Linguistic Origins of Hebrew: 1800 BCE?!

Dave Washburn dwashbur at
Sat Sep 9 12:08:18 EDT 2000


I can agree with everything except the conclusion, and for the 
same reasons that Henry already brought up: texts are not 
language.  The only thing this shows for 1500 is that this is the 
earliest preserved text that we have.  We have to keep in mind that 
such artifacts come into our hands by the accident of preservation, 
so if we don't have something earlier than that, it could mean that 
we don't have the language before that or it could mean that 
nothing has been preserved before that, due to the whims of time.  
Good timetable, though.  A definite keeper.

> Would you agree with the following: (please critique what is wrong with this
> succession scheme)
> 1. Serabit el Khadem, Sinai, Proto-Canaanite, 1500 BCE
> 2. Proto-Canaanite, 13-12th century BCE
> 3. Ahiram Sarcophagus, Phoenician, 1000 BCE
> 4. Gezer Calender, Hebrew, end of 10th century BCE
> 5. Mesha Stele, Hebrew script  mid. 9th century BCE
> 6. Kilamu inscription, Phoenician, last third of 9th century BCE
> 7. Siloam inscription, Hebrew, late 8th century BCE
> 8. Hebrew seals, 7th century BCE
> 9. Hebrew ostraca, Arad, early 6th century BCE
> 10 Elephantine Papyrus, Aramaic, late 5th century BCE
> 11 Leviticus Scroll, Qumran, Paleo-Hebrew, late 2nd century BCE
> 12 Isaiah Scroll, I, Qumran, square Hebrew script, late 2nd century BCE
> This may point to 1500 as a starting point? Or not...
> --
> Brian Tucker
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> Riverview, Michigan 48192
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Dave Washburn
"Éist le glór Dé."

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