CHRONOLOGY & CATASTROPHISM WORKSHOP (10 issues, 1986-1990). ARTICLE ABSTRACTS/EXTRACTS

 
Chronology & Catastrophism WORKSHOP 1986:1                       Click here for cost
 
Ekron and Gath - The Location of the Interior Cities of the Philistines Reconsidered, by Terry Lawrence
 
Ekron was the northernmost of the five major Philistine cities (Joshua 13:3 and I Samuel 6:17). Together with Gath it was located in the interior rather than near the coast. Judges 1:18 relates that it was captured by the tribe of Judah but in later sources Ekron appears as one of the pentapolis of the Philistine confederation. After the Ark of the Covenant, which was captured at Ebenezar, had brought misfortune to the Philistine cities that received it, the people of Ekron refused to admit it and proposed returning it to Israelite territory (I Samuel 5:1ff, 6:16-17). Proposals for the location of Gath have included the British survey team of Palestine placing Gath at Tell es Safi; W. F. Albright arguing for Tell el Areni .......... G. E. Wright was driven even further south by the same logic that had caused Albright and Mazar to look for a southern Gath. ............... Since none of the proposals seem to be 100% satisfactory a fresh outlook is needed ...........
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The Waters that Never Really Parted, by Roger Ashton

George F. Weinert has worked with the idea of interplanetary tidal force to account for the parting of the waters of Exodus ch. XIV. He has proposed a body of water 20 km long, 5 km wide, and 20 m deep, and an approach to Earth of a planetary visitor, proto-Venus or pseudo-Venus, to a proximity of 3.13 Earth diameters.  ...............  Physical evidence is at variance with the closest approach of only 6.26 Earth radii, .............
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Requirements for the Convection Cell, by D. A. Slade

In 1960, Harry Hess of Princeton University published a landmark paper about sea-floor spreading, titled 'Geopeotry' - a title actually coined by Robert S. Deitz, then of the U. S. Navy Electronics Laboratory, who wrote a paper about the same time. Hess was developing a hypothesis on the vexed question of continental drift, the idea of which has had a stormy reception in scientific circles, from what may have been its first inception when Sir Francis Bacon noticed .....................to the modern upsurge started by Taylor in 1910 and Wegener in 1915. In his Principles of Physical Geology written in 1929, Arthur Holmes first propsed that mantle convection currents were responsible for continental drift; and lacking any physical evidence, there it rested until Hess provided a convincing hypothesis .....................
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Ninsianna and Ramesside Star Observations, by Michael G. Reade

Comparison of the Egyptian Ramesside Star Tables with the Babylonian (Ammizaduga) Venus tablets suggests that both relate to the same celestial disturbance. Integration of the information recorded on both leads to recognition of a discontinuity in the precession of the equinoxes of about 2 months (= 60o displacement in longitude of the vernal equinox) and a suggestion as to how 4 and 8 year 'festival' cycles could have originated .........
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Chronology & Catastrophism WORKSHOP 1986:2                       Click here for cost 

Abraham in Egypt, by E. J. Sweeney

Abraham, according to Hebrew tradition, was the founding father of Israel. To him, it was said, God promised a progeny more numerous than the stars. A native of Ur in Mesopotamia, he was told to leave his home and his father's house for a land that would belong to his descendants forever............ Over the years a great deal of debate has gone into the story of Abraham. It has always been clear that he must have been - if he existed at all - an important character. .... the Arabs, recognised him as their forebear; and indeed there is good evidence to suggest that Arab traditions regarding him were not derived from the Hebrews. Modern scholarship now generally agrees that Abraham  was a real person. .....................'....There are, to be sure folkloristic motifs in the stories. But these belong to the development of the narative, not its central figures - who are portrayed most realistically' [1].  Thus, Abraham and his tribe seem to have existed: But the question is when? ...............................
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The Land(s) of Punt, by Daniel Kline

Velikovsky's reconstruction of Egyptian chronology places Hatshepsut on the throne of Egypt as a contemporary of King Solomon. As Velikovsky has pointed out, [1] Hatshepsut may well have been the Queen of Sheba whom Josephus described as the Queen of Egypt and Ethiopia [2]. This theory was forcefully supported by Danielius [3].  .......................... Unfortunately, although the current view that Punt was in or near Somaliland is only tentatively accepted by Egyptologists, [4] there are a number of cogent reasons which I will cite below why Palestine is an even less likely candidate for the land of Hatshepsut's ancestors. It must be kept in mind, however, that even if Punt were not Palestine, the identification of Hatshepsut with the Queen of Sheba is not ruled out. The voyage to Punt may have occurred in addition to a visit to King Solomon. .....
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Rehabilitation of Censorinus, by G. W. van Oosterhout

[Donovan] Courville's paper 'Limitations of astronomical dating methods' [1] only recently came to my attention. The author's conclusion that Censorinus' text on the helical rising of Sirius is worthless surprised me extraordinarly and I [can]not believe that this conclusion is correct. It is not attractive to criticise a colleague but as the error, apparently, is spreading, [2] I cannot let it pass without comment. That the conclusion is incorrect becomes evident if we compare Courville's translation with the Latin original. .............
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Computed Planetary Orbits and the Babylonian Observations of Venus, by Eric W. Crew

The Babylonian inscribed tablets, sometimes described as the Ammizaduga or Ninsianna tablets, ...... found in the ruins of Nineveh, record the disappearances and re-appearances of the planet Venus over a period of about 21 years. Computer programmes were compiled to show the orbits of Earth and Venus in a simplified co-planar model. The times of inferior and superior conjunctions were obtained and the intervals between similar conjunctions (synodic periods) [were] plotted against time. The computer orbit of Venus was modified until the calculated synodic periods corresponded closely to those derived from the Babylonian records. The results strongly support the view that these records are generally valid and provide important indications concerning the origin and history of Venus. .......
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Chronology & Catastrophism WORKSHOP 1987:1                         Click here for cost 

Tektites, Wildfires and the Extinction of the Dinosaurs, by Trevor Palmer

Several recent discoveries have strengthened the argument that a global catastrophe occurred 65 million years ago (by conventional dating), bringing to a close the Cretaceous Period and wiping out the dinosaurs and many other groups of living creatures.  As discussed in SIS Review VII:A, pp. 9-20, the Alvarez team produced the first scientifically acceptable evidence of the cause, in the form of an iridium abundance anomaly at the Cretaceous-Tertiary (C-T) boundary. This could have resulted from the impact of an asteroid or comet, or from volcanic action. Which was it? ..........
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Earthquakes in the Early Irish Tradition, by Emmet J. Sweeney

In a compendium of extremely old traditions, compiled at various periods during the medieval era, the Irish claimed to trace the history of their country back to the earliest times. A whole mass of literature and genealogical material, much of which was transcribed from earlier documents, has survived. The most famous of these works - the 'historical' books - have names that are familiar to modern students of Irish history: these include the Lebor Gabala - (or Book of Invasions), the Annals of the Four Masters, the Chronicon Scotorum, and the Book of Lecan. All of these works agree on a number of basic points. They trace the first settlement of the island to a period before the universal deluge. The leader of this settlement is popularly named Ceasair, and it is quite clear that this tradition represents a medieval concoction based on Hebrew and Classical material. Other traditions, however, derive much more of their inspiration from native sources. .................  in contrast to the apparent accuracy of such details in the native tradition, there are a number of facts about these accounts which have always seemed totally inexplicable in any real, historical terms; for the actual invasion of Ireland, it was said, was accompanied by the most extraordinary events of nature. Most of the invading fleet was destroyed by a tremendous tempest before it could reach the country. In the Lebor Gabala this storm is imaginatively portrayed  ............                   _________________________________________________________________________________

Problems with the Morning Star, by Jill Abery

Velikovsky makes much of the planet Venus as the Morning Star, particularly in respect of its worship as an object of terror by peoples round the world [1]. However, he often appears to use the name Morning Star as a generic term and does not dwell overmuch on the dual aspects of Venus as both Morning and Evening Stars. This duality has subsequently been discussed and its importance emphasised by others. Peter James has argued that Velikovsky was mistaken in his identification of Greek Aphrodite as the Moon, and that Aphrodite, as goddess of love, was in fact the Greek Evening Star while Athena was the warlike Morning Star aspect of Venus [2]. ............ When we turn to the myths of Mesoamerica the picture is not so clear cut. The ancient Maya are well known for their obsession with the planet Venus. John Henderson writes that Venus, to the Maya, had many aspects. 'Most are malevolent and dangerous, particularly when the planet first rises as the Morning Star.' [5]  ......
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A Critical Re-Appraisal of the Book of Genesis, by Damien Mackey, Frank Calneggia and Paul Money
 
This working paper, based on the theses of P. J. Wiseman and Professor A. S. Yahuda, aims to introduce the reader to an approach to the study of the book of Genesis which is altogether different from the one usually encountered in modern biblical commentaries. It is not different for difference's sake: the writers are simply convinced that a synthesis of Wiseman's and Yahuda's brilliant ideas succeeds in unnravelling the 'problem' of the book of Genesis! This, we must add, is not a problem inherent in Genesis itself, but one created by the Documentary Hypothesis - that method of form criticism originationg it seems, with the Frenchman, Jean Astruc (d. 1766), and later elaborated by biblical critics such as Graf (d. 1869) and Julius Wellhausen (d. 1918). ...................
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The Parting of the Waters of the Red Sea, by Ragnar Forshufvud

In C&C Workshop 1986:1, p. 5, Roger Ashton criticises an attempt by George F. Weinert to explain the Parting of the Waters as a consequence of an interplanetary tidal force. I agree with most of what Roger Ashton says, but not with his title ('The Waters that Never Really Parted'), nor with his conclusion ('The event is therefore fabulous.')  All that you really can conclude is that the waters did not part the way Weinert thought they did. In my opinion all attempts at explaining the Parting of the Waters as being a result of tidal action are doomed to failure. The forces that can be produced by static electricity are also much too small. The electromagnetic approach, however, is much more promising. What Exodus 14 describes is, in fact, exactly what would happen if an extremely large telluric current were flowing east-west under the Sea of Passage ...............
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 Chronology & Catastrophism WORKSHOP 1987:2                       Click here for cost 

A Critical Re-Appraisal of the Book of Genesis (Part 2, Moses as Compiler of the Book of Genesis), by Damien Mackey, Frank Calneggia and Paul Money

In Part One we looked at the structure of the Book of Genesis, and found that the key to structure of the first book of Scripture was to be found in the repetitious phrase, 'These are the generations ('Toledoth') of ...' . Now, in Part Two, we shall be examining Genesis from the linguistic point of view. It will be shown that Egyptian exerted considerable influence on the formation and development of Hebrew as a literary language. The Graf-Wellhausen system has dominated the field of biblical research for more than a century, ...... Consequently the entire Pentateuch is considered by scholars to be a late product - even those parts which deal with the 'Egyptian Epoch' of Israelite history (i.e. from the Patriarch Joseph to the Exodus). .......
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The Late Pleistocene Extinctions: No Evidence for Platos's Atlantis, by Trevor Palmer

If, at a party, you were told a rather lengthy story by an old man who said he had learned it at the age of 10 from his 90 year old grandfather, whose father had learned it from a friend who had picked it up during a tour abroad, would you be inclined to believe every word, or even any susbstantial part of it? Your doubts about the reliability of the speaker would no doubt be increased even further when he had to stop and think at one stage, admitting that he did not remember the story very well. Nevertheless, this is what Plato would have us believe was the source of his information about Atlantis. ............ Platos's pupil, Aristotle, did not believe a word of this, implying that it had all been invented to provide a framework for a discussion of Plato's ideas about society and politics [1]. ........... According to Timaeus (24a), these events took place 9,000 years before the time of Solon, i.e. about 11,500 years ago. Interestingly, that is about the time when the Pleistocene epoch, the most recent ice age, came to an end. Extinctions of animal species had occurred at intervals throughout the Pleistocene, but were particularly marked at or near its conclusion. ........
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Thera: Chronology at a Crossroads?, by Bernard Newgrosh

During the second millennium BC an enormous volcanic explosion laid waste the island of Thera (Santorini) in the eastern Mediterranean Sea. The fall-out in the form of ashes is detectable throughout large areas of the eastern Mediterranean, the Aegean region, and on the island of Crete. Pottery of a type known as Late Minoan IA was found straddling the lava deposits on Thera, and archaeologists have used this pottery as a means for dating the major second millennium BC eruption. The Late Minoan IA period has thus been dated to 1550-1500 BC, and the eruption of Thera dated to 1500 BC. This dating, it must be stressed, is purely an archaeological one. ...........Until recently, then, the eruption of Thera at c. 1500 BC has had to be accepted on the basis of archaeological evidence alone, and without any independent confirmation. ........... Newer radiocarbon studies, using organic materials derived from short-lived plants ........ data from tree-ring growth ............... data from the southern Greenland ice core (Dye 3) ............. The accuracy and refinement of the new ice core dating tool is very impressive ................ However, there are obvious problems .........  
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Chronology & Catastrophism WORKSHOP 1988:1                     Click here for cost 

The Molecular Revolution, by Trevor Palmer

The last few years have seen considerable changes in our understanding of human evolution, as acknowledged by the Yale palaeoanthropologist, David Pilbeam, in an article in Scientific American [1]. In particular, it seems that the hominid line split off to form a separate strand of the hominoid line much later than previously realised. Hominoids include all existing humans and apes, together with their ape-like ancestors; the term hominoid is restricted to hominoids who walk (or walked) erect, i.e. those of the genera Australopithecus or Homo, of which we (members of the specia Homo sapiens) are the only survivors. Pilbeam asks, 'Why was the hominoid fossil record misinterpreted, ...............
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Support for Heinsohn's Chronology is Misplaced, by Lester J. Mitcham
 
Emmet J. Sweeney is a bold man. Having applauded that section of Velikovsky's proposed historical revision - in C&C Workshop 1986:2, p. 38) which has been dismissed by the revision's supporters and critics alike as a piece of fiction, we now find him in favour of an equally implausible set of theses. I am referring to Sweeney's review of Gunnar Heinshohn's 'Mesopotamian Historiography' in C&C Workshop 1987:2, pp. 20-22. In rushing to defend the Heinsohn theories, Sweeney demonstrates his superficial grasp of the subject in general and his total disregard for the evidence of the Ancient Chronicles and Royal Inscriptions in particular. These must form the basis of any attempt to revise Mesopotamian chronology [1]. In fact one is inclined to suspect that Sweeney must be unaware of texts such as those compiled by Grayson and Brinkman. .....
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Earth-Venus Contacts in the Late 3rd Millennium BC, by Bernard Newgrosh
 
IOne of the most frequently criticised aspects of Dr. Velikovsky's Worlds in Collision thesis is his identification of the gods of ancient times with planets, thus Ishtar with Venus, Nergal with Mars, etc. [1]  Velikovsky's assertion that the planetary gods caused catastrophes on Earth has been equally strongly criticised, and has been stoutly defended. However, one major assumption of his thesis has almost gone unchallenged, namely that there was just the one epoch of 'Venus catastrophes' (in the times of Moses and Joshua). For in Worlds in Collision Velikovsky collects many examples of Venus goddesses causing destruction but without, in the vast majority of instances, being able to show that these relate to c. 1500 BC and not an earlier or a later date. If, as I have suggested on a number of occasions, the Venus deity visited catastrophe on Earth prior to 1500 BC then the matter of ascribing a date of composition to the relevant mythological texts becomes a crucial issue. But the dating of texts can be a very difficult proposition. ......
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Chronology & Catastrophism WORKSHOP 1988:2                         Click here for cost 

Planetary Identities: I, the Concept of Deity, by Dwardu Cardona

..................The debate Boyles instigated with his original comments concerning the planetary identities of the ancient deities [4] has since drawn Derek Shelley-Pearce [5] and Bernard Newgrosh [6], besides myself, into the fray. . ..........   a measure of recapitualtion is necessary for the proper understanding of the issues involved. But mostly, the debate in question gives me a chance to introduce some new material ...............
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The Israelites and the 18th Dynasty, by Anthony H. Rees

There are a number of traditions connecting Joseph to the rule of a king of Egypt called Magron, and to his father and grandfather, who are both called Pharaoh [1]. These enable us to construct the framework for  a tentative chronology for the Israelite 'sojourn' in Egypt.  .................... 
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Abraham and Phallicism, by George R. Harvey

Two seemingly unrelated events occurred during the biblical Abraham's lifetime which were strictly phallic in nature: the first scriptural recording of the religious practice of circumcision and the drama at Sodom concerning a male homosexual act. Proponents of Dr. Immanuel Velikovsky's theory of an upset solar system give many instances of religious ceremonies which can easily be explained as the attempt by a terrified people to appease the gods or angels by imitating or otherwise relating to the astronomical phenomena they witnessed [1]. I wish to propose a similar explanation for the two phallic events. These many have been two different, already old, ways of trying to relate to the heavens after Saturn's loss of the column which appeared to have reached from Earth to Saturn. The heavens needed to be assuaged in Abraham's day because of the obvious danger from above which was to culminate in Sodom's destruction. I lean towards the arguments of those who believe Venus was the agent of Sodom's destruction and the source of the sulphur which rained from heaven. .............
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Before the Greeks: Professor Davis' Cretan Decipherments, by Alan Dilnot

In 1952 Michael Ventris in association with John Chadwick announced the decipherment of the 'Mycenaean' Linear B script as Greek. This discovery, which compelled a radical revision of our understanding of Greek pre-history, also raised hopes that the closely related Linear A script might soon be deciphered. Chadwick, in the Postscript to The Decipherment of Linear B, reported that 'two plausible theories' had emerged: the one, that the Linear A language belonged to the Hittite group; the other, that it had 'Semitic connections' [1].  Amongst the supporters of the Semitic theory was Professor Simon Davis of Witwatersand. Subsequently, however, Professor Davis became a proponent of the Hittite theory ......... Davis' work has received little, and generally unsympathetic, attention. ......... I believe that Davis' work has not received due attention or justice, but it is not my purpose here to reproduce his arguments or to describe his working methods. I shall, however, summarise the kinds of texts his decipherment concerns before proceeding to report and comment upon his conclusions .......
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Ancient Calendars (a criticicism of the Rene Gallant talk extract in C&C Workshop 1987:1), by Dick Atkinson
 
[Rene] Gallant covers a lot of ground. Part of his talk reflects the Thom/Hawkins/Hoyle attitude to supposed megalithic astronomy. Another area dealt with is the history of calendars. The third aspect is the supposed light thrown on catastrophic theories by ancient calendars. It is suggested that calendars were needed for four purposes, roughly: agricultural, religious, administrative and historical. Gallant [spoke] vaguely of 'the days that pass before the next operation in the fields'. The picture which might spring to mind is of a modern farmer consulting his almanac or specialist diary before spraying for potato blight. This was not the approach of Neolithic farmers ...............
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Chronology & Catastrophism WORKSHOP 1989:1                        Click here for cost 

Planetary Identities: II, The Mythology of Homer, by Dwardu Cardona

Zeus, Hades and Poseidon - This, the second part of my amiable dispute with Chris Boyles, turns now to some of his more specific objections. Concerning the planetary identifications I had earlier presented [1], Boyles has stated that my 'deductions are hardly proof of the origins of all deities' [2], but the truth is that I never presented my 'deductions' as such. ................. I would therefore like to challenge Boyles into naming one such major deity who, in his opinion, does not owe his or her origin to the personification of a planetary body or a planet-induced phenomenon.   Actually, in a way, Boyles has already tried to meet this challenge. Thus, in his reply to Derek-Shelley-Pearce, ..................
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The Ramesside Star Tables and Reade's Venus Tablet Reconstruction, by John D. Weir

The Ramesside Star Tables give the diurnal motion of the stars over a complete year but the observations after the first three months are not consistent with the calculated data and Michael Reade pointed this out in 1979 [1], giving his tentative conclusions as follows:

              That the axis of the earth was forced out of its hitherto normal alignment with the stars at a season after the
              summer solstice, that the disturbance was a sustained one rather than a shock one, and that it was
              associated with an acceleration  in the spin rate of the earth.
 
....................................................The Venus Tablets are, of course, a record of Venus observations with the date-formula of the Hammurabi dynasty King Ammisaduqa. Huber has dated them on astronomical grounds as from 1702 to 1681 BC [5]. However, if one assumes that the year-name was inserted by a scribe at a much later date, once can reject Humber's date and, in theory, make the Venus Tablets co-incide with the Ramesside Star Tables [6]. Reade's Venus Tablet reconstruction differs from previous enquiries .................
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The Hebrew Patriarchs in Greek Tradition Part I), by Anthony H. Rees

In C&C Workshop 1988:2, pp. 7-9, this author presented a paper titled 'The Israelites and the 18th Dynasty'. It showed how some Jewish traditions could be construed as pointing towards an Israelite sojourn in 18th Dynasty Egypt. ..................................... The prime purpose of this paper, however, is not just to form links with Egyptian history and chronology, but also to seek links between Hebrew patriarchal traditions and those concerning the contemporary Greek kings. ...............

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Punctuated Darwinism?, by Jill Abery

Darwin's theory of the origin of new species by the natural selection of small variations has received much just and detailed criticism in recent years. Even the discovery of the mechanism of inheritance and the subsequent development of the science of genetics, which at first appeared to give Darwinism a solid foundation, has not come up with any proof that it is possible to change one species into another. Rather, it would seem to indicate that the role of natural selection is to weed out any individuals which vary too much from a species' norm. Indeed, modern genetics, armed with computers, actually contains the seeds of the ultimate argument against neo-Darwinism. Most arguments for and against evolution by natural selection are theorectical or based on negative evidence such as the absence of any missing link fossils. ............ 
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Chronology & Catastrophism WORKSHOP 1989:2                    Click here for cost 

Venus Tablet Anomalies, by John D. Weir

The Babylonian baked clay Venus Tablets are damaged copies of a twenty-one year sequence giving the day after settings of the planet Venus and the rising dates with astrological omens added. Twenty-one years is the reign lenght of King Ammisaduqa of the Hammurabi Dynasty. Since his 8th date-formula is found after Year 8 of the Venus Tablets, the record is thought to have originated in Ammisaduqa's reign.................... Having thus established the probable arrangement of the tablet, we can fill in the recorded observations -  but omitting those doubtful ones with displaced invisibility periods. We then find that most of the genuine observations are grouped together at the top of the tablet, or the tablet was broken and only bits of it survived. The logical deduction is that we have today only part of the Old Babylonian sequence: the gaps were filled in at a later date, probably by the Kassites. ..................
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Directed Mutation in Bacteria, by Jill Abery

Very occasionally an entrenched dogma within the scientific establishement is challenged, not by a crank writing in green ink from a private address, as Phillip Gething describes those offering new theories from outside academia [1], but by reputable researchers with papers even sometimes published in Nature. The reaction can be varied. In the case of Rupert Sheldrake's theory of formative causation [2], Nature unpenned the Furies and declared his book fit for burning. In the case of a French researcher's work which seemd to prove that there was something behind homeopathy [3], Nature sent in a team of debunkers including a magician. In both cases New Scientist was rather more open-minded but both subjects have since dropped out of sight.  More recently Nature has published a work which strikes at the roots of modern Darwinism and raises the spectre of that old arch enemy, Lamarckism [4]. ..........
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Good Medicine, by David Salkeld

In Worlds in Collision, Velikovsky indicates that clouds which brought the 'Shadow of Death' upon the world were unusually fragrant [1]. In the subsequent section he equates what Hesiod and Homer call 'ambrosia' with the manna of the Israelites, and says that these substances were used as ointments. His authority for ambrosia is the Illiad xiv 170ff; Rieu's translation says that Here (Hera) began her preparations to seduce Zeus by 'removing every stain from her body with ambrosia, and anointing herself with the delicious and imperishable olive-oil she uses. It was perfumed ...'  Thus Homer seems to make ambrosia a skin-purifying agent, whereas fragrance is associated with the magical olive oil. But Jewish legend directly associates curative properties with a sweet-smelling substance. 'At the same time [as the Shekinah dwelt among the people of Israel] God caused the earth to exhale and send aloft a healing fragrance, which cured them of all their diseases' [2]. This substance, manna, 'also replaced perfume for [the Israelites], for it shed an excellent fragrance upon those who ate it' [3]. It 'was like coriander seed, white; and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey (Exodus 16:31). Thus though mainly thought of as food, manna seems also to have had health-preserving and sickness-relieving qualities. ............. 
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Chronology & Catastrophism WORKSHOP 1990:1                                            Click here for cost 

Solomon, The Exodus and Abraham Related to Egyptian Chronology, by R. M. Porter

It is the purpose of this article to recap on some of the proposed revisions and then to propose yet another, which is mainly a synthesis of earlier ideas. The title of the article stems from a belief that, if Solomon (and of course his son Rehoboam and their Egyptian contemporary Shishak) and the Exodus and Abraham can be correctly synchronised with the history of Egypt, then everything else will fall into place. It is not the purpose of this article to prove anything but to propose a scheme which should be considered and tested against the evidence. Nor is the article attempting to disprove the conventional scheme ................... Throughout this article it is assumed that the Old Testament is a useful historical source .............
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Celestial Mechanics of the Half-century Venus Interval, by Robert B. Driscoll
 
Immanuel Velikovsky deduced two close approaches of Venus to Earth separated by an interval of 52 years (archives of pre-Columbian Mexico) or of 50 years (Jubilee year of the Israelites) [1]. Ragnar Forshufvud showed that the larged stretched orbit of Velikovsky's Venus could have been shrunk and circularised gradually, over several centuries before and after its encounters with Earth, by the aerodynamic drag on its extended atmosphere  .................
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On Dating the Trojan War, by Steven Robinson
 
Suppose that the 'New Chronology' for Egypt's Third Intermediate Period is sound (allowing for a margin of uncertainty at the earlier end): what consequences would this have for the chronology of Mycenaean Greece? This was the question David Rohl began to address in the last C&C Review [1]. After expounding several reasons why the received chronology was unsatisfactory, he suggested that the date of the Trojan War - virtually the only historical event of the Mycenaean period - should be lowered from c. 1200 to c. 900 BC. The present writer believes than an even lower date is required. We can approach the problem from a number of directions, ...................................
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Chronology & Catastrophism WORKSHOP 1990:2                    Click here for cost 
Thera and the Exodus: The Cause and the Effect, by David A. Slade
 
An attempt has recently been made to link the Jewish Exodus chronologically with the Thera eruption, with the suggestion that there was some causal relationship between the ten plagues of Egypt and Theran vulcanism. Only in two aspects does this suggestion seem at all possible. The temporary retreat of sea-water and darkness 'which could be felt' lasting for three days can be rationally explained as seismic and volcanic phenomena [1].
 
So wrote J. V. Luce, Senior Tutor in Classics at Trinity College, Dublin, in 1969. He traces the successive steps of several independent workers, beginning with the Minoan hypothesis of K. T. Frost (1909); its volcanic cause (S. Marinatos, 1939); its possible connection with Atlantic (S. Marinatos, c. 1960); and finally with the Exodus (A. G. Galanopoulos, 1964). ..................  In 1988 The Royal Society of Britain published the findings of a committee set up to study the eruption of Krakatoa in 1883. .......................... The Krakatoa eruption is generally seen as very similar to the mid-second millennium collapse of Thera, only smaller in both violence and volume. Therefore, this can safely be used as a model guide concerning the retreat of sea-water and the darkness 'which could be felt'. ................. 
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The Etruscans and their Language, by Hugh Crosthwaite
 
The purpose of this short paper is to comment on a few Etruscan words in an attempt to discover more about the nature of religion in the ancient world. Livy, in his history of Rome, is our best known source for stories of the early days of Rome, when the city was ruled by Etruscan kings. ..............
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The Exo-Synchronous Molecular Evolutionary Clock, by George R. Harvey
 
In order to account for the apparent clock-like rate of evolutionary change of DNA molecules, a rate similar for all life, I offer a theory which calls for evolution's driving force to have consisted of episodic, radiation-producting, extra-terrestrially-caused upsets. These events occured with a certain degree of even frequency that was of the order of thousands to tens of thousands of years and each of them left in the survivors the maximum tolerable DNA changes. ...... The last few decades have brought about a revolution in man's ability to understand, decode and manipulate deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) molecules, ....................
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The Origins of the Spartan State in the New Chronology, by David Rohl
 
The Rise of Sparta in the Period of Archaic Greece. The development of Sparta as a major power in Archaic Greece has been the subject of considerable interest to scholars, not only because of the unusual society that evolved, but also because so little can be gleaned from the available evidence as to the origins of that famous 6th and 5th century Spartan culture. ............ The chronology of the Spartan kings ....... A new history of Sparta leading up to the Archaic Period .......................... The case for not accepting the traditions at face value .................... .Slavery in the Spartan state ....................... Differences between Spartan Greeks and Athenian Greeks .................... The reasons for the initial dominance of Sparta in the Archaic Greek World and its later decline ............................................
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Lies, Damned Lies and ..., by Alasdair Beal
 
In many areas of modern science, the interpretation of experimental data and the assessment of the validity of theories depends heavily on statistical analysis and criteria based on statistical theories. It certainly sounds convincing  when someone claims that 'the hypothesis that ... can be rejected at the 96.2% confidence interval' on the basis of a statistical reading of the experimental evidence. Yet it is surprising how often a careful sceptical look at the information reveals that the Emperor's new statistical clothes are surprisingly threadbare. There is another, more mundane trap which sometimes catches [out] even the most eminent scientists - it is the sin, often committed accidentally, with no ill intent, of trying to read more into experimental evidence than the quality of that evidence will support. Those who seek to challenge orthodox ideas would do well to be aware (and wary) of these pitfalls, in both their own work and that of their opponents. Three examples in areas of interest to catastrophists are outlined below.  The first is a creationist .................. the second is an eminent orthodox scientist in his own area of expertise; and the third is a dissident scientist who, although creationist in his beliefs, tends to plough a furrow which has much in commont with catastrophist thinking. .......................................
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