[b-hebrew] Josiah's book of the Law

Yitzhak Sapir yitzhaksapir at gmail.com
Thu Aug 4 08:16:27 EDT 2005

Peter Kirk wrote:
> Is this list of Phoenician month names intended to be in order, and if
> so, starting at what point in the year? If so, we have a contradiction
> with the biblical record. In 1 Kings 8:2 Ethanim is the 7th month, and
> in 6:38 Bul is the 8th month (and counting from Nisan is assumed), so
> these two months are successive; but in the Phoenician calendar they are
> four months apart. Do you know of any resolution of this, except for
> suggesting that the biblical text is confused?

My understanding is that it isn't in any particular order.  Note the wide
range of places from which these inscriptions are taken.  Some of the
months are suggested to be perhaps equivalent to other known months
from other ANE calendars.  For example, )tnm may be the equivalent of
Nuzi month Attana$(we) which perhaps is a cognate of Alalakh month
Attana/Attanatu.  This month is listed as the seventh Nuzi month. (p. 369
in Cultic Calendars of the ANE).  Perhaps yrx xyr is derived from the 
widely attested month of the Xiaru festival, ("donkey festival"), from which
I think the month Iyyar is derived.  I guess this would indicate a borrowing 
of the month name by Phoenicians since I understand the Hebrew (and 
Phoenician?) word in this case is (ayyir.  Also, the month "mp)" occurs 
in a reference "yrx mp) lpny" which may indicate an intercalated month,
which is usuallythe 6th or 12th month (but there are exceptions).  I note
that in some of the above transcriptions I use "yrh".  I meant "yrx".

Yitzhak Sapir

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