[b-hebrew] Assumptions about ANE ages that just don't work.

Markus Karzelek markus at karzelek.com
Fri Oct 19 12:09:08 EDT 2007

James C. Read wrote:
> [...] By Moses day people could expect to live to 70 years or if they were
> particularly strong up to 80 years. But such was not the case in Abram's
> day. Let's consider Genesis 11:32 where Abram is about to become the new
> family head:
> [...]
> This is how Aram started to get rich. Let's, for arguments sake, say that
> Sarah was between 50 and 70 at the time. Dividing by three that
> puts here in the 16-24 age bracket by modern standards. Nothing
> surprising about her being good looking there.

hm - you make a good point, but there are some verses which you overlooked:

let's take Gen 17,15ff as an example
 15 Then God said to Abraham, "As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call
her name Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name.
 16 "I will bless her, and indeed I will give you a son by her. Then I will
bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of peoples will come
from her."
 17 Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said in his heart, "Will
a child be born to a man one hundred years old? And will Sarah, who is
ninety years old, bear a child?"

It seems like even in the times of Abraham a man being 100 years old was
really old and an 90 years old woman has had already her menopause. At
least, that's what I think this text suggests.

kind regards
Markus Karzelek
ul. sw. Jadwigi 12
50-266 Wroclaw

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