[b-hebrew] Exodus Miracles and 'elep

Peter Kirk peterkirk at qaya.org
Tue Aug 3 16:10:37 EDT 2004


On 03/08/2004 20:57, Kevin P. Edgecomb wrote:

>I'd like to suggest another possibility for explaining the range of impossibly large numbers not only in the Exodus and Numbers texts, but throughout the Hebrew Bible.  I think it more likely that late in the Persian period or early in the Hellenistic period, and editor or editors consistently altered the numbers included in the historical texts by factors of either 10 or 100.  The idea was suggested by what appear to be a few "misses" and by the similarly motivated alteration of numbers in earlier Assyrian texts as described in Marco De Odorico's _The Use of Numbers and Quantifications in the Assyrian Royal Inscriptions_ (Helsinki: Neo-Assyrian Text Corpus Project, 1995).  I've put my notes on this idea online here:
>
>http://www.bombaxo.com/numbmult.html
>  
>

Kevin wrote there:

> Another option is that it suggests that the Multiplier, without 
> understanding of the factors of population and 
> econcomic growth in the region, could not believe the smaller, 
> original numbers to be correct, and set about 
> to remedy the perceived errors.


Another option is that it suggests that Kevin Edgecomb, without 
understanding of the factors of population and 
econcomic growth in the region, could not believe the larger numbers in 
the surviving text to be correct, and set about 
to remedy the perceived errors.

For why do we assume that we know better than the ancients how large the 
population was at any particular time? The actual archaeological 
evidence is rather sparse. And populations can rise and fall very 
quickly in some circumstances, without necessarily leaving much trace 
3000 or so years later.

-- 
Peter Kirk
peter at qaya.org (personal)
peterkirk at qaya.org (work)
http://www.qaya.org/





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