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Historicity Edit

George Rawlinson believed Nimrod was Belus (like Nimrod and Ninus a king not attested in Mesopotamian annals, but claimed by the later Greeks to have been a king of Assyria) based on the fact Babylonian and Assyrian inscriptions bear the names [[Bel-|Bel-Template:Sic]].[1] The word Nibru in the Akkadian language of Assyria and Babylonia comes from a root meaning to 'pursue' or to make 'one flee', and as Rawlinson pointed out not only does this closely resemble Nimrod’s name but it also perfectly fits the description of Nimrod in Genesis 10: 9 as a great hunter. The Belus-Nimrod equation or link is also found in many old works such as Moses of Chorene and the Book of the Bee.[2] Nibru, in the Sumerian language, was the original name of the city of Nippur.


SemiramisEdit

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In the legend of Semiramis by Diodorus Siculus, Semiramis and Ninus[3] had a son named Ninyas. After King Ninus conquered Asia, including the Bactrians, he was fatally wounded by an arrow. After Ninus's death she reigned as queen regnant for 42 years, conquering much of Asia. Semiramis restored ancient Babylon and protected it with a high brick wall that completely surrounded the city.

According to nineteenth-century Scottish minister Alexander Hislop, he believed that Semiramis was an actual person in ancient Mesopotamia who invented polytheism and, with it, goddess worship.[4] Hislop claimed in his book The Two Babylons (1853) that Semiramis was a Queen consort and mother of Nimrod, builder of the Bible's Tower of Babel, although biblical mention of consorts to Nimrod is lacking.[5] Hislop believed Semiramis and Nimrod's incestuous male offspring to be the Akkadian deity Tammuz, a god of vegetation, as well as a life-death-rebirth deity. Hislop maintained that all divine pairings in religions, such as Isis and Osiris and Aphrodite and Cupid, are retellings of the tale of Semiramis and Tammuz. Hislop took literary references to Osiris and Orion as "seed of woman" as evidence in support of his thesis. This all led up to Hislop's central claim: that the Catholic Church is a veiled continuation of the pagan religion of ancient Babylon, the product of a millennia-old secret conspiracy founded by Semiramis and Nimrod.[5]

Criticism

Modern scholars have unanimously rejected the book's arguments as erroneous and based on a flawed understanding of the texts,[5][6] but variations of them are accepted among some groups of evangelical Protestants.[5][6]

Lester L. Grabbe has highlighted that Hislop's argument, particularly his association of Ninus with Nimrod, is based on a misunderstanding of historical Babylon and its religion. Grabbe also criticizes Hislop for portraying Semiramis as Nimrod's consort, despite the fact that she is never even mentioned in a single text associated with him, and for portraying her as the "mother of harlots", even though this is not how she is depicted in any of the texts where she is mentioned.[5] Ralph Woodrow has stated that Alexander Hislop was an exceptionally poor researcher who "picked, chose and mixed" portions of various unrelated myths from many different cultures.[7]

ReferencesEdit

  1. {{{last1}}}, {{{first1}}}. {{{pub}}}: [{{{url}}} The Seven Great Monarchies of the Ancient Eastern World], {{{publisher}}}, {{{location}}} ({{{date}}}) {{{edition}}} ed. p.{{{page}}}Template:Full citation needed
  2. Mos. Choren. 1. 6; 9; Book of the Bee, 22
  3. Ninus is a mythical king of Assyria not attested in the far older and more comprehensive Assyrian King List.
  4. {{{1}}}. [{{{2}}} {{{3}}}] ({{{4}}}) {{{5}}}
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 {{{last1}}}, {{{first1}}}. {{{pub}}}: Can a 'History of Israel' Be Written?, Continuum International Publishing Group, London, England (1997) {{{edition}}} ed. p.{{{page}}}
  6. 6.0 6.1 Mcllhenny, Albert M.. {{{pub}}}: This Is the Sun?: Zeitgeist and Religion (Volume I: Comparative Religion), {{{publisher}}}, {{{location}}} (2011) {{{edition}}} ed. p.60
  7. Ralph Woodrow "THE TWO BABYLONS: A Case Study in Poor Methodology", in Christian Research Journal volume 22, number 2 (2000) of the (Article DC187)