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Who were the Phoenicians?


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#16    The Puzzler

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 02:53 AM

If only the Egyptians and East Africans practised circumcision, how did the Jewish people come to adapt it into their life unless they came from this same area?
Unless they picked it up in the Caucasus area from the Egyptians that were around Colchis?

How does anyone equate this practise with the Jews apart from coming from an African source?


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#17    cormac mac airt

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 03:11 AM

Since,

Quote

The Phoenicians were the Canaanites—and the ancestors of today's Lebanese.


According to Dr. Spencer Wells, then both are haplogroup J2.

About J2:

Quote

Haplogroup J2 is widely believed to be associated with the spread of agriculture from Mesopotamia, the Levant, and Anatolia. The age of J2 has been estimated as 18,500 +/- 3,500 thousand years ago. Its distribution, centered in West Asia and Southeastern Europe, its association with the presence of Neolithic archaeological artifacts, such as figurines and painted pottery, and its association with annual precipitation have been interpreted as evidence that J2, and in particular its J2a-M410 subclade belonged to the agricultural innovators who followed the rainfall.


and

Quote

Another important fact about the distribution of Haplogroup J2 is that it appears to have dispersed from a Middle Eastern homeland to the west through a primarily maritime or littoral route, as it is found in high concentrations among the populations of the coasts of the Mediterranean Sea in both Eurasia and Africa, and particularly along the coasts of the eastern Mediterranean in Europe.


Haplogroup J2 (Y-DNA)

About the parent haplogroup J:

Quote

Haplogroup J is believed to have arisen 31,700 years ago (plus or minus 12,800 years) in the Near East (Semino et al. 2004).


and

Quote

Haplogroup J is found in greatest concentration in the Caucasus and Southwest Asia.


This together indicates that the Phoenicians/Canaanites and their ancestors have been in the same general area for the last 20,000 to 30,000 years.

cormac


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#18    Karlis

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 03:11 AM

The Puzzler on Sep 22 2008, 12:47 PM, said:

~~~(snip) ...
Can someone just confirm for me what defines the term Israel? Is it Canaan or something different? Is it later Canaan?
Hi Puzzler -- At this URL, is a map of “Israel/Canaan during the reign of King David”.
http://www.mideastweb.org/palearly.htm

Collins postulates that at the height of Israel’s power under King David, the Phoenicians were a sea-faring/trading nation, and had an alliance; that there were regular, established shipping trading routes to the North American Great Lakes.

Regards,
Karlis



#19    Leonardo

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 06:58 AM

The Puzzler on Sep 22 2008, 03:05 AM, said:

So were the Canaanites from Africa or are they too 'indigenous' to the Levant?
We can only really call Phoenicians Phoenicians from 1500BC technically, before that they were a people at Sidon and Tyre, part of Canaanites, didn't really do the sailing thing too much, wasn't until they became Phoenicians as such they developed the sailing expertise, the Canaanites weren't known sailors, so at 1500BC we have the Canaanites developing into Phoenicians........

So, by taking DNA from someone at (old) Carthage area is really only telling us Phoenicians came from the Levant, which we know is no big suprise, but what is the DNA telling us about where Canaanites came from? The ancestors of Phoenicians...


Sorry, Puzzler. My post was a bit obtuse.

What I was inferring was that, by referring to Punic as an Afro-Semitic language you are making it out to be a blend of ancient Semitic and a contemporary African language, hence implying an origin for the Phoenicians as not being the Levant and an offshoot of the Canaanites, but resulting from direct migration from Africa. Semitic we already know is one of a family of Afro-Asiatic languages so the 'African' in African-Semitic is unnecessary and potentially misleading.

I think cormac has answered the origins question rather well and I can't think of anything else to add.

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#20    The Puzzler

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 09:33 AM

Leonardo on Sep 22 2008, 04:58 PM, said:

Sorry, Puzzler. My post was a bit obtuse.

What I was inferring was that, by referring to Punic as an Afro-Semitic language you are making it out to be a blend of ancient Semitic and a contemporary African language, hence implying an origin for the Phoenicians as not being the Levant and an offshoot of the Canaanites, but resulting from direct migration from Africa. Semitic we already know is one of a family of Afro-Asiatic languages so the 'African' in African-Semitic is unnecessary and potentially misleading.

I think cormac has answered the origins question rather well and I can't think of anything else to add.

Aaahhhhhh..

OK, sounds fair.  (For now... ph34r.gif )


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#21    1.618

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 09:49 AM

Puzzler, on one of your other threads someone posted about the phoenicans circumnavigating africa. During the long journey, they stopped off to plant and harvest grain etc. It would make sense to me that some of the phoenicans could have stayed behind at places where they stopped. This could result in their genes being widespread as well as influencing or being influenced by other cultures around africa.


#22    Essan

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 02:45 PM

Karlis on Sep 22 2008, 03:36 AM, said:

Ok, since Puzzler did not reply, and no one else commented -- I'll assume nobody has heard of Steven Collins. Either that, or are Collins' propositions not worth considering?

Regards,
Karlis


Hadn't heard of him before and looking at his website I certainly won't be wasting money on his books which appear to contradict nearly everything Jewish archaeologists tell us about the origins of the Jewish state and early Biblical times.  King David ran a global sea empire eh?  Hmmm, and all from his little hill top village and without any of the surrounding empires even knowing .....

I'd rather read Finkelstein and Silberman original.gif


As for the Phoenicians - any reason they had to be a distinct racial group?   Whilst the original Phoenicians may well have been a Caananite tribe living on the coast ... maybe they were joined over time by various groups of seafarers as their port grew .... and thus became the first multi-ethnic society?  Just a thought original.gif  

btw if their sailors were anything like sailors from more recent times, it wasn't just grain they were seeding on their journey round Africa grin2.gif

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#23    Qoais

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 03:37 PM

I agree that the Phoenicians could have been an amalgamation of a number of peoples.

An ethnic group is a group of human beings whose members identify with each other, usually on the basis of preferential endogamy and/or a presumed or real common ancestry.[1][2] Ethnic identity is further marked by the recognition from others of a group's distinctiveness[3] and the recognition of common cultural, linguistic, religious, behavioral or biological traits,[1][4] real or presumed, as indicators of contrast to other groups.[5]

Ethnicity is an increasingly important means by which states and scientists can identify (and categorise) people, and through which people can identify themselves. According to "Challenges of Measuring an Ethnic World: Science, politics, and reality", a conference organized by Statistics Canada and the United States Census Bureau (April 1-3, 1992), "Ethnicity is a fundamental factor in human life: it is a phenomenon inherent in human experience."[6] However, many social scientists, like anthropologists Fredrik Barth and Eric Wolf, regard ethnicity more as a product of interaction, rather than reflecting essential qualities inherent to human groups.[7] Processes that result in the emergence of such identification are called ethnogenesis. Members of an ethnic group, on the whole, claim cultural continuities over time, although historians and cultural anthropologists have documented that many of the values, practices, and norms that imply continuity with the past are of relatively recent invention.[8]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnic_group

A "product of interaction", which would definitely apply to those with sailing experience in the ancient times.

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#24    The Puzzler

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 11:52 PM

Qoais on Sep 23 2008, 01:37 AM, said:

I agree that the Phoenicians could have been an amalgamation of a number of peoples.

An ethnic group is a group of human beings whose members identify with each other, usually on the basis of preferential endogamy and/or a presumed or real common ancestry.[1][2] Ethnic identity is further marked by the recognition from others of a group's distinctiveness[3] and the recognition of common cultural, linguistic, religious, behavioral or biological traits,[1][4] real or presumed, as indicators of contrast to other groups.[5]

Ethnicity is an increasingly important means by which states and scientists can identify (and categorise) people, and through which people can identify themselves. According to "Challenges of Measuring an Ethnic World: Science, politics, and reality", a conference organized by Statistics Canada and the United States Census Bureau (April 1-3, 1992), "Ethnicity is a fundamental factor in human life: it is a phenomenon inherent in human experience."[6] However, many social scientists, like anthropologists Fredrik Barth and Eric Wolf, regard ethnicity more as a product of interaction, rather than reflecting essential qualities inherent to human groups.[7] Processes that result in the emergence of such identification are called ethnogenesis. Members of an ethnic group, on the whole, claim cultural continuities over time, although historians and cultural anthropologists have documented that many of the values, practices, and norms that imply continuity with the past are of relatively recent invention.[8]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnic_group

A "product of interaction", which would definitely apply to those with sailing experience in the ancient times.

Hi Q!
Yeah I was going to add to that too and 1.6's post made me think abit.

I haven't forgotton those Egyptians arriving in around 1800BC in Colchis on the Black Sea (J2 in Caucasus) either, I'm going a long way around.....I'm working on it all now.
That time is before  'Phoenicians' became Phoenicians in Phoenicia. When they were still just Sidonese Canaanites. Egyptians must have been sailing before them if Sesostris has sailed into the Erythraean Sea previously. The Celts are proving interesting too.
You will also see touches of the J2 in Ethiopia too.  That could be when Herodotus speaks of them coming from the 'shores of the Erythraean Sea'.
It appears though from other Herodotus I read that he specifically starts the Erythraean Sea OUTSIDE the Arabian Gulf (Red Sea).
Being a 'child of Canaan' would indeed seem to make Sidon multicultural. The link between Heracles being Melqet certainly add to the mystery.

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#25    The Puzzler

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Posted 23 September 2008 - 03:45 AM

I'm just not getting past the Canaanites being from Africa.

http://www.raceandhistory.com/cgi-bin/foru...rames/read/1895

The fact that Phoenicians spoke a Semitic language does not necessarily mean they were Semites. Language and race are two different things. There are, for instance, plenty of Spanish-speakers in the world whose ancestors did not come from Spain.

As noted in my book Black Spark, White Fire the Bible clearly indicates that the Phoenicians – a Canaanite people – were not of Semitic descent. The word "Semitic" applies to those peoples who were descended from Noah’s son Shem. But, according to Genesis 9-10, the Canaanites were descended from another of Noah’s sons, Ham.

Genesis states that there were four Hamitic nations: "Cush, Mizraim, Put and Canaan." Mizraim is Egypt. Cush is Nubia, or the Sudan. "Put" likely refers to a land the Egyptians called Punt, which probably lay in Ethiopia or Somalia.

Thus, every Hamitic nation, except Canaan, appears to be located in Africa.

Of course, not all readers believe the Bible. But even an atheist must wonder why the Biblical scribes believed that Phoenicians and other Canaanites were related to people in Africa. Was it something about their appearance?

The Babylonian Talmud, set to writing in the sixth century A.D., records a Jewish oral tradition that the Canaanites were black. In it, Noah curses his grandson Canaan, saying: "Canaan’s children shall be born ugly and black!… your grandchildren’s hair shall be twisted into kinks…"


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#26    The Puzzler

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Posted 23 September 2008 - 03:52 AM

Here is some words from Herodotus:

Quote

The account which I received of this Hercules makes him one of the twelve gods. Of the other Hercules, with whom the Greeks are familiar, I could hear nothing in any part of Egypt. That the Greeks, however (those I mean who gave the son of Amphitryon that name), took the name from the Egyptians, and not the Egyptians from the Greeks, is I think clearly proved, among other arguments, by the fact that both the parents of Hercules, Amphitryon as well as Alcmena,  were of Egyptian origin. Again, the Egyptians disclaim all knowledge of the names of Neptune and the Dioscuri, and do not include them in the number of their gods; but had they adopted the name of any god from the Greeks, these would have been the likeliest to obtain notice, since the Egyptians, as I am well convinced, practised navigation at that time, and the Greeks also were some of them mariners, so that they would have been more likely to know the names of these gods than that of Hercules. But the Egyptian Hercules is one of their ancient gods. Seventeen thousand years before the reign of Amasis, the twelve gods were, they affirm, produced from the eight: and of these twelve, Hercules is one.

In the wish to get the best information that I could on these matters, I made a voyage to Tyre in Phoenicia, hearing there was a temple of Hercules at that place, very highly venerated. I visited the temple, and found it richly adorned with a number of offerings, among which were two pillars, one of pure gold, the other of emerald, shining with great brilliancy at night. In a conversation which I held with the priests, I inquired how long their temple had been built, and found by their answer that they, too, differed from the Greeks. They said that the temple was built at the same time that the city was founded, and that the foundation of the city took place two thousand three hundred years ago. In Tyre I remarked another temple where the same god was worshipped as the Thasian Hercules. So I went on to Thasos, where I found a temple of Hercules which had been built by the Phoenicians who colonised that island when they sailed in search of Europa. Even this was five generations earlier than the time when Hercules, son of Amphitryon, was born in Greece. These researches show plainly that there is an ancient god Hercules; and my own opinion is that those Greeks act most wisely who build and maintain two temples of Hercules, in the one of which the Hercules worshipped is known by the name of Olympian, and has sacrifice offered to him as an immortal, while in the other the honours paid are such as are due to a hero.


That places Tyre foundation at 2900BC, a similar time Sesostris is said to have gone through there. Heracles had been an Egyptian God for 17,000 years at that time, so would assume that the Phoenicians took the God Heracles from them or Tyre was founded by an Egyptian, with Phoenicans later arriving there. We see a bit later but still much earlier than the Greek Heracles, the Phoenicians colonised Thasos and left a temple of Heracles.

I wonder therefore:
Were the Egyptians in the Levant before the Phoenicians that descended from Canaan, around 1500BC?

Edited by The Puzzler, 23 September 2008 - 03:52 AM.

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#27    The Puzzler

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 03:09 PM

Can anyone give me a link or evidence that the Phoenicians were descendants of the Cucuteni-Trypillians, shem, my mind is a bit blurred since we last touched on this, you may have some info on this.

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#28    shemTov

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 04:20 PM

The Puzzler on Oct 15 2008, 03:09 PM, said:

Can anyone give me a link or evidence that the Phoenicians were descendants of the Cucuteni-Trypillians, shem, my mind is a bit blurred since we last touched on this, you may have some info on this.


there are no bodies to prove anything hartewise but stylistically it seems like they attended potters college in hacilar [J2 haplo like phoenicians]

linked-image

and it is thought that the suddenly intrusive elite med. skull types [j2] in the kurgans are probably cucuteni

"Anthropology of Sredny Stog and Novodanylovka

J.P. Mallory reviews a work on the archaeology of the Sredny Stog and Novodanylovka cultures of the northern Pontic area, which are considered by some to be the original Proto-Indo-Europeans. It is interesting that the females are Proto-Europoid, while there is an intrusive Mediterranean element of Balkan origin among the males.

D. Ya. Telegin et al. Srednestogovskaya i Novodanilovskaya Kul'tury Eneolita Azovo-Chernomorskogo Regiona. Kiev: Shlyakh, 2001.

Reviewed by J.P. Mallory, JIES vol. 32, 3/4, p. 363-366.

"The third section of the book surveys the anthropological literature concerning the Sredny Stog and Novodanylovka cultures. For the twenty Sredny Stog burials from Igren, we find the somewhat unusual situation of women outliving males on an average of 7.8 years (males - 35.8 years, females - 43.6); only one individual lived passed 55 years. In terms of the craniological analysis of physical characteristics the Sredny Stog females tend to exhibit a homogeneous Proto-Europoid type that is most similar to the earlier inhabitants of the region. The series of male crania, however, tend to vary more and indicate both more robust Proto-Europoid and more gracile southern European (or Mediterranean) components. The analysis of six Novodanilovka skulls from three sites suggests again the presence of both Proto-Europoid and Mediterranean types. The cranial evidence as a whole suggests a mingling of local Proto-Europoids (seen especially in the east) with more gracial south-east European types in the west, a attern that might be explained by the flow of populations from the Balkan Neolithic (Tripolje) into the western Ukraine."


there is a really neat story about what happened to the bodies but its very spooky

Edited by shemTov, 15 October 2008 - 08:16 PM.


#29    Leonardo

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 07:16 PM

The Puzzler on Sep 23 2008, 04:52 AM, said:

Here is some words from Herodotus:


That places Tyre foundation at 2900BC, a similar time Sesostris is said to have gone through there. Heracles had been an Egyptian God for 17,000 years at that time, so would assume that the Phoenicians took the God Heracles from them or Tyre was founded by an Egyptian, with Phoenicans later arriving there. We see a bit later but still much earlier than the Greek Heracles, the Phoenicians colonised Thasos and left a temple of Heracles.

I wonder therefore:
Were the Egyptians in the Levant before the Phoenicians that descended from Canaan, around 1500BC?


I'm assuming you put an extra '0' in 1,700 by accident when referring to how long Heracles had been an Egyptian god!!!  blink.gif

Regarding the dating of the founding of Tyre by Herodotus - I would be a little wary of the figure given. While I am not familiar with the calendric system in use in Phoenicia it is likely the priests quoted a date to Herodotus based on previous royal or high priestly personages and the length of their reign, rather than give him a date based on exact knowledge of founding based on calendar. As such, given the propensity of those in the ancient civilisations to exaggerate the length of rule of important or dearly held royals etc we should look more towards hard evidence of the founding - and the first monumental mention of Tyre as a city is in 1300BCE, we also have the Amarna letters of 1350BCE (source). Interestingly, the Amarna (Tyre) letters seem to have been written by a mayor - not a King. An indication Tyre was, at that time, not important enough to rate a royal presence?

We might allow a century or two before that for it's founding, but I'd be skeptical of a date of double that without real evidence.

Edited by Leonardo, 15 October 2008 - 07:17 PM.

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#30    The Puzzler

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Posted 16 October 2008 - 10:55 AM

Leonardo on Oct 16 2008, 05:16 AM, said:

I'm assuming you put an extra '0' in 1,700 by accident when referring to how long Heracles had been an Egyptian god!!!  blink.gif

Regarding the dating of the founding of Tyre by Herodotus - I would be a little wary of the figure given. While I am not familiar with the calendric system in use in Phoenicia it is likely the priests quoted a date to Herodotus based on previous royal or high priestly personages and the length of their reign, rather than give him a date based on exact knowledge of founding based on calendar. As such, given the propensity of those in the ancient civilisations to exaggerate the length of rule of important or dearly held royals etc we should look more towards hard evidence of the founding - and the first monumental mention of Tyre as a city is in 1300BCE, we also have the Amarna letters of 1350BCE (source). Interestingly, the Amarna (Tyre) letters seem to have been written by a mayor - not a King. An indication Tyre was, at that time, not important enough to rate a royal presence?

We might allow a century or two before that for it's founding, but I'd be skeptical of a date of double that without real evidence.

No, I did not put in an extra '0'. lol

Quote

About Heracles I heard the account given that he was of the number of the twelve gods; but of the other Heracles whom the Hellenes know I was not able to hear in any part of Egypt: and moreover to prove that the Egyptians did not take the name of Heracles from the Hellenes, but rather the Hellenes from the Egyptians,—that is to say those of the Hellenes who gave the name Heracles to the son of Amphitryon,—of that, I say, besides many other evidences there is chiefly this, namely that the parents of this Heracles, Amphitryon and Alcmene, were both of Egypt by descent, and also that the Egyptians say that they do not know the names either of Poseidon or of the Dioscuroi, nor have these been accepted by them as gods among the other gods; whereas if they had received from the Hellenes the name of any divinity, they would naturally have preserved the memory of these most of all, assuming that in those times as now some of the Hellenes were wont to make voyages and were seafaring folk, as I suppose and as my judgment compels me to think; so that the Egyptians would have learnt the names of these gods even more than that of Heracles.

In fact however Heracles is a very ancient Egyptian god; and (as they say themselves) it is seventeen thousand years to the beginning of the reign of Amasis from the time when the twelve gods, of whom they count that Heracles is one, were begotten of the eight gods.
I moreover, desiring to know something certain of these matters so far as might be, made a voyage also to Tyre of Phenicia, hearing that in that place there was a holy temple of Heracles; and I saw that it was richly furnished with many votive offerings besides, and especially there were in it two pillars, the one of pure gold and the other of an emerald stone of such size as to shine by night: and having come to speech with the priests of the god, I asked them how long a time it was since their temple had been set up: and these also I found to be at variance with the Hellenes, for they said that at the same time when Tyre was founded, the temple of the god also had been set up, and that it was a period of two thousand three hundred years since their people began to dwell at Tyre. I saw also at Tyre another temple of Heracles, with the surname Thasian; and I came to Thasos also and there I found a temple of Heracles set up by the Phenicians, who had sailed out to seek for Europa and had colonised Thasos; and these things happened full five generations of men before Heracles the son of Amphitryon was born in Hellas.

So then my inquiries show clearly that Heracles is an ancient god, and those of the Hellenes seem to me to act most rightly who have two temples of Heracles set up, and who sacrifice to the one as an immortal god and with the title Olympian, and make offerings of the dead to the other as a hero. Moreover, besides many other stories which the Hellenes tell without due consideration, this tale is especially foolish which they tell about Heracles, namely that when he came to Egypt, the Egyptians put on him wreaths and led him forth in procession to sacrifice him to Zeus; and he for some time kept quiet, but when they were beginning the sacrifice of him at the altar, he betook himself to prowess and slew them all. I for my part am of opinion that the Hellenes when they tell this tale are altogether without knowledge of the nature and customs of the Egyptians; for how should they for whom it is not lawful to sacrifice even beasts, except swine and the males of oxen and calves (such of them as are clean) and geese, how should these sacrifice human beings? Besides this, how is it in nature possible that Heracles, being one person only and moreover a man (as they assert), should slay many myriads?
http://server.egypt.com/egypt/historyen/in.../About-Heracles

I will do more checking on the beginnings of Tyre, thanks for reminding me of that, but as you can see Heracles is not a Greek God but an ancient Egyptian one who is indeed according to them 17,000 years immortal. I have included so much text from Herodotus for you to read since it is all inclusive about Heracles and many people don't know he was an Egyptian God before a Greek one, note also that they didn't know about or have Poseidon as a God, I believe he was Phoenician, father of Sidon.
I find all of Herodotus work absolutely fascinating and never tire of reading it.


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