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Mother Snake and the Semites


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#1    Bella-Angelique

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Posted 01 February 2007 - 03:36 PM

Presentation made in lecture at Hebrew University
Earliest Semitic text revealed in Egyptian pyramid inscription
Spell from the Egyptian pyramid text states in a Semitic language, but written in hieroglyphics: "Utterance of rir-rir mother snake, mother snake."

The first public presentation on the earliest connected Semitic text ever deciphered has taken place at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

The presentation was made by Prof. Richard Steiner, professor of Semitic languages and literature at Yeshiva University in New York, in a lecture entitled "Proto-Canaanite Spells in the Pyramid Texts: a First Look at the History of Hebrew in the Third Millennium B.C.E." The lecture was sponsored by the Academy of the Hebrew Language in cooperation with the Hebrew University and the World Union of Jewish Studies.

Prof. Steiner, a past fellow of the Institute for Advanced Studies at the Hebrew University and a member of the Academy of the Hebrew Language, has deciphered a number of Semitic texts in various Egyptian scripts over the past 25 years. In his lecture he interpreted Semitic passages in Egyptian texts that were discovered more than a century ago, inscribed on the subterranean walls of the pyramid of King Unas at Saqqara in Egypt. The pyramid dates from the 24th century B.C.E., but Egyptologists agree that the texts are older. The dates proposed for them range from the 25th to the 30th centuries B.C.E. No continuous Semitic texts from this period have ever been deciphered before.

The passages, serpent spells written in hieroglyphic characters, had puzzled scholars who tried to read them as if they were ordinary Egyptian texts. In August, 2002, Prof. Steiner received an email message from Robert Ritner, professor of Egyptology at the University of Chicago, asking whether any of them could be Semitic. "I immediately recognized the Semitic words for `mother snake,'" said Steiner. "Later it became clear that the surrounding spells, composed in Egyptian rather than Semitic, also speak of the mother snake, and that the Egyptian and Semitic texts elucidate each other."

Although written in Egyptian characters, the texts turned out to be composed in the Semitic language spoken by the Canaanites in the third millennium B.C.E., a very archaic form of the languages later known as Phoenician and Hebrew. The Canaanite priests of the ancient city of Byblos, in present-day Lebanon, provided these texts to the kings of Egypt. source



Pyramid of Unas at Saqqara
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#2    draconic chronicler

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Posted 01 February 2007 - 11:55 PM

Quote

Presentation made in lecture at Hebrew University
Earliest Semitic text revealed in Egyptian pyramid inscription
Spell from the Egyptian pyramid text states in a Semitic language, but written in hieroglyphics: "Utterance of rir-rir mother snake, mother snake."

The first public presentation on the earliest connected Semitic text ever deciphered has taken place at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

The presentation was made by Prof. Richard Steiner, professor of Semitic languages and literature at Yeshiva University in New York, in a lecture entitled "Proto-Canaanite Spells in the Pyramid Texts: a First Look at the History of Hebrew in the Third Millennium B.C.E." The lecture was sponsored by the Academy of the Hebrew Language in cooperation with the Hebrew University and the World Union of Jewish Studies.

Prof. Steiner, a past fellow of the Institute for Advanced Studies at the Hebrew University and a member of the Academy of the Hebrew Language, has deciphered a number of Semitic texts in various Egyptian scripts over the past 25 years. In his lecture he interpreted Semitic passages in Egyptian texts that were discovered more than a century ago, inscribed on the subterranean walls of the pyramid of King Unas at Saqqara in Egypt. The pyramid dates from the 24th century B.C.E., but Egyptologists agree that the texts are older. The dates proposed for them range from the 25th to the 30th centuries B.C.E. No continuous Semitic texts from this period have ever been deciphered before.

The passages, serpent spells written in hieroglyphic characters, had puzzled scholars who tried to read them as if they were ordinary Egyptian texts. In August, 2002, Prof. Steiner received an email message from Robert Ritner, professor of Egyptology at the University of Chicago, asking whether any of them could be Semitic. "I immediately recognized the Semitic words for `mother snake,'" said Steiner. "Later it became clear that the surrounding spells, composed in Egyptian rather than Semitic, also speak of the mother snake, and that the Egyptian and Semitic texts elucidate each other."

Although written in Egyptian characters, the texts turned out to be composed in the Semitic language spoken by the Canaanites in the third millennium B.C.E., a very archaic form of the languages later known as Phoenician and Hebrew. The Canaanite priests of the ancient city of Byblos, in present-day Lebanon, provided these texts to the kings of Egypt. source
Pyramid of Unas at Saqqara
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The pyramid texts Also mention the fiery flying serpents called Seraphim in both Hebrew and Egyptian.  But modern Christians believe these are swan winged , harp struming "cartoon angels".   The hieroglyph looks like a dragon, just like the ones on the Hebrew Menorah from the temple in Jerusalem.  



#3    speshall mareens

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Posted 02 February 2007 - 03:13 AM

why didn't you put htis in the dragon fthread?

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#4    Ryo Ohki

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Posted 02 February 2007 - 05:02 AM

Does that mean Jewish people used to like snakes?

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#5    Leonardo

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Posted 02 February 2007 - 09:51 AM

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Does that mean Jewish people used to like snakes?


I think you can safely assume there was a snake cult being practised among the Semitic peoples who lived in Egypt at that time. It would be presumptuous to assume the entirety of those people worshipped the snake as a deity. In the biblical context this could be evidence for why the snake was demonised in Christian theology so as to mitigate the influence of the cult in later Jewish society.

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#6    draconic chronicler

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Posted 10 February 2007 - 12:39 AM

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I think you can safely assume there was a snake cult being practised among the Semitic peoples who lived in Egypt at that time. It would be presumptuous to assume the entirety of those people worshipped the snake as a deity. In the biblical context this could be evidence for why the snake was demonised in Christian theology so as to mitigate the influence of the cult in later Jewish society.

Serious Hebrew scholars confirm that the seraphim are fiery flying serpents.  This is what the word means, and they are the most senior servants of God.  Early Christianity acknowledged this too, as confirmed by ivory bible covers, mosaics and frescoes, all depicting winged dragons and serpents guarding the throne of God and often gobbling up sinners.  Christian scriptures also confirmed dragons in heaven.  The catholic chruch of the Middle Ages essentially changed the Biblical dragons into the winged cartoon angels we know today, but archaeology and surviving scriptures reveal the truth of the matter.

In the oldest Eden tale from mesopotamia a dragon guards the tree of life and offers immortality to Adam.  This degenerated into the more familiar version in the bible.  But yes the Hebrews began worshipping the heavenly dragons, which is why the staff of Moses and Ark of the Covenant were destroyed, due to the dragon images on them.  You can still see the dragons on the image of the sacred Menorah, also from the Jewish temple.


#7    GreenmansGod

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Posted 10 February 2007 - 02:29 AM

The Semites were polytheist when they where in Egypt.  Thy didn't be come monotheist until much later.

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#8    louie

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Posted 13 February 2007 - 09:43 AM

And the south american tribes say thier leader came from the sky inside a snake.... Mayan, Aztec.

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#9    draconic chronicler

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Posted 13 February 2007 - 11:42 AM

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And the south american tribes say thier leader came from the sky inside a snake.... Mayan, Aztec.


Yes virtually every theology has some kind of wise flying serpents or dragons connected to their theology.  Today only the Christians try to deny this.  And although they have tried to destroy the evidence of this, archaeology continues to unearth more.



#10    Siara

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Posted 13 February 2007 - 02:25 PM

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Yes virtually every theology has some kind of wise flying serpents or dragons connected to their theology.  Today only the Christians try to deny this.  And although they have tried to destroy the evidence of this, archaeology continues to unearth more.


The Christians deny this?  When Adam and Eve were tempted to eat from the tree of knowledge, which animal tempted them?

I've read a number of articles suggesting that the Old Testament associated the snake with evil because other, competing religions used it as a symbol for wisdom.



#11    Piney

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Posted 13 February 2007 - 06:33 PM

I have always been fasinated with these new discoveries about pre- Abraham religions. I just read somewhere that Bethany where one of the Marys in the bible came from was a center of Astoreth (Isis) worship where priestesess raised sacred doves. Wasn't Astoreth sometimes portrayed holding a snake?

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#12    Ryo Ohki

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Posted 13 February 2007 - 09:46 PM

I dont like snakes much. I like lizards better.

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