Join the Unexplained Mysteries community today! It's free and setting up an account only takes a moment.
- Sign In or Create Account -
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 1
Proclus

Historical criticism: "Moving" dates & places

83 posts in this topic

After some radical Atlantis skeptics did repeatedly not understand under which circumstances it is scientifically supported and absolutely reasonable to "move" or "map" a date or place in an ancient story, I start now this thread.

The basic question is: Under which circumstances are you willing to accept that a place or date in an ancient story (Bible, Herodotus, Atlantis, whatever) has to be "moved" or "mapped" (however you want to call it) to another date or place, which is then the real date or place, the date and place really meant, the date and place the ancient text is really talking about?

Example: Herodotus talks of pharao Menes living 11340 years before, but modern science found that king Menes indeed lived approx. 3000 BC. So Herodotus' Menes is a reality, but the date has to be "moved" - as everybody can see, because of good reasons.

Example: Ancient geographers screwed up the place of far-away places like Britain. They thought it to be x miles away, but in reality there are y miles. Despite the error, Britain really exists! We only have to "move" the wrong placing to the right place. (And maybe Britain is much smaller than the ancients thought? Not a problem for us, Britain is anyway real, I hope you agree.)

So, what "good reasons" for such a "moving" of dates and places and sizes do you accept?

I am looking forward to your opinions!

Do you know other good examples?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the birthdate of Jesus is the most famous "shuffled date" I can think of, first of all given clues within the text he was born more towards th middle of the year (closer to an equinox rather then a solstice IIRC) and it wasn't "year zero" despite the best efforts of the likes o Thomas Aquinas, but closer (afain IIRC) to about AD 30.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the birthdate of Jesus is the most famous "shuffled date" I can think of, first of all given clues within the text he was born more towards th middle of the year (closer to an equinox rather then a solstice IIRC) and it wasn't "year zero" despite the best efforts of the likes o Thomas Aquinas, but closer (afain IIRC) to about AD 30.

Jesus is another example like Atlantis: Only mentioned in one source, all other sources much later.

Was Jesus a historical person, then? Or a mythical invention? (The same question exists for Muhammed and Buddha and ...)

I am not interested in the question itself, rather in the methods you want to apply to find an answer ...

If you think Jesus was a person of history, why do you think this under a scientific perspective?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

Herodotus was about as good as historian as Zane Gray. Unless you also are willing to take his word for two headed giants in Libya you better take anything he says with a great bit of caution.

As far as the History of ancient Egypt, in Herodotus' time (5th century BC) there was nobody who could have given you an accurate description of what happened around 2500 BC or 2000 years previous.

Edited by questionmark
3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Herodotus was about as good as historian as Zane Gray. Unless you also are willing to take his word for two headed giants in Libya you better take anything he says with a great bit of caution.

As far as the History of ancient Egypt, in Herodotus' time (5th century BC) there was nobody who could have given you an accurate description of what happened around 2500 BC or 2000 years previous.

I disagree with your judgement of Herodotus. The giants and other things are clearly marked as myths by Herodotus. Whereas the information which gave him the basis for his Egyptian chronology came directly from the prime source, the temples and priests; nevertheless he (and the priests!?) screwed it up.

But I agree fully with you that the ancient Greeks had no clear idea of long-ago times. Such starts the Atlantis story of Plato: Solon confesses that he knows only myths and asks in Egypt for better information. If this is an invention, it is not a bad one, because Egypt really was a place to get better information on the past, at least compared to others.

Yet, you have not answered on the initial question of this thread!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I disagree with your judgement of Herodotus. The giants and other things are clearly marked as myths by Herodotus. Whereas the information which gave him the basis for his Egyptian chronology came directly from the prime source, the temples and priests; nevertheless he (and the priests!?) screwed it up.

But I agree fully with you that the ancient Greeks had no clear idea of long-ago times. Such starts the Atlantis story of Plato: Solon confesses that he knows only myths and asks in Egypt for better information. If this is an invention, it is not a bad one, because Egypt really was a place to get better information on the past, at least compared to others.

Yet, you have not answered on the initial question of this thread!

Like that one of the funerary temples show the amount of cabbages the pharaoh had to buy to feed his workers?

Right.

Fact is that whoever told Herodotus the history of Egypt, just as an example, knew less about it than a modern day tour guide.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

Like that one of the funerary temples show the amount of cabbages the pharaoh had to buy to feed his workers?

Right.

Fact is that whoever told Herodotus the history of Egypt, just as an example, knew less about it than a modern day tour guide.

You are fully right ... except one small tiny thing: That you think Herodotus could have done better.

But he could not.

He was the first one to come to Egypt. He was the first one to ask for its history, for which the priests themselves did not show interest. He fully relied on translators. As a friend of Athens he travelled in a country conquered by the Persians.

Herodotus did a great job!

He made a lot of mistakes, but he always tried his very best.

Concerning the cabbage: Modern Egyptology assumes that this really was the notion among the Egyptians, then. So once again Herodotus is confirmed to be a trustworthy reporter of his time. What less educated persons rarely understand: Egypt was not a country full of knowledge and wisdom. In the Saitic period a totally different atmosphere reigned.

Historical criticism means among other things: Do not just think the author is a lier. Consider the historical context and you will see that the author had reasons to believe what he wrote although it is wrong and something else is true what he really meant!

You still have not answered the initial question.

Edited by Proclus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You are fully right ... except one small tiny thing: That you think Herodotus could have done better.

But he could not.

He was the first one to come to Egypt. He was the first one to ask for its history, for which the priests themselves did not show interest. He fully relied on translators. As a friend of Athens he travelled in a country conquered by the Persians.

Herodotus did a great job!

He made a lot of mistakes, but he always tried his very best.

Concerning the cabbage: Modern Egyptology assumes that this really was the notion among the Egyptians, then. So once again Herodotus is confirmed to be a trustworthy reporter of his time. What less educated persons rarely understand: Egypt was not a country full of knowledge and wisdom. In the Saitic period a totally different atmosphere reigned.

Historical criticism means among other things: Do not just think the author is a lier. Consider the historical context and you will see that the author had reasons to believe what he wrote although it is wrong and something else is true what he really meant!

You still have not answered the initial question.

Who cares whether he knowingly lied? The fact of the matter is that his whole account is unreliable. And that is the bottom line.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Who cares whether he knowingly lied? The fact of the matter is that his whole account is unreliable. And that is the bottom line.

Who caaarees?! *cringe*

Well, you are lost for science, as it seems. You are not able to see the worth of it all.

Historical criticism is not your cup of tea, but to believe is it: All or nothing is your slogan, is it?

I will not ask for an answer on the initial question a third time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Who caaarees?! *cringe*

Well, you are lost for science, as it seems. You are not able to see the worth of it all.

Historical criticism is not your cup of tea, but to believe is it: All or nothing is your slogan, is it?

I will not ask for an answer on the initial question a third time.

I am just pointing out that the premises of your initial question is faulty and therefore any answer to the question will be faulty... therefore not bothering to content with it.

If you are so strong on "science" you should have been able to extrapolate that by yourself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am just pointing out that the premises of your initial question is faulty and therefore any answer to the question will be faulty... therefore not bothering to content with it.

If you are so strong on "science" you should have been able to extrapolate that by yourself.

Now this becomes interesting. Not everybody is so smart as you are :-)

So you think it is wrong to see king Menes at approx. 3000 BC? You think it is wrong to assume that Herodotus got a piece of reality in his hands when he heard of king Menes? Please clarify your point, I am so silly, I haven't got it fully, sorry sorry ...

Edited by Proclus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now this becomes interesting. Not everybody is so smart as you are :-)

So you think it is wrong to see king Menes at approx. 3000 BC? You think it is wrong to assume that Herodotus got a piece of reality in his hands when he heard of king Menes? Please clarify your point, I am so silly, I haven't got it fully, sorry sorry ...

Your guess is as good as anybody else. There is nothing independent corroborating Menes and while the current trend is to date him around 3000 BCE there have been opinions dating him from 5000-2000 BCE. It could also very well be that he is as mythical king as Fu Xi. All we know for certain is that the most recent discovery is an image of a pharaoh dating around that time, but as far as I remember there is no inscription identifying him.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your guess is as good as anybody else. There is nothing independent corroborating Menes and while the current trend is to date him around 3000 BCE there have been opinions dating him from 5000-2000 BCE. It could also very well be that he is as mythical king as Fu Xi. All we know for certain is that the most recent discovery is an image of a pharaoh dating around that time, but as far as I remember there is no inscription identifying him.

The current .... "trend"? *shock*

It is pretty sure that Menes has to be dated approx. 3000 BC. Your range of 5000 to 2000 BC makes me laughing. This range is far from science ... - And: Of course Menes could be a legendary pharao to give the start of chronologies a name, but: Concerning the dating question this does not matter. So you missed the point altogether.

And you still have not answered the initial question.

Why not trying with a totally different example? The eruption of Santorini was dated at different points of time, and thus all dependent chronology shifted with this dating. Again, it is not important whether this or that dating is correct. I am interested in the question: Would you basically agree in this shiftings of datings? (Has nothing to do with Atlantis, by the way *smile*)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The current .... "trend"? *shock*

It is pretty sure that Menes has to be dated approx. 3000 BC. Your range of 5000 to 2000 BC makes me laughing. This range is far from science ... - And: Of course Menes could be a legendary pharao to give the start of chronologies a name, but: Concerning the dating question this does not matter. So you missed the point altogether.

And you still have not answered the initial question.

Why not trying with a totally different example? The eruption of Santorini was dated at different points of time, and thus all dependent chronology shifted with this dating. Again, it is not important whether this or that dating is correct. I am interested in the question: Would you basically agree in this shiftings of datings? (Has nothing to do with Atlantis, by the way *smile*)

By a few hundred years back and forth, probably, especially those parts of history we know as the stone age. Most other dates (starting with the invention of scripture) are multiple corroborated so there is no need, and no sense, in shifting them anywhere. Within the shortest time its inaccuracy would be discovered.

And if you never have seen Menes dated as far as back as 5000 BC that must be because your knowledge about history as a science must be much more limited than what you think. Among others that was claimed by Champollion, Bokh and Mariette.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

History is written by the victor. FACT not fiction.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

History is written by the victor. FACT not fiction.

Not quite correct, but a generally assumed fallacy.

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After some radical Atlantis skeptics did repeatedly not understand under which circumstances it is scientifically supported and absolutely reasonable to "move" or "map" a date or place in an ancient story, I start now this thread.

The basic question is: Under which circumstances are you willing to accept that a place or date in an ancient story (Bible, Herodotus, Atlantis, whatever) has to be "moved" or "mapped" (however you want to call it) to another date or place, which is then the real date or place, the date and place really meant, the date and place the ancient text is really talking about?

Example: Herodotus talks of pharao Menes living 11340 years before, but modern science found that king Menes indeed lived approx. 3000 BC. So Herodotus' Menes is a reality, but the date has to be "moved" - as everybody can see, because of good reasons.

Example: Ancient geographers screwed up the place of far-away places like Britain. They thought it to be x miles away, but in reality there are y miles. Despite the error, Britain really exists! We only have to "move" the wrong placing to the right place. (And maybe Britain is much smaller than the ancients thought? Not a problem for us, Britain is anyway real, I hope you agree.)

So, what "good reasons" for such a "moving" of dates and places and sizes do you accept?

I am looking forward to your opinions!

Do you know other good examples?

Hi Proclus,

Interesting subject I think. Fomenko like?

For me: I would give it all consideration, even if the approach is not believed being 'scientific' enough for others.

Let's call it circumstancial evidence feeling :-) For every one different when to accept I think.

For me, I'm not convinced that the accepted views are that scientific, merely conventional. So not really bothered with that assumed science :-)

But common sense: why not.

For example: Tacitus, Plato, ...: when did they come from the shelve? -> See that timeframe for analogy in events described in those 'annals'.

A question in this: when exactly did Plato turned up the first time (copy or non copy)? Anybody an idea, I'm wondering if somebody can tell that, I don't.

Deplacements in time and place: let's take Tacitus' 'Germania' (you're living in Germany right?).

If these events describe events on the border of Gallia and Germania during the time when they showed up in the middleages: whole story of Germany (and Europe) can be interpreted otherwise.

Just a thought to reflect on, what the story might be. Some corresponding names that might cause confusing for the monks copying ;-)

Hamburg -> Hammes Boucres

Coln -> Coulogne

Bremen -> Brêmes

Danemark -> Dannes

Noorman -> Normandy

Just gave this example because of handled by Delahaye (notorious believer of deplacements/doublures in history, for others are his ideas not convincing or backed by enough evidence).

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

By a few hundred years back and forth, probably, especially those parts of history we know as the stone age. Most other dates (starting with the invention of scripture) are multiple corroborated so there is no need, and no sense, in shifting them anywhere. Within the shortest time its inaccuracy would be discovered.

And if you never have seen Menes dated as far as back as 5000 BC that must be because your knowledge about history as a science must be much more limited than what you think. Among others that was claimed by Champollion, Bokh and Mariette.

Some hundred years are ok for you but thousands not?

*smile*

You really really have not gotten the point. What a pity!

The Gentlemen Champollion etc. do not represent today's science ...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some hundred years are ok for you but thousands not?

*smile*

You really really have not gotten the point. What a pity!

The Gentlemen Champollion etc. do not represent today's science ...

Which would shoot your pal Herodotus straight out of the water.

Quod erat demonstrando

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting subject I think. Fomenko like?

For me: I would give it all consideration, even if the approach is not believed being 'scientific' enough for others.

Let's call it circumstancial evidence feeling :-) For every one different when to accept I think.

For me, I'm not convinced that the accepted views are that scientific, merely conventional. So not really bothered with that assumed science :-)

Thanks for your examples.

No, it's not Fomenko-like. It's ... yes, it's science! I really start to wonder about the people here in this forum. Looking for the historical circumstances which brought a certain text into life is crucial for a scientific view on ancient texts! You just cannot interprete them correctly without this!

Another example is the Manetho king list of Egyptian pharaos, an important basis for today's view of Egyptian history. It's handed down to us by Jewish-Christian writers who distorted this or that. What did they distort? Of course this depends which fits / fits not into their jewish-christian view! It's not that difficult to understand, is it?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Though, I like Fomenko :tu: Find his approach no less scientific than all 'studies' around Plato.

When speaking about 'remapping' history, his work played a big role in helping to understand the necessity for this kind of open approach.

...

Looking for the historical circumstances which brought a certain text into life is crucial for a scientific view on ancient texts! You just cannot interprete them correctly without this!

...

Couldn't agree more.

And therefore I'm still interested when/how did the legacy of Plato came to us for the first time? I can't find much information on it.

All is debated what he should or shouldn't have meant, should or shouldn't have been in what age etc.

Do we have first hand material of this 'figure', or only references by others that were 'discovered' some centuries later?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No-one has mentioned the legends surrounding King Arthur. Hope it fits within the question you are presenting. Chretien De Troyes basically gave us the Arthurian legends as we know them, or at least the backbone. Those stories were then added to by the likes of Malory down to TH White. Personally I think Arturis has been successfully placed near the withdrawal of the Roman Empire from Britain around the 5th and 6th centuries AD. If there is a basis for Arturus in the Celtic legends such as Olwen, then how did a Roman Empire general end up at Avalon?

I think because the small bit of truth embedded in the historic figure was embellished and grew until when you get to Malory's time in the Middle Ages, people probably were looking for a great leader to save them from war and the plague and the French! And Malory probably wondered why he kept getting thrown into jail after a spot of raping and pillage. :unsure2:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After some radical Atlantis skeptics did repeatedly not understand under which circumstances it is scientifically supported and absolutely reasonable to "move" or "map" a date or place in an ancient story, I start now this thread.

The basic question is: Under which circumstances are you willing to accept that a place or date in an ancient story (Bible, Herodotus, Atlantis, whatever) has to be "moved" or "mapped" (however you want to call it) to another date or place, which is then the real date or place, the date and place really meant, the date and place the ancient text is really talking about?

Example: Herodotus talks of pharao Menes living 11340 years before, but modern science found that king Menes indeed lived approx. 3000 BC. So Herodotus' Menes is a reality, but the date has to be "moved" - as everybody can see, because of good reasons.

Example: Ancient geographers screwed up the place of far-away places like Britain. They thought it to be x miles away, but in reality there are y miles. Despite the error, Britain really exists! We only have to "move" the wrong placing to the right place. (And maybe Britain is much smaller than the ancients thought? Not a problem for us, Britain is anyway real, I hope you agree.)

So, what "good reasons" for such a "moving" of dates and places and sizes do you accept?

I am looking forward to your opinions!

Do you know other good examples?

On Herodotus, who I love reading and defend him when I can, because most of what he wrote was 2nd hand info, he records what he has been told and only makes a few assumptions himself - he tells us about the building of the pyramids and the Great Pyramid being built using iron and in the time frame of around 1100-900BC.

I found this pretty interesting and conducted a topic on it, to which kmt and others as well as reading as much as I could on the archaeology assurred me the Great Pyramid was built c. 2600- 2400BC - but still, rather intiguing the way Herodotus explains it and just pops it into that (much) later time frame....

Edited by The Puzzler

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Egyptians do have a very good records of history, is why I change my theory of Tartesso as Atlantis to Crete and Santorina.The Egyptain priest does refered the war of Atlantis to the mythical kings of Athens around the 15 hundreds bc, and a flood of destuction.

At Tell el Dab'a in Egypt, pumice found at this location has been dated to 1540 BCE, closer to the traditionally accepted date of Thera's eruption.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Herodotus talks of pharao Menes living 11340 years before, but modern science found that king Menes indeed lived approx. 3000 BC. So Herodotus' Menes is a reality, but the date has to be "moved" - as everybody can see, because of good reasons.

What are those good reasons? I dont know any.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 1

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.