[b-hebrew] Akhenaten and the Hebrew Religion

MarianneLuban at aol.com MarianneLuban at aol.com
Thu Jul 22 12:06:48 EDT 2004

The mention of the toponyms "Pithom" and "Raamses" in the Book of Exodus are 
useless as historical markers for any exodus.  While it is true that the city 
in the eastern Delta, Per Ramesses Meryamun, was built by Ramesses II, it is 
already mentioned in the Book of Genesis as the Land of Raamses which was given 
to the family of Joseph in which to reside.  However, since 215 years are 
supposed to separate Joseph's arrival in Egypt and the exodus, (as written by 
Josephus, who believed in only one exodus, having taken place at the time of the 
routing of the Hyksos by king Ahmose I, ca. 1570 ) there was no king called 
Ramesses then.  Therefore, if the toponym "Raamses" is an anachronism in 
Genesis, it can just as well be in Exodus.

I have written a book called "The Exodus Chronicles:  Beliefs, Legends & 
Rumors from Antiquity Regarding the Exodus of the Jews from Egypt", the title of 
which clearly spells out what the book is all about.  Was there any indication 
from antiquity that there may have been an exodus at the time of Akhenaten?  
The answer must be "yes".  The salient point is this:  Although most of the 
ancient authors were quite adamant that the exodus had taken place in the 18th 
Dynasty (and most of these were Christians and Jews who took the Book of Exodus 
literally), there was no universal agreement on which pharaoh presided over 
the event.  And yet the strong belief in the exodus having occurred in this 
particular era led to Manetho's 18th Dynasty (and he was an Egyptian pagan who 
labored under no Biblical constraints) being hopelessly distorted by the 
subsequent historians who strove mightily to adjust the successions and regnal lengths 
within the dynasty to fit the numbers suggested in the Bible to their own 
theories--even drafting pharaohs from Manetho's 19th Dynasty (which included 
Ramesses II) into the 18th to make up the deficit.

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