there, “on the mountains of Ararat”, that the Ark landed.

See e.g. my:

Mountain of landing for the Ark of Noah

https://www.academia.edu/35414295/Mountain_of_landing_for_the_Ark_of_Noah

 

The article, “Mysterious Lost Kingdom Of Urartu”, continues with further obscurities:

 

The kingdom’s beginnings are lost in the mists of pre-history, but before it was destroyed, Urartu was situated in Eastern Turkey, Iran and the modern Armenian Republic.

The earliest documentary mention of the land of Urartu can be found in Assyrian sources.

Based on what we know, the people of Urartu were famous metalworkers, spoke a language that was related to Hurrian (a language that has no other known connections), and they adapted the Assyrian cuneiform script for their own purposes.

….

Although it cannot be said with certainty, it appears that from the ninth century on, Urartu was ruled by a single dynasty ….

The true origin of the people of Urartu is unknown. Some historians think these people people migrated from somewhere to the west into the Armenian plateau, then for the most part known as Nairi. They called themselves Khaldians or children of the god Khaldis, just as the name of the Assyrians reflects the name of their god Assur.

….

Several attempts have been made to decipher the cuneiform inscriptions of Armenia through the present-day Armenian language.

The failure of these attempts has led some to believe that the inscriptions in question must be in some unknown, alien tongue, neither Indo-European nor Semitic.

….

Sooner or later everything must come to [an] end, and so did the existence of the Kingdom of Urartu. The fall of the Kingdom of Urartu is shrouded in darkness. The kingdom was succumbed in around 585 – 590 BCE. However, there is no written account of this event and this timescale is not undisputed.

 

Similarly, again, we read at: http://www.messagetoeagle.com/ancient-artifacts-shed-new-light-mysterious-kingdom-urartu/

 

Ancient Artifacts Shed New Light On

The Mysterious Kingdom Of Urartu

….

The mysterious kingdom of Urartu does still hold many ancient secrets. The kingdom’s beginnings are lost in the mists of pre-history, but before it was destroyed, Urartu was situated in Eastern Turkey, Iran and the modern Armenian Republic.

In ancient times the kingdom of Urartu was known under a variety of different names. The Assyrians called it Urartu and the Hebrews referred to it as Ararat, and in more modern times it has been named Kingdom of Van.

Very little is known about this ancient place and the origins of its people. Who were they? Where did they come from? The earliest documentary mention of the land of Urartu can be found in Assyrian sources.

Based on what we know, the people of Urartu were famous metalworkers, spoke a language that was related to Hurrian (a language that has no other known connections), and they adapted the Assyrian cuneiform script for their own purposes.

….

Obviously people of Urartu knew their kingdom was about to vanish and made a last attempt to hide some precious objects with hope these would survive as a reminder of the kingdom’s existence.

Unfortunately, a large number of these artifacts, including most of the inscribed objects, have not been excavated. For example, many Urartian cemeteries with their hundreds of burial goods have been robbed, while only a few (such as the cemetery at Altintepe) have been properly excavated. This means that archaeologists have been deprived of a complete and contextual knowledge of the culture and precious history has been lost once again.

This brilliant era of Urartu did not last long and the kingdom disappeared rapidly from history. ….

 

North, south, east, or west?

http://www.catastrophism.com/amember/plugins/protect/new_rewrite/login.php?v=-any&url=/online/pubs/journals/cat-anc/vol0402/071hitt.htm

“That the Kingdom of Urartu was imperialistic can be deduced by the fortress-like citadels constructed in strategic positions, presumably harboring military garrisons. But where did they come from, we may wonder’! The barbarian north? The Semitic south? Or Anatolia? Velikovsky identified the Hittites with the Chaldeans, and the Chaldeans in turn with the Urartians … and claims that “striking similarities” occur between Hitttite and Urartian art. Khaldis (or Khaldia) was a Urartian deity recorded by Sargon II following his capture of the city of Musasir (site unknown) around 714 B.C. …. As the chief deity of the captured city its image was ritualistically removed from its shrine, signifying subjugation. Assuming Khaldis to be the ancestor god, these people may then tentatively be identified with the Armenian tribe known to the Greeks and Romans several centuries later as the “Chalybes” …”.

Somewhat more positive about the Urartians is revisionist Robert H. Hewsen, who has written as follows (“Anatolia and Historical Concepts”): http://archive.is/t134Y#selection-83.1-83.32
“According to Velikovsky’s chronology the Hurrians would disappear in ca. 865, while, in ca. 860 – five years later – we first hear in Assyrian records of Aramu, king of a state first called in Assyrian Uruatri and then Urartu.21) This state was a federation of smaller states and peoples of the Armenian Plateau welded together through the arms of the Kings of Biaina.22) The history of this Urartian federation and of its long struggle with Assyria is rather well known thanks to its conspicious inscriptions, and these enable us to determine that its language was closely akin to Hurrian. Indeed, Burney, one of the few western authorities on Urartu, states `the Urartian language was closely related to Hurrian, so much so that, whatever the reservations of some philologists, it may legitimately be described as latter-day Hurrian.23)

Now using the conventional chronology, archaeology has discovered that one of those ubiquitous dark ages exists on the Armenian Plateau between the disappearance of the Hurrians and the emergence of the Urartian state, a period which Burney describes as somewhere between six to ten centuries in duration.24) According to Velikovsky’s chronology, Burney exaggerates. The imaginary gap would be somewhere between seven and eight centuries and would not represent any dark age.

Rather, its presence would be due to the inaccuracies of the traditional chronology. Since the dates of the Hurrians and Mitannians are bound to those of the so-called Hittites, and the date of the Hittites is bound to what Velikovsky considers the erroneous chronology of Egypt, these dates, he feels have led to the unnatural separation of the Hurrians and the Urartians by perhaps as much as 700 to 800 years.

The Urartian federation would thus be nothing [more] than a new Hurrian formation which arose immediately following, and perhaps because of, the destruction of Mitanni in the ninth century BC. The traditional and incessant hostility between the Urartians and the Assyrians may well have begun as a result of the Assyrian role in the destruction of Mitanni.25)

Now, I mentioned earlier that Velikovsky notes that the Urartians were called Khaldu and that Chaldeans were encountered by Xenophon on his march through Armenia in 401-400 BC. Actually the term Chaldean for the Urartians is an arbitrary one adopted by Lehmann-Haupt, who, since the Assyrians were called after their chief god, Ashur, patterned the name of the Urartians after their chief god, Khaldis, and who believed that the Chaldeans encountered by Xenophon 200 years after the fall of Urartu were surviving Urartians under their native name.26)

We know now, however, that the Chaldeans of the Armenian Plateau were only one component of the Urartian federation, which actually called itself `Biainili.27) Thus, while Velikovsky errs in thinking them to have been remnants of the Neo-Babylonian or Chaldean state which he identifies with the `Hittite’ Empire of central Anatolia.

The chronological revisions of Velikovsky affect the lesser peoples of eastern Anatolia as well. North of the Hittites lived the warlike Kashka tribes. First cited, in the conventional chronology, in ca. 1350 BC, Velikovsky’s revisions would make them actually appear in ca. 850 BC. Since the Kashka are believed to be identical to the Qulha of eighth century Urartian sources, the new chronology places them between the Kashka and the Qulha. Since the Qulha are one of the peoples who went into the blend which produced the later Georgian people of Caucasia, the exact date of their first appearance is of some import for our understanding of the formation of Colchis, the earliest Georgian political entity.28)

Finally, there is one other people whose traditional date is bound to that of the Hittites and thus to the traditional chronology of Egypt. These are the Hayasa, a people who traditionally flourished in the fourteenth century BC but, according to Velikovsky, in the ninth. Since the Armenians call themselves Hayk’ (singular Hay), it has usually been accepted that, while Herodotus (7.73) calls them simply a Phrygian colony, they were probably an amalgamation of an Indo-European-speaking Phrygian tribe with local, perhaps Hurrian-speaking, Hayasa. The only problem was the chronology. The Armenians first appear in the sixth century BC, whereas the Hayasa were thought to have flourished in the fourteenth. Velikovsky’s chronology reduces this gap by over 600 years and the link between the Hayasa and the Hayk’/Armenians becomes more secure.29)

In conclusion, let me note that none of the evidence which I have gathered in this paper can be interpreted as proof of the exactness of Velikovsky’s chronological revisions. Rather, I have merely attempted to apply his thesis to a particular part of the ancient East. I have tried to demonstrate that nothing he has to say presents any undue difficulties for this field but rather tends to simplify and clarify the history of the area. While this does not make Velikovsky correct, it certainly gives us pause. I cannot but urge all specialists to address themselves without prejudice to an investigation of their own areas of interest and expertise in the light of Dr. Velikovsky’s work.

If ancient history stands in need of being rewritten, so be it. It will not be the first time. Perhaps we should at least attempt to determine if it is necessary for us to begin.30) …”.

 

Horrible Histories: Casualty Kassites

Published December 13, 2017 by amaic

"Unfinished" Kudurru, Kassite period, attributed to the reign of Melishipak, 1186–1172 B.C.E., found in Susa, where it had been taken as war booty in the 12th century B.C.E.

by

Damien F. Mackey

  

 

Unfortunately, we are not much better off as regards the period of Kassite domination in Iraq … all we have at present is about two hundred royal inscriptions – most of them short and of little historical value – sixty kudurru … and approximately 12,000 tablets … less than 10 per cent of which has been published. This is very little indeed for four hundred years – the length of time separating us from Elizabeth 1”.

Georges Roux

 

 

On a previous occasion, I wrote regarding a Velikovskian type downward revision of Babylonian (Kassite) history:

However, for a 500-year lowering of so-called ‘Middle’ Mesopotamian kings to be complete, one must also be able to show how these Mesopotamian kings, Kassites, are to be merged with the ‘Neo’ Babylonian kings ….

Also, though most of the Hammurabic dynasty would have concluded before this period, its final (weaker) kings, who would date to the very period under consideration, would need to be accounted for. Here is my proposal. Hammurabi and his powerful son, Samsuiluna, would now fit into the uncertain phase of Babylonian history of the first half of the C10th BC. The next son, Abi-eshuh, under extreme pressure from the Kassite, Kashtiliash, would be a contemporary of Tukulti-Ninurta, who defeated a Kashtiliash. As the Kassites had increased their pressure, Hammurabi’s later successors were driven northwards; so that, by the time of Shamsi-Adad V, son of Shalmaneser III, ‘descendants of Hammurabi’ are found in the Mari region. Thus there is no crush, with, all at once, Babylonian, Kassite and Assyrian kings occupying Babylon at the one approximate time.

The Kassites

… Kassites; likewise an ‘Indo-European’ people … a single quote from Roux might suffice here: ….

“Hittites, Mitannians and the ruling class of the Kassites belonged to a very large ethno-linguistic group called ‘Indo-European’, and their migrations were but part of wider ethnic movements which affected Europe and India as well as Western Asia”.

The Kassites, ‘Mitannians’ and Hurrians all seem to have expanded to approximately the same places eastwards at approximately the same time (by the revision). The Subarians and Lullubi are sometimes linked with these. An ‘Indo-European’ connection as noted by Roux, especially between the Kassites and the so-called ‘Mitannians’, would certainly account for the skilled horsemanship attributed to the Kassites …. The ‘Mitannians’, like the Kassites … seem to have been something of a horseriding aristocracy or élite amongst the Hurrians and other associated nations. The Hurrians (already discussed in Chapter Two) are often linked with the ‘Mitannians’ as Hurri-Mitannian – but were apparently though neither Semitic nor ‘Indo-European’ in the language they spoke. It has sometimes been called Asianic.

It is not I think too much to say that the Kassites are an enigma for the over-extended conventional scheme. Roux has given the standard estimate for the duration of Kassite rule of Babylonia: … “… a long line of Kassite monarchs was to govern Mesopotamia or, as they called it, Kar-Duniash for no less than four hundred and thirty-eight years (1595-1157 B.C.)”. This is a substantial period of time; yet archaeology has surprisingly little to show for it.

Roux again: ….

“Unfortunately, we are not much better off as regards the period of Kassite domination in Iraq … all we have at present is about two hundred royal inscriptions – most of them short and of little historical value – sixty kudurru … and approximately 12,000 tablets (letters and economic texts), less than 10 per cent of which has been published. This is very little indeed for four hundred years – the length of time separating us from Elizabeth 1”.

[Seton] Lloyd, in his book dedicated to the study of Mesopotamian archaeology, can give only a mere 4 pages (including pictures) to the Kassites, without even bothering to list them in the book’s Index at the back. ….

Incredibly, though the names of the Kassites “reveal a clearly distinct language from the other inhabitants in the region”, as van de Mieroop writes, “and Babylonian texts indicate the existence of a Kassite vocabulary, no single text or sentence is known in the Kassite language”. ….

Obviously, new interpretations are required. The Kassite period is thought to have been brought to its end by the Elamites in the mid-C12th BC. But there emerges quite a new picture about the Kassites when their history is condensed in the context of Velikovsky’s EA revision (VLTF) and this people is re-located well down the time scale. When this is done, the extremely meagre archaeological and historical traces of the Kassites become supplemented by the abundant archaeology and documentation from Syro-Mitanni through to Babylonia during the early to mid C1st millennium BC. ….

Posted by AMAIC at 3:57 PM 0 comments

 

Horrible Histories: Missing Mitannians

Published December 12, 2017 by amaic

Image result for mitannians

 

by

 Damien F. Mackey

 

“The Mitannians are perhaps one of the most enigmatic Near Eastern Superpowers.

Despite their impressive empire, we know remarkably little about them,

especially compared to the Egyptians or the Hittites”.

 

 

Introduction

 

Professor Gunnar Heinsohn (University of Bremen) and Emmet Sweeney, historical revisionists, have, in recent times, arrived at some startling conclusions about ancient history – some of these warranting further critical examination, whilst other of their views appear to me to be extreme and well wide of the mark. In order to account for an apparent lack of due stratigraphy for, say, the Mitannians, or the neo-Assyrians, or the Medo-Persians, this pair (not always in perfect agreement) will attempt to merge any one of these with a far earlier kingdom, for instance, the ancient Akkadians to be merged as one with the neo-Assyrians.

Lester Mitcham, however, was able to expose Sweeney’s choices for comparisons using firm archaeological data in his article, “Support for Heinsohn’s Chronology is Misplaced” (SIS Chronology and Catastrophism Workshop, No 1, May 1988).

The Akkadians and the neo-Assyrians were found to be two quite distinct peoples, well-separated in time, and speaking and writing quite different languages.

Mitcham demonstrated similarly the archaeological impossibility of Heinsohn’s and Sweeney’s bold efforts to fuse the Old Babylonian Dynasty of Hammurabi with the Persians – King Hammurabi supposedly being the same as Darius the Great.

 

Once again, different peoples, different geographies, different times.

 

Heinsohn and Sweeney do have, though, some degree of support for their argument that the Persian Empire, as classically presented, is seriously lacking in due archaeological strata. For professor Heinsohn, in his far-reaching article, “The Restoration of Ancient History” (http://www.mikamar.biz/symposium/heinsohn.txt), refers to the results of some conferences in the 1980’s pointing to difficulties regarding the extent of the Medo-Persian empires:

 

In the 1980’s, a series of eight major conferences brought together the world’s finest experts on the history of the Medish and Persian empires. They reached startling results. The empire of Ninos [pre-Alexander period (3)] was not even mentioned. Yet, its Medish successors were extensively dealt with-to no great avail. In 1988, one of the organizers of the eight conferences, stated the simple absence of an empire of the Medes [pre-Alexander period (2)]:  “A Median oral tradition as a source for Herodotus III is a hypothesis that solves some problems, but has otherwise little to recommend it … This means that not even in Herodotus’ Median history a real empire is safely attested.  In Assyrian and Babylonian records and in the archeological evidence no vestiges of an imperial structure can be found. The very existence of a Median empire, with the emphasis on empire, is thus questionable” (H. Sancisi-Weerdenburg, “Was there ever a Median Empire?”, in A. Kuhrt, H. Sancisi-Weerdenburg, eds., Achaemenid History III. Method and Theory, Leiden, 1988, p. 212).

 

Two years later came the really bewildering revelation.  Humankind’s first world empire of the Persians [Pre-Alexander Period (1)] did not fare much better than the Medes.  Its imperial dimensions had dryly to be labelled “elusive” (H. Sancisi-Weerdenburg, “The quest for an elusive empire?”, in H. Sancisi-Weerdenburg, A. Kuhrt, eds., Achaemenid History IV. Centre and Periphery, Leiden l990, p. 264). ….

 

 

Enigma of the Mitannians

 

In their attempt to counteract what they have perceived to be the problem of the dearth of solid historical evidence for the Mitannians, professor Heinsohn and Emmet Sweeney arrived at the conclusion that the Mitanni and Median empires were one and the same.

 

Admittedly, the Mitannians seem to be a people without an adequate archaeology, a series of kings without precise geographical location.

 

https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/superpowers-near-east/0/steps/19016

“The Mitannians are perhaps one of the most enigmatic Near Eastern Superpowers. Despite their impressive empire, we know remarkably little about them, especially compared to the Egyptians or the Hittites”.

 

https://www.britannica.com/place/Mitanni

“[Mitanni’s] heartland was the Khābūr River region, where Wassukkani, its capital, was probably located”. But: http://www.worldhistory.biz/ancient-history/66326-mitanni.html

“They established a capital at Wassukanni, the location of which remains unknown”.

 

http://www.worldhistory.biz/ancient-history/66326-mitanni.html

“Very little of a definite nature is known about Mitanni’s leaders, internal history, and society. It appears that Mitannian society was dominated by a chariotowning warrior class known as the mary-annu, who owned large country estates and bred horses and sheep. Some or all of the members of this class may have been Indo-Europeans, suggesting some sort of cultural or political fusion of that group and the Hurrians in Mitanni”.

 

Who were the Mitannians?

And, might Emmet Sweeney have – amidst all of his unlikely conclusions – paved the way for an answer to this question in one of his bold claims: namely, that the Mitannian king Parratarna was Shamshi Adad I?

I intend further to investigate this.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

King Hiram and King Idrimi

Published December 11, 2017 by amaic
Image result for idrimi

by

 Damien F. Mackey

 

 

Level VII [at Alalakh], which did not contain the [characteristic] pottery,

was the level containing the inscribed tablets of the Yarim-Lim dynasty.”

 

 

Introduction

 

To flesh out historically the biblical kings David and Solomon (c. C10th BC) one needs also to:

 

  • delve right back to a conventionally-estimated Syro-Mesopotamia of the era of c. 1800 BC so as to locate their contemporaries in Rekhob and Hadadezer (historically, Uru-kabkabu and Shamsi-Adad I); Eliada and Rezon (historically, Iahdulim and Zimri-Lim); and Hiram (historically, Iarim-Lim); and then to

 

  • dip into the conventionally-estimated Egypt of the era of c. 1500 BC to locate their Eighteenth Dynasty contemporaries in (Thutmose I and II), “Queen of Sheba” and “Shishak” (historically, Hatshepsut and Thutmose III).

 

In what will follow here, that same conventionally-estimated (but quite incorrect) era for the Eighteenth Egyptian dynasty (c. 1500 BC) will also to found to contain a colourful character who may be yet another face of the biblical king Hiram.

 

Hiram as Idrimi

 

I had previously sought to identify this Idrimi (conventionally dated to c. 1500 BC) with one of King Solomon’s three adversaries (I Kings 11:14-26) namely, Hadad, or Hadar, the Edomite: “That name, Hadar, is the same as Hadoram (Adoram), and, as it seems to me, as Idrimi”.

 

But Hadoram (Adoram), or Adoniram, are also names that can be associated with the Hebrew name, Joram, and also with Hiram, as according to Abarim:

http://www.abarim-publications.com/Meaning/Joram.html#.Wi3KHeRlJ9A

 

Associated Biblical names

 

♂Adoniramאדנירם

♂Ahiramאחירם

♂Hadoramהדורם
הדרם

♂♕Hiramחירם
חירום
חורם

♂♕Joramיורם

 

Moreover, the geography of Idrimi, Alalakh, is much more befitting of Hiram, as Iarim-Lim.

Thus I would write, in my university thesis:

 

A Revised History of the Era of King Hezekiah of Judah

and its Background

 AMAIC_Final_Thesis_2009.pdf

 

the following (very Courville-based) sections regarding Iarim-Lim, the Philistines (Cretans) and the archaeology of Alalakh:

 

The Earlier Philistine History

 

It remains to be determined whether or not the Philistines can be traced all the way back to Crete in accordance with the biblical data; though obviously, from what has been said, to well before the time of the ‘Sea Peoples’, whose immediate origins were Aegean, not Cretan.

Courville has looked to trace just such an archaeological trail, back through the era of the late Judges/Saul; to Alalakh (modern Atchana) at the time of Iarim-Lim (Yarim-Lim) of Iamkhad (Yamkhad) and Hammurabi of Babylon; and finally to Crete in early dynastic times. I shall be basically reproducing Courville here, though with one significant chronological divergence, in regard to his dating of the Alalakh sequences. Courville has, according to my own chronological estimation for Hammurabi and Iarim-Lim, based on Hickman … dated the Hammurabic era about four centuries too early (as opposed to the conventional system’s seven centuries too early) on the time scale. Courville had wonderfully described Hammurabi as “floating about in a liquid chronology of Chaldea”, just after his having also correctly stated that: …  “Few problems of ancient chronology have been the topic of more extensive debate among scholars than the dates to be ascribed to the Babylonian king Hammurabi and his dynasty …”. And so he set out to establish Hammurabi in a more secure historical setting. This, I do not think he managed successfully to achieve however.

Courville’s re-location of Hammurabi to the approximate time of Joshua and the Conquest is still fairly “liquid” chronologically, as it seems to me, without his having been able to establish any plausible syncretisms beyond those already known for Hammurabi (e.g. with Shamsi-Adad I and Zimri-Lim). Revisionist Hickman on the other hand, despite his radical lowering of the Hammurabic era even beyond the standard [Velikovsky-date lowering] scale, by about seven centuries to the time of kings David and Solomon (c. C10th BC), has been able to propose and develop what are to my way of thinking some promising syncretisms, e.g. between David’s Syrian foe, Hadadezer, and Shamsi-Adad I (c. 1809-1776 BC, conventional dates), with the latter’s father Ilu-kabkabu being the biblical Rekhob, father of Hadadezer (2 Samuel 8:3); … and between Iarim-Lim and the biblical Joram (var. Hadoram), son of To’i, and prince of Hamath (cf. 2 Samuel 8:10 & 1 Chronicles 18:10).

I shall have cause to re-visit some of these kings in the following chapter.

So now, with Hammurabi and his era somewhat more securely located, as I think, than according to Courville’s proposed re-location – and hence with the potential for a more accurate archaeological matrix – we can continue on with Courville’s excellent discussion of the archaeology of the early Philistines: ….

 

VIII. The Culture of the Sea Peoples in the Era of the Late Judges

 

The new pottery found at Askelon [Ashkelon] at the opening of Iron I, and correlated with the invasion of the Sea Peoples, was identified as of Aegean origin. A similar, but not identical, pottery has been found in the territory north of Palestine belonging to the much earlier era of late Middle Bronze. By popular

views, this is prior to the Israelite occupation of Palestine. By the altered chronology, this is the period of the late judges and the era of Saul.

… That the similar pottery of late Middle Bronze, occurring both in the north and in the south, is related to the culture found only in the south at the later date is apparent from the descriptions of the two cultures. Of this earlier culture, which should be dated to the time of Saul, Miss Kenyon commented:

 

The pottery does in fact provide very useful evidence about culture. The first interesting point is the wealth of a particular class of painted pottery …. The decoration is bichrome, nearly always red and black, and the most typical vessels have a combination of metopes enclosing a bird or a fish with geometric decoration such as a “Union Jack” pattern or a Catherine wheel. At Megiddo the first bichrome pottery is attributed to Stratum X, but all the published material comes from tombs intrusive into this level. It is in fact characteristic of Stratum IX. Similar pottery is found in great profusion in southern Palestine … Very similar vessels are also found on the east coast of Cyprus and on the coastal Syrian sites as far north as Ras Shamra. [Emphasis Courville’s]

 

Drawings of typical examples of this pottery show the same stylized bird with

back-turned head that characterized the pottery centuries later at Askelon. … The anachronisms and anomalies in the current views on the interpretation of this invasion and its effects on Palestine are replaced by a consistent picture, and one that is in agreement with the background provided by Scripture for the later era in the very late [sic] 8th century B.C.

 

Courville now turns to the archaeology at the site of Alalakh on the shore of the Mediterranean at its most northeast protrusion, in order “to trace this culture one step farther back in time” (though in actual fact, by my chronology, it will bring him to approximately the same time – though a different place). ….

 

  1. The Culture of Level VI at Alalakh Is Related to That of the Philistines

 

He commences by recalling Sir Leonard Woolley’s investigations at this site in the

1930’s, during which Woolley discovered “seventeen archaeological levels of occupation”:

 

A solid synchronism is at hand to correlate Level VII at Alalakh with the era of Hammurabi of the First Dynasty at Babylon …. The basis for this synchronism is found in the Mari Letters where it is stated that “… there are ten or fifteen kings who follow Hammurabi of Babylon and ten or fifteen who follow Rim-sin of Larsa but twenty kings follow Yarim-Lim of Yamkhad”.

Investigations at Alalakh revealed numerous tablets inscribed in cuneiform, most of which are by the third of the three kings of the dynasty, Yarim-Lim by name.

…. Since the First Dynasty at Babylon was of Amorite origin, then so also was the Yarim-Lim dynasty of Amorite origin.

In the reports by Woolley, he indicates the find at Alalakh of two characteristic pottery types which were designated as “White-Slip milk bowls” and “Base-Ring Ware”. As the digging proceeded downward, he found that such types of pottery were plentiful in Level VI, all but disappeared in Level VII, and then reappeared in all levels from VIII to XVI. Level VII, which did not contain the pottery, was the level containing the inscribed tablets of the Yarim-Lim dynasty. The obvious conclusion was that the people of Yarim-Lim (Amorites) had conquered this city and probably also the surrounding territory, ruling it for a period estimated to have been about 50 years. At the end of this time, the original inhabitants were able to reconquer the site and reoccupy it.

Courville now turns his attention to seeking an identity for the people from whom the city of Alalakh was taken for about half a century, but who then reoccupied it: ….

What then was this culture like …? We let Woolley tell us about the culture:

 

… We do indeed know extremely little about the Level VI buildings. It is to the pottery that we must look for information about Level VI, and the pottery can tell us a good deal. On the one hand we have what I have called the “nationalist revival” of the traditional painted ware which had been suppressed under the late regime, and some examples of this are perfect replicas of the old both in form and in decoration, but as time goes on, there appear modifications of the long-established types – instead of the isolated and static figures of birds or animals these become active and are combined in running scenes surrounding the whole pot without the interruption of the triglyph-like partitions which were once the rule … For the first time we get a polychrome decoration in red and black paint on a buff surface, and the design includes not only birds but the “Union Jack” motive which is specially characteristic of contemporary Palestine … [Emphasis Courville’s]

 

As one examines this pottery description, he will be struck with the notable similarities of decoration found on the pottery at Megiddo for the era of Philistine occupation in the time of Saul. There is the same use of red and black paint, the similar use of birds as a decoration motif, and the same use of the “Union Jack”.

 

Finally, Courville traces this distinctive archaeological path all the way back to Crete. I am giving only the barest outlines of his discussion here: ….

 

  1. The Sea Peoples of Crete

 

With the evidences thus far noted before us, we are now in a position to examine the archaeological reports from Crete for evidences of the early occupation of this site by the Caphtorim (who are either identical to the Philistines of later Scripture or are closely related to them culturally). We now have at least an approximate idea of the nature of the culture for which we are looking …. … we can hardly be wrong in recognizing the earliest occupants of Crete as the people who represented the beginnings of the people later known in Scripture as the Philistines, by virtue of the stated origin of the Philistines in Crete. This concept holds regardless of the name that may be applied to this early era by scholars.

The only site at which Cretan archaeology has been examined for its earliest occupants is at the site of the palace at Knossos. At this site deep test pits were dug into the earlier occupation levels. If there is any archaeological evidence available from Crete for its earliest period, it should then be found from the archaeology of these test pits. The pottery found there is described by Dr. Furness, who is cited by Hutchinson.

“Dr. Furness divides the early Neolithic I fabrics into (a) coarse unburnished ware and (b) fine burnished ware, only differing from the former in that the pot walls are thinner, the clay better mixed, and the burnish more carefully executed. The surface colour is usually black, but examples also occur of red,

buff or yellow, sometimes brilliant red or orange, and sometimes highly variegated sherds”.

A relation was observed between the decoration of some of this pottery from early Neolithic I in Crete with that at the site of Alalakh ….

Continuing to cite Dr. Furness, Hutchinson commented:

 

Dr. Furness justly observes that “as the pottery of the late Neolithic phases seems to have developed at Knossos without a break, it is to the earliest that one must look for evidence of origin of foreign connections”, and she therefore stresses the importance of a small group with plastic decoration that seems mainly confined to the Early Neolithic I levels, consisting of rows of pellets immediately under the rim (paralleled on burnished pottery of Chalcolithic [predynastic] date from Gullucek in the Alaca [Alalakh] district of Asia Minor). [Emphasis Courville’s]

 

While the Archaeological Ages of early Crete cannot with certainty be correlated with the corresponding eras on the mainland, it would seem that Chalcolithic on the mainland is later than Early Neolithic in Crete; hence any influence of one culture on the other is more probably an influence of early Cretan culture on that of the mainland. This is in agreement with Scripture to the effect that the Philistines migrated from Crete to what is now the mainland at some point prior to the time of Abraham. ….

Prophet Job and Montuemhat

Published December 7, 2017 by amaic
Image result for montuemhat

Job as a ‘King’ of Egypt

 

by

Damien F. Mackey

 

“That day there was joy for all the Jews who lived in Nineveh.

Ahiqar and … Nadin were also on hand to rejoice with Tobit.

Tobias’s wedding feast was celebrated with joy for seven days,

and many gifts were given to him”.

 Tobit 11:17-18

 

 

His Pre-Official Years

 

 

Introduction

 

Thankfully the Book of Tobit is able to provide us with much biographical information for Job (= Tobias):

 

Job’s Life and Times

 

https://www.academia.edu/3787850/Jobs_Life_and_Times

 

because such information about the famed holy man of great righteousness is almost completely lacking in the Book of Job.

The Book of Tobit spans the lengthy neo-Assyrian period from king “Shalmaneser” until the destruction of Nineveh (cf. Tobit 1:2 and 14:15), thus anchoring Tobias/Job chronologically.

The Book of Tobit also gives what I consider to be the correct succession of neo-Assyrian kings, Shalmaneser, to Sennacherib, to Esarhaddon. No king Sargon mentioned between Shalmaneser and Sennacherib. I give what I think to be the reason for this in:

 

Assyrian King Sargon II, Otherwise Known As Sennacherib

 

https://www.academia.edu/6708474/Assyrian_King_Sargon_II_Otherwise_Known_As_Sennacherib

 

Whilst in this present set our focus will be on the official status of Tobias/Job in the neo-Assyrian kingdom, we learned in the previous, related series:

 

Tobit a High Official in Realm of Assyria. Part One: “King Shalmaneser”

 

https://www.academia.edu/27931582/Tobit_a_High_Official_in_Realm_of_Assyria._Part_One_King_Shalmaneser_

 

‘… Tobit of … the tribe of Naphtali, who in the days of Shalmaneser, king of the Assyrians, was taken into captivity …. The Most High gave me favor and good appearance in the sight of Shalmaneser, and I was his buyer of provisions’. Tobit 1:1, 2, 13

 

Tobit a High Official in Realm of Assyria. Part Two: Tobit’s Status

 

https://www.academia.edu/27932418/Tobit_a_High_Official_in_Realm_of_Assyria._Part_Two_Tobits_Status

 

that this Naphtalian family was one of no little importance. For, as I noted in Part Two:

 

Tobit, an exile, must have been a person of exceptional competence to have so risen in the kingdom of Assyria to become purveyor, or quartermaster, of the Assyrian king, Shalmaneser.

That particular rank in Assyria, termed rab[i] ekalli or rab ša muḫḫi ekalli (“… in Middle Assyrian times the ša muḫḫi ekalli is used synonymously to rab ekalli”: https://www.academia.edu/7640201/2015_Food_and_drink_for_the_palace_the_manageme), may have been a very high one indeed. For, according to this following estimation of the rank http://ancientpeoples.tumblr.com/post/30101734778/assyrian-rule-of-conque

Directly under the king were three officers. The turtannu, or field marshal; the ummânu, vice-chancellor; and the rab ša muḫḫi ekalli, the major-domo. The latter was the most important and the only one with direct access to the king (though the king could of course require the audience of lower ranked men himself); even the field marshal and the vice-chancellor had to go through the major-domo to request a meeting.

But Tobit was not the only person of high rank in this most talented family of his (https://books.google.com.au/books?id=d5PXD5saod4C&pg=PA11&lpg=PA11&dq=tobit+was+king’s+quartermaster):

 

The family of Tobit, as we meet them in the Book of Tobit, are exceptional people. Tobit himself becomes procurator general, quartermaster for King Shalmaneser, and is sent on important purchasing expeditions to Media (Persia). His nephew Ahiqar becomes royal cupbearer, in effect the administrator of the entire empire. Their kinsman Gabiel in Media also has an important post there.

 

One might think it inevitable therefore, too, that Tobias/Job – being able to boast of so high-ranking a father (Tobit) and a cousin (Ahiqar), in the kingdom of Assyria – would also have attained ultimately to a position of greatest prominence.

His arrival at manhood, when Tobias/Job married Sarah and then returned safely to his parents in Nineveh, was, as we read above, an occasion of “joy for all the Jews [preferably Israelites?] who lived in Nineveh”. Even the great man, Ahiqar, attended the celebration, along with Nadin. For my identification of this sinister character, Nadin, see:

 

“Nadin went into everlasting darkness”

 

https://www.academia.edu/7177604/_Nadin_went_into_everlasting_darkness_

 

Tobias/Job, having now arrived at a most meaningful phase of his early adult life, was soon to be catapulted into such public prominence as would see him, as I wrote previously:

 

… rise to highest judicial office. One has only to read e.g. Job 29:7-10:

 

‘When I went to the gate of the city

and took my seat in the public square,

the young men saw me and stepped aside

and the old men rose to their feet;

the chief men refrained from speaking

and covered their mouths with their hands;

the voices of the nobles were hushed,

and their tongues stuck to the roof of their mouths’.

 

 

Chronology,

Tobias and Shalmaneser

 

“At the ripe old age of 117 Tobias died, having lived long enough to hear about the destruction of Nineveh and to see King Cyaxares of Media take the people away as captives. Tobias praised God for the way that he had punished the people of Nineveh and Assyria.

As long as he lived he gave thanks for what God had done to Nineveh”.

Tobit 14:14-15

 

Biblical numbers

 

A slight problem for my identification of Tobias, son of Tobit, with the prophet Job (“Job’s Life and Times”) is that, whereas Job is said to have “lived a hundred and forty years” (Job 42:16), Tobias appears to have fallen somewhat short of 140. The numbers given for his age at death vary: 99 years (Douay), 117 years, or 127 years.

As biblical scholars are very much aware, however, numbers can be somewhat unreliable – a classic case being 1 Samuel 13:1: “Saul was … years old when he became king; and he reigned two years over Israel” (בֶּן-שָׁנָה, שָׁאוּל בְּמָלְכוֹ; וּשְׁתֵּי שָׁנִים, מָלַךְ עַל-יִשְׂרָאֵל).

Looking at those four figures for Tobias/Job: 99, 117, 127, 140, totalling 483, we get an average figure of approximately 120 years.

As the Book of Tobit describes it, the death of Tobias occurred at “ripe old age”. Compare the Septuagint version of the Book of Job: “And Job died, an old man and full of days …”. His was a life long enough for him to have witnessed the rise and fall of many great people. As I wrote about this in my article:

 

Prophet Nahum as Tobias-Job Comforted

 

https://www.academia.edu/8729042/Prophet_Nahum_as_Tobias-Job_Comforted

 

The prophet Job too, man of vast experience as he was, had witnessed such things (Job 13:1): “My eyes have seen all this …”. All what things? “All this” (Job 12:17-25):

 

“[God] leads rulers away stripped and makes fools of judges. He takes off the shackles put on by kings and ties a loincloth around their waist. He leads priests away stripped and overthrows officials long established. He silences the lips of trusted advisers and takes away the discernment of elders. He pours contempt on nobles and disarms the mighty. He reveals the deep things of darkness and brings utter darkness into the light. He makes nations great, and destroys them; he enlarges nations, and disperses them. He deprives the leaders of the earth of their reason; he makes them wander in a trackless waste. They grope in darkness with no light; he makes them stagger like drunkards”.

 

Again, as I wrote previously: “The Book of Tobit spans the lengthy neo-Assyrian period from king “Shalmaneser” until the destruction of Nineveh (cf. Tobit 1:2 and 14:15), thereby anchoring Job chronologically”.

According to the conventional listing of neo-Assyrian kings, the life of Tobias/Job would have been contemporaneous with all of the following kings (though, by the terms of my revision, several of these are actually duplicates, e.g. Tiglath-pileser III = Shalmaneser V; Sargon II = Sennacherib):

 

Tiglath-Pileser III 745–727 BC son of Ashur-nirari (V)
Shalmaneser V 727–722 BC son of Tiglath-Pileser (III)
End of the document known as Assyrian King List; the following kings reigned after the list had been composed.
Sargon II 722–705 BC
Sennacherib 705–681 BC
Esarhaddon 681–669 BC
The dates of the last kings are not certain.
Ashurbanipal 669–between 631 and 627 BC
Ashur-etil-ilani ca. 631–627 BC
Sin-shumu-lishir

 

Tobit 1:9-10: “When I grew up, I married Anna, a member of my own tribe. We had a son and named him Tobias. Later, I was taken captive and deported to Assyria, and that is how I came to live in Nineveh”.

During the next reign, however, that of Sennacherib (my Sargon II), the fortunes of the family fluctuated considerably.

 

Chronology,

Tobias and Sennacherib

  

“When Shalmaneser died, his son Sennacherib succeeded him as emperor. It soon became so dangerous to travel on the roads in Media that I could no longer go there”.

 

Tobit 1:15

 

Introduction

 

The Book of Tobit gives a neo-Assyrian succession, from Shalmaneser to Sennacherib, that – whilst it does not accord with the view of modern Assyriology, that Shalmaneser (V) was succeeded by Sargon II – is the one that I have accepted.

However, although I consider the Book of Tobit to be an accurate historical record of events, it does contain – in those various versions of it that have come down to us – some contradictions and inaccuracies. We saw this clearly earlier, with three different figures being given for the age of Tobias at death: namely, 99 years, 117 years, and 127 years.

The geography of the book, too, which – as it presently stands – has Tobias and the angel Raphael travelling in the wrong direction, eastwards instead of westwards, needs to be restored back to its original which then makes perfect sense:

 

A Common Sense Geography of the Book of Tobit

 

http://www.academia.edu/8675202/A_Common_Sense_Geography_of_the_Book_of_Tobit

 

Different age numbers are also given in the case of Tobit, the father of Tobias. According to the Douay account, Tobit lost his sight at the age of 56, recovered it at the age of 60 (14:3), and lived after that for 42 years (14:1), dying at the age of 102 (14:2). The NRSV version, though, has Tobit losing his sight at 62 (14:2, with the note: “Other ancient authorities read fifty-eight”), and: “For four years I remained unable to see …” (2:10). And he died at the age of 112 (14:2).

 

Tobit 1 Overview

 

Tobit 1 gives a summary of events in the life of Tobit and his family from the early days of Tobit: ‘When I was young … I was the only one in my family who regularly went to Jerusalem to celebrate the religious festivals, as the Law of Moses commands everyone to do’ (1:4, 6), to his return to Nineveh, thanks to the intervention of his nephew, Ahikar, after persecution from king Sennacherib (v. 22). Tobit was by then a married man with a son, Tobias.

Indeed, life would become far bumpier for the family during the reign of Sennacherib. The Douay version of Tobit 1:18 adds the extra piece of information that “Sennacherib … had a hatred for the children of Israel”.

That same verse also adds another note that is most interesting from a chronological point of view: “… after a long time, Salmanasar [Shalmaneser] the king being dead … Sennacherib his son … reigned in his place …”. Shalmaneser V is supposed to have reigned for only the short period of 726/7-722 BC. Tobit’s version, “after a long time”, would better accord with my expanded king Shalmaneser of Assyria, which includes the alter ego of the potent Assyrian king, Tiglath-pileser III. For Tobit’s “Shalmaneser” does as did Tiglath-pileser III. He takes the tribe of Naphtali into captivity (1:2): “During the time that Shalmaneser was emperor of Assyria, I was taken captive in my hometown of Thisbe, located in northern Galilee …”.

Commentators immediately jump in here. For example R. Littman (Tobit: The Book of Tobit in Codex Sinaiticus) writes, p. 47:

 

The information is inaccurate here and probably represents a confusion of the historical details by the book of Tobit, written 500 years after the events. According to 2 Kgs 15:29 it was Tiglath-pileser III (745-727 BCE), the father of Shalmaneser V (727-722 BCE), who conquered the Galilee and the land of Naphtali and deported the people around 732 BCE.

 

Sennacherib

 

Tobit 1:15-22 recalls the dramatic events that occurred during the reign of Sennacherib, which I give here with the addition of some comments (v. 15):

 

“When Shalmaneser died, his son Sennacherib succeeded him as emperor. It soon became so dangerous to travel on the roads in Media that I could no longer go there”.

 

Comment: Tobit’s “Media” needs to be understood as “Midian”, to the west, not east, of Nineveh. (Refer back to my “A Common Sense Geography …”).

From Sennacherib’s Years 9-11, it would have become most dangerous for anyone to have travelled the western road. For, according to the chronological estimations of my university thesis:

 

A Revised History of the Era of King Hezekiah of Judah

and its Background

 

AMAIC_Final_Thesis_2009.pdf

 

Sennacherib’s Year 9 was the year when his military might really began to be felt in Palestine. It was “the year”, I believe, to which the prophet Isaiah had referred (Isaiah 20:1): “In the year that the supreme commander, sent by Sargon [= Sennacherib] king of Assyria, came to Ashdod [= Lachish] and attacked and captured it …”. On “Ashdod” as Lachish, see my:

 

Sargon II’s “Ashdod” – the Strong Fort of Lachish

 

http://www.academia.edu/8713108/Sargon_II_s_Ashdod_-_the_Strong_Fort_of_Lachish

 

Sennacherib’s Year 10 saw a revolt against Assyria by one Yatna of Ashdod (= Lachish).

Sennacherib’s Year 11 was a most triumphant one for the king of Assyria, with his great western campaign and conquest of king Hezekiah of Judah and his city of Jerusalem.

Tobit continues his narrative, harking back to Shalmaneser for a moment (vv. 16-17), before continuing on with Sennacherib (v. 18):

“While Shalmaneser was still emperor, I took good care of my own people whenever they were in need. If they were hungry, I shared my food with them; if they needed clothes, I gave them some of my own. Whenever I saw that the dead body of one of my people had been thrown outside the city wall, I gave it a decent burial.

One day Sennacherib cursed God, the King of Heaven; God punished him, and Sennacherib had to retreat from Judah. On his way back to Media he was so furious that he killed many Israelites. But I secretly removed the bodies and buried them; and when Sennacherib later searched for the bodies, he could not find them”.

Comment: This verse actually condenses two separate campaigns of Sennacherib, the one referred to above, when he was totally victorious over king Hezekiah of Judah – during the course of which the Assyrian king had blasphemed God – and another, about a decade later, when his massive army of 185,000 was famously routed (“had to retreat”). This last corresponds to the victory of Israel over Assyria as set in motion by the heroic intervention of the pious Simeonite woman, Judith.

One can easily imagine that Sennacherib would have been “furious”.

Meanwhile, back in Nineveh, the ageing Tobit had continued on with his corporal works of mercy. An informer notified the angry Sennacherib, and Tobit was forced to flee for his life with his family (vv. 19-20):

Then someone from Nineveh told the emperor that I was the one who had been burying his victims. As soon as I realized that the emperor knew all about me and that my life was in danger, I became frightened. So I ran away and hid. Everything I owned was seized and put in the royal treasury. My wife Anna and my son Tobias were all I had left.

 

Chronology,

Sennacherib and Esarhaddon

 

Then someone from Nineveh told the emperor that I was the one who had been burying his victims. As soon as I realized that the emperor knew all about me and that my life was in danger, I became frightened. So I ran away and hid. Everything I owned was seized and put in the royal treasury. My wife Anna and my son Tobias were all I had left”.

 

Tobit 1:19-20

 

Sennacherib or Esarhaddon?

 

There is no mention at all of the famed Assyrian king, Esarhaddon, in the Douay version of the Book of Tobit. The Septuagint, telling of the assassination of Sennacherib whilst Tobit was in hiding, explicitly refers to a king successor of Sennacherib’s, though it does not name him as Esarhaddon, but, instead, as “Sarchedonus”.

This name is generally taken to mean Esarhaddon:

http://biblehub.com/topical/s/sarchedonus.htm

“sar-ked’-o-nus (Codex Vaticanus Sacherdonos; Codex Alexandrinus Sacherdan, but Sacherdonosos in Tobit 1:22): An incorrect spelling, both in the King James Version and the Revised Version (British and American), for Sacherdonus in Tobit 1:21, another form of Esar-haddon”.

 

Here are the relevant verses (Tobit 1:21-22):

 

“And there passed not five and fifty days, before two of his sons killed [Sennacherib], and they fled into the mountains of Ararath [Urartu]; and Sarchedonus his son reigned in his stead; who appointed over his father’s accounts, and over all his affairs, Achiacharus [Ahikar] my brother Anael’s son. And Achiacharus intreating for me, I returned to Nineve. Now Achiacharus was cupbearer, and keeper of the signet, and steward, and overseer of the accounts: and Sarchedonus appointed him next to him: and he was my brother’s son”.

 

That discrepancy in numbers that we considered earlier amongst the various versions of the Book of Tobit raises its ugly head here again – for, regarding the 55 (“five and fifty”) days referred to in the above text, other ancient authorities read 40, 45, or 50.

The Douay, whilst never actually mentioning Esarhaddon, seems to make it quite clear, nonetheless, that the next important set of events in the life of Tobit and his family, commencing with Tobit’s becoming blind, all occurred after the death of Sennacherib, “killed by his own sons. And Tobias returned to his house, and all his substance” (1:24-25). For, at the beginning of the very next chapter we read (2:1): “Now when I was come home again, and my wife Anna was restored to me, with my son Tobias, in the feast of Pentecost, which is the holy feast of the seven weeks, there was a good dinner prepared me, in the which I sat down to eat”.

This chapter 2 is the very one that recounts Tobit’s becoming afflicted with blindness.

The NRSV is even more explicit (2:1): “Then during the reign of Esarhaddon I returned home”.

If this be the case, then the incident of Tobit’s blindness as narrated in Tobit 2, leading to the westwards journey of Tobias and the angel Raphael (Tobit 6), and the marriage of Tobias to Sarah (Tobit 7-8), the return journey to Nineveh and the recovery of Tobit’s sight (Tobit 11), all belong chronologically after the death of Sennacherib.

And that may well be the truer situation.

However, I have reasons for suspecting that it may not have been the case, and that all of Tobit 2-11, as well, had occurred during the reign of Sennacherib, and not in the time of Esarhaddon. In the next section, I shall give my reasons for thinking this.

 

Chronology,

mostly in Sennacherib’s reign

 

Some errors chronological, numerical, and geographical, can be found in our current versions of the Book of Tobit. These, I think, can easily be corrected. But there may also be a more tricky situation whereby the main body of material in the Book of Tobit (chapters 2-14) has confused the reigns of two neo-Assyrian kings, Sennacherib and Esarhaddon.

 

Preamble

 

A surface reading of the various versions of the Book of Tobit would suggest, as we have found, a chronological sequence according to which there occurred – almost immediately following the assassination death of Sennacherib who had been seeking the life of Tobit – now during the reign of Esarhaddon, Tobit’s return to his home thanks to the intervention of his nephew, Ahikar; Tobit’s subsequent blindness; and then all of the other marvellous events that are narrated as having occurred after this (Tobit 2-14). That is how the different texts would appear to read. And, as noted earlier, that may indeed be the way that the Book of Tobit is meant to be interpreted.

However, as I have already suggested, Tobit chapter 1 provides a kind of overview of at least the earlier events narrated. Hence it may need to be read as a summary. This, then, would allow for the possibility that some, or all, of what follows it is meant to be folded within the chronology of Tobit 1. And that is what I think is actually the case, that the remainder of the narrative following the account of Sennacherib’s assassination – with the exception of the death and burial of Tobit and his wife, Anna; the account of Tobias’s flight from Nineveh, over whose destruction he will greatly rejoice; and his subsequent death (14:14-17 Douay) – belongs entirely within the reign of Sennacherib, and not Esarhaddon (who is never even mentioned in the Douay version).

My reasons for saying this are very much influenced by previous reconstructions of mine in relation to the Book of Judith, as set out in my university thesis (as referred to above).

Whilst a full discussion of this will be reserved for the next section (below), I would like here to make a relevant preliminary point. As we came to consider king Sennacherib earlier, we read this text (Tobit 1:18):

“One day Sennacherib cursed God, the King of Heaven; God punished him, and Sennacherib had to retreat from Judah. On his way back to Media he was so furious that he killed many Israelites. But I secretly removed the bodies and buried them; and when Sennacherib later searched for the bodies, he could not find them”.

 

About which I wrote:

 

Comment: This verse actually condenses two separate campaigns of Sennacherib, the one referred to above, when he was totally victorious over king Hezekiah of Judah – during the course of which the Assyrian king had blasphemed God – and another, about a decade later, when his massive army of 185,000 was famously routed (“had to retreat”). This last corresponds to the victory of Israel over Assyria as set in motion by the heroic intervention of the pious Simeonite woman, Judith.

 

Biblical telescoping of events, such as the campaigns of king Sennacherib of Assyria, can be a source of many headaches for modern biblicists and historians alike – very difficult to untangle. And I think that a mis-reading of Sennacherib’s campaigns may indeed be the source of a confusion of chronology in relation to the Book of Tobit.

 

My Reasons for Rejecting Esarhaddon

 

These are largely chronologically-based.

 

(i) Age of Tobias

 

Tobias, at the time of his wedding, is referred to as being a “young man” (Greek: νεανίσκος) (e.g. Tobit 7:2). That would work far better, I would suggest, if Tobias had married Sarah at some point of time between Sennacherib’s two invasions, these being dated in my thesis to, respectively, Sennacherib’s Years 10-11 and 19-20.

Sennacherib’s first major invasion of the west was a massive success, and he went on from there, in his Year 12, to punish the troublesome Merodach-baladan of Babylon (cf. Judith 1:5, where the latter is called “Arphaxad”): “In the twelfth year of his reign King Nebuchadnezzar [= Sennacherib] went to war against King Arphaxad …”. So when Tobit 1:21 (Douay) speaks of the Assyrian armies “fleeing … by reason of the slaughter that God had made”, this cannot refer to the successful first invasion, but only to the second invasion, led by the “Holofernes” of the Book of Judith. The phrase “fleeing from Judea” as given in this verse only serves to add to the confusion, I believe. For, whereas the successful Assyrian invasion conquered Judah, the second one failed to reach there thanks to the intervention of Judith situated in the north (at Bethulia not too far from Dothan).

The rout that followed that disastrous campaign for Assyria around Year 20 of Sennacherib must be what is referred to in connection with Tobit 1:24 (Douay): “But after forty-five days, the king was killed by his own sons”. Tobit chapter 1 appears to be a summary of events that occurred during the reigns of Shalmaneser and Sennacherib, culminating in the assassination of Sennacherib.

 

Reconsidering the life of young Tobias, he was born – we have learned – during the reign of Shalmaneser, but before the family was taken into captivity. My expanded Shalmaneser (beyond the conventionally short-reigning Shalmaneser V) has enabled for Tobit to have officiated on behalf of Shlamaneser for a substantial period of time (Tobit 1:18, Douay): “But after a long time, [Shalmaneser] the king being dead, when Sennacherib his son, who reigned in his place …”.

We do not know how old Tobias was when the family was taken into Assyrian captivity by this Shalmaneser. But let us take a small figure, 2-5. A “long time” during the reign of Shalmaneser had followed that, say 10-20 years. Tobias, when still a “young man” (νεανίσκος can also men “youth”), married Sarah. I have located that after Sennacherib’s return from Judah in about his Year 11. An estimated minimum figure for the age of Tobias when he, as a young man, married Sarah, would be (2+10+11=) 23 years, whilst an estimated maximum figure would be (5+20+11=) 36 years.

To either of these figures we would need (for Esarhaddon to be the reigning king) to add an extra, say, 10 years until the death of Sennacherib, plus at least the 2 years during the reign of Esarhaddon when Ahikar had tended to Tobit’s blindness before Ahikar himself went to Elymaïs (Tobit 2:10, NRSV). That would lift our estimated minimum figure for the age of Tobias at marriage to (23+10+2=) 35 years, whilst our estimated maximum figure would now become an impossible (36+10+2=) 48 years.

Tobit 1:15: “But when Shalmaneser died, and his son Sennacherib reigned in his place, the highways into Media [read Midian] became unsafe and I could no longer go there”, presumably applied to the period when Sennacherib’s armies were campaigning westwards (Years 9-11), making it unsafe to travel there. By the time of Tobit’s blindness, these major western campaigns had recently ceased, but Tobit could still not travel because he could no longer see.

 

(ii) Ahikar in Elymaïs

 

As, noted, the Douay version of the Book of Tobit never once refers to Esarhaddon. However, there are several references to Esarhaddon, presumably, as “Sarchedonus”, in the Septuagint – these being rendered in modern versions as “Esarhaddon”. The references to Esarhaddon in the Tobit 1 overview, when read as a summary, are not at all problematical to my theory that the events narrated in Tobit chapters 2-14 belong to the reign of Sennacherib.

 

Tobit 1:21-22 (NSRV) reads:

 

“But not forty days passed before two of Sennacherib’s sons killed him, and they fled to the mountains of Ararat, and his son Esar-haddon reigned after him. He appointed Ahikar, the son of my brother Hanael over all the accounts of his kingdom, and he had authority over the entire administration. Ahikar interceded for me, and I returned to Nineveh. Now Ahikar was chief cupbearer, keeper of the signet, and in charge of administration of the accounts under King Sennacherib of Assyria; so Esar-haddon reappointed him. He was my nephew and so a close relative”.

 

 

This overview provides some further information about Ahikar admittedly beyond the reign of Sennacherib. However, Ahikar would presumably have been in very good standing with Sennacherib for his so skilfully having served as the king’s mouthpiece, being able to speak Hebrew, before the people of Jerusalem (2 Kings 18:28) during Assyria’s successful invasion of Judah. Hence it is quite plausible that Ahikar was able to “intercede” with Sennacherib on behalf of Tobit, thereby allowing Tobit to return home.

What is definitely problematical for my reconstruction, though, is Tobit 2:1 (NRSV): “Then during the reign of Esarhaddon I [Tobit] returned home”.

The Book of Judith, verse 1:6, may come to my aid here, at least as I have interpreted it in my thesis. For, during the reign of Sennacherib (= “Nebuchadnezzar”), one “Arioch” (or “Erioch”) is found to be ruling “the Elymeans”, and he, I believe, was the same Ahikar.

Thus I wrote in my thesis (Volume Two, pp. 46-47):

 

Verses 1:6: “Arioch, king of the Elymeans”

 

In [the Book of Judith] 1:6, which gives a description of the geographical locations from which Arphaxad’s allies came, we learn that some of these had hailed from the region of the “Hydaspes, and, on the plain, Arioch, king of the Elymeans”. I disagree with Charles that: …. “The name Arioch is borrowed from Gen. xiv. i, in accordance with the author’s love of archaism”. This piece of information, I am going to argue here, is actually a later gloss to the original text. And I hope to give a specific identification to this king, since, according to Leahy: …. “The identity of Arioch (Vg Erioch) has not been established …”.

What I am going to propose is that Arioch was not actually one of those who had rallied

to the cause of Arphaxad in Year 12 of Nebuchadnezzar, as a superficial reading of [the Book of Judith] though might suggest, but that this was a later addition to the text for the purpose of making more precise for the reader the geographical region from whence came Arphaxad’s allies, specifically the Elamite troops. In other words, this was the very same region as that which Arioch had ruled ….

But commentators express puzzlement about him. Who was this Arioch? And if he were

such an unknown, then what was the value of this gloss for the early readers?

Arioch, I believe, was the very Achior who figures so prominently in the story of Judith.

He was also the legendary Ahikar, a most famous character as we read in Chapter 7. Therefore he was entirely familiar to the Jews, who would have known that he had eventually governed the Assyrian province of Elam. I shall tell about this in a moment.

Some later editor/translator presumably, apparently failing to realise that the person named in this gloss was the very same as the Achior who figures so prominently throughout the main story of [the Book of Judith], has confused matters by calling him by the different name of Arioch. He should have written: “Achior ruled the Elymeans”.

[The Book of Tobit] tells us more. …. he who had been Sennacherib’s Rabshakeh was appointed governor (or ‘king’) of Elymaïs (Elam) (cf. 1:18, 21: 2:10). This was Tobit’s very nephew, Ahikar/Achior. …. From there it is an easy matter to make this comparison:

 

“Achior … Elymeans” [Book of Judith]; “Ahikar (var. Achior) … Elymaïs” [Book of Tobit].

 

Tobit had apparently again – even after his persecution and having to flee for his life from king Sennacherib for burying the dead, and then being restored thanks to Ahikar – risen up from his festival of Pentecost meal to bury a murdered compatriot (2:1-4), thereby eliciting this response from his neighbours (v. 8): “And my neighbors laughed and said, ‘Is he still not afraid? He has already been hunted down to be put to death for doing this, and he ran away; yet here he is again burying the dead!’ This reaction of Tobit’s neighbours would, I think, make more sense had it occurred still during the reign of Sennacherib, rather than of Esarhaddon about whom we know of no such animosity towards Tobit or any of his relatives.

(iii) Ahikar and Nadin

 

Late in the Book of Tobit, after Tobias had returned home to Nineveh with his wife, Sarah, and old Tobit had been cured of his blindness, we read (11:17-18): “That day brought joy to the Jews of Nineveh, and his cousins Ahikar and Nadin [Nadab] came to share in Tobit’s happiness”. (“Cousins” appears to be used in a very loose sense here). If this event really occurred during the reign of Esarhaddon, then it would be devastating to my reconstruction in ““Nadin went into everlasting darkness”,” that has equated this “Nadin” with the “Holofernes” of the Book of Judith, who should be well and truly dead by the time that Esarhaddon had come to the throne. A mere three chapters after we are told that Nadin had shared in Tobit’s happiness, we read these Tobit’s horrifying words about Nadin’s betrayal of Ahikar (14:10):

 

‘Remember what Nadin did to Ahikar his own uncle who had brought him up. He tried to kill Ahikar and forced him to go into hiding in a tomb. Ahikar came back into the light of day, but God sent Nadin down into everlasting darkness for what he had done. Ahikar escaped the deadly trap which Nadin had set for him, because Ahikar had given generously to the poor. But Nadin fell into that fatal trap and it destroyed him’.

 

I, being confident that this can only refer to the Achior and Holofernes incident of the Judith drama, must definitely favour Sennacherib over Esarhaddon as the Assyrian ruler at this time.

  

  Officiating in Egypt

 

“In folktale manner in the style of Jewish aggada … [the Testament of Job] elaborates upon the Book of Job making Job a king in Egypt”.

 

Introduction

 

We left Tobias (= Job) as a young married man, and with the family and friends rejoicing over the ageing Tobit now cured of his blindness.

All of this in the reign of Sennacherib.

With the assassination death of Sennacherib, and his perhaps more favourably-disposed son Esarhaddon’s rise to the throne of Assyria,

 

http://www.geocities.ws/robertp6165/saitetimeline.html Esarhaddon, in contrast to usual Assyrian practice, is moderate in the implementation of the occupation of Egypt compared to past policies in other provinces, respecting local traditions as far as possible [,]

 

the way now lies open for a new phase of career for Tobit – who had so faithfully served king Shalmaneser, father of Sennacherib, and with yet some 40 years of health to look forward to – and for the long-lived Tobias/Job.

The illustrious career of Tobias/Job, not covered in the Book of Tobit, is glimpsed through Job’s recollections in various places, most notably in, as we have read, Job 29.

For any further information, we need to go outside the books of Tobit and Job, to writings such as The Testament of Job and, perhaps (for Catholic readers), the visions of the holy mystic, Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich.

According to The Testament of Job, the prophet Job was a king in Egypt. David deSilva tells of this (http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/view/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195329001.001.1/):

“Scholars generally agree that the work was composed in Egypt, especially since the author situates Job himself in Egypt as a king (T. Job 28:7) in contrast with the biblical setting in “Uz” (Job 1:1). Attempts to link the work more closely with the Therapeutae, a Jewish sect in Egypt with some resemblances to the Essenes, are interesting but inconclusive.20

 

But that is not all, for it seems that strong Egyptian influences can also be detected throughout the Book of Job, at least according to the Rev. G. Knight, in Nile and Jordan (1921).

(See Part One of this series)

This would make perfect sense if Job – and/or the author[s] of the book – had spent a substantial period of time in that country.

What I would be looking for at this stage in my historical search for an illustrious career for Tobias/Job – and perhaps also for his father, Tobit – would be an appointment during the reign of king Esarhaddon of Assyria (continuing on with Ashurbanipal in the case of Tobias/Job), and one that included serving in Egypt, presumably at a very high level.

And I think that, in Montuemhat [Mantimanhe] and his father Nesptah, at Thebes in Egypt, I may have found just the sort of pattern that I am looking for. We read about these two most significant characters at: http://www.newchronology.org/fullt/53.txt

 

Mayor Montuemhat is perhaps the most interesting Theban figure known to Egyptologists from the complex period of transition between the Kushite 25th and Saite 26th Dynasties. This was also, of course, the time of the invasions of Egypt by the Assyrian kings Esarhaddon and Ashurbanipal which included the sacking of Thebes in 664 BC. His standing in the Theban community during this turbulent period of Egyptian history cannot simply be measured by the great number of titles and offices which he held. Montuemhat was certainly more influential than a mere ‘mayor’ or ‘Fourth Prophet of Amun’. Indeed, Ashurbanipal records him as ‘king of Thebes’ on the ‘Rassam Cylinder where his name appears in the Akkadian writing as ‘Mantimanhe’.

 

Comment: This is the precise chronological era in neo-Assyrian history that I would expect to find Tobias/Job serving as an official, from the reign of Esarhaddon through to Ashurbanipal. “Esarhaddon appoints various native [sic?] noblemen as governors, functionaries and scribes in the provinces of Egypt” (http://www.geocities.ws/robertp6165/saitetimeline.html)

Note, too, that Montuemhat was a “Prophet”, and also that he was a servant of the god, Amun, like Senenmut (Solomon in Egypt). See my:

 

Solomon and Sheba

 

https://www.academia.edu/3660164/Solomon_and_Sheba

 

according to which (Amun) Amon-Ra was the King of All Gods.

Thomas C. Hamilton has written along similar lines in his “Amunism and Atenism” (http://kabane52.tumblr.com/post/132812715270/amunism-and-atenism):

“I have pointed out in the past that the descriptions of Amun in Egyptian literature converge in fascinating ways with the biblical description of God. Amun-Re is a sun-god. The sun, of course, is one of the Lord’s chief symbols in Scripture, and the nations worshiped God as the “God of Heaven.” This is why the phenomenon of original monotheism is called the “sky-god” phenomenon. That a god was associated with the sun does not mean that he had always been identified with the sun. Indeed, I think the “fusion” of Amun and Re was the recovery of a pristine monotheistic religion. Just as Yahweh and El were two titles for one God, so also Amun and Re. Imhotep, whom I have identified with Joseph, served as High Priest of Re at Heliopolis”.

 

Above all, Montuemhat was – as tradition has recorded of the prophet Job – a “king”.

The great Assyrian king, Ashurbanipal, graces him with the title, “king of Thebes”.

Further on, we shall read that Montuemhat had ruled over a massive portion of Egypt. This would have become possible as the neo-Assyrian kings managed to push far southwards the Kushite rulers of 25th dynasty of Egypt.

Finally, Ashurbanipal even conquered the great city of Thebes (664 BC, conventional dating). This would likely mean that Montuemhat, who lived beyond this cataclysmic event, would have been an actual witness to it. No wonder then that he – if as Job, as Nahum (refer back to “Prophet Nahum as Tobias-Job Comforted”) could write of Nineveh (Nahum 3:8): “… are you better than No Amon [Thebes] …?”

 

The article continues:

 

“Montuemhat’s noble descent was certainly of help in his acquisition of the various offices of state, positions which had been handed down for generations from father to son. Already before him his great grandfather, Harsiese, and grand-father, Khaemhor, had been mayors of Thebes, viziers and prophets of Amun during the late 22nd Dynasty and also under the hegemony of the early Kushite pharaohs Shabaka and Shabataka.

From his father, Nesptah, he directly inherited the title of ‘Mayor of Thebes’ and, in addition, he was holder of the office of ‘Governor of Upper Egypt’. Besides these significant civil and administrative posts, Montuemhat also acted as a religious functionary for the cult of Amun. However, in spite of his dominant position as mayor of the great religious centre of Egypt, he only reached the rank of ‘Fourth Prophet of Amun’

within the great temple of Amun at Karnak itself. He did record the title of ‘Second Prophet’ on certain monuments, but unfortunately without mentioning the deity to whom the post obtained. The position of ‘Prophet of Montu’, which also had been within the inheritance of this powerful Theban family, was transferred to his brother, Harsiese, who then handed the title down to his own son. Nevertheless, a son of Montuemhat named Paherienmut later rose to the rank of a ‘Third Prophet of Montu’.”

 

Comment: Who were these illustrious forbears of Montuemhat from whom he could apparently boast “noble descent”? Surely not, though (in my context), “native” Egyptians, as historians naturally think. In this series we have observed that Tobit and other of his relatives, especially Ahikar – and later Tobias/Job himself – were extremely significant public figures, some attaining to the very highest official positions in the kingdom of Assyria. The legendary ‘Story of Ahikar’ tells of Ahikar’s involvement with Egypt and its Pharaoh on behalf of king Sennacherib.

As we deepen our knowledge of the presumed Theban mayors, Khaemhor and Harsiese, “during the late 22nd Dynasty”, we may be able to get a better handle on the tortuous Third Intermediate Period [TIP] of Egyptian history (21st-25th dynasties).

The article continues, turning now to more of a consideration of Montuemhat’s father, Nesptah (Nesiptah):

 

“While we possess a significant amount of information concerning Montuemhat’s father, Nesptah, very little is known about his mother, Istemkheb, a very common name of the time. Montuemhat seems to have had three wives. His principal spouse was apparently the lady Neskhons, for her son, Nesptah, became Montuemhat’s heir and successor. In his father’s tomb in Asasif (Western Thebes) Nesptah is depicted performing the funeral rites and making offerings to his deceased father (for the discovery of the burial of Nesptah see JACF 2, p. 82). His other wives were the lady Shepenmut and a Nubian princess named Udjarenes. The latter appears in the tomb of Montuemhat in statue groups and reliefs accompanying her husband. It seems likely that the marriage of Montuemhat to this Nubian princess was undertaken as a gesture of loyalty towards the Kushite kings under whose rule he began his career”.

 

Comment: All of the names here are Egyptian: Montuemhat, his father, Nesptah, his mother, Istemkheb, his wife, Neskhons. The Hebrew versions, I suggest, were, respectively, Tobias/Job, (his father) Tobit, (his mother) Anna, (his wife) Sarah.

The name Montuemhat itself may have great significance following on from my argument, albeit most controversial, that Tobias/Job was the matrix for the Prophet Mohammed:

 

Biography of the Prophet Mohammed (Muhammad) Seriously Mangles History. Part Two: From Birth to Marriage

 

https://www.academia.edu/28216595/Biography_of_the_Prophet_Mohammed_Muhammad_Seriously_Mangles_History._Part_Two_From_Birth_to_Marriage

 

In that article, I wrote this about the name similarities, or even equivalents:

 

Birth of Mohammed

 

Given as c. 570 … the “Year of the Elephant”. But revised here to the reign of Sennacherib. Mohammed’s parents are traditionally given as ‘Abdullah and Aminah, or Amna. Now, this information is what really confirms me in my view that Tobias is a major influence in the biography of Mohammed, because the names of Tobias’s parents boil down to very much the same as those of Mohammed. Tobit is a Greek version of the name ‘Obad-iah, the Hebrew yod having been replaced by a ‘T’.

And ‘Obadiah, or ‘Abdiel, is, in Arabic ‘Abdullah, the name of Mohammed’s father.

And Amna is as close a name as one could get to Anna, the wife of Tobit ….

 

Tobias (my Job) is the biblico-historical foundation for the young Mohammed!

 

May we now include, alongside Tobit = ‘Abdullah and Anna = Amna, our alter ego for Tobias/Job, Montuemhat = Mohammad?

Whilst I have thought to identify Job’s wife as Sarah of the Book of Tobit:

 

Did Job’s Wife really say to the Prophet: ‘Curse God and die’? Part Two. Job’s Wife as Sarah of Book of Tobit.

 

https://www.academia.edu/12073444/Did_Job_s_Wife_really_say_to_the_Prophet_Curse_God_and_die_Part_Two._Job_s_Wife_as_Sarah_of_Book_of_Tobit

 

and now potentially, in an Egyptian context: “His principal spouse … lady Neskhons”, it is quite credible, given the progeny of Job, that he had other, lesser, wives as well.

“Montuemhat seems to have had three wives”, we read above.

 

And, according to Bl. Catherine Emmerich (The Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary: http://www.ecatholic2000.com/anne/lom163.shtml), who has located Job to pre-Abrahamic times, the holy man had a total of four wives: “Job’s first wife was of the tribe of Peleg: after many adventures, when he was living in his third home, he married three more wives of the same tribe”. Compare Tobit 6:15: “The angel replied, ‘Have you already forgotten your father’s instructions? He told you to marry a woman from your own tribe. So, listen carefully to what I say. Don’t worry about the demon. Marry Sarah!’.”

 

Anne Catherine Emmerich also has Job for a time in Egypt:

The spring which appeared at Matarea in answer to the Blessed Virgin’s prayers was not a new one, but an old one which gushed forth afresh. It had been choked but was still lined with masonry. I saw that Job had been in Egypt … and had dwelt on this spot in this place. [172] It was he who found the spring, and he made sacrifices on the great stone lying here. Job was the youngest of thirteen brothers. His father was a great chieftain ….

[Job] made a great expedition to Egypt, a land which at that time was ruled by foreign kings …. They ruled over only a part of Egypt, and were later driven out by an Egyptian king. [174]

…. The king of these shepherds from Job’s country desired a wife for his son … and Job brought this royal bride (who was related to him) to Egypt with a great following. He had thirty camels with him, and many menservants and rich presents. He was still young–a tall man of a pleasing yellow-brown color, with reddish hair. The people in Egypt were dirty brown in color. At that time Egypt was not thickly populated; only here and there were large masses of people. ….

The king showed Job great honor, and was unwilling to let him go away again. He was very anxious for him to emigrate to Egypt with his whole tribe ….

Job was to be sure a heathen [sic], but he was an upright man who acknowledged the true God and worshipped Him as the Creator of all that he saw in nature, the stars, and the ever-changing light. He was never tired of speaking with God of His wonderful creations. He worshipped none of the horrible figures of beasts adored by the other races of mankind in his time ….

Job found a terrible form of idolatry here in this city, descending from the heathen magical rites practiced at the building of the Tower of Babel. They had an idol with a broad ox’s head, rising to a point at the top. Its mouth was open, and behind its head were twisted horns. Its body was hollow, fire was made in it, and live children were thrust into its glowing arms. …

There were intervals of calm between the great misfortunes that befell Job: the first interval lasted nine years, the second seven, and the third twelve. The words in the Book of Job: “And while he (the messenger of evil) was yet speaking” mean “This misfortune of his was still the talk of the people when the following befell him”. ….

 

Also of relevance is mention of Montuemhat’s “making offerings to his deceased father” in light of Tobit 14:11: “Then they laid Tobit on his bed. He died and was given an honorable burial”.

According to the Montuemhat article, he was a man of “undoubted political skills”:

 

“The first time we come across Montuemhat in the texts is during the reign of pharaoh Taharka (690-664 BC). He continues in office, no doubt as a result of his undoubted political skills, throughout the trauma of the Assyrian sack of Thebes and is still attending to his duties when the Saite pharaoh, Psamtek I, sends his daughter, Nitocris, to Thebes to become the ‘God’s Wife of Amun at a special adoption ceremony in 655 BC. As was the tradition of the period, the incumbent God’s Wife, Shepenupet (daughter of the last Nubian king Tanutamun) formerly accepted the young Nitocris as her successor, thus handing over to the Saite princess much of the power and authority of the Amun cult and its estates. Since Montuemhat was the effective ruler of Thebes following the departure of the Assyrian forces in around 662, he was undoubtedly directly involved in the political manoeuvres which brought Nitocris to Upper Egypt and his long term experience of the machinations of Theban political life may have presented him with the opportunity to act as mediator in the negotiations between the Kushite faction still at Thebes and the new dynastic power of the western Delta which was based at the new capital of Sais”.

 

Comment: Was this situation involving Montuemhat and Nitocris, the ‘God’s Wife of Amun’, what Catherine Emmerich had recollected: “Job brought this royal bride (who was related to him) to Egypt with a great following”?

 

Montuemhat’s territory of rule was extremely vast and he officiated there for a long period of time, “a full 30 years” according to the following:

 

“With the Thebaid as his residence, Montuemhat ruled a region stretching as far south as Elepha[n]tine at the First Cataract and up to Hermopolis in the north. At Abydos he was responsible for restoration work in the Osireion and at Karnak he constructed, or at least decorated, some of the chambers of the Temple of Mut, just to the south of the Amun temple complex at Karnak. The political ups and downs of the time are also reflected in the contemporary art. By chance, numerous statues of Montuemhat have come down to us in remarkable condition – more than a dozen cut from dark hardstone. The early pieces, made during the 25th Dynasty, show the typical style of the Kushite rulers, in spite of the fact that Montuemhat was himself a native Egyptian [sic]. It is likely, therefore, that Kushite craftsmen were commissioned to undertake the work for the Theban mayor, or at least their influence was predominant at the local court. His later representations, on the other hand, are characteristic of early Saite art, with the typical archaising canon which was such a feature of the 26th Dynasty ‘renaissance’. Even in his old age Montuemhat was responsible for an expedition to the quarries of the Wadi Gasus in the Eastern Desert. The rock-carved inscription left there by him is actually the last dated record of Montuemhat known to us. He died sometime around 648 BC. Thus his career continued on through the first 16 years of Psamtek 1’s reign and in total spanned a full 30 years.

His tomb (Asasif no. TT. 34) is the most significant monument in the eastern area of the giant cliff bay of Deir el-Bahri. The impressive mudbrick pylon even today dominates the land-scape of this part of the necropolis, marking the location of the largest private tomb in Western Thebes. …”.