[b-hebrew] Year 14

Yigal Levin leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il
Tue Oct 27 02:28:15 EDT 2009

Jim, very briefly: 


Despite your efforts, the geography of Gen. 14:2-12 clearly relates to the
Trans-Jordan, Dead Sea and southern regions of the land. So this is where
QD$ would be as well. There is a debate on whether there were one southern
Kadesh (=Barnea) or two, a Kadesh and a Kadesh Barnea. I support the former
opinion, but in any case even if there were two they would be in the south.
The accepted identification of Kadesh Barnea is at Ein Quderat, south-east
of Gaza. Archaeologically, there is a large Iron-Age fortress at the site
(albeit with no sign saying "welcome to Kadesh-Barnea"). The geography is
clear, and has nothing to do with the 14th century kingdom of Amurru. By the
way, the equation of "Amurru" with biblical "Amorite" (Emori) is not as
certain as is often assumed.


Now, is there any "secular history" evidence of these events? No. Just like
the entire Patriarchal narratives. This does not bother me. Obviously it
does bother you. If making up your own history and geography works for you -
be my guest, but not on this list.


Yigal Levin



From: JimStinehart at aol.com [mailto:JimStinehart at aol.com] 
Sent: Monday, October 26, 2009 4:03 PM
To: leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il; b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Year 14


Dear Prof. Levin:
Is it on-topic for this list to ask a question about your identification of
QD$ at Genesis 14: 7?  In your published article, you state that the QD$ at
Genesis 14: 7 is a site 60 miles south of Gaza.  If so, that would seem to
be a mythical element of Genesis 14: 1-11, since no historical invaders from
the north would likely waste their time 60 miles south of Gaza, where there
was nothing to loot, and powerful Egypt loomed nearby.
In support of your published assertion, is the name "QD$" or "Kadesh-barnea"
or some similar name attested in secular history, prior to the common era,
60 miles south of Gaza, or anywhere else in that general vicinity?
Approaching the same question from a different angle, on what basis do you
seem certain that the QD$ at Genesis 14: 7 is not historical QD$, namely
Qadesh of Upper Galilee?  If we look at historical factors (though this may
be what you negatively characterize as being my "pseudo-historical
reconstructions"), the presence of Amorites in the same sentence (Genesis
14: 7) strengthens that interpretation.  Amorites are historically attested
near QD$ of Upper Galilee, in the Bekka Valley, e.g. the Amorite princeling
author of Amarna Letter EA 175 from the Bekka Valley.  By contrast,
historically no Amorites are attested 60 miles south of Gaza.  QD$ of Upper
Galilee is attested by the name "QD$", or slight variants thereon, in the
following three Late Bronze Age secular historical sources:  (i) the
mid-15th century BCE Thutmose III list, (ii) the Amarna Letters, and (iii)
with the identical spelling "QD$", in Ugaritic literature.  Unlike a site 60
miles south of Gaza, historical QD$ of Upper Galilee would be a logical
target for Bronze Age invaders from the north.  Moreover, based on Amarna
Letter EA 175, we know that in Year 14 (the original subject of this
thread), Amorite cities in the Bekka Valley were set on fire by the Hittites
and three local allies.  Based on my lifetime's work, that is my proposed
historical understanding of Genesis 14: 7.
*       *       *
All of us on the b-hebrew list, especially those of us who share your
passion for identification of Biblical geographical sites (one of your
scholarly specialties), would learn a lot if you would identify a secular
historical inscription, pre-dating the common era, of the name "QD$", or
some close variant thereon, at or near a site 60 miles south of Gaza.  We
would also appreciate learning from you your objective reasons (other than
the medieval pointing done in the Middle Ages, which is inherently suspect)
for rejecting historical QD$ of Upper Galilee as being the "QD$" at Genesis
14: 7.
Jim Stinehart
Evanston, Illinois

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