[b-hebrew] logograms--an ode to Hebrew

Peter Kirk peterkirk at qaya.org
Fri Dec 24 11:39:41 EST 2004

On 24/12/2004 16:45, George F Somsel wrote:

> ...
>I'm not sure that we are on the same wave-length.  What are a few of
>those you would deem to be fictional?  Moses? David?  Solomon? Jeremiah?
>Isaiah?  Or are you speaking of some other names?
Jim wrote, only about four hours ago but many messages ago:

> as to Nehemiah- he's as fictional as Moses and Abraham; and fictional 
> people don't write books, they are the subject of them.

In fact I would think that Nehemiah has a better claim to existence than 
almost anyone in the Hebrew Bible, apart from the few foreign kings 
named in other sources. There was certainly a series of Persian 
governors of Judea during the Achaemenid period, but their names are 
mostly not recorded elsewhere. These governors were I believe commonly 
from the governed ethnic group. So it is highly likely that Artaxerxes 
would have appointed as governor a trusted Jew from his private 
household. The name Nehemiah is a very likely one for this Persian 
period, and is recorded for two other individuals from this period but 
not in any other period. So, even if the book is not genuinely 
Nehemiah's memoir, there is a very good chance that it was attributed to 
a well-known and respected Persian governor of the time.

Peter Kirk
peter at qaya.org (personal)
peterkirk at qaya.org (work)

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