mattfeld at mail.pjsnet.com
Mon Sep 25 11:21:46 EDT 2000
My thanks to Christine Bass and Randal D. Sawtelle for the input on the
latest theory about a flooding Black Sea as possibly being what is behind
Noah's Flood as suggested by Bob Ballard. I visited the Nat'l. Geo. website
and found it very artistically done.
As I pointed out in an earlier message, most Humanist scholars remanin
skeptical about the Black Sea flooding being behind Noah's Flood, and I
share this scepticism. The Flood legends are situated in Shuruppak, in Lower
Mesopotamia, and archaeological surveys have documented extensive flooding
of this area in the 4th through 2nd Milleniums BCE, said floods being laid
down by the Euphrates and Tigris rivers. None of the imagery in the Sumerian
and Babylonian accounts is in anyway connected with the Black Sea. For
example in the earliest Sumerian account, Ziusudra (the bible's Noah) tears
down his reed house and builds a boat out of reeds. Reed house and boats are
still made in the marshlands of Lower Mesopotamia.
Nevertheless the notion that the Black Sea grew in size as late as the 7th
millenium is of interest (but not to biblical studies in my view).
Along this same line of flood discovery, and somewhat off topic, I was
fascinated by the recent corings in the Mediterranean Sea (1970s ?) that
brought up layers of salt. The coring experts realized immediately that what
they were beholding was evidence that the Med. Sea had dried up, causing
salt deposits to appear. This tallied with Russian corings done earlier on
the Nile to establish its deepest bed in antiquity, and their shock to
discover the ancient bed was way below the current sea-level of the Med.
Sea. The realization that the Med. Sea had dried up explained the Nile's bed
being cut so deeply. The Nat'l. Geographic has published some maps showing
this Med Sea in its dried up state. Later, a break occured near Gibraltar,
and the Med. Sea filled up again from the Atlantic rushing in. This also
explains the mystery of how pigmy hippos appeared in Cyprus. They evidently
walked there when the Med Sea had dried up, then, trapped on the island,
survived until man arrived and hunted them into extinction.
All the best,
Walter Reinhold Warttig Mattfeld
Walldorf by Heidelberg
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