Date of Moses, was: [b-hebrew] Re: PS /g/

Peter Kirk peterkirk at
Thu Nov 18 17:42:40 EST 2004

On 18/11/2004 21:54, Uri Hurwitz wrote:

> */Peter Kirk <peterkirk at>/* wrote:
>     :
>     ...But where did the IA I date come from? "
>       Sorry, I don't understand your question, Peter. Every hand
>     book of Syrian-Palestinian archaeology  explains how the date was
>     derived, and why most connect it with early Israeli settlement in
>     the highlands, by whatever name they call it. (Compare Deaver's"
>     Proto- Israelites ")
>       Uri
I don't understand your problem. If these books are assuming the 
scholarly consensus of an Exodus in the time of Rameses II, they are 
automatically rejecting the 15th century date that we are discussing - 
unless anyone dates Rameses II as high as the 15th century, which I 
don't think anyone does.

I am well aware that there is a problem with this dating of the Exodus 
and Conquest, that there is no evidence of destruction of Jericho or 
other cities at this period, at the very end of the Late Bronze or the 
start of the Iron Age. There are also problems with the Egyptian 
evidence or lack of it. And it is also contradicted by the Bible itself, 
which gives 480 years from the Exodus to Solomon which in itself implies 
a 15th century Exodus. In short, there is no evidence at all for the 
theory of an Exodus at the time of Rameses II except for the name Ramses 
in Exodus 1:11 etc - and by that argument Gen 47:11 implies that Joseph 
also lived in or after the time of Rameses I if not Rameses II. In fact 
if any theory about Moses is absurd, it is that the Pharaoh he opposed 
was Rameses II.

So, let's for the moment drop the idea of an Exodus under Rameses II and 
a Conquest at the start of the Iron Age. If there was no Exodus and 
Conquest then, did they perhaps happen at another time? The biblical 
dates suggest the 15th century. There is evidence of widespread 
destruction of Jericho etc at the end of MB IIB. Could that have been 
the Conquest? Do the dates tie up? Not quite on conventional chronology, 
but they are not far out. And where would the Exodus then fit into 
Egyptian history? The expulsion of the Hyksos (Karl's preference)? The 
arrival of the Hyksos (as proposed by David Rohl)? These also require 
some chronological adjustments, but the evidence for the conventional 
chronology is actually very weak.

Peter Kirk
peter at (personal)
peterkirk at (work)

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