Today I was watching a DVD produced by the BBC on the Rosetta stone and the consequent race that developed between the brilliant Frenchman John Francois Champollion and the competitive English scientist Thomas Young to read and understand ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. An overall wonderfully produced show, not some recount documenting key events, but a story driven period piece with an eye and detail to attention, one episode within a series of films on the history of Egyptian discovery.
John Francois Champollion at an early age had mastered many languages (Latin, Greek, Hebrew, Aramaic, Sanskrit, Avestan, Pahlavi, Arabic, Syriac, Chaldean, Persian and Ge’ez including to his native French) and would eventually win the race of decythering the gylphs and go on to visit Egypt to read the hieroglyphics at first hand, the first man to do so since the understanding of the script had gradually fell into disuse and decline from the beginning of roman times. It is said that the Christian church viewed his discovery as potentially dangerous to some of the fundamental doctrines of Christianity and that any effort to suppress his findings would be welcomed by church officials. History seemed on a precipice, how quickly his findings would come to the fore of popular thinking would be timed by how long he could keep his discoveries secret, which would remain unknown till the time of his death, this however was an imposition made through an agreement for funding on his expedition, where “he was forbidden to publish anything contravening the Biblical account of history”.
During this time he would privately make records of his findings within his diary, these challenges to perceived Christian history were largely concerning “details of monuments and tombs pre-dating the supposed date of the “Great Flood” of Noahs time, once this information was made public knowledge the bible and its authority was surely undermined, scientists proceeded with enthusiasm at the possibilities this represented, as the faithful tried best to combat it. This had me thinking? Is their a consensus on the biblical and historical data for dating for Noah’s flood? What was Champollion’s findings exactly? What did the church have to say in response to his claims? I am simply surprised that such matters haven’t come to my attention before? Because I find the whole ordeal fascinating!
So having the internet at my finger tips I decided to find a quick answer and save time in an effort to not reinvent some study on this subject that may have been covered numerous times already, thus I began my search. So, do Champollion’s discoveries reveal the existence of Egyptian culture prior to the accepted dates for the biblical account of the great flood and therefore deduce the bible as inaccurate and void of historical truth? Christian thought and deduction uses the historical timeline centred by BC & AD, this is used in an effort to calculate history and biblical events.
In answersingenesis.com an understanding of the calculations is shared, here is their breakdown “ Genesis 11:10 tells us that Shem was 100 years old, 2 years after the Flood had finished. When was Noah’s Flood? 1,981 years to AD 0 plus 967 years to the founding of Solomon’s Temple plus 480 years to the end of the Exodus plus 430 years to the promise to Abraham plus 75 years to Abraham’s birth plus 350 years to Shem’s 100th birthday plus 2 years to the Flood. The Biblical data places the Flood at 2304 BC +/- 11 years. This date is, as expected, in conflict with secular archaeology which regards the Flood as either local or a myth and the Biblical chronologies as irrelevant or inaccurate.” And “The placing of a catastrophic global flood in the year 2304 BC means that all civilizations discovered by archaeology must fit into the last 4,285 years.” No mean feat huh? Full article here >>>> http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v4/i1/noahs_flood.asp In the many articles in which I have read the calculation of these years, not every one has shared the same calendar throughout the history of our many cultures, so dates will vary slightly, though not greatly, a decade or century here or there? In WikiAnswers.com the following is shared; “The bible clearly states that in the 2nd month on the 17th day God sealed Noah inside when he was 600 years old. and when Noah was 601 years old in the 2nd month and the 27th day the ground was dry and he went out of the ark. I will work through the dates but others much more versed than I put the flood at 4990bc. exactly 6023 years after creation.” “According to the Biblical chronology it was around 2300 BC, that is around 1700 years after Creation in around 4000 BC. Many of the patriarchs listed above were living at the same time.”
Interesting stuff huh?
So what was Champollion’s discovery that threatened the flood? Champollion deciphered “the tomb belonging to a man called Menofre who was Royal hairdresser to a King called Djedkare – a King who lived during the fifth dynasty, one that predated Noah’s Flood and, according to the Church and the Bible, could not have existed.” Taken from the BBC. Before this time I had not heard of a bloke called Menofre, I admit I am not an Egyptologist and have a basic knowledge on such things but so far I can only find that Menofre was also known as Memphis or Menji in coptic, which was the capital for the united kingdom of upper and lower Egypt, from Old Kingdom times (2650 – 2134 BC).
So far the only information I can find on this Menofre fella and his tomb is the many online regurgitations based on the BBC documentary of Champollion, the knowledge on Menofre seems indeed slim? Surely some one has discussed the finer notes of Champollion on this subject?
On the The Quodlibeta Forum, user “Humphreyclarke” posed the following question; “I am very suspicious about the claim the church placed restrictions of the Franco-Tuscan expedition and I can’t find a single source for it anywhere. The most likely source for it would be Champollion’s Egyptian diaries for which the first English translation appeared in 2001.”
Only translated in 2001, gee, what’s the hold up huh? And where are the sources for Champollion’s dating analysis for Monfre’s tomb, no where can I find it? At the moment the claims to me are suspect ……… till someone can show me otherwise and my mind boggles as to how such information is authoritively heralded as reliable whilst Champollion the great thinker’s diary entries remain so hidden?
If I find some atheist with an axe to grind and in turn has tainted the BBC production or some other dude who has hidden the truth in favour of controversy over fact, how sad a casualty it should be and blight on what is otherwise a great show!
I don’t care if you be Christian, Scientist or Atheist………….. “I want the truth!”
WHATIS THE TRUTH?