References

Chapter 1 Initiation

1 For example, see Julian Morgenstern, ‘The Book of the Covenant’, Hebrew Union College Annual, vol. V, 1928, reprinted by KTAV Publishing House Inc., New York, 1968, p. 118: ‘the Ark itself came in popular thought and speech to be identified with the deity; the Ark itself was to all extents and purposes the deity.’ The direct identification of the Ark with God is well illustrated in the following passage from Numbers 10:35: ‘And it came to pass, when the Ark set forward, that Moses said, Rise up, Lord, and let thine enemies be scattered and let them that hate thee flee before thee’ (King James Authorized Version). The Jerusalem Bible translation of the same verse, which makes use of Yahweh, the name of God, reads: ‘And as the Ark set out, Moses would say, Arise, Yahweh, may your enemies be scattered and those who hate you run for their lives before you.’ The Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible comments: ‘The Ark is not only seen as the leader of Israel’s host, but is directly addressed as Yahweh. There is virtually an identification of Yahweh and the Ark … there is no doubt that the Ark was interpreted as the extension or embodiment of the presence of Yahweh’ (The Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible: An Illustrated Encyclopaedia, Abingdon Press, Nashville, 1962, pp. 222–3.

2 See Exodus 37:1, which gives the dimensions of the Ark as follows: ‘two cubits and a half was the length of it, and a cubit and a half the breadth of it, and a cubit and a half the height of it.’ The measurements in feet and inches are extrapolated from the ancient cubit, which was eighteen inches. See Dr J. H. Hertz (ed.), The Pentateuch and the Haftorahs, Soncino Press, London, 1978, p. 327. The Jerusalem Bible, footnote (b), p. 87, concurs (Jerusalem Bible, Eyre & Spottiswoode, London, 1968).

3 Exodus 37:7–9.

4 1 Chronicles 28:2.

5 Richard Elliott Friedman, Who Wrote the Bible?, Jonathan Cape, London, 1988, p. 156.

6 The Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible, op. cit., p. 222.

7 The phrase is taken from J. Theodore Bent’s nineteenth-century book on Axum, The Sacred City of the Ethiopians: Travel and Research in Abyssinia in 1893, Longmans, Green, London, New York and Bombay, 1896.

8 Eritrea was in fact decolonized in 1952. For the next ten years it was federated with Ethiopia but kept its own separate identity. In 1962, after what was widely believed to be a rigged referendum, the federal relationship was dissolved and Ethiopia took over full control of the territory, which thenceforward was governed directly from Addis Ababa. Haile Selassie argued that apart from the brief colonial interlude Eritrea had always been an integral part of Ethiopia and should remain so. Many Eritreans, however, felt differently.

9 G. W. B Huntingford (ed.), The Periplus of the Eritrean Sea, Hakluyt Society, London, 1980.

10 Reported in A. H. M. Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, A History of Ethiopia, Oxford University Press, 1955, pp. 32–3.

11 J. W. McCrindle (trans, and ed.), The Christian Topography of Cosmos, an Egyptian Monk, Hakluyt Society, London, 1898.

12 The Rufinius history of the conversion of Ethiopia to Christianity is reported at length in A. H. M Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, A History of Ethiopia, op. cit., pp. 26–7. See also Graham Hancock, Richard Pankhurst, Duncan Willetts, Under Ethiopian Skies, Editions HL, London and Nairobi, 1983, pp. 34–5.

13 Reported by Richard Pankhurst, writing in Hancock, Pankhurst and Willetts, Under Ethiopian Skies, op. cit.

14 For a full account of the findings of this dig see S.C. Munro-Hay, Excavations at Axum: An Account of Research at the Ancient Ethiopian Capital directed in 1972–74 by the Late Dr Neville Chittick, Royal Geographical Society, London, 1989.

15 Another tradition says that the coffers are in fact coffins and that they once contained the bodies of Kaleb and Gebre-Maskal.

16 C. F. Beckingham and G. W. B Huntingford (eds), The Prester John of the Indies: A True Relation of the Lands of Prester John, being the Narrative of the Portuguese Embassy to Ethiopia in 1520 written by Father Francisco Alvarez, Cambridge, published for the Hakluyt Society at the University Press, 1961, vol. I, pp. 151–3.

17 Ibid., footnote 2, p. 151.

18 Ibid., pp. 145–8.

Chapter 2 Disenchantment

1 From Article II of the 1955 (revised) Constitution.

2 Aymro Wondemagegnehu and Joachim Motovu, The Ethiopian Orthodox Church, The Ethiopian Orthodox Mission, Addis Ababa, 1970, p. 48.

3 Ibid., p. 46.

4 Ibid., p. 152.

Chapter 3 The Grail Cipher

1 The book was published in 1990. Carol Beckwith, Angela Fisher, Graham Hancock, African Ark: Peoples of the Horn, Collins Harvill, London, 1990.

2 William Anderson, The Rise of the Gothic, Hutchinson, London, 1985, p. 34. And see in general pp. 33–7.

3 For a chronology see Chartres: Guide of the Cathedral, Editions Houvet-la-Crypte, Chartres, pp. 12–13.

4 John James, Medieval France: A Guide to the Sacred Architecture of Medieval France, Harrap Columbus, London, 1987, p. 71.

5 Malcolm Miller, Chartres: The Cathedral and the Old Town, Pitkin Pictorials, Norwich, UK, pp. 13 and 18. See also Chartres: Guide of the Cathedral, op. cit., Foreword written by Etienne Houvet, custodian of the cathedral, p. 3.

6 Chartres: Guide of the Cathedral, op. cit., p. 53.

7 Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, The Queen of Sheba and her Only Son Menelik: bang the ‘Book of the Glory of Kings’ (Kebra Nagast), Oxford University Press, 1932, p. 29. In a conversation with Solomon the Queen of Sheba is quoted as saying: ‘From this moment I will not worship the sun, but will worship the creator of the sun, the God of Israel … because of this I have found favour with thee, and before the God of Israel, my Creator.’

8 1 Kings 10:1–13; 1 Chronicles 9:1–12.

9 For a good résumé of the scholarly conventional wisdom see H. St John Philby, The Queen of Sheba, Quartet Books, London, 1981.

10 Malcolm Miller, Chartres Cathedral: Illustrating the Medieval Stained Glass and Sculpture, Pitkin Pictorials, Norwich, UK, p. 14. See also Chartres: Guide of the Cathedral, op. cit., pp. 37–47.

11 Genesis 14:18; Psalm 110:4.

12 Malcolm Miller, Chartres Cathedral: Illustrating the Medieval Stained Glass and Sculpture, op. cit., p. 20.

13 Chartres: Guide of the Cathedral, op. cit., p. 42.

14 See Exodus 37:1 and Chapter 1, note 2 above.

15 Chartres: Guide of the Cathedral, op. cit., p. 40.

16 Louis Charpentier, The Mysteries of Chartres Cathedral, RILKO, London, 1983 (originally published by Robert Laffont, Paris, 1966), p. 70.

17 Chartres: Guide of the Cathedral, op. cit., p. 37.

18 Louis Charpentier, The Mysteries of Chartres Cathedral, op. cit., p. 68, photographic section between pp. 32 and 33, and p. 113.

19 See, for example, Robert Graves, The White Goddess, Faber & Faber, London and Boston, 1988 edn, p. 161.

20 Hebrews 7.

21 Louis Charpentier, The Mysteries of Chartres Cathedral, op. cit., p. 113.

22 See D. D. R. Owen (trans.), Chrétien de Troyes: Arthurian Romances, J. M. Dent, London, 1988, Introduction, p. x.

23 Sir Thomas Malory, Le Morte d’arthur, Penguin Classics, London, 1988 – see half-tide page.

24 See Edwin H. Zeydel (trans. and ed.), The Parzival of Wolfram von Eschenbach, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, 1951, p. 14. See also Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, Penguin Classics, London, 1980, Introduction, p. 8.

25 Sir Thomas Malory, Le Morte d’arthur, op. cit., pp. 190 and 213.

26 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 239.

27 Lady Flavia Anderson, The Ancient Secret: Fire from the Sun, RILKO, London, 1987, p. 15.

28 Ibid.

29 Chrétien de Troyts, Arthurian Romances, op. cit., p. 417.

30 Ibid., pp. 417–18.

31 Ibid., p. 459.

32 Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz, The Grail Legend, Coventure, London, 1986, pp. 29 and 116. (Originally published by Walter Verlag, Olten, 1980, and in the USA by Sigo Press, Boston, 1970.) See also A. M. Hatto’s Foreword to Wolfram’sParzival, op. cit., p. 7. Old Catalan grazal and Provençal grasal both also meant ‘vessel, cup or bowl of wood, earthenware or metal’.

33 The word ‘holy’ appears in no less than thirty books of the Old Testament.

34 John Matthews, The Grail: Quest for the Eternal, Thames & Hudson, London, 1987, p. 12.

35 See F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 162.

36 William Anderson, The Rise of the Gothic, op. cit., p. 65.

37 For a discussion see M. Kilian Hufgard, ‘Saint Bernard of Clairvaux’, Medieval Studies, vol. II, Edwin Mellen Press, 1989, p. 143: ‘It would be impossible to calculate the full extent of Bernard’s influence on the iconography of the early Gothic cathedrals.’

38 See John Matthews, The Grail: Quest for the Eternal, op. cit., p. 12.

39 For a discussion see Bodo Mergell, Der Graal in Wolframs Parsifal, Halle, 1952. See also Encyclopaedia Britannica, Micropaedia, 15th edn, 1991, vol. V, pp. 408–9, which states that the Queste del Saint Graal ‘was clearly influenced by the mystical teachings of Saint Bernard of Clairvaux’.

40 An excellent discussion of this symbolism is contained in John Matthews, The Grail: Quest for the Eternal, op. cit., pp. 14–17.

41 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., p. 827.

42 John Matthews, The Grail: Quest for the Eternal, op. cit., p. 15.

43 Ibid., p. 15.

44 M. Kilian Hufgard, ‘Saint Bernard of Clairvaux’, op. cit., p. 141.

45 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., pp. 42–3 and 87–8.

46 Helen Adolf, ‘New Light on Oriental Sources for Wolfram’s Parzival and other Grail Romances’, Publications of the Modern Languages Association of America, vol. 62, March 1947, pp. 306–24.

47 Ibid., p. 306. ‘I am indebted’, wrote Adolf, ‘to the pioneers in this field, to Veselovskij and Singer, founders of the Ethiopian theory.’ A. N. Veselovskij had written several works on the origin of the Grail legend which had been published in Russia between 1886 and 1904; S. Singer had been a German academic writing at about the same time. Details of their works are to be found in Adolf’s Bibliography, p. 324.

48 Ibid., p. 306.

49 See, for example, Chrétien de Troyes, Arthurian Romances, op. cit., Introduction by D. D. R. Owen, p. ix–xviii. See also Jessie L. Weston, From Ritual to Romance, Cambridge University Press, 1920, particularly Chapter 6 where she specifically rejects the cauldrons of Celtic mythology as being the prototypes for the Grail, adding ‘these special objects belong to another line of tradition altogether’ (pp. 69–70). She also rejects the other common derivation in the Cup of the Last Supper and the Lance of Longinus (p. 68). It was Jessie Weston’s scholarly book that largely inspired T. S. Eliot’s poem The Waste Land. See T. S. Eliot, Selected Poems, Faber & Faber, London, 1961, p. 68.

50 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 410.

51 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit. See in particular Foreword, pp. 7–8. A typical example of the close correspondences between the two texts is to be found in the near-identical descriptions of the Grail procession and of the subsequent disappearance of the Grail castle (Wolfram, pp. 123–31; Chrétien, pp. 415–22). The Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th (1910) edn, confirms that Parzival was ‘beyond all doubt’ a rendering of a ‘French original’ (entry under ‘Wolfram von Eschenbach’, p. 775). See also Margaret Fitzgerald Richey, The Story of Parzival and the Grail, As Related by Wolfram von Eschenbach, Basil Blackwell & Mott, Oxford, 1935, pp. 10–11: ‘the external resemblances [between Wolfram’s account and Chrétien’s] are so close, not only in the ordering of the episodes but also in points of detail, that many scholars regard Chrétien’s poem as the one specific basis of Wolfram’s.’

52 Helen Adolf, ‘New Light on Oriental Sources for Wolfram’s Parzival’, op. cit., p. 307.

53 For confirmation of the use of stone ‘white and beautiful like marble’ in the most precious tabots see C. F. Beckingham and G.W.B. Huntingford (eds), The Prester John of the Indies: A True Relation of the Lands of Prester John, being the Narrative of the Portuguese Embassy to Ethiopia in 1520 written by Father Francisco Alvarez, Cambridge, published for the Hakluyt Society at the University Press, 1961, vol. II, p. 543.

54 Helen Adolf, ‘New Light on Oriental Sources for Wolfram’s Parzival’, op. cit., p. 309.

55 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., for example p. 240. Another even more specific example of the Grail’s legislative function occurs on p. 406.

56 Ibid., p. 246.

57 Judges 20:27–8.

58 1 Samuel 3:1–11.

59 1 Chronicles 28. Note in particular verse 19.

60 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 243.

61 Louis Ginzberg, The Legends of the Jews, The Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia, 1911, vol. III, pp. 128–9.

62 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 232. Emphasis added.

63 The Jewish Encyclopaedia, Funk & Wagnells, New York, 1925, vol. II, p. 107. See also Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1978, reprinted by Eisenbrauns, Winona Lake, Indiana, 1985, p. 246. Haran states the scholarly view that ‘the Ark held not the two tables of the law but … a meteorite from Mount Sinai’.

64 For a discussion see Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz, The Grail Legend, op. cit., p. 148, footnote 28.

65 Jennifer Westwood (ed.), The Atlas of Mysterious Places, Guild Publishing, London, 1987, p. 74.

66 Ibid.

67 For a lengthy and very scholarly discussion of these links see two papers by Julian Morgenstern: ‘The Book of the Covenant’, Hebrew Union College Annual, vol. V. 1928; and ‘The Ark, the Ephod and the Tent of Meeting’, Hebrew Union College Annual,vol. XVII, 1942–3; both reprinted by KTAV Publishing House, New York, 1968. In ‘The Book of the Covenant’, p. 118, Morgenstern writes: ‘The most natural assumption is that the Ark contained a betyl … This conception was, of course, common amongst the primitive Semites, and the evidence is ample that it was current in ancient Israel.’

68 W. H. Roscher, Lexikon der griechischen und römischen Mythologie, 1884, cited in Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz, The Grail Legend, op. cit., p. 148.

69 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 239.

70 See, for example, Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz, The Grail Legend, op. cit., pp. 149 and 157.

71 John Matthews, The Grail: Quest for the Eternal, op. cit., p. 17. Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz also suggest a similar derivation: The Grail Legend, op. cit., p. 148.

72 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., e.g. pp. 225, 240.

73 Ibid., pp. 126–7.

74 Tan. Terumah, XI; also, with slight variations, Yoma 39b. Cited in The Jewish Encyclopaedia, vol. II, op. cit., p. 105.

75 I Kings 8:12.

76 Zev Vilnay, Legends of Jerusalem: The Sacred Land, The Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia, 1973, vol. I, pp. 11–12.

77 E.g., Exodus 40:20–38.

78 Chrétien de Troyes, Arthurian Romances, op. cit., p. 417.

79 Ibid.

80 Exodus 37:1–2.

81 Exodus 37:6.

82 Exodus 34:29–30. This is the Jerusalem Bible translation, direct from Hebrew, rather than through Greek in the case of the King James Authorized Version (The Jerusalem Bible, Eyre & Spottiswoode, London, 1968). The King James Version has the two verses as follows: ‘And it came to pass, when Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tables of testimony in Moses’ hand, when he came down from the mount, that Moses wist not that the skin of his face shone while he talked with him. And when Aaron and all the children of Israel saw Moses, behold, the skin of his face shone; and they were afraid to come nigh him.’

83 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 125.

84 Ibid., p. 125.

85 Ibid., p. 125.

86 Ibid., pp. 125 and 401.

87 Ibid., p. 239.

88 Ibid., p. 389.

89 1 Chronicles 15:2. Similarly see Deuteronomy 10:8.

90 Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, Kebra Nagast, op. cit.

91 Ibid., p. 98.

92 Ibid., p. 79.

93 Ibid., p. 95.

94 In his translation, Sir E. A. Wallis Budge used a variety of different words and phrases to refer to the Ark of the Covenant – e.g. ‘Zion’, ‘Heavenly Zion’, ‘Tabernacle of His Law’, ‘Tabernacle of His Covenant’, ‘Tabernacle of the Law of God’. He makes clear at several points that these terms are all completely interchangeable and that they refer to exactly the same thing. For example, in his Introduction (p. xvii), he speaks of ‘the Tabernacle of the Law of God, i.e. the Ark of the Covenant’. Likewise, within the main body of the translation, there are several points, cross-referenced to biblical passages, at which this interchangeability of terms for the Ark (including ‘Zion’ and ‘Heavenly Zion’) is unequivocally spelled out – e.g. pp. 14–15 and 178. For purposes of clarity in my own text, and with apologies to Budge, I have adopted the policy of simplifying this confusing terminological spaghetti. In all my quotations from the Kebra Nagast the familiar epithets ‘Ark of the Covenant’, ‘Ark of His Covenant’, ‘Ark of God’, ‘Ark of the Lord’, and just plain ‘Ark’ will be used.

95 Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, Kebra Nagast, op. cit., p. 169.

96 Ibid. pp. 94–5.

97 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 393.

Chapter 4 A Map to Hidden Treasure

1 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, Penguin Classics, London, 1980, p. 22.

2 Ibid., p. 17.

3 Ibid., p. 22.

4 See, for example, H. St John Philby, The Queen of Sheba, Quartet Books, London, 1981, pp. 58–60.

5 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 30.

6 Ibid., p. 27.

7 Ibid., p. 24.

8 Ibid., p. 34.

9 Ibid., p. 39.

10 Ibid.

11 Ibid.

12 Ibid., p. 56.

13 Ibid., p. 40.

14 Ibid., p. 66.

15 The complex tangle of relationships in Parzival requires some unravelling. On pp. 439–47 of the Penguin Classics edition, Professor A. T. Hatto provides a useful glossary of personal names. Feirefiz is described on p. 440 as ‘Parzival’s infidel half-brother; son of Gahmuret and his first wife Belacane’.

16 Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, The Queen of Sheba and her Only Son Menelik: being the ‘Book of the Glory of Kings’ (Kebra Nagast), Oxford University Press, 1932, p. 35.

17 Ibid., p. 37.

18 Ibid., p. 38.

19 See Chapter 3, note 94 above.

20 Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, Kebra Nagast, op. cit., p. 102. For a further example of the emphasis on skin colour in the Kebra Nagast set p. 156.

21 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., Professor A. T. Hatto’s footnote to p. 40.

22 A. N. Veselovskij, ‘On the Problem of the Origin of the Grail Legend’, Zurnal [Journal] of the [Russian] Ministry for the Enlightenment of the People, Moscow, February 1904, p. 452. See also Helen Adolf, ‘New Light on Oriental Sources for Wolfram’sParzival and other Grail Romances’, Publications of the Modern Languages Association of America, vol. 62, March 1947, p. 310.

23 Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, Kebra Nagast, op. cit., p. 46.

24 Dr E. Littman (trans. and ed.), The Legend of the Queen of Sheba in the Tradition of Axum, Bibliotheca Abessinica (Studies Concerning the Languages, Literature and History of Abyssinia), vol. I, Princeton University Library, 1904, p. 9.

25 See Chapter 3 above.

26 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., pp. 406–7.

27 Ibid., p. 408.

28 See, for example, C. F. Beckingham and G. W. B. Huntingford (eds), The Prester John of the Indies: A True Relation of the Lands of Prester John, being the Narrative of the Portuguese Embassy to Ethiopia in 1520 written by Father Francisco Alvarez,Cambridge, published for the Hakluyt Society at the University Press, 1961.

29 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 408.

30 Linda B. Parshall, The Art of Narration in Wolfram’s ‘Parzival’ and Albrecht’s ‘Jüngerer Titurel’, Cambridge University Press, 1981, p. 1.

31 Henry and Mary Garland, The Oxford Companion to German Literature, Oxford University Press, 1986, p. 892.

32 Dorothy Reich, A History of German Literature, Blackwood, Edinburgh and London, 1970, p. 95.

33 Linda B. Parshall, The Art of Narration in Wolfram’s ‘Parsival’ and Albrecht’s ‘Jüngerer Titurel’, op. cit., p. 1.

34 No English translation exists of Der Jüngerer Titurel. That it depicts the last resting place of the Holy Grail as being ‘the land of Prester John’ is, however, not in dispute. Readers who wish to follow the matter further, and who read German, are referred to K. A. Hahn, Titurel, Leipsig, 1842. See also Werner Wolf and Kurt Nyholm’s edited edition in several volumes in the Deutsche Texte des Mittelalters (DTM) series, originally published by the Academy of Sciences of the GDR, Berlin, 1955–84.

35 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parsival, op. cit., p. 408.

36 Ibid., p. 408.

37 Ibid., p. 373.

38 Ibid., p. 377.

39 See Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th (1910) end, p. 304. See also Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History to 1270, Haile-Selassie I University, Addis Ababa, 1972, pp. 254–5.

40 Ibid.

41 Ibid.

42 Ibid., p. 261.

43 Ibid, and Encyclopaedia Britannica, op. cit., p. 305.

44 Encyclopaedia Britannica, op. cit., p 305

45 For a discussion see Irmgard Bidder, Lalibela: the Monolothic Churches of Ethiopia, M. DuMont, Cologne, p. 11.

46 See Chapter 1 above for full details.

47 Helen Adolf, ‘New Light on Oriental Sources’, op. cit., p. 306.

48 E. A. Wallis Budge, A History of Ethiopia, London, 1928, p. 178.

49 Extract from The Travels of Marco Polo, quoted in Henry Sah, A Voyage to Abyssinia Frank Cass and Co., London, 1967, Appendix V.

50 Encyclopaedia Britannica, op. cit., p. 306.

51 C. F. Beckingham and G. W. B. Huntingford (eds), The Prester John of the Indies, op. cit., see p. 5.

52 Ibid., e.g. p. 296.

53 Encyclopaedia Britannica, op. cit., p. 306.

54 Ibid., p. 306.

55 Ibid., p. 306.

56 Ibid., p. 304.

57 Ibid., p. 306 (emphasis added).

58 David Buxton, The Abyssinians, Thames & Hudson, London, 1970, p. 45.

59 See Chapter 3 above.

60 John Matthews, The Grail: Quest for the Eternal, Thames & Hudson, London, 1987, p. 69.

61 Encyclopaedia Britannica, Ope cit., p. 591.

Chapter 5 White Knights, Dark Continent

1 Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz, The Grail Legend, Coventure, London, 1986, pp. 10–11. (Originally published by Walter Verlag, Olten, 1980, and in the USA by Sigo Press, Boston, 1970.)

2 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, Penguin Classics, London, 1980, p. 232. See also p. 213.

3 Ibid., p. 410.

4 Ibid., p. 233.

5 Ibid., p. 214.

6 See Jessie L. Weston’s translation of Parzival, David Nutt, London, 1894, ‘Excursus A: Wolfram’s Source’, pp. 191–2. See also Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz, The Grail Legend, op. cit., p. 152.

7 Ibid.

8 See, for example, The Hutchinson Encyclopedia, Hutchinson, London, 1988, p. 481.

9 See in particular F. Kampers, Das Lichtland der Seelen und der Heilige Gral, Cologne, 1916, pp. 20–7. See also Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz, The Grail Legend, op. cit., p. 152. That great authority on Parzival, Jessie Weston, concurs. See ‘Excursus A’ to her translation of Parzival, op. cit., particularly p. 191, last paragraph.

10 Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz, The Grail Legend, op. cit., p. 152.

11 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., for example pp. 228, 393 and 406.

12 Ibid., p. 241.

13 Ibid. Professor A. T. Hatto’s ‘Introduction to a Second Reading’, p. 438.

14 Margaret Fitzgerald Richey, The Story of Parzival and the Graal, As Related by Wolfram von Eschenbach, Basil Blackwell & Mott, Oxford, 1935, p. 198.

15 Ibid., p. 211. See also p. 198: ‘This identification with the Templars is very striking, and what else is told in connection in the text of Parzival agrees with the character of that Order.’

16 Louis Charpentier, The Mysteries of Chartres Cathedral, RILKO, London, 1983, p. 68.

17 As, for example, in Gaetan Delaforge, The Templar Tradition in the Age of Aquarius, Threshold Books, Vermont, 1987, p. 68.

18 The principal source for discussion of Wolfram’s visit to the Holy Land is Karl Bertau, Deutsche Literatur im europäischen Mittelalter, C. H. Beck, Munich, 1974.

19 1 Chronicles 28:2. The words are those of Solomon’s father, King David, who had hoped to build the Temple for the Ark, but who had been instructed by God to leave this task to Solomon.

20 William of Tyre, A History of Deeds done Beyond the Sea (E. Babcock and A. C. Krey trans.), Octagon Books, New York, 1986, vol. I, pp. 524–5.

21 Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th edn, 1910, p. 593.

22 Edward Burman, The Templars: Knights of God, Aquarian Press, Wellingborough, 1986, p. 21.

23 John J. Robinson, Born in Blood, Century, London, 1990, p. 66. Originally published in the USA in 1989 by M. Evans.

24 Encyclopaedia Britannica, Micropaedia, 15th edn, 1991, vol. III, p. 133. The city was sold to the King of France in 1286.

25 Edward Burman, The Templars, op. cit., p. 27. Saint Bernard’s mother, Aleth, was André de Montbard’s sister.

26 Interestingly, it is thought possible that Saint Bernard himself provided the model for Sir Galahad, the hero of the Cistercian Queste del Saint Graal. See Edward Burman, The Templars, op. cit. p. 30. See also Encyclopaedia Britannica, Micropaedia, 15th edn, 1991, vol. V, pp. 79–80 and 408–9.

27 John J. Robinson, Born in Blood, op. cit., p. 66.

28 Edward Burman, The Templars, op. cit., p. 21.

29 Chrétien de Troyes, Arthurian Romances, J. M. Dent, London, 1988, D. D. R. Owen’s Introduction, p. ix.

30 Steven Runciman, A History of the Crusades, Penguin Books, London, 1987, vol. II, p. 157.

31 Ibid. See also Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th edn, 1910, p. 591. Then, as now, the Mosque of Omar, better known as the Dome of the Rock, stood over the site of Solomon’s Temple. See also F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 1345.

32 Steven Runciman, A History of the Crusades, op. cit., vol. II, p. 157.

33 John G. Robinson, Born in Blood, op. cit., p. 66.

34 Steven Runciman, A History of the Crusades, op. cit., vol. II, p. 157

35 Meir Ben-Dov, In the Shadow of the Temple: The Discovery of Ancient Jerusalem, Harper & Row, New York, 1985 and Keter Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1985, p. 347.

36 Ibid.

37 Zev Vilnay, Legends of Jerusalem: The Sacred Land, Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia, vol. I, 1973, p. 11.

38 See Professor Richard Elliott Friedman, Who Wrote the Bible?, Jonathan Cape, London, 1988, Chapter 1, pp. 155–6, quoted in Chapter 1, p. 7 above.

39 Zev Vilnay, Legends of Jerusalem, op. cit., p. 11.

40 Ibid., pp. 123 and 324, note 136. See also N. A. Silberman, Digging for God and Country, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1982, p. 186. See also ‘The Syriac Apocalypse of Baruch’ in H. F. D. Sparks (ed.), The Apocryphal Old Testament, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1989, pp. 843 and 844.

41 Malcolm Barber, ‘The Origins of the Order of the Temple’, Studia Monastica, vol. XII, 1970, pp. 221–2.

42 Jean Richard, Le Royaume Latin de Jerusalem, Presses Universitaires de France, Paris, 1953, p. 105.

43 Ibid.

44 Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz, The Grail Legend, op. cit., pp. 131 and 126.

45 See the essay on relics in John James, Medieval France: A Guide to the Sacred Architecture of Medieval France, Harrap Columbus, London, 1987, pp. 36–40.

46 Ibid., p. 39.

47 Gaetan Delaforge, The Templar Tradition in the Age of Aquarius, op. cit., p. 68.

48 Ibid.

49 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., p. 162.

50 Edward Burman, The Templars, op. cit., p. 23.

51 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., pp. 162 and 1345.

52 Ibid., p. 162.

53 Ibid., pp. 162 and 1345. See also Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th edn, 1910, p. 591.

54 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., pp. 1345–6.

55 For a discussion of the financial activities of the Templars see Edward Burman, The Templars, op. cit., pp. 74–97.

56 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., p. 162: ‘In the disputed election which followed the death of Pope Honorious II in 1130 Bernard sided with Innocent II against the antipope, Anacletus, and was eventually successful in securing Innocent’s victory.’

57 In the Papal Bull Omne Datum Optimum. See Edward Burman, The Templars, op. cit., p. 41.

58 S. Howarth, The Knights Templar, London, 1982, p. 194.

59 Ibid., pp. 193–5.

60 C. N. Johns, ‘Excavations at Pilgrim’s Castle, Atlit, 1932’, Quarterly of the Department of Antiquities in Palestine, vol. III, no. 4, 1933, pp. 145–64.

61 John Wilkinson, Joyce Hill and W. F. Ryan (eds), Jerusalem Pilgrimage 1099–1185, Hakluyt Society, London, 1988, p. 294.

62 Ibid.

63 Meir Ben-Dov, In the Shadow of the Temple, op. cit., p. 346.

64 John Wilkinson, Joyce Hill and W. F. Ryan (eds), Jerusalem Pilgrimage 1099–1185, op. cit., p. 294.

65 Louis Charpentier, The Mysteries of Chartres Cathedral, op. cit., p. 70.

66 For a general discussion see M. Kilian Hufgard, ‘Saint Bernard of Clairvaux’, Medieval Studies, vol. II, Edwin Mellen Press, 1989. See in particular pp. 140–1 and 143–50.

67 Quoted in Robert Lawlor, Sacred Geometry: Philosophy and Practice, Thames & Hudson, London, 1989, p. 10.

68 Ibid.

69 M. Kilian Hufgard, ‘Saint Bernard of Clairvaux’, op. cit., pp. 148–9.

70 Ibid., p. 139.

71 Ibid., p. 129.

72 Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History to 1270, Haile-Selassie I University, Addis Ababa, 1972, pp. 265–7.

73 Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th edn, 1910, p. 306. See also A. H. M. Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, A History of Ethiopia, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1966, p. 53: ‘There can be little doubt that the King, whose envoy had discourse with Master Philip, was the King of Abyssinia, who was the only Christian King in the Near East who could have sent such an embassy.’

74 Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History to 1270, op. cit., pp. 239–87.

75 See David Buxton, The Abyssinians, Thames & Hudson, London, 1970, pp. 44 ff. See also Jean Doresse, Ancient Cities and Temples of Ethiopia, Elek Books, London, 1959, p. 92, and Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History to 1270,op. cit., pp. 225–32.

76 See Wolf Leslau, Falasha Anthology, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1979, Introduction, pp. xx–xi.

77 Richard Pankhurst, An Introduction to the Economic History of Ethiopia from Early Times to 1800, Lalibela House/Sidgwick & Jackson, London, 1961.

78 Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History to 1270, op. cit., p. 265.

79 A good summary of this legend is given by Professor Richard Pankhurst in Graham Hancock, Richard Pankhurst and Duncan Willetts, Under Ethiopian Skies, Editions HL, London and Nairobi, 1983, pp. 58–9. For further details, see J. Perruchon, Vie de Lalibela, rot d’ethiopie, Paris, 1892, and Gedle Lalibela (Amharic translation from Ge’ez), Haile-Selassie I University, Addis Ababa, 1959.

80 Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History to 1270, op. cit., see in particular pp. 265 and 266. Lalibela’s sojourn in Jerusalem in also reported in Jean Doresse, Ancient Cities and Temples of Ethiopia, op. cit., p. 113.

81 Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History, op. cit., p. 265.

82 Ibid.

83 See David Buxton, The Abyssinians, op. cit., p. 44. See also Irmgard Bidder, Lalibela: the Monolithic Churches of Ethiopia, M. DuMont, Schauberg, Cologne, pp. 14 and 108.

84 Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History, op. cit., pp. 272–3. See also Jean Doresse, Ancient Cities and Temples of Ethiopia, op. cit., p. 113.

85 Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History, op. cit., p. 112.

86 Ibid., p. 262.

87 David Buxton, The Abyssinians, op. cit., p. 45.

88 A. H. M. Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, A History of Ethiopia, op. cit., p. 53. In October 1990 I visited the Ethiopian monastery on the roof of the Chapel of the Invention of the Cross.

89 A good account of the restoration of the Solomonic dynasty is given in Richard Pankhurst, An Introduction to the Economic History of Ethiopia, op. cit., pp. 60–71.

90 Encyclopaedia Britannica, op. cit., p. 594.

91 For example see Helen Adolf, ‘New Light on Oriental Sources for Wolfram’s Parzival and Other Grail Romances’, Publications of the Modern Languages Association of America, vol. 62, March 1947, p. 308.

92 An English translation of the letter is given in full in Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History, op. cit., pp. 255–61.

93 Ibid.

94 Ibid.

95 Sir E. A. Wallis Budge (trans. and ed.), The Bandlet of Righteousness: An Ethiopian Book of the Dead, Luzac, London, 1929. See, for example, pp. 41 ff.

96 This conflict, and its implications, are discussed in Chapter 6 below.

97 Full text of the letter in Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History, op. cit., pp. 255–61.

98 Ibid.

99 Irmgard Bidder, Lalibela, op. cit., p. 29.

100 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., for example pp. 406, 393 and 241.

101 Ibid., p. 406.

102 Ibid., p. 251.

103 Ibid., p. 252.

104 Ibid., p. 252, footnote.

105 An independent state from AD 1056 until it passed to the Habsburgs in the thirteenth century, Styria was annexed by Hider in 1938 and is now an alpine province of south-east Austria (capital Graz). Slovenes are included amongst the inhabitants of the province – and Wolfram mentions Slovenes after referring to ‘the Rohas’. This insertion of a deliberate ambiguity into his text, leaving room for two or more possible interpretations, is the sort of technique that Wolfram repeatedly employs in his encoding of vital information. In this way he veils the truth he wishes to convey in an alternative meaning that most will accept as the only possible meaning of his words.

106 For details of the Templar croix pattée see Andrea Hopkins, Knights, Collins & Brown, London, 1990, pp. 72–91.

107 UNESCO was involved in the restoration of some of the Lalibela churches in the 1960s and subsequently adopted them as a world heritage site. They are described as ‘A remarkable coupling of engineering and architecture and a unique artistic achievement.’ See A Legacy for All: The World’s Major Natural, Cultural and Historic Sites, UNESCO, Paris, 1982, p. 74.

108 See, for example, D. R. Buxton, ‘The Christian Antiquities of Northern Ethiopia’, Archaeologica, no. 92, 1947, p. 23.

109 C. F. Beckingham and G. W. B Huntingford (eds), The Prester John of the Indies: A True Relation of the Lands of Prester John, being the Narrative of the Portuguese Embassy to Ethiopia in 1520 written by Father Francisco Alvarez, Cambridge, published for the Hakluyt Society at the University Press, 1961, vol. I. pp. 11–13.

110 Ibid., p. 223.

111 Ibid., p. 226.

112 Ibid., p. 227.

113 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 406.

114 Ibid., p. 406.

Chapter 6 Resolving Doubts

1 Le R. P. Dimotheos, Deux ans de séjour en Abyssinie: ou vie morale, politique et religieuse des Abyssiniens, Jerusalem, 1871, p. 137.

2 Ibid., p. 141.

3 Ibid., p. 141.

4 Ibid., p. 143.

5 As noted in Chapter 1 above, the sanctuary chapel was built by the late Emperor Haile Selassie in 1965.

6 Again, see Chapter 1 above.

7 Le R. P. Dimotheos, Deux ans de séjour en Abyssinie, op. cit., p. 141.

8 Ibid., p. 141.

9 Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History to 1270, Haile-Selassie I University, Addis Ababa, 1972.

10 See Chapter 3 above.

11 Exodus 37:1–2.

12 B. T. Evetts (trans. and ed.), Abu Salih, Churches and Monasteries of Egypt and some Neighbouring Countries, Oxford, 1895.

13 Ibid., p. 287.

14 Ibid., p. 288.

15 Numbers 4:5–6.

16 For a short summary of the place of Amharic and other northern Ethiopic languages within the Semitic language group as a whole see Edward Ullendorff, The Ethiopians: an Introduction to Country and People, Oxford University Press, London, 1973, Chapter 6, ‘Languages’, pp. 111 ff. Arabic is also a Semitic language, and Amharic has the second largest number of speakers of any Semitic language after Arabic.

17 See, for example, Julian Morgenstern, ‘The Ark, the Ephod and the Tent of Meeting’ in Hebrew Union College Annual, vol. XVII, 1942–3, KTAV Publishing House, New York, 1968, p. 249.

18 See for example Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements in Abyssinian (Monophysite) Christianity’, Journal of Semitic Studies, vol. I, no. 3, 1956, p. 233, footnote 6. He says that tobot is ‘derived from the Jewish Pal. Aramaic tebuta (tebota) which in turn is a derivation from Hebrew tebah.

19 See Genesis 6:7 ff. The first reference to Noah’s Ark as tebah comes in verse 14 of this chapter.

20 See Exodus 2:3. For confirmation that tebah is used in the Bible to refer to the Ark of Noah and also to Moses’s Ark of bulrushes see Bruce Metzger, David Goldstein, John Ferguson (eds), Great Events of Bible Times: New Perspectives on the People, Places and History of the Biblical World, Guild Publishing, London, 1989, p. 12.

21 E. A. Wallis Budge, The Queen of Sheba and her Only SonMenelik: being the ‘Book of the Glory of Kings’ (Kebra Nagast), Oxford University Press, 1932, pp. 14–15.

22 Ibid., p. 14.

23 Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements in Abyssinian (Monophysite) Christianity’, op. cit., p. 234. Ullendorff also advances the same argument in his excellent Ethiopia and the Bible: The Schweich Lectures 1967, published for the British Academy by Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 84.

24 Edward Ullendorff, ‘The Queen of Sheba in Ethiopian Tradition’, in James B. Pritchard (ed.), Solomon and Sheba, Phaidon Press, London, 1974, p. 108.

25 Kebra Nagast, op. cit., Introduction, p. xlii.

26 Jean Doresse, Ancient Cities and Temples of Ethiopia, Elek Books, London, 1959, p. 21.

27 A. H. M. Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, A History of Ethiopia, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1966, p. 16.

28 Kebra Nagast, op. cit., p. 29.

29 See Chapter 2 above.

30 Edward Ullendorff, Ethiopia and the Bible, op. cit., p. 18.

31 Ibid., pp. 117 and 17–21.

32 Ibid., pp. 16–17.

33 For an informative account of the negative impact of Christian missionary activity on Falasha culture, see David Kessler, The Falashas: The Forgotten Jews of Ethiopia, Schocken Books, New York, 1985.

34 Date from The Jerusalem Bible, Eyre & Spottiswoode, London, 1968, Chronological Table, p. 345.

35 J. M. Flad, Falashas of Abyssinia, London, 1869, p. 3.

36 For a good and up-to-date reference on Jewish festivals see Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, Jerusalem Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1989. For Hanukkah see p. 319.

37 Ibid., p. 576. See also J. S. Trimingham, Islam in Ethiopia, Frank Cass, London, 1965, pp. 20–1. This scholarly and meticulously researched book, first published in 1952, contains a recommendable general round-up on Ethiopia, ‘The Region and its Folk’, pp. 1–31.

38 Henry A. Stern, Wanderings among the Falashas in Abyssinia, London, 1862. Reprinted by Frank Cass, London, 1968, p. 188.

39 Ibid., pp. 188–9.

40 In fact a few years later Stern was punished, on the order of the Ethiopian Emperor Tewodros who had him flogged within an inch of his life (though not because he had interfered with the Falashas). Stern was imprisoned, along with several other Europeans, and was eventually rescued by the Napier expedition to the citadel of Magdala which cost the British taxpayer several million pounds.

41 Date from The Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 343.

42 Leviticus 17:8–9.

43 See Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.) The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, op. cit., p. 615.

44 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 1221.

45 Ibid.

46 Ibid. See also Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, op. cit., pp. 618 and 693.

47 Ibid., pp. 481–3 and 695–6.

48 ‘[The Falashas] are … the only Jews in the world whose worship is focussed upon sacrifice on the altar’, J. S. Trimingham, Islam in Ethiopia, op. cit., p. 21.

49 See, for example, David Kessler, The Falashas, op. cit., p. 69 and Wolf Leslau, Falasha Anthology, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1979, pp. xxvi ff.

50 James Bruce, Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile in the years 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1772 and 1773, Edinburgh, 1790, vol. I, p. 500.

51 For Bruce’s views on this subject, see for example Travels, vol. II, p. 293 in which he describes Judaism as being the religion of Ethiopia ‘long before Christianity’.

52 Before the sack of Magdala the manuscript was seen by Flad and translated for him by the Emperor’s librarian. See J. M. Flad, Falashas of Abyssinia, op. cit., p. 4.

53 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. I, p. 485.

54 Ibid.

55 See, for example, A. H. M. Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, A History of Ethiopia, op. cit., p. 30. See also Jean Doresse, Ancient Cities and Temples of Ethiopia, op. cit., pp. 85–6.

56 Kebra Nagast, op. cit., pp. 225 ff.

57 For confirmation of the Falashas’ own use of the term Beta Israel, see for example Wolf Leslau, Falasha Anthology, op. cit., Introduction, p. ix. The word ‘Falasha’ itself is derived from an ancient Ethiopic term meaning ‘Immigrant’ or ‘Stranger’.

58 See note 94 to Chapter 3 above. For the use of ‘Zion’ as an epithet or synonym for the Ark of the Covenant in the Kebra Nagast see Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, Kebra Nagast, op. cit., for example, pp. 14–15 and 178–79. See also p. 223.

59 Kebra Nagast, op. cit., p. 227.

60 Ibid., pp. 226 and 227.

61 A full translation of Eldad’s treatise is given in Elkan Adler, Jewish Travellers, London, 1930. See p. 11.

62 For a discussion, see The Jewish Encyclopaedia, Funk and Wagnalls Co., New York, 1925, vol. V, pp. 90–1. See also The Universal Jewish Encyclopaedia, vol. IV. p. 46.

63 Date from The Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 344.

64 Quoted in Elkan Adler, Jewish Travellers, op. cit., p. 13.

65 See for example David Kessler, The Falashas, op. cit., p. 68 ff. See also Encyclopaedia Judaica, vol. VI, which Kessler cites extensively. See also Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, op. cit., pp. 568–70, and Wolf Leslau, Falasha Anthology, op. cit., Introduction, p. xxiii.

66 Quoted in Elkan Adler, Jewish Travellers, op. cit., p. 12.

67 Ibid., p. 11.

68 Benjamin of Tudela’s book of travels is translated in Elkan Adler, Jewish Travellers, op. cit., see p. 60.

69 R. L. Hess, ‘An Outline of Falasha History’, Journal of Ethiopian Studies, no. 6, Addis Ababa, 1967. See also Elkan Adler, Jewish Travellers, op. cit., p. 153.

70 S. Mendelssohn, The Jews of Africa, London, 1920.

71 Joseph Halévy, La Guerre de Sarsa-Dengel contre les Falachas, Paris, 1907.

72 Ibid. Adonai is, of course, one of the Hebrew names of God.

73 Ibid.

74 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. II, p. 293.

75 Ibid., vol. I, p. 486.

76 Joseph Halévy, Travels in Abyssinia, London, 1877.

77 Reported in David Kessler, The Falashas, op. cit. – to whose account I am greatly indebted.

78 The Falashas: The Jews of Ethiopia, Minority Rights Group Report no. 67, London, July 1985.

79 See Chapter 2 above.

80 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, Penguin Classics, London, 1980, p. 125.

Chapter 7 A Secret and Never-Ending Quest

1 For the adoption of Christianity by the Roman Empire under Constantine see, for example, J. M. Roberts, The Pelican History of the World, Penguin, London, 1981, pp. 281–4. For details on the civilization, power and prosperity of the Axumite Empire see Chapter 1 above.

2 Edward Gibbon, The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, London, 1788.

3 See Chapter 4 above for a discussion.

4 See, for example, Edward Burman, The Templars: Knights of God, Aquarian Press, Wellingborough, 1986. See also Malcolm Barber, The Trial of the Templars, Cambridge University Press, 1989.

5 Malcolm Barber, The Trial of the Templars, op. cit., page 45.

6 See F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, Oxford University Press, 1988, pp. 117 and 119.

7 Ibid., p. 300.

8 Malcolm Barber, The Trial of the Templars, op. cit., p. 2.

9 Ibid., p. 3.

10 James Bruce, Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile in the years 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1772 and 1773, Edinburgh, 1790, vol. I, p. 528.

11 Ibid., p. 530.

12 Ibid., p. 530. Interestingly, the notion that Ethiopia might take steps to interrupt the flow of the Nile to the disadvantage of Egypt is still in circulation. In January 1990, for instance, aware of the close military and economic co-operation that was then being developed between Ethiopia and Israel, the Egyptian government officially warned Ethiopia and Israel not to ‘tamper’ with the Blue Nile. See The Independent, London, 6 January 1990, p. 16.

13 See Edward Burman, The Templars, op. cit., p. 123.

14 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. I, p. 530.

15 Ibid., p. 532.

16 For a discussion, see Chapter 5 above.

17 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. I, p. 528.

18 B. T. Evetts (trans. and ed.), Abu Salih, Churches and Monasteries of Egypt and some Neighbouring Countries, Oxford, 1895.

19 Ibid., p. 288. Emphasis added.

20 This rendering of ‘blond hair’ instead of ‘red hair’ is given in a direct translation from the original made by that great linguist Professor Edward Ullendorff in his Ethiopia and the Bible: The Schweich Lectures 1967, published for the British Academy by the Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 26.

21 Secrecy was enshrined within the rule that governed the Templar order, and betrayal of secrets was punishable by expulsion or worse. See for example Edward Burman, The Templars, op. cit., p. 46. See also John J. Robinson, Born in Blood, Century, London, 1990, p. 77.

22 O. G. S. Crawford (ed.), Ethiopian Itineraries circa 1400–1524, Cambridge University Press for the Hakluyt Society, 1958, p. 212.

23 Ibid., pp. 213 and 214.

24 Extract from Foresti’s chronicle translated in Ibid., p. 215.

25 Ibid., p. 212.

26 Ibid., pp. 214–15.

27 The significance of the data is indeed that it confirms a meeting with Pope Clement V somewhere in 1306. That meeting may not necessarily have taken place in Avignon – which anyway was not part of France at that time and which did not become the official seat of the Pope until the year 1309. Between 1305 (the date of his coronation in Lyons) and March of 1309, when he officially took up residence in Avignon, Clement V had an itinerant existence, travelling around France and basing himself temporarily in various cities. It is possible that he did meet with the envoys in Avignon: even though he had not yet established his official seat there in 1306 he could well have been temporarily in residence at the time. Alternatively the envoys may have travelled to meet him elsewhere in France. Foresti’s abstract from the original chronicle was made nearly two hundred years after that chronicle was written. It may be surmised that the original did not even state where in France the meeting between the envoys and the Pope took place. If so Foresti may be excused for jumping to the conclusion that the venue was Avignon since that was the Pope’s official seat for most of his period in office. Foresti may simply not have known that he did not move there officially until 1309. At any rate, establishing the precise venue of the meeting is a matter of minor significance. The point is that a meeting did take place. For a discussion of these issues see E. Ullendorff and C. F. Beckingham, The Hebrew Letters of Prester John, Oxford University Press, 1982, pp. 6–7.

28 This is confirmed, for example, in Richard Pankhurst, An Introduction to the Economic History of Ethiopia from Early Times to 1800, Lalibela House/Sidgwick & Jackson, London, 1961, pp. 64–5. See also Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, The Queen of Sheba and her Only Son Menelik: being the ‘Book of the Glory of Kings’ (Kebra Nagast), Oxford University Press, 1932, Introduction, p. xxxvii.

29 Kebra Nagast, op. cit., Introduction, pp xvi and xxli.

30 Mordechai Abir, Ethiopia and the Red Sea, Cass, London, 1980, p. 47.

31 Malcolm Barber, The Trial of the Templars, op. cit., pp. 47–8.

32 Ibid., p. 48.

33 Possibly as many as twenty-four knights. See Malcolm Barber, The Trial of the Templars, op. cit., p. 46.

34 See, for example, John J. Robinson, Born in Blood, op. cit., p. 138.

35 See Malcolm Barber, The Trial of the Templars, op. cit., pp. 193–220.

36 Ibid., p. 203.

37 See John J. Robinson, Born in Blood, op. cit., pp. 150–1.

38 Ibid., pp. 150–1.

39 Ibid., p. 153. See also O. A. Haye, The Persecution of the Knights Templars, Edinburgh, 1865, p. 114.

40 The Monymusk Reliquary, which may now be seen at the National Museum of Antiquities, Queen Street, Edinburgh. It is said to have been modelled on the Temple of Solomon. For accounts of its role at Bannockburn see article by David Keys in The Independent, London, 29 July 1989, p. 38. See also Robert the Bruce, Pitkin Pictorials, London, 1978, p. 15.

41 The oldest Masonic documents, the Old Charges, date back no earlier than the mid-1300s, i.e. just after the suppression of the Templars. See, for example, Alexander Horne, King Solomon’s Temple in Masonic Tradition, Aquarian Press, Wellingborough, 1972, p. 25.

42 Kenneth Mackenzie, The Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia, Aquarian Press, Wellingborough, 1987 (first published 1877). See pp. 84 and 420–1.

43 Ibid. See pp. 593–4 and 719–22.

44 Ibid., p. 325.

45 It was in 1717, after four centuries of complete secrecy, that Freemasonry first officially declared its existence.

46 Kenneth Mackenzie, The Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia, op. cit., pp. 719–22.

47 John J. Robinson, Born in Blood, op. cit.

48 Ibid., p. 137.

49 Hyginus Eugene Cardinale (ed.), Orders of Knighthood, Awards and the Holy See, Van Duren Publishers, 1985, p 27.

50 Ibid., pp. 27 and 207–8.

51 Ibid., p. 27. Papal confirmation took the form of the granting of a constitution: Ad ea ex quibus.

52 A small and intrepid group of Dominican friars went to Ethiopia as evangelists in the fourteenth century (and it is a matter of some interest that they were sent by the same Pope, John XXII, who had granted confirmation to the Order of Christ). Somewhat later, in the fifteenth century, a Venetian painter named Nicholas Brancaleone was attached to the court of Emperor Baeda Mariam.

53 Zurara, quoted in Edgar Prestage, The Portuguese Pioneers, Adam & Charles Black, London, 1933, p. 158.

54 Ibid., p. 27.

55 Ibid., pp. 215–16.

56 Ibid., pp. 165–6.

57 Ibid., pp. 168–70.

58 Ibid., p. 170.

59 Ibid., p. 30.

60 Ibid., pp. 32 and 212–13.

61 Ibid., p. 27: ‘Henry was a crusader by disposition.’

62 Ibid., pp. 27 and 160.

63 Ibid., p. 29.

64 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, Penguin Classics, London, 1980, p. 232.

65 Edgar Prestage, The Portuguese Pioneers, op. cit., pp. 161 and 155.

66 Ibid., p. 154.

67 Ibid., p. 170.

68 Ibid.

69 Ibid.

70 Ibid.

71 Encyclopaedia Britannica, Micropaedia, 15th edn, 1991, vol. V, p. 100.

72 Edgar Prestage, The Portuguese Pioneers, op. cit., pp. 251–2.

73 Ibid., p. 257.

74 Ibid.

75 Ibid., see Chapter XII.

76 A useful account of Covilhan’s journey to Ethiopia is provided by James Bruce in Travels, op. cit., vol. II, pp. 103–13. See also Edgar Prestage, The Portuguese Pioneers, op. cit., pp. 214–21.

77 Edgar Prestage, The Portuguese Pioneers, op. cit., p. 216.

78 A. H. M. Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, A History of Ethiopia, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1966, p. 62.

79 C. F. Beckingham and G. W. B. Huntingford (eds), The Prester John of the Indies: A True Relation of the Lands of Prester John, being the Narrative of the Portuguese Embassy to Ethiopia in 1520 written by Father Francisco Alvarez, Cambridge University Press for the Hakluyt Society, 1961, vol. I, p. 227.

80 Ibid., p. 226.

81 Captain Sir Richard F. Burton, First Footsteps in East Africa, London, 1894, reprinted Darf Publishers, London, 1986, vol. II, p. 5.

82 Ibid., p. 6. See also James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. II, pp. 162–72, and A. H. M Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, History of Ethiopia, op. cit., pp. 82–3.

83 Jean Doresse, Ancient Cities and Temples of Ethiopia, Elek Books, London, 1959, p. 127.

84 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. II, p. 164.

85 A. H. M. Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, History of Ethiopia, op.cit., p. 83.

86 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol II, p. 173.

87 Quoted in Philip Carman, The Lost Empire: the Story of the Jesuits in Ethiopia, Sidgwick & Jackson, London, 1985, p. 8.

88 Edward Gibbon, The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, op. cit.

89 The best overall account of Don Christopher’s mission is given by Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. II, pp. 181 ff. Sir Richard Burton, First Footsteps, op. cit., pp. 6–11, also contains useful material. In addition, the campaign is well covered in all the general histories.

90 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. II, p. 185.

91 Reported in The Itinerario of Jeronimo Lobo, The Hakluyt Society, London, 1984, pp. 206–7.

92 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. II, pp. 187–8.

93 Ibid., pp. 190–1.

94 Ibid., p. 418.

95 A. H. M. Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, History of Ethiopia, op. cit., p. 108. Professor Edward Ullendorf, The Ethiopians, Oxford University Press, 1973, p. 76. The tradition of the Ark’s sojourn on Lake Tana during and after the Gragn campaigns is well known in Ethiopia and was repeated to me in an interview with the Head of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church in Britain, Archpriest Solomon Gabre Selassie. The answers to the questions that I addressed to the archpriest were given to me in writing on 12 July 1989.

96 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. II, p. 409. Philip Carman, The Lost Empire, op. cit., p. 156.

97 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. I, pp. 481–2.

98 Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘James Bruce of Kinnaird’, Scottish Historical Review, T. Nelson, Edinburgh, 1953, p. 129.

99 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. III, p. 598.

100 See, for example, discussion in Alan Moorehead, The Blue Nile, Penguin Books, London, 1984, pp. 34–5. See also Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘James Bruce of Kinnaird’, op. cit., pp. 133–6.

101 For Bruce’s comments on Paez see, for example, Travels, op. cit., vol. II, pp. 244, 245, 266, 344, and vol. III, p. 617. Likewise an extensive treatise on Lobo’s book (which had been translated into English by Dr Samuel Johnson in 1735 as A Voyage to Abyssinia) appears in vol. III of Travels, pp. 133–41. See also vol. III, p. 426 for a further comment on Lobo.

102 Indeed he not only failed to give them credit for their achievements but also blatantly plagiarized their accounts. Here, for example, is Paez on his own visit to the twin springs which lie to the south of Lake Tana and which are regarded as the source of the Blue Nile: ‘On April 21 in the year 1618, being here together with the king and his army, I ascended the place and observed everything with great attention; I discovered first two round fountains, each about four palms in diameter, and saw, with the greatest delight, what neither Cyrus, the king of the Persians, nor Cambyses, nor Alexander the Great, nor the famous Julius Caesar, could ever discover. The two openings of these fountains have no issue in the plain at the top of the mountain, but flow from the foot of it. The second fountain lies abut a stone cast west from the first’ (quoted in Alan Moorehead, The Blue Nile, op. cit., p. 34).
   Jeronimo Lobo reached the source some twelve years after Paez, around the year 1630. Here is his description: ‘The source of this famous river, the object of so much searching but hidden for so long, is discovered … on a very gradual slope made by a certain mountain, seeming rather more like a rather irregular field than a mountain slope with quite an expanse of open, flat ground, where one can see for a fair distance. In this gradually rising plain, one discovers, in the driest part of summer, two circular pools or wells of water, which we can more appropriately call pits four spans in width and separated from each other by a distance of a stone’s throw … The whole plain, especially the part near the said wells … is swollen and undermined with water … and the reason it does not swallow up anyone who walks on it is that, since all the land is green and this part has many various grasses and herbs, the roots are so intertwined that … they can support anyone who walks on the field’ (The Itinerario of Jeronimo Lobo, op. cit., p. 228).
   Bruce’s own ‘discovery’ was made on 4 November 1770 (a century and a half after Paez and Lobo) and was preceded by his guide pointing out to him a ‘hillock of green sod … in [which] the two fountains of the Nile are to be found … Throwing off my shoes, I ran down the hill towards the little island of green sods, which was about two hundred yards distant; the whole side of the hill was thick grown over with flowers, the large bulbous roots of which appearing above the surface of the ground … occasioned two very severe falls before I reached the brink of the marsh; I after this came to the island of green turf … and I stood in rapture over the principal fountain which rises in the middle of it.
   ‘It is easier to guess than to describe the situation of my mind at that moment – standing in that spot which had baffled the genius, industry, and inquiry of both ancients and moderns for the course of near three thousand years. Kings had attempted this discovery at the head of armies, and each expedition was distinguished from the last only by the difference of the numbers which had perished, and agreed alone in the disappointment which had uniformly, and without exception, followed them all … Though a mere private Briton I triumphed here, in my own mind, over kings and their armies’ (James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. III, pp. 596–7).
   As I read and re-read Bruce’s description I could not help but feel that it was a kind of bastardized pastiche of the earlier experiences of Paez and Lobo (mixing the intertwined roots and swollen green marshes of the latter with the former’s allusions to kings and conquerors). Moreover, as I have already stated, it cannot be denied that the Scottish traveller was thoroughly familiar with the writings of both his predecessors.

103 Alan Moorehead, The Blue Nile, op. cit., p. 49. Professor Edward Ullendorff, in his paper ‘James Bruce of Kinnaird’, op. cit., describes Bruce as ‘one of the great universal savants and men of action of the eighteenth century’ and quotes the comment of the brothers d’abbadie, the French explorers, who said that they had consulted the Travels as a daily text-book and ‘had never discovered a mis-statement, and hardly even an error of any considerable importance’.

104 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. III, p. 615.

105 Ibid., p. 131.

106 Reported in ‘the Annals of Emperor Iyasu I’ in I. Guidi (ed.), Annales Iohannis I, Iyasu I, Bakaffa, Paris, 1903, pp. 151–9. See also Jean Doresse, Ancient Cities and Temples of Ethiopia, op. cit., p. 180. See also R. Basset, ‘Etudes sur l’histoire d’ethiopie’,Journal Asiatique, Octobre-Novembre-Décembre 1881, p. 297.

107 I subsequently learned from Professor Richard Pankhurst (conversation in Addis Ababa Tuesday 4 December 1990) that Bruce had in fact owned copies of the two principal documents of Iyasu’s life, the full chronicle and the abbreviated chronicle. Both these documents tell the story of the king going into the Holy of Holies and opening the Ark. In his Travels Bruce gave a potted history of all the solar eclipses and comets that had been seen in Ethiopia during the few centuries prior to his own visit. In this potted history he drew extensively on Iyasu’s abbreviated chronicle, which had mentioned a sighting of Richaud’s Comet in 1689. As Pankhurst put it: ‘The point is this. After describing the comet, the abbreviated chronicle goes on in the very next paragraph to report Iyasu’s encounter with the Ark in 1690. So Bruce must have known about it. That being so, his suggestion that the relic had been destroyed by the Muslims in the early 1500s does indeed look suspicious.’

108 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. I, pp. 365–492.

109 Ibid., vol. I, pp. 471–3.

110 Ibid., vol. I, p. 472.

111 Ibid., vol. I, pp. 472–3. See also pp. 444–6.

112 Ibid., vol. I, p. 475.

113 Ibid., vol. I, p. 476.

114 Ibid., vol. I, pp. 471 and 478.

115 Ibid., vol. III, pp. 128–33. E.g.: ‘On the 18th, in the morning, we … came into the plain wherein stood Axum’ (p. 128); and: ‘On the 19th of January, I found the latitude of Axum to be 14° 6’ 36” north …’ (p. 133).

116 See Chapter 1 above.

117 The tradition of the original Ark being brought out only at Timkat is also confirmed, for example, in Ruth Plant, Architecture of the Tigré, Ethiopia, Ravens Educational and Development Services, Worcester, 1985, p. 206: ‘It is said that the original Ark of the Covenant, brought by Menelik I from Jerusalem, is held in the Treasury. Only one monk is allowed to see it, although the casket is led in procession at the time of Timkat.

118 Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘James Bruce of Kinnaird’, op. cit., p. 141.

119 Ibid., p. 141.

120 Ibid., p. 141.

121 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. I, pp. 483–4.

122 Alan Moorehead, The Blue Nile, op. cit., p. 31.

123 Kebra Nagast, op. cit., Budge’s Introduction, pp. xxxii and xxxiii.

124 Around the third to second centuries BC. See R. H. Charles (trans.), The Book of Enoch, Society for the Propagation of Christian Knowledge, London, 1987, Introduction, p. xiii.

125 H. F. D. Sparks (ed.). The Apocryphal Old Testament, Clarendon Paperbacks, Oxford, 1989, p. 170: ‘Among the Ethiopic manuscripts that Bruce brought back were three containing what is now known as “1 Enoch” or “Ethiopian Enoch”. One of these manuscripts (now in the Bodleian Library at Oxford) contained “1 Enoch” only; the second (also in the Bodleian) contained “1 Enoch” followed by Job, Isaiah, “the Twelve”, Proverbs, Wisdom, Ecclesiastes, Canticles and Daniel; the third (now in the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris) is a transcript of the second.’

126 Kenneth Mackenzie, The Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia, op. cit., pp. 200–2.

127 Ibid.

128 Major F. B. Head, The Life of Bruce, the African Traveller, London, 1836.

129 J. M. Reid, Traveller Extraordinary: The Life of James Bruce of Kinnaird, Eyre & Spottiswoode, London, 1968.

130 Elgin occupied the position of Grand Master Mason of Scotland, 1961–5. Debretts Illustrated Peerage, Macmillan, London, 1985, p. 412.

Chapter 8 Into Ethiopia

1 For further details see Chapter 12 below.

2 Richard Pankhurst, writing in Graham Hancock, Richard Pankhurst and Duncan Willetts, Under Ethiopian Skies, Editions HL, London and Nairobi, 1983, p. 24. See also Yuri Elets, Emperor Menelik and his War with Italy, Saint Petersburg, 1898.

Chapter 9 Sacred Lake

1 James Bruce, Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile in the Years 1768, 176g, 1770, 1771, 1772 and 1773, Edinburgh, 1790, vol. III, pp. 425–7.

2 E.g. Sergew Hable-Selassie, Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History to 1270, Addis Ababa, 1972, p. 26.

3 See note 102 to Chapter 7 above.

4 See, for example, Alan Moorehead, The Blue Nile, Penguin Books, London, 1984, pp. 12–13 and 34. See also Major R. E. Cheesman, Lake Tana and the Blue Nile: An Abyssinian Quest, Macmillan, London, 1936.

5 Alan Moorehead, The Blue Nile, op. cit., p. 17.

6 For a further discussion see, for example, Lucie Lamy, Egyptian Mysteries, Thames & Hudson, London, 1981, pp. 7–8.

7 H. L. Jones (ed.), The Geography of Strabo, Loeb Library, London, 1940.

8 E. L. Stevenson, Geography of Claudius Ptolemy, New York, 1932.

9 Aeschylus, Fragment 67, quoted in Jean Doresse, Ancient Cities and Temples of Ethiopia, Elek, London, 1959.

10 For a discussion see Edward Ullendorff, Ethiopia and the Bible, Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 2.

11 James Bruce, Travels, op. cit., vol. III, p. 387.

12 See for example Gaalyah Cornfeld, Archaeology of the Bible Book by Book, Harper & Row, San Francisco, 1976, pp. 25 and 118.

13 Leviticus 4:6.

14 Leviticus 5:9.

15 Herbert Danby DD (trans.), The Mishnah, Oxford University Press, 1933, pp. 166, 167 and 168.

16 Ibid., p. 168.

Chapter 10 Ghost in a Maze

1 E. A. Wallis Budge, The Queen of Sheba and Her Only Son Menelik, bring the ‘Book of the Glory of Kings’ (Kebra Nagast), Oxford University Press, 1932, p. 145.

2 Which had supposedly taken place during the reign of Solomon in Jerusalem, i.e. in the tenth century BC. Axum was not founded until some eight hundred years later. See S. C. Munro-Hay, Excavations at Axum, British Institute in Eastern Africa, London, 1989, pp. 19–24.

3 E.g. the guardian monk. See Chapter 1 above. E. A. Wallis Budge also (wrongly) makes the assumption that Menelik’s destination with the Ark was Axum. In the Introduction to his English translation of the Kebra Nagast he states: ‘The Tabernacle of the Law of God, i.e. the Ark of the Covenant, had been brought from Jerusalem to Axum by Menelik, Solomon’s firstborn son, according to the Ethiopians.’ Many Ethiopians do say this. It is significant, however, that the Kebra Nagast makes no such claim and only specifies ‘Debra Makeda’ as the place to which the Ark was brought. For the Budge passage quoted above see Kebra Nagast, op. cit., Introduction, p. xvii.

4 Major R. E. Cheesman, Lake Tana and the Blue Nile: An Abyssinian Quest, Frank Cass, London, 1968 (first published 1936), pp. 174–5 and 179. Cheesman, who visited Tana Kirkos in the early 1930s, was also told of the Ark traditions on the island (see pp. 174–80). This is the only other reference to these traditions that I have been able to find in the literature – a reflection of the extreme isolation of Tana Kirkos and of the fact that the island has never been the subject of a proper scholarly or archaeological study.

5 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, Penguin Classics, London, 1980. See, for example, pp. 132 and 392–405.

6 Margaret Fitzgerald Richey, The Story of Parzival and the Grail as Related by Wolfram von Eschenbach, Basil Blackwell & Mott, Oxford, 1935, p. 198. Another interpretation of the meaning of Munsalvaesche is ‘wild’ or ‘savage’ mountain. See, for example, footnote by Professor A. T. Hatto to Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 123.

7 Psalm 130:3–7. Emphasis added.

8 See for example The New Collins Thesaurus, Collins, London and Glasgow, 1984, p. 594.

9 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 121.

10 Ibid., pp. 120–1.

11 Confirmation of this fact is available in a wide range of sources, for example in the survey of Christian and Jewish Ethiopian customs provided by J. S. Trimingham in his authoritative Islam in Ethiopia, Frank Cass, London, 1976, p. 26. See also David Kessler, The Falashas: The Forgotten Jews of Ethiopia, Schocken Books, New York, 1985, p. 68.

12 Kings 9:26: ‘And king Solomon made a navy of ships in Ezion-geber, which is beside Elath, on the shore of the Red sea, in the land of Edom.’ For the identification of Ezion-geber with modern Elat see, for example, Gaalyah Cornfeld, Archaeology of the Bible Book by Book, Harper & Row, San Francisco, 1976, pp. 110–11.

13 Kebra Nagast, op. cit., pp. 77–8: ‘And they loaded the wagons, and the horses, and the mules in order to depart … And as for the wagons, no man hauled his wagon … and whether it was men, or horses, or mules, or loaded camels, each was raised above the ground to the height of a cubit; and all those who rode upon beasts were lifted up above their backs to the height of one span of a man, and all the various kinds of baggage which were loaded on the beasts, as well as those who were mounted on them, were raised up to the height of one span of a man, and the beasts were lifted up to the height of one span of a man. And everyone travelled in the wagons … like an eagle when his body glideth above the wind.’

14 See for example Biblical Archaeology Review, May/June 1988, p. 3i.

15 Kebra Nagast, op. cit., p. 78.

16 I later confirmed that the Takazze was frequently referred to by Ethiopians as ‘the Nile’ and vice versa – for example, in Axumite texts of the fourth century and many later documents. For a discussion see L. P. Kirwan, ‘The Christian Topography and the Kingdom of Axum’, Geographical Journal, London, vol. 138, part II, June 1972, pp. 172–3.

17 I later learned that this same route was much more than just plausible. Throughout recorded history it had been greatly favoured by merchants and by pilgrims travelling between Ethiopia and Jerusalem. See O. G. S Crawford, Ethiopian Itineraries, Cambridge University Press for the Hakluyt Society, London, 1958.

18 James Bruce, Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile in the Years 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1772 and 1773, Edinburgh, 1790, vol. III, p. 252.

19 J. M. Flad, Falashas of Abyssinia, London, 1869, p. 10.

20 See, for example, The Falashas: The Jews of Ethiopia, Minority Rights Group Report Number 67, London, 1985. See also David Kessler, The Falashas, op. cit., p. 10, and Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements in Abyssinian (Monophysite) Christianity’, Journal of Semitic Studies, vol. I, no. 3, 1956, p. 254.

21 David Kessler, The Falashas, op. cit., p. 92.

22 In general for historical detail on trade and pilgrimage routes between Ethiopia and Jerusalem through Egypt and the Sudan see Ethiopian Itineraries, op. cit.

Chapter 11 And David danced before the Ark …

1 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 465.

2 Ibid.

3 See, for example, Richard Pankhurst, A Social History of Ethiopia, Institute of Ethiopian Studies, Addis Ababa University, 1990, pp. 41 and 193.

4 The absolute non-recognition by Coptic Christians of the unique tabot/Ark traditions of Ethiopia was forcefully confirmed in June 1989 in an interview in London with Bishop Serabion and Father Bishoi Boushra of the Coptic Orthodox Church. The interview was carried out on my behalf by Caroline Lasko, a freelance researcher.

5 Aymro Wondmagegnehu and Joachim Motovu, The Ethiopian Orthodox Church, The Ethiopian Orthodox Mission, Addis Ababa, 1970, pp. 11–14.

6 The Independent, London, 20 November 1990, p. 11.

7 Ibid. See also The Falashas: The Jews of Ethiopia (Minority Rights Group Report No. 67), Minority Rights Group, London, 1985, pp. 12–13.

8 Frederick C. Gamst, The Qemant: A Pagan-Hebraic Peasantry of Ethiopia, Holt, Rinehart & Winston, New York, 1969.

9 Ibid., p. 4.

10 Ibid., p. 122.

11 Genesis 12:9–10.

12 Genesis 41:27.

13 Leviticus 11:3–4, 7: ‘Whatsoever parteth the hoof, and is cloven footed, and cheweth the cud, among the beasts, that shall ye eat. Nevertheless these shall ye not eat of them that chew the cud, or of them that divide the hoof: as the camel, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean to you … And the swine, though he divide the hoof and be cloven footed, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you.’

14 See Deuteronomy 14:21: ‘Ye shall not eat of anything that dieth of itself.’ See also Leviticus 17:13–14: ‘And whatsoever man there be of the children of Israel … which hunteth and catcheth any beast or fowl that may be eaten; he shall even pour out the blood thereof … For it is the life of all flesh; the blood of it is for the life thereof: therefore I said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall eat the blood of no manner of flesh: for the life of all flesh is the blood thereof.’

15 Exodus 23: 19 and 34:26; Deuteronomy 14:21.

16 Compare Exodus 3 5:2–3: ‘Six days shall work be done, but on the seventh day there shall be to you an holy day, a Sabbath of rest to the Lord: whosoever doeth work therein shall be put to death. Ye shall kindle no fire throughout your habitations upon the Sabbath day.’

17 Genesis 21:33.

18 In his Archaeology of the Bible Book by Book (Harper & Row, San Francisco, 1976, p. 65), Gaalyah Cornfeld puts it this way: ‘Altars were the focal point of both high places, bamoth, and temples. The bamoth were essentially Canaanite sites of worship, but were acceptable also in earlier Israelite religion. They were usually open areas, with sacred trees and stone pillars, masseboth, associated with the altar.’

19 See, for example, Judges 6:25, 1 Kings 16:33; 2 Kings 21:3; 2 Kings 23:15; Isaiah 27:9.

20 2 Kings 23:7.

21 The Falashas: The Jews of Ethiopia (Minority Rights Group Report No. 67), op. cit., p. 9.

22 Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, Jerusalem Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1989, p. 684.

23 Ibid., p. 548.

24 Leviticus 15:19: ‘If a woman have an issue [of] blood … she shall be put apart seven days: and whosoever toucheth her shall be unclean until the even.’

25 ‘And in the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised’, Leviticus 12:3.

26 Leviticus 1:9.

27 See Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements in Abyssinian (Monophysite) Christianity’, Journal of Semitic Studies, vol. I, no. 3, London, 1956, pp. 249–50. Ullendorff states: ‘The date of circumcision on the eighth day is shared … by Jews and Ethiopians only. This is the more remarkable because members of the Coptic Church in Egypt [which was responsible for Ethiopia’s conversion] are circumcised at an age between six and eight years, and Gallas, Muslims and other influences in Ethiopia, with widely varying dates, would all combine to shake the Ethiopian confidence in the eighth day. Yet this date has been steadfastly maintained, no doubt under the influence of the Pentateuchal injunction … I have no doubt that the maintenance of circumcision among Abyssinians is part of those elements of Hebraic-Jewish lore which have been so tenaciously preserved in that part of Africa.’

28 Ibid., pp. 243–4.

29 Ibid., pp. 245–6. See also Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, op. cit., pp. 192–4 and 604–6.

30 Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements’, op. cit., pp. 242–3 and 247, note 3.

31 See in particular Exodus 19:15 and Leviticus 20:18.

32 Genesis 32:32: ‘Therefore the children of Israel eat not of the sinew which shrank, which is upon the hollow of the thigh.’

33 Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements’ op. cit., p. 242.

34 Ibid., p. 236. I am greatly indebted to Professor Ullendorff’s paper for alerting me to these correspondences.

35 Exodus 28:4.

36 Ibid.

37 Ibid. See also Exodus 28:17–21.

38 Archbishop David Matthew, Ethiopia, London, 1947, p. 12.

39 Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements’, op. cit., p. 235.

40 Ibid., pp. 235–6.

41 This also was the view of the Scottish traveller James Bruce, who argued that Frumentius and other Christian missionaries who came to Ethiopia in the fourth century AD, ‘finding Jewish traditions confirmed in the country, chose to respect them rather than refute them. Circumcision, the doctrine of clean and unclean meats, and many other Jewish rites and ceremonies are therefore part of the religion of the Abyssinians at this day.’ James Bruce, Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile in the Years 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1772, and 1773, 3rd edn, Edinburgh, 1813, vol. III, p. 13.

42 Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements’, op. cit., p. 227 (emphasis added).

43 Ibid., p. 251.

44 Leviticus 16:2–13.

45 Leviticus 16:13.

46 Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements’, op. cit., p. 238, quoting Isenberg’s Dictionary of the Amharic Language, London, 1841, p. 112.

47 The begegna is a hand-held, ten-stringed wooden harp, today found only in Ethiopia and said to be descended from the biblical Harp of David. See Tesfaye Lemma, Ethiopian Musical Instruments, Addis Ababa, 1975, p. 10.

48 2 Samuel 6:5–16.

49 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, Penguin Classics, London, 1980, p. 121.

50 And throughout the Pharaonic period. See Adolf Erman, Life in Ancient Egypt, Dover Publications, New York, 1971, pp. 279, 296, 390.

51 II Chronicles 5:12–13. See also 1 Kings 8:11.

52 II Chronicles 6:41 (Jerusalem Bible translation, Eyre & Spottiswoode, London, 1968, p. 464).

53 Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, translated by J. R. R. Tolkien and edited by Christopher Tolkien, Unwin Paperbacks, London, 1988, pp. 26 and 21.

Chapter 12 Magic … or Method?

1 Date from The Jerusalem Bible, Eyre & Spottiswoode, London, 1968, ‘Chronological Table’, p. 343.

2 These dimensions in feet and inches are extrapolated from the ancient cubit which measured approximately eighteen inches. See Dr J. H. Hertz (ed.), The Pentateuch and the Haftorahs, Soncino Press, London, 1978, p. 327. The Jerusalem Bible, footnote (b), p. 87, concurs.

3 The translation given here is from the Jerusalem Bible. The King James Authorized Version states ‘corners’ instead of ‘supports’ in Exodus 25:12.

4 Exodus 25:10–22.

5 Exodus 31:2–4.

6 Exodus 37:1–9.

7 ‘I came down from the mountain and put the tablets in the Ark’, Deuteronomy 10:5, supposedly quoting Moses’s own words. See also Exodus 40:20, ‘He [Moses] took the Testimony and placed it inside the Ark. He set the shafts to the Ark and placed the throne of mercy on it.’

8 Exodus 40:21: ‘He [Moses] brought the Ark into the Tabernacle and put the screening veil in place; thus he screened the Ark of Yahweh, as Yahweh had directed Moses.’

9 Leviticus 10:1.

10 Ibid.

11 Leviticus 10:2. The full passage reads: ‘And there went out fire from the Lord and devoured them and they died there before the Lord’ (King James Authorized Version). The Jerusalem Bible translation of the same, which makes use of ‘Yahweh’ (YHWH), the mystical name of God, reads as follows: ‘Then from Yahweh’s presence a flame leaped out and consumed them and they perished in the presence of Yahweh.’ It is important to stress that in this and many other similar contexts the Bible is actually and quite explicitly referring to the Ark when it speaks of ‘the Lord’ and/or ‘before the Lord’, or of ‘Yahweh’ and/or ‘in the presence of Yahweh’. This is best illustrated by the following passage from Numbers 10:35: ‘And it came to pass, when the Ark set forward, that Moses said, Rise up, Lord, and let thine enemies be scattered and let them that hate thee fall before thee’ (King James Authorized Version). The Jerusalem Bible translation of the same verse reads: ‘And as the Ark set out, Moses would say, Arise, Yahweh, may your enemies be scattered and those who hate you run for their lives before you.’ The Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible comments: ‘The Ark is not only seen as the leader of Israel’s host, but is directly addressed as Yahweh. There is virtually an identification of Yahweh and the Ark … there is no doubt that the Ark was interpreted as the extension or embodiment of the presence of Yahweh.’ The Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible: An Illustrated Encyclopaedia, Abingdon Press, Nashville, 1962, pp. 222–3.

12 Leviticus 16:1–2, amalgam of King James Authorized Version and Jerusalem Bible translations.

13 Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia, 1911, vol. III, p. 210.

14 Ibid. Compare Exodus 40:35.

15 The Ark was installed in the Tabernacle on the first day of the first month of the second year after the Israelites had fled Egypt (Exodus 40:17). It was on the eighth day of the same month that the priests were invested and the deaths of Nadab and Abihu occurred (Leviticus 9:1 et seq.). The entry of Moses into the Holy of Holies to which I am referring here took place soon after, and indeed in the same month, since this entry is described in Chapter 7 of the book of Numbers and since Chapter 9 of the same book is still set ‘in the first month of the second year’ – clearly an eventful period (Numbers 9:1).

16 Numbers 7:89.

17 Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. III, p. 210.

18 Ibid., vol. III, p. 157. See also The Jewish Encyclopaedia, Funk & Wagnells, New York, 1925, vol. II, p. 105.

19 Numbers 10:33, 35–6, Jerusalem Bible translation.

20 Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. III, p. 228.

21 Julian Morgenstern, ‘The Book of the Covenant’, in Hebrew Union College Annual, vol. V, 1928, reprinted by KTAV Publishing House, New York, 1968, p. 20, footnote 25. See also The Jewish Encyclopaedia, op. cit., vol. II, p. 105.

22 E.g. during the crossing of the Jordan. See The Jewish Encyclopaedia, op. cit., vol. II, p. 105.

23 Ibid. And see also Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. III, p. 194.

24 Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. III, p. 395. Another legend, supported by Midrashic commentaries, says that during the wilderness wanderings: ‘The Ark gave the signal for breaking camp by soaring high and then swiftly moving before the camp at a distance of three days’ march’ (Ibid., vol. III, p. 243).

25 Julian Morgenstern, ‘The Book of the Covenant’, op. cit., pp. 27–8: ‘The oldest Biblical references to the Ark agree absolutely in representing it as discharging two specific functions, that of choosing the way it wished to go, and that of going into battle with the army of Israel and giving it victory over its enemies … These two important functions the Ark was able to discharge, all the evidence indicates, because of a positive divine power resident in it. And all these earliest sources agree in identifying this divine power with Yahweh’ (emphasis added). For further corroboration of the frequency with which the Ark was taken into battle see Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. III, pp. 284 and 409; vol. IV, p. 143.

26 The Jewish Encyclopaedia, op. cit., vol. II, p. 106.

27 Numbers 14:44–5 (amalgam of King James Authorized Version and Jerusalem Bible translations).

28 Exodus 16:35. There has been a great deal of scholarly debate about whether the Israelites really did spend forty years in the desert (making Moses approximately 120 years old when the wanderings ended) or whether the period was shorter than this. Likewise the vast numbers of the Israelites given in the Bible (600,000 men on foot, plus their families) have been hotly disputed on ecological grounds – since Sinai could never have sustained such a population. Both these points are irrelevant to my argument. For the record, however, I suspect that the Israelites spent a good deal less than forty years in the wilderness: four years sounds far more likely. And I suspect that their numbers were small – a few hundreds or thousands at the most.

29 Numbers 31:2–11.

30 Numbers 22:1.

31 Numbers 20:28.

32 Numbers 20:24–8.

33 Numbers 27:12–23.

34 Deuteronomy 34:4–6, 10–12.

35 Deuteronomy 31:14–15.

36 Joshua 3:3–4 (King James Authorized Version translation). Emphasis added.

37 Joshua 3:6, 14–17; Joshua 4:18, 21, 23.

38 Joshua 6:11, 13–16, 20–1.

39 E.g. Joshua 7:3 ff. which tells of battle being started without the Ark and of the resulting defeat; Joshua 7:6 which inserts the Ark back into the narrative; and Joshua 8:1 ff. which tells of the ultimate Israelite victory. See also Joshua 10:10 ff., which almost certainly recounts the participation of the Ark in another significant victory. Similarly Joshua 10:29–30 ff., especially verse 42.

40 See, for example, Joshua 18:1–10; 19:51; 21:2; 22:9; Judges 18:31; 21:19; and 1 Samuel 1:3–9 and 24; 3:21.

41 See Julian Morgenstern, ‘The Ark, the Ephod and the Tent of Meeting’, Hebrew Union College Annual, vol. XVII, 1942–3, reprinted by KTAV Publishing House, New York, 1968, pp. 235–6: ‘It [the Ark] was not carried into ordinary battles.’

42 1 Samuel 4:1–2 (amalgam of King James Authorized Version and Jerusalem Bible translations).

43 1 Samuel 4:3 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

44 1 Samuel 4:4–5 (King James Authorized Version translation).

45 1 Samuel 4:6–9 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

46 1 Samuel 4:10–11.

47 1 Samuel 4:13, 15–17 (King James Authorized Version translation); and 1 Samuel 4:18–19 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

48 Encyclopaedia Britannica, 15th edn, 1991, vol. XIV, p. 786.

49 1 Samuel 4:22.

50 1 Samuel 5, complete text.

51 1 Samuel 6:1.

52 1 Samuel 6:2 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

53 1 Samuel 6:7 (King James Authorized Version translation).

54 1 Samuel 6:12 (King James Authorized Version translation).

55 1 Samuel 6:13–14, 19 (King James Authorized Version translation).

56 See for example 1 Samuel 6:19, Jerusalem Bible translation. See also the same verse in the New English Bible, Oxford and Cambridge University Presses, 1970, p. 308, and in the Holy Bible: New International Version, The Bible Societies/ Hodder & Stoughton, UK, 1988. This latter states: ‘But God struck down some of the men of Bethshemesh, putting seventy of them to death because they had looked into the Ark of the Lord.’ See also Handbook to the Bible, Lion Publishing, London, 1988, p. 234.

57 Two of the biblical translations (Jerusalem Bible and New English Bible) imply that the men were killed because they had not rejoiced when they saw the Ark of Yahweh; the King James Authorized Version and the New International Version, on the other hand, specifically say that they were killed because they looked into the Ark. This latter interpretation is supported in the Handbook to the Bible, op. cit., p. 234 and by Julian Morgenstern in ‘The Ark, the Ephod and the Tent of Meeting’, op. cit., p. 241.

58 1 Samuel 6:20 (New English Bible translation).

59 1 Samuel 6:15.

60 1 Samuel 7:1. A Christian church dedicated to ‘the Virgin Mary Ark of the Covenant’ now stands at Kiriath-Jearim. See Chapter 3 above.

61 1 Samuel 7:1. The Jerusalem Bible states that a certain Eleazar was appointed ‘to guard the Ark of Yahweh’. The New English Bible states that he was its ‘custodian’.

62 Julian Morgenstern, ‘The Ark, the Ephod and the Tent of Meeting’, op. cit., p. 241, footnote 143.

63 Set Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 343.

64 2 Samuel 6:3–4; 6–7.

65 2 Samuel 6:9–10 (New English Bible translation).

66 2 Samuel 6:10 (New English Bible translation).

67 2 Samuel 6:11 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

68 Louis Ginzberg, The Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. VI, p. 275.

69 2 Samuel 6:12 (King James Authorized Version translation).

70 E.g. 1 Chronicles 15:15.

71 2 Samuel 6:15.

72 2 Samuel 6:5.

73 1 Chronicles 16:1. See also 1 Chronicles 17:45.

74 1 Chronicles 28:2.

75 Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 344.

76 1 Kings 6:38 states that the Temple took eleven years to build.

77 1 Kings 8:1, 3, 4, 5, 6 (amalgam of King James Authorized Version and Jerusalem Bible translations).

78 Some details of what is known about this mysterious disappearance are given in Chapter 1 above. The phrase ‘thick darkness’ is from 1 Kings 8:12.

79 See for example Professor Richard Elliott Friedman, Who Wrote the Bible?, Johnathan Cape, London, 1988, p. 156.

80 As in the case of Moses’s insubordinate sister Miriam. See Numbers 12. This incident is discussed further in Chapter 13 below.

81 Exodus 12:40.

82 The date of the Exodus, which Moses led in his old age, is generally put at between 1250 and 1230 BC (see, for example, Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 343). For a discussion of the dates of Tutankhamen’s short rule see Christiane Desroches-Noblecourt, Tutankhamen: Life and Death of a Pharaoh, Penguin, London, 1989, p. 105.

83 Christiane Desroches-Noblecourt, Tutankhamen, op. cit., pp. 15 and 20.

84 Exodus 25:11.

85 Christiane Desroches-Noblecourt, Tutenkhamen, op. cit., p. 131. See also Nicholas Reeves, The Complete Tutankhamun, Thames & Hudson, London, 1990, pp. 102 and 104. It is interesting to note that the sarcophagus itself also bore images of these tutelary deities in high relief – see page 105.

86 Exodus 25:18.

87 For a discussion see Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, Jerusalem Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1989, pp. 157–8.

88 Christiane Desroches-Noblecourt, Tutankhamen, op. cit., p. 185.

89 Ibid., p. 185. See also John Anthony West, Ancient Egypt, Harrap Columbus, London, 1989, p. 268, and Jill Kamil, Luxor, Longman, London and New York, 1989, p. 28.

90 Alan Moorehead, The Blue Nile, Penguin, London, 1984, p. 17.

91 I Chronicles 15:15, Jerusalem Bible translation. The King James Authorized Version reads: ‘And the children of the Levites bare the Ark of God upon their shoulders with the staves thereon, as Moses commanded.’

92 See, for example, Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements in Abyssinian (Monophysite) Christianity’, Journal of Semitic Studies, vol. I, no. 3, 1956, p. 223, footnote 6. Ullendorff says that tabot is ‘derived from the Jewish Pal. Aramaic tebuta (tebota) which in turn is a derivation from the Hebrew tebah.

93 E. A. Wallis Budge, The Queen of Sheba and her Only Son Menelik: being the ‘Book of the Glory of Kings’ (Kebra Nagast), Oxford University Press, 1932, pp. 14–15.

94 Ibid., p. 14.

95 I am grateful to Dr Kitchen for his help and advice at various stages of this project. I first came into contact with him after he met and was interviewed on 12 June 1989 by Caroline Lasko (a freelance researcher then working with me). He subsequently was kind enough to be available for further meetings and to write to me on various salient points. For his authoritative views on the ancient Egyptian origins of many aspects of early Judaism the reader is referred to his paper ‘Some Egyptian Background to the Old Testament’, Tyndale House Bulletin, no. 5–6, Cambridge, April 1960. As regards the Ark of the Covenant and its relationship to the arks from Tutankhamen’s tomb, see in particular pp. 10–11.

96 E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God in Ancient Egypt, Oxford University Press, 1934, p. 40.

97 A. H. Sayce, Fresh Light from the Ancient Monuments, Religious Tract Society, London, 1884, p. 67. See also p. 68.

98 Christiane Desroches-Noblecourt, Tutankhamen, op. cit., p. 186. See also Shalom M. Paul and William G. Dever (eds), Biblical Archaeology, Keter Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1973, part III, p. 252: ‘Some scholars have compared the Ark to the chests (the lower part of which was generally boat-shaped) which were brought out of the temple by the Egyptian priests at festivals, and on which statues of the gods were placed.’ Emphasis added.

99 Julian Morgenstern, ‘The Book of the Covenant’, op. cit., p. 121.

100 J. A. West, Ancient Egypt, op. cit., p. 236.

101 Ibid.

102 Ibid.

103 Lady Flavia Anderson, The Ancient Secret: Fire from the Sun, RILKO Books, London, 1987,pp. 113–14.

104 I made the following entry in my notebook: ‘The arks carried in the Apet ceremonies – though later transformed into chests – initially took the form of boats. It is therefore not difficult to see how the word tebah came to be used in biblical Hebrew for the ark of Noah and for Moses’s ark of bullrushes. That a different name (’Aron) was subsequently used for the Ark of the Covenant could simply be a function of the fact that the Ark itself had disappeared from Jerusalem by the time that the books of the Old Testament came to be officially codified – and that the biblical scribes, setting down the oral history of the Jewish people, had been confused or uncertain about some of the key details of the religious tradition from which the lost relic had hailed. If my theory is correct, of course, it was not “lost” at all, but instead had been taken to Ethiopia – where its original name (Tapet or Tabot) has continued to be used right up to the present day.’ I later discovered that the Scottish explorer James Bruce had considered similar issues in vol. I of his Travels. He passed through Luxor (then known to Europeans as Thebes) on his way to Ethiopia and speculated that the name ‘Thebes’ must have been derived from ‘Theba, which was the Hebrew name for the Ark when Noah was ordered to build it – Thou shalt “make thee an Ark (Theba) of gopher-wood”. The figure of the temples in Thebes do not seem to be far removed from the idea given us of the Ark.’ Though he did not proceed, as I had done, to link Tapet (the ancient Egyptian name for Thebes) to Tabot, I was intrigued that he followed this particular linguistic trail. It further convinced me that his principal aim in going to Ethiopia had been to search for the Ark of the Covenant and not, as he pretended, to discover the source of the Nile. See James Bruce, Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile in the Years 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1772 and 1773, Edinburgh, 1790, vol. I. pp. 394–5.

105 Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), Encyclopaedia of Judaism, op. cit., p. 504.

106 Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 343.

107 Josephus, Jewish Antiquities, translated by H. St J. Thackeray, Heinemann, London, 1930, vol. IV, books I–IV, p. 253.

108 Ibid., pp. 257–9.

109 Acts 7:22.

110 Philo Judaeus, De Vita Mosis, translated by F. H. Colson, Heinemann, London, 1935, vol. VI, pp. 287–9.

111 This is attested to at some length in both Philo and Josephus, op. cit.

112 What we know about the life of Moses confirms that ‘he had studied the various branches of Egyptian magic’, E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., p. 8.

113 ‘All the pharaohs were magicians as part of their office’, C. Jacq, Egyptian Magic, Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, Chicago, 1985, p. 12. And see in general pp. 9–13.

114 Acts 7:22.

115 Luke 24:19.

116 That knowledge of words of power is indeed referred to in the phrase ‘mighty in words’ – rather, say, than oratory – becomes clear when we remember that Moses later told Yahweh, ‘never in my life have I been a man of eloquence.’ The deity replied that the prophet should use his half-brother Aaron as his mouthpiece: ‘I know that he is a good speaker.’ Exodus 4:10–17.

117 E. A. Wallis Budge, Egyptian Magic, Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner, London, 1901, p. 5.

118 Josephus, op. cit., footnote c, pp. 276–7. See also Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., footnote 3a, p. 63.

119 Exodus 3:2.

120 Exodus 3:7–10.

121 Exodus 3:13.

122 J. G. Frazer, The Golden Bough: A Study in Magic and Religion, Macmillan, London, 1987 edn, p. 261.

123 Exodus 3:14 and Exodus 3:6.

124 See Irving M. Zeitlin, Ancient Judaism, Polity Press, Cambridge, 1984, pp. 58–9. See also Handbook to the Bible, Lion Publishing, London, 1988, p. 157. The meaning of the Hebrew verb ‘to be’ goes beyond ‘to exist’ and conveys the notion ‘to be actively present’. For a fuller discussion see F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 1354. See also Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, op. cit., pp. 289–90.

125 E.g. Exodus 4:20; Exodus 17:9.

126 Exodus 4:2.

127 Exodus 4:3–4.

128 E. A. Wallis Budge, Egyptian Magic, op. cit., p. 5, and From Fetish to God, op. cit., pp. 119 and 129.

129 Exodus 7:11–12.

130 Exodus 7:20–2.

131 Exodus 8:1–7.

132 Exodus 8:16–19.

133 Exodus 8:21–32.

134 Exodus 9:1–7.

135 Exodus 9:8–11.

136 Exodus 10:1–20; Exodus 10:21–3.

137 Exodus 12:23–30.

138 Exodus 12:31–3.

139 Exodus 14:21–2.

140 Exodus 14:23.

141 Exodus 14:7–9.

142 Budge, Egyptian Magic, op. cit., p. 10.

143 Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., p. 8.

144 Ibid., p. 43: ‘It is impossible to think that the highest order of the priests did not possess esoteric knowledge which they guarded with the greatest care.’

145 See, for example, Lucie Lamy, Egyptian Mysteries, Thames & Hudson, London, 1981, p. 86.

146 Luciano Canfora, The Vanished Library: A Wonder of the Ancient World, Hutchinson, London, 1989, p. 21.

147 Herodotus, The History, David Green (trans.), University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 1988, p. 132.

148 W. B. Emery, Archaic Egypt, Penguin, London, 1961, p. 206.

149 See the paper ‘Mathematics and Astronomy’ in J. R. Harris (ed.), The Legacy of Egypt, Oxford University Press, 1971.

150 This may be deduced from measurement of a variety of ancient Egyptian structures. Sir William Flinders Petrie, the nineteenth-century archaeologist (who was highly sceptical in general of theories suggesting advanced knowledge in ancient Egypt) was satisfied that the proportions of the Great Pyramid at Giza (c. 2550 BC) ‘expressed the transcendental number pi with very considerable precision’. See A. J. West, The Traveller’s Key to Ancient Egypt: A Guide to the Sacred Places of Ancient Egypt, Harrap, London, 1987, p. 90.

151 Reported in Mystic Places, Time-Life Books, Amsterdam, 1987, p. 65.

152 See R. El-Nadoury, ‘The Legacy of Pharaonic Egypt’, in General History of Africa II, UNESCO, Paris, 1981.

153 See the paper on ‘Medicine’ in J. R. Harris (ed.), The Legacy of Egypt, op. cit.

154 See Chapter 5 above.

155 Quoted in Robert Lawlor, Sacred Geometry: Philosophy and Practice, Thames & Hudson, London, 1982.

156 See William Anderson, The Rise of the Gothic, Hutchinson, London, 1985, p. 65.

157 Dates from J. A. West, Ancient Egypt, op. cit., pp. 249–50.

158 Ibid., pp. 249–50.

159 Ibid., p. 252.

160 Ibid., p. 424.

161 J. R. Harris, ‘Technology and Materials’, in The Legacy of Egypt, op. cit., p. 103.

162 J. A. West, Ancient Egypt, op. cit., p. 251.

163 Ibid., p. 109.

164 Quoted in ibid., p. 40.

165 Ibid., pp. 112–23, for all measurements and weights. See also A.J. Spencer, The Great Pyramid, P. J. Publications, London, 1989.

166 A. Abu Bakr, ‘Pharaonic Egypt’, in the UNESCO General History of Africa II, op. cit.

167 Mystic Places, op. cit., pp. 49–50.

168 Ibid., p. 62.

169 Ibid., p. 62. For a full and up-to-date presentation of the pyramidologists’ point of view see Peter Lemesurier, The Great Pyramid Decoded, Element Books, Dorset, UK, 1989.

170 Peter Lemesurier, The Great Pyramid Decoded, op. cit., p. 7.

171 Mystic Places, op. cit., p. 59, and Lemesurier, op. cit., p. 3. In fact, as Lemesurier points out, the alignment is fractionally off true – by nearly five minutes of arc, or one-twelfth of a degree. But this would be to ignore the astronomical evidence that the cause even of this minute error is to be found in the gradual movement of the earth’s own axis rather than in any inaccuracy on the part of the building’s original surveyors.

172 Set Mystic Places, op. cit., p. 47; J. A. West, Ancient Egypt, op. cit., p. 123; and A.J. Spencer, The Great Pyramid, op. cit.

173 Herodotus, op. cit., 2. 125, p. 186.

174 Quoted in J. A. West, Ancient Egypt, op. cit., p. 107.

175 Ibid., Introduction, p. xi. As well as the sheer magnitude of the task involved in building the Great Pyramid, other factors also contributed to my deepening suspicion that the ancient Egyptians must have known something that modern civilization did not. In the late nineteenth century, for example, Sir William Flinders Petrie, certainly the most eminent archaeologist of his generation, spent months at Giza carefully measuring the edifice – principally with a view to demolishing some of the wilder speculations of the pyramidologists. This he largely succeeded in doing (he claimed subsequently that he had provided ‘the ugly little fact which killed the beautiful theory’). However, even he was forced to admit on several occasions that some of the achievements of the pyramid’s builders were quite baffling. Commenting on the precision with which the 115,000 ten-ton casing blocks were laid around the core masonry, he wrote: ‘Merely to place such stones in exact contact would be careful work, but to do so with cement in the joint seems almost impossible; it is to be compared to the finest opticians’ work on a scale of acres.’ Petrie’s remark is quoted in J. A. West’s Ancient Egypt, op. cit., p. 90.

Chapter 13 Treasures of Darkness

1 Garth Fowden, The Egyptian Hermes: A Historical Approach to the Late Pagan Mind, Cambridge University Press, 1987, pp. 22–3.

2 See New Larousse Encyclopaedia of Mythology, Hamlyn, London, 1989, p. 28.

3 Ibid., p. 27. See also E. A. Wallis Budge, Egyptian Magic, Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner, London, 1901, p. xi: ‘the world itself came into existence through the utterance of a word by Thoth.’ Soon after I had learned this it occurred to me that the whole concept was eerily analogous to the well known biblical passage which stated: ‘In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things came to be, not one thing had its being but through him’ (John 1:1–3). Intrigued by this coincidence I looked further and discovered, to my considerable surprise, that the Judaeo-Christian Scriptures allowed a number of other close parallels to be drawn between Thoth, the pagan moon-god of the Egyptians, and Yahweh, the God of Moses. One of the most striking of these concerned the Ten Commandments given to Moses on Mount Sinai and supposedly inscribed on the tablets of stone that were contained within the Ark of the Covenant: ‘Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image … Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain … Remember the sabbath day and keep it holy … Honour thy father and thy mother … Thou shalt not kill … Thou shalt not commit adultery … Thou shalt not steal … Thou shalt not bear false witness … Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife.’ (Exodus 20:3–17).
   I had always thought that this exacting legal code was unique to early Judaic culture. This assumption, however, was overturned when I found the following remarkably similar formulae in Chapter CXXV of the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead – a chapter which consisted of a series of negative confessions that the soul of the deceased was obliged to make before Thoth in his capacity as divine judge and scribe: ‘Not have I despised god … Not have I killed … Not have I fornicated … Not have I despoiled the things of the god … not have I defiled the wife of a man … Not have I cursed god … Not have I borne false witness’ (see E. A. Wallis Budge, The Egyptian Book of the Dead: The Papyrus of Ani, British Museum Publications, London, 1895, pp. 195–204). Perhaps the most striking parallel of all, however, occurred in a rubric to one part of the Book of the Dead which stated: ‘This chapter was found on an alabaster brick, under the feet of the Majesty of this venerable place, the God Thoth, and it was written by the God himself.’ I already knew, of course, that the Ark of the Covenant had frequently been referred to in the Bible as the ‘footstool of God’ (e.g. 1 Chronicles 28:2) and that it had contained the stone Tablets of the Law written by Yahweh’s own finger. I could therefore only conclude that the match between the thinking and behaviour of Yahweh and Thoth – and also between the beliefs that people had held about the two deities – was much too close to be entirely fortuitous. Neither, I reasoned, was it possible that the biblical passages had influenced the writers of the Book of the Dead since, of the two documents, the latter was by far the most ancient (some of its contents, I knew, went back as far as the fourth millennium BC; the most archaic sections of the Bible, by contrast, were at least 2,000 years younger).

4 Garth Fowden, The Egyptian Hermes, op. cit., p. 33.

5 Ibid., p. 23. See also E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God in Ancient Egypt, Oxford University Press, 1934, pp. 121–2, and the New Larousse Encyclopaedia of Mythology, op. cit., p. 27.

6 New Larousse Encyclopaedia of Mythology, op. cit., p. 27.

7 John Anthony West, The Traveller’s Key to Ancient Egypt: a Guide to the Sacred Places of Ancient Egypt, Harrap Columbus, London, 1987, pp. 74–5.

8 E. A. Wallis Budge (trans.), The Egyptian Book of the Dead, op. cit., Introduction, p. cxviii.

9 E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., p. 157. See also M. V. Seton-Williams, Egyptian Legends and Stories, Rubicon Press, London, 1990, p. 16.

10 This story is to be found in its fullest form in Plutarch, De Iside et Osiride. See M. V. Seton-Williams, op. cit., pp. 24–9. See also E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., pp. 177 ff.

11 W. B. Emery, Archaic Egypt, Penguin, London, 1987, p. 192.

12 E. A. Wallis Budge (trans.), The Egyptian Book of the Dead, op. cit., Introduction, pp. xii and xiii.

13 W. B. Emery, Archaic Egypt, op. cit., p. 38. Emphasis added.

14 Ibid., p. 175–91.

15 Ibid., pp. 177 and 31.

16 Ibid., p. 26.

17 Instructions given to Sin on the day of creation by Marduk, chief figure in the Mesopotamian pantheon. Quoted in the New Larousse Encyclopaedia of Mythology, op. cit., p. 57.

18 Ibid.

19 E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., p. 155

20 W. B. Emery, Archaic Egypt, op. cit., p. 31.

21 This is Emery’s view also. See ibid., p. 122–3.

22 Plato, Timaeus and Critias, Penguin Classics, London, 1977, p. 39.

23 Ibid., pp. 35–8 and 137–8.

24 Ibid., p. 38.

25 Ibid. See ‘Appendix on Atlantis’ by Sir Desmond Lee, p. 158.

26 Ibid., p. 158.

27 Ibid., p. 40.

28 See Edmond Sollberger, The Babylonian Legend of the Flood, British Museum Publications, London, 1962. See also The Epic of Gilgamesh, Penguin Classics, London, 1960.

29 Peter Marshall, Journey Through the Maldives, Camerapix Publishers International, London, 1991, p. 191.

30 Set Encyclopaedia Britannica, 15th edn, 1991, Micropaedia, vol. IV, pp. 441–2.

31 See Chapter CLXXV of the Book of the Dead where Thoth (in his capacity as universal demiurge) resolves to send a flood to punish sinful humanity: ‘They have fought fights, they have upheld strifes, they have done evil, they have created hostilities, they have made slaughter, they have caused trouble and oppression … [Therefore] I am going to blot out everything which I have made. This earth shall enter into the watery abyss by means of a raging flood, and will become even as it was in primeval time’ (from the Theban Recension of the Book of the Dead, quoted in E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., p. 198). This compares intriguingly with Chapter 6 of Genesis: ‘And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart … And God said, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence … And behold I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth to destroy all flesh wherein is the breath of life from under heaven; and everything that is in the earth shall die’ (Genesis 6:5–17).

32 E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., pp. 197–8.

33 Good summaries of the Plutarch account are given in M. V. Seton-Williams, Egyptian Legends and Stories, op. cit., pp. 24–9; and in E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., pp. 178–83.

34 See in particular E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., p. 182. The Plutarch story has the coffer floating across the Mediterranean to ‘Byblos’ near modern Beirut. Budge dismisses this as a mistranslation, pointing out that byblos was simply a name for the papyrus plant.

35 Ibid., p. 180.

36 Josephus, Jewish Antiquities, translated by H. St J. Thackeray, Heinemann, London, 1930, vol. IV, books I-IV, p. 263.

37 Philo, Life of Moses, translated by F. H. Colson, Heinemann, London, 1935, vol. VI, p. 285.

38 E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., pp. 181–2.

39 Samuel Noah Kramer, The Sumerians: Their History, Culture and Character, University of Chicago Press, 1963. See also John Oates, Babylon, Thames & Hudson, London, 1979.

40 New Larousse Encyclopaedia of Mythology, op. cit., pp. 58–60.

41 Jonah 2:10; 3:2.

42 Genesis 6:19.

43 Genesis 6:14.

44 Genesis 9:1.

45 Luke 24:19.

46 John 3:5.

47 Mark 1:9–11.

48 See E. A. Wallis Budge, Egyptian Magic, Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner, London, 1901.

49 J. A. West, Ancient Egypt, op. cit., p. 8.

50 Thor Heyerdahl, The Ra Expeditions, Book Club Associates, London, 1972, p. 17. Heyerdahl adds, without much further comment, that the pyramid boat had clearly been built ‘to a pattern created by shipbuilders from a people with a long, solid tradition of sailing on the open sea’ (p. 16).

51 J. A. West, Ancient Egypt, op. cit., pp. 132–3. See also A.J. Spencer, The Great Pyramid, P. J. Publications, London, 1989.

52 Christiane Desroches-Noblecourt, Tutankhamen, Penguin, London, 1989, pp. 89, 108, 113 and 283.

53 A.J. Spencer, The Great Pyramid, op. cit.

54 See, for example, W. B. Emery, Archaic Egypt, op. cit., p. 68.

55 General History of Africa, UNESCO, Paris, 1981, p. 84–107.

56 For further discussion see W. B. Emery, Archaic Egypt, op. cit., particularly Chapter 4; Lucy Lamy, Egyptian Mysteries, Thames & Hudson, London, 1981, p. 68; and UNESCO General History of Africa, op. cit.

57 J. A. West, Ancient Egypt, op. cit., p. 158. The Greeks later appropriated Imhotep, under the Hellenized name Asclepius, as the founder of the science of medicine.

58 E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God, op. cit., p. 161.

59 Garth Fowden, The Egyptian Hermes, op. cit., p. 33.

60 Ibid., p. 23.

61 J. A. West, Ancient Egypt, op. cit., p. 12.

62 Ibid., p. 340.

63 Ibid., p. 343.

64 The Jewish Encyclopaedia, Funk & Wagnells, New York, 1925, vol. II, p. 497.

65 Collins English Dictionary, Collins, London, 1982, p. 261; emphasis added.

66 Malcolm Barber, The Trial of the Templars, Cambridge University Press, 1989, p. 62. See also pp. 61, 67, 69, 100, 101, 147, 163–4, 167, 175, 178, 182–3, 185–8, 210, 249.

67 G. Legman, The Guilt of the Templars, Basic Books, New York, 1966, p. 85.

68 See H.J. Schonfield, The Essene Odyssey, Element Books, London, 1984, pp. 162–5. The code is known as the Atbash cipher. See in particular p. 164.

69 Ibid., p. 164.

70 E. A. Wallis Budge, The Gods of the Egyptians, Methuen, London, 1904, vol. I, p. 415.

71 Ibid., p. 414.

72 Ibid., p. 414.

73 David Stevenson, The Origins of Freemasonry, Cambridge University Press, 1990, p. 85. The Masons had venerated Thoth in his later incarnation as Hermes, the Greek god of wisdom. As Stevenson explains: ‘The Greeks had identified their god Hermes with the Egyptian god Thoth, scribe to the gods, and himself a god of wisdom’ (ibid., p. 83).

74 Ibid., p. 85 (with Thoth again in his incarnation as Hermes).

75 In De Revolutionibus. For a discussion see Timothy Ferris, Coming of Age in the Milky Way, Bodley Head, London, 1988, p. 65.

76 From The Harmonies of the World, quoted in Timothy Ferris, Coming of Age in the Milky Way, op. cit., p. 79.

77 The quotation is from Newton’s Principia, cited in Richard S. Westfall, Never at Rest: a Biography of Isaac Newton, Cambridge University Press, 1980, p. 435.

78 Ibid., p. 434.

79 John Harrison, The Library of Isaac Newton, Cambridge University Press, 1978.

80 Frank Manuel, The Religion of Isaac Newton, Oxford University Press, 1974, p. 86.

81 Gale E. Christianson, In the Presence of the Creator: Isaac Newton and His Times, Collier Macmillan, London, 1984, p. 262.

82 Richard S. Westfall, Never at Rest, op. cit., p. 346.

83 Gale E. Christianson, op. cit., pp. 256–7.

84 Ibid., p. 257.

85 Richard S. Westfall, Never at Rest, op. cit., p. 250.

86 John Maynard Keynes, ‘Newton the Man’, in Newton Tercentenary Celebrations, Cambridge University Press, 1947, pp. 27–9.

87 Gale E. Christianson, In the Presence of the Creator, op. cit., p. 362.

88 Ibid.

89 Ibid., p. 222

90 Yahuda Manuscript Collection, Jewish National and University Library, Jerusalem, MS 16.2, pp. 48, 50 and 74.

91 Richard S. Westfall, Never at Rest, op. cit., p. 355.

92 Ibid., p. 356. See also Gale E. Christianson, In the Presence of the Creator, op. cit., p. 255.

93 See Gale E. Christianson, In the Presence of the Creator, p. 256.

94 Piyo Rattansi, ‘Newton and the Wisdom of the Ancients’, in John Fauvel, Raymond Flood et al. (eds), Let Newton Be!: A New Perspective on his Life and Works, Oxford University Press, 1988, pp. 188 and 195.

95 Quoted by Jan Golinski in ibid., pp. 159–60.

96 Gale E. Christianson, In the Presence of the Creator, op. cit., p. 222.

97 Isaiah 45:3.

98 J. A. West, Ancient Egypt, op. cit., p. 33.

99 Joshua 6:11–21.

100 1 Samuel 6:13–19.

101 1 Samuel 5.

102 Louis Ginzberg, The Legends of the Jews, The Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia, 1911, vol. III, p. 194.

103 Exodus 3:8.

104 Exodus 16:35. See Chapter 12, note 28 above.

105 The shortest route was the ‘Way of the Sea’ (known to the Egyptians as the ‘Way of Horus’ and to the Bible as the ‘Way of the Land of the Philistines’). Slightly longer, but also quickly traversed, was the more southerly ‘Way of Shur’. See Itzhaq Beit-Arieh, ‘The Route Through Sinai’, Biblical Archaeology Review, May/June 1988, p. 31.

106 Indeed, this is hinted at in the Bible. According to Exodus 13: ‘When Pharaoh had let the people go … God led them not through the way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near; for God said, Lest peradventure the people repent when they see war, and they return to Egypt. But God led the people about, through the way of the wilderness’ (Exodus 13:17–18).

107 E.g. Exodus 14:9–12; Exodus 14:31; Exodus 15:22–4; Exodus 15:25; Exodus 16:2–3; Exodus 16:4–36; Exodus 17:1–4; Exodus 17:6–7.

108 Exodus 17:6–7.

109 Exodus 15:25.

110 Exodus 16:4–36.

111 Numbers 12:1–2, and in general Numbers 12.

112 Numbers 12:10.

113 Numbers 12:10.

114 Numbers 16:2–3.

115 Numbers 16:4.

116 Numbers 16:5–7, 17. See also 16:39 (King James Authorized Version translation) or 17:4 (Jerusalem Bible translation) for confirmation that the censers were brazen/bronze. There can be no doubt that the phrases ‘put fire therein and put incense in thembefore the Lord’ (King James Authorized Version) and ‘fill them with fire and … put incense in them before Yahweh’ (‘Jerusalem Bible translation) explicitly and unambiguously mean that they were to burn incense before the Ark. See Chapter 12, note n, above for a full explanation of why this is. See also note 121 below.

117 Numbers 16:7.

118 Numbers 16:18.

119 Numbers 16:19.

120 Numbers 16:20–1.

121 Numbers 16:22 and 35 (amalgam of King James Authorized Version and Jerusalem Bible translations). Numbers 16:35 in fact states ‘there came out a fire from the Lord’ (King James Authorized Version translation). The Jerusalem Bible translation says ‘a fire came down from Yahweh’. See Chapter 12, note 11 above for a full explanation of why the work is implied. It is worth adding with reference to this passage that the Israelites did not accept that it had been ‘the Lord’ who had blasted the hapless rebels. Instead they pinned the blame fairly and squarely on the man who controlled the Ark. Numbers 16:41 states: ‘All the congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses … saying You have brought death to the people’ (amalgam of King James Authorized Version and Jerusalem Bible translations). The latter is doubly logged as Numbers 17:6. (Emphasis added.)

122 Numbers 17:12–13 (King James Authorized Version translation). In the Jerusalem Bible the same passage is logged under Numbers 17:27–8.

123 See Chapter 12 above for a full discussion.

124 Acts 7 123–4.

125 Exodus 2:12–15.

126 Exodus 7:7.

127 Exodus 2: 15–25

128 Ahmed Osman, Moses: Pharaoh of Egypt, Grafton Books, London, 1990, p. 171. Osman identified Moses with Pharaoh Akhenaten who briefly introduced a version of monotheism into Egypt before being overthrown.

129 A good summary account of Flinders Petrie’s expedition to Serabit-el-Khadem is given in Werner Keller, The Bible as History, Bantam Books, New York, pp. 126–9. See also William M. Flinders Petrie, Researches in Sinai, Dutton, New York, 1906.

130 Itzhaq Beit-Arieh, ‘The Route Through Sinai’, op. cit., p. 33. See also William F. Albright, The Proto-Sinaitic Inscriptions and their Decipherment, Harvard University Press, 1969; Frank Moore Cross, ‘The Evolution of the Alphabet’, Eretz-Israel, vol. 8, 1967, p. 12; Joseph Naveh, Early History of the Alphabet, Hebrew University, Jerusalem, 1982.

131 Itzhaq Beit-Arieh, ‘The Route Through Sinai’, op. cit., p. 33.

132 For further details see, for example, Aviram Perevolotsky and Israel Finkelstein, ‘The Southern Sinai Route in Ecological Perspective’, Biblical Archaeology Review, July/August 1985, pp. 27 and 33. See also Egypt: Insight Guide, APA Publications, Singapore, 1989, pp. 243–6

133 Again for further details see Perevolotsky and Finkelstein, ‘The Southern Sinai Route in Ecological Perspective’, op. cit., p. 27.

134 Ibid., p. 33.

135 Ibid., pp. 27 and 33. See also Egypt: Insight Guide, op. cit., pp. 243–6, and Itzhaq Beit-Arieh, ‘The Route Through Sinai’, op. cit.

136 Itzhaq Beit-Arieh includes a helpful chart of other contenders for the role of Mount Sinai in his paper ‘The Route Through Sinai’, op. cit., p. 37. He concludes that the Exodus almost certainly did follow the southern route through Sinai leading to Mount Sinai as it is presently identified. The same conclusion is drawn in The Times Atlas of the Bible, Guild Publishing, London, 1987, p. 56.

137 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, Penguin Classics, London, 1980, p. 232

138 See Julian Morgenstern, ‘The Book of the Covenant’, Hebrew Union College Annual, vol. V, 1928; and ‘The Ark, the Ephod and the Tent of Meeting’, Hebrew Union College Annual, vol. XVII, 1942–3; both reprinted by KTAV Publishing House, New York, 1968. See also Chapter 3 above.

139 Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1978; reprinted 1985 by Eisenbrauns, Winona Lake, Indiana, USA, p. 246.

140 Exodus 19:3.

141 Exodus 19:12–13 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

142 Exodus 19:16, 18 (amalgam of Jerusalem Bible and King James Authorized Version translations).

143 Exodus 24:12.

144 Exodus 24:15–18 (amalgam of Jerusalem Bible and King James Authorized Version translations).

145 See Louis Ginzberg, The Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. III, pp. 118–19.

146 Exodus 31:18; 32:15–16.

147 Exodus 32:19. The well known golden calf incident begins at Exodus 32:1.

148 Exodus 32:28.

149 Exodus 34:28.

150 Exodus 34:29.

151 Exodus 34:29 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

152 Exodus 33:7, Jerusalem Bible translation: ‘Moses used to take the Tent and pitch it outside the camp. He called it The Tent of Meeting.’

153 Exodus 33:11.

154 Louis Ginzberg, The Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. III, p. 119.

155 Exodus 34:29–35.

156 Exodus 34:30.

157 Exodus 34:33.

158 Exodus 34:34–5.

159 See Moshe Levine, The Tabernacle: Its Structure and Utensils, Soncino Press, Tel Aviv, 1969, p. 88.

160 See, for example, The Oxford Reference Dictionary, Guild Publishing, London, 1988, p. 793, which gives the measure of a span or hand-breadth as nine inches. See also The Oxford Library of Words and Phrases, Guild Publishing, London, 1988, vol. III, p. 451.

161 Rabbi Shelomo Yitshaki was born at Troyes in AD 1040 and died in the year 1105. He is generally referred to as Rashi (an acronym based on his full title and name). See Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Judaism, Jerusalem Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1989, p. 583.

162 Exodus 39:1–32.

163 See, for example, Exodus 28:43 and Leviticus 10:6.

164 Numbers 4:5–6 and 15: ‘When the camp is broken, Aaron and his sons [Eleazar and Ithamar] are to come and take down the veil of the screen. With it they must cover the Ark … On top of this they must put a covering of fine leather, and spread over the whole a cloth all of violet. Then they are to fix the poles to the Ark … [Then] the sons of Kohath are to come and take up the burden, but without touching any of the sacred things; otherwise they would die.’

165 Ibid.

166 Louis Ginzberg, The Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. III, p. 228: ‘The most distinguished among the Levites were the sons of Kohath, whose charge during the march through the desert was the Holy Ark. This was a dangerous trust, for out of the staves attached to it would issue sparks that consumed Israel’s enemies, but now and then this fire wrought havoc among the bearers of the Ark.’

167 See passage quoted in note 164 above which specifies that the ‘veil of the screen’, a layer of leather and a layer of cloth were used to wrap the Ark. When the Tabernacle was pitched and at rest, the ‘veil of the screen’ hung in the entrance to the Holy of Holies. It was made of ‘blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen of cunning work’ (Exodus 26:31). Unusually for such an important accessory, it did not contain any gold – and neither, of course, did the ‘covering of fine leather’ or the ‘cloth of violet’. In other words before the Ark was moved it was first thoroughly wrapped and insulated by several layers of non-conductive materials.

168 The view that the Ark was dangerous to carry for some possibly electrical reason is supported by the Jewish tradition quoted in note 166 above. The same tradition adds further credibility to this notion when it states that the Kohathites, rather than behaving as though they were honoured by being given the job of carrying the Ark – as one might have expected if it was indeed nothing more than a symbol of their God – in fact tried to avoid the duty, ‘each one planning cautiously to shift the carrying of the Ark upon another.’ Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. III, p. 228.

169 Leviticus 10:2. The full passage reads: ‘And there went out the fire from the Lord and devoured them and they died there before the Lord’ (King James Authorized Version). The Jerusalem Bible translation of the same verse reads: ‘Then from Yahweh’s presence a flame leaped out and consumed them and they perished in the presence of Yahweh.’ See Chapter 12, note 11 above for an explanation of why the Ark is implied.

170 Leviticus 10:4–5 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

171 1 Samuel 5.

172 E.g. the slaying of Uzzah by what sounds like some kind of electrical discharge. See 2 Samuel 6:3–7.

Chapter 14 The Glory is departed from Israel

1 See Chapter 5 above.

2 Mecca and Medina are the first two. For details as to the date of construction of the Dome of the Rock see Dan Bahat, Carta’s Historical Atlas of Jerusalem, Carta, Jerusalem, 1989, p. 44–9.

3 See Chapter 12 above. See also Zev Vilnay, Legends of Jerusalem: The Sacred Land, vol. I, Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia, 1973, pp. 11–12.

4 See Chapter 5 above, and later parts of this chapter, for further details.

5 For further details see Jerome Murphy-O’connor, The Holy Land, Oxford University Press, 1986, pp. 84–6.

6 See Chapter 5 above.

7 1 Chronicles 28:2.

8 For a good concise history of the successive stages of building and destruction on the Temple Mount see Carta’s Historical Atlas of Jerusalem, op. cit. As regards archaeological confirmation that the Dome of the Rock does indeed stand over the site of the original Temple of Solomon, see Kathleen Kenyon, Jerusalem: Excavating 3,000 Years of History, Thames & Hudson, London, 1967, p. 55: ‘From the present structure back to Solomon there is no real break. One can therefore be certain of the site of Solomon’s Temple.’ See also Kathleen Kenyon, Digging up Jerusalem, Benn, London, 1974, p. 110.

9 Islam also accepts Jesus Christ as a prophet. Muhammad is regarded as exceptional because he was the last of the prophets – the last of the messengers sent by God to teach and enlighten humankind and whose honour it therefore was to complete the divine message. There can be no serious dispute that the God worshipped by the Jews, Christians and Muslims is, in essence, the same deity. The oneness of this God is accepted by all three faiths although Muslims believe that Christians are confused by such notions as the Trinity and the divinity of Christ. An Arabic inscription within the Dome of the Rock reads as follows: ‘O you People of the Book, overstep not bounds in your religion, and of God speak only the truth. The Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, is only an apostle of God, and his word which he conveyed into Mary, and a Spirit proceeding from him. Believe therefore in God and his apostles, and say not Three. It will be better for you. God is only one God. Far be it from his glory that he should have a son.’

10 See Zev Vilnay, Legends of Jerusalem, op. cit., pp. 123 and 324, footnote 136. See also Neil Asher Silberman, Digging for God and Country: Exploration, Archaeology and the Secret Struggle for the Holy Land 1799–1917, Knopf, New York, 1982, p. 186.

11 Quoted from ‘The Syriac Apocalypse of Baruch’ in H. F. D. Sparks (ed.), The Apocryphal Old Testament, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1989, pp. 843–4.

12 Ibid.; see ‘Introduction to the Syriac Apocalypse of Baruch’, particularly p. 837.

13 See Chapter 5 above.

14 See Chapter 12 above.

15 1 Kings 8:1, 6, 10–11, 27.

16 1 Kings 11:4–5.

17 1 Kings 4:30.

18 Each wing measured five cubits (about seven and a half feet). See 2 Chronicles 3:11 and 1 Kings 6:24. According to the Jerusalem Bible translation, the cherubim were made of olive wood plated with gold.

19 1 Kings 6:19 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

20 Twenty cubits, by twenty cubits, by twenty cubits. See 1 Kings 6:20.

21 Chronicles 3:8 states that 600 talents of fine gold were used to overlay the walls, floor and ceiling of the Holy of Holies. An ancient talent weighed approximately 75 pounds, therefore 600 talents would have weighed 45,000 pounds – more than twenty tonnes. For further details, and academic support for the amounts of gold specified in the Bible as having been used in King Solomon’s Temple, see Professor Alan R. Millard, ‘Does the Bible Exaggerate King Solomon’s Golden Wealth?’, Biblical Archaeology Review, May/June 1989, pp. 21–34. See also 1 Kings 6:20, 22 and 30.

22 2 Chronicles 3:9.

23 1 Kings 7:13–14 (amalgam of King James Authorized Version and Jerusalem Bible translations).

24 Chrétien de Troyes, Arthurian Romances (translated by D. D. R. Owen), Dent, London, 1987, p. 375; emphasis added.

25 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, Penguin Classics, London, 1980. See in particular pp. 62–7 and 70–1.

26 See Kenneth Mackenzie, The Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia, Aquarian Press, Wellingborough, 1987 (first published 1877), pp. 316–17. See also Alexander Home, King Solomon’s Temple in the Masonic Tradition, Aquarian Press, Wellingborough, 1988, pp. 262–8 and 272–9. See also John J. Robinson, Born in Blood, Century, London, 1990, pp. 217–18. Hiram of Tyre, the bronzeworker and skilled craftsman, is of course not to be confused with King Hiram of Tyre who supplied Solomon with cedarwood for the construction of the Temple, and who also sent him a number of skilled artisans to assist with the work.

27 John J. Robinson, Born in Blood, op. cit., p. 219.

28 1 Kings 7:23, 26.

29 See Shalom M. Paul and William G. Dever (eds), Biblical Archaeology, Keter Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1973, part III, p. 257.

30 Bruce Metzger, David Goldstein, John Ferguson (eds), Great Events of Bible Times, Guild Publishing, London, 1987, p. 89.

31 Shalom M. Paul and William G. Dever, Biblical Archaeology, op. cit., p. 257.

32 1 Kings 7:38.

33 See Chapter 12 above.

34 See Chapter 11 above.

35 1 Kings 7:40, 45.

36 1 Kings 7:15, 21–2.

37 Kenneth Mackenzie, The Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia, op. cit., pp. 349–50. See also David Stevenson, The Origins of Freemasonry, Cambridge University Press, 1990, pp. 143–52.

38 Alexander Home, King Solomon’s Temple in Masonic Tradition, op. cit., p. 219.

39 Ibid.

40 Joshua 15:48; Judges 10:1; Judges 10:2; Chronicles 24:24.

41 E.g. Deuteronomy 27:5: ‘And there shalt thou build an altar unto the Lord thy God, an altar of stones: thou shalt not lift up any iron tool upon them.’ See also Joshua 8:31.

42 Moses was said to have used the Shamir in the desert to engrave writing on the precious stones worn in the breastplate of the High Priest. See Louis Ginzberg, The Legend of the Jews, Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia, 1909, vol. I, p. 34, and vol. IV, p. 166.

43 Ibid., vol. I, p. 34.

44 Ibid., vol. TV, p. 166.

45 Ibid., vol. I, p. 34. On the vanishing of the Shamir see also Herbert Danby (trans.), The Mishnah, Oxford University Press, 1989, p. 305.

46 Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. I, p. 34.

47 From Islamic traditions about the Shamir, reported in Alexander Horne, King Solomon’s Temple in the Masonic Tradition, op. cit., p. 165.

48 Jerusalem Bible, Eyre & Spottiswoode, London, 1968, Chronological Table, p. 344.

49 1 Kings 14:25–6.

50 The only objects specifically mentioned are the ‘shields of gold which Solomon had made’, 1 Kings 14:26.

51 For further details see Professor Kenneth A. Kitchen, ‘Shishak’s Military Campaign in Israel Confirmed’, Biblical Archaeology Review, May/June 1989, pp. 32–3. See also Bruce Metzger, David Goldstein, John Ferguson (eds), Great Events of Bible Times, op. cit., pp. 94–5.

52 Ibid., p. 95.

53 Ibid., p. 94. This view is also expressed with great authority by Professor Menahem Haran of Jerusalem’s Hebrew University in his book Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1978, reprinted (with corrections) by Eisenbrauns, Winona Lake, Indiana, 1985, 286: ‘It may be concluded that the Egyptian army bypassed Jerusalem in the north, proceeding from Aijalon to Beth-horon and Gibeon and from there north-eastwards to Zemaraim and down into the Jordan Valley at Succoth. Shishak’s campaign seems to have been mainly directed against the Northern Kingdom. Only one section of his army seems to have overrun the Negeb as far as Arad, without advancing towards the Judean hills. It is thus not impossible that the temple treasuries and those of the king’s house with “all the shields of gold which Solomon had made” were handed over to Shishak by Rehoboam himself. He thereby succeeded in diverting the Egyptian army from his land. This would be the meaning of his words “he took away” used with reference to Shishak. The story in 1 Kgs 14:25–6 only mentions one particular part of Shishak’s route, highlighting it as viewed from Jerusalem.’

54 Professor Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel, op. cit., p. 284.

55 Ibid., pp. 284–5. Examples in the Bible of Judaean kings who emptied the treasuries for their own purposes include Ahaz and Hezekiah. See 2 Chronicles 28:24 and 2 Kings 18:15–16.

56 Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 344. The reign of Jehoash (Joash) is given as 798–783 BC. 2 Kings 14:1 states that the conflict between Jehoash and Amaziah took place in the second year of the reign of Jehoash – hence the date 796 BC.

57 2 Kings 14:12–14. The King James Authorized version states ‘in the treasures of the king’s house’. However, the more accurate and recent translations of the Jerusalem Bible and the New English Bible state, respectively, ‘the treasury of the royal palace’ and ‘the treasuries of the royal palace’. It is clear that the translation ‘treasury’ or ‘treasuries’ is the correct one here.

58 Professor Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel, op. cit., pp. 277 and 285, footnote 19.

59 According to the authoritative chronology provided in the Jerusalem Bible, op. cit. See Chronological Table, p. 346. See also translation of the second book of Kings, pp. 423–4.

60 2 Kings 24:10–13 (amalgam of King James Authorized Version and Jerusalem Bible translations).

61 Professor Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel, op. cit., p. 287. The King James Authorized Version of the Bible wrongly translated the word hekal with the general term ‘temple’, thus causing much confusion to subsequent generations of scholars who did not have access to the original Hebrew. The hekal was a specific part of the Temple – the outer sanctum which formed the ante-chamber to the Holy of Holies.

62 For details see Chapter 11 above.

63 See Professor Edward Ullendorff, ‘Hebraic-Jewish Elements in Abyssinian (Monophysite) Christianity’, in Journal of Semitic Studies, vol. I, no. 3, 1956, p. 235.

64 Ibid., pp. 235–6: ‘The outside ambulatory of the three concentric parts of the Abyssinian church (which is either round, octagonal, or rectangular) is called k’ene mahlet, i.e. the place where hymns are sung and where the debtara or cantors stand. This outer part corresponds to the haser of the Tabernacle or the ulam of Solomon’s Temple. The next chamber is the k’eddest where communion is administered to the people; and the innermost part is the mak’das where the tabot rests and to which only priests have access. In some parts of Abyssinia, especially the north, the k’eddest (the qodes of the Tabernacle of hekal of Solomon’s Temple) is called ’enda ta’amer, “place of miracle”, and the mak’das is named k’eddusa k’eddusam (the qodes haqqodasim of the Tabernacle and the debir of the Temple). This division into three chambers applies to all Abyssinian churches, even the smallest of them.’

65 This, as I subsequently established, had not been quite the act of senseless vandalism that the English version of the text implied: the phrase ‘cut in pieces’ was a translation of the Hebrew way-e-qasses, which did suggest cutting up but also connoted the stripping of metal plates from overlaid objects. Such a nuance made sense because the Bible stated unambiguously that the ‘golden furnishings’ that had stood in the hekal had included the ‘altar’ and the ‘table of the showbread’ – both of which had been made of wood overlaid with gold. For a discussion see Professor Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel, op. cit., p. 287, footnote 23.

66 1 Kings 7:49–50 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

67 If this is not already patently obvious to the reader, then it is made clear in the Jerusalem Bible’s translation of 1 Kings 8:6 which reads as follows: ‘The priests brought up the Ark of the Covenant of Yahweh to its place, in the debir of the Temple, that is, in the Holy of Holies, under the cherubs’ wings.’

68 As is demonstrated by their treatment of King Jehoiachin (2 Kings 24:11–12), their deportation of large numbers of the inhabitants of Jerusalem (2 Kings 24:14–16), and their despolation of the Temple of Yahweh (2 Kings 24:13).

69 Research notes provided to the author by David Keys, Archaeology Correspondent of The Independent, London.

70 2 Kings 24:17.

71 2 Kings 25:1.

72 2 Kings 25:1–3. For the dates of these events I have relied on the Chronological Table in the Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., p. 346. There is a small margin of error in the dates allocated. Some archaeologists put the ending of the siege and final destruction of the Temple at 586 BC – e.g. see Kathleen Kenyon, Jerusalem: Excavating 3,000 Years of History. op. cit., p. 55.

73 2 Kings 25:8. It is important to stress that the academics disagree as to whether these events took place in 587 or 586 BC.

74 2 Kings 25:8–10, 13–16. A parallel inventory, which does not contradict this one in any way, and which also makes no mention of the Ark, may be found in Jeremiah 52:17–23.

75 The view that the gold and silver items taken by Nebuzaradan consisted only of relatively minor utensils is given additional weight by the text of the parallel list in Jeremiah 52:17–23 which, in verse 19, states explicitly that commander of the guard ‘took the bowls, the censers, the sprinkling bowls, the ash containers, the lamp-stands, the goblets and the saucers: everything that was made of gold and everything of silver’ (Jerusalem Bible translation). See also Jeremiah 27:18–22 which refers to the objects not taken by Nebuchadnezzar in 598 BC and prophesies that they will be taken after the second conquest of the city: ‘But if they be prophets, and if the word of the Lord be with them, let them now make intercession to the Lord of Hosts, that the vessels which are left in the house of the Lord, and in the house of the king of Judah, and at Jerusalem, go not to Babylon. For thus saith the Lord of hosts concerning the pillars, and concerning the Sea, and concerning the bases, and concerning the residue of vessels that remain in the city, which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon took not when he carried away captive Jeconiah … king of Judah from Jerusalem to Babylon … Yea, thus saith the Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel, concerning the vessels that remain in the house of the Lord, and in the house of the king of Judah and of Jerusalem; They shall be carried to Babylon, and there shall they be until the day that I visit them, saith the Lord; then will I bring them up, and restore them to this place.’

76 E.g., Kathleen Kenyon, Royal Cities of the Old Testament, Barne & Jenkins, London, 1971, p. 148: ‘Probably the Ark vanished in the burning of the Temple, though there is no actual reference to it subsequent to its deposit in the Holy of Holies in the time of Solomon.’

77 2 Kings 24:15–16.

78 2 Kings 25:11, 21.

79 Psalm 78:1–6.

80 Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 346.

81 Peter Calvocoressi, Who’s Who in the Bible, Penguin, London, 1988, p. 45.

82 Ibid.

83 Ezra 1:7–11.

84 Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 346.

85 Ibid. See also Ezra 3:8; 5:16.

86 The Jerusalem Bible Chronological Table, op. cit. gives a completion date of 515 BC. The Encyclopaedia of Judaism proposes the slightly earlier dates of 520–517 BC. See Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Judaism, Jerusalem Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1989, p. 694.

87 Hebrew-English Edition of the Babylonian Talmud, Soncino Press, London, Jerusalem, New York, 1974, Tractate Yoma, 21b.

88 See also Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. VI, p. 442: ‘The following five things were in the First Temple only: the heavenly fire, the holy oil of anointing, the Ark, the Holy Spirit, and the Urim and Thummim.’ Biblical references to the Urim and Thummim can be found in Exodus 28:30; Leviticus 8:8; Ezra 2:63; and Nehemiah 7:65.

89 Zev Vilnay, Legends of Jerusalem, op. cit., vol. I, p. 123. See also Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. VI, p. 378: ‘Solomon, at the erection of the Temple, provided a secret place to be used later for “hiding” holy objects.’

90 Hebrew-English Edition of the Babylonian Talmud, op. cit., Tractate Yoma, 53b.

91 Dates from the Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 345.

92 Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. IV, p. 282. See also Hebrew-English Edition of the Babylonian Talmud, op. cit., Tractate Yoma, 52b. See also C. Roth and G. Wigoder (eds), The New Standard Encyclopaedia of Judaism. W. H. Allen, London, 1970, p. 158.

93 Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. III, p. 158.

94 Ibid.

95 Herbert Danby (trans.), The Mishnah, op. cit., p. 158. See also Zev Vilnay, Legends of Jerusalem, op. cit., p. 122.

96 See entry on the Books of Maccabees in F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 855.

97 Ibid. In its ‘Introduction to the Books of Maccabees’ the Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., concludes that Maccabees was probably written around 63 BC.

98 2 Maccabees 2:1, 4–5.

99 Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., p. 605, footnote 2a and ‘Introduction to the Books of Maccabees’, p. 569.

100 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., p. 855.

101 Jeremiah was born around 650 BC. The exact date of his death is not known; however it is thought to have occurred within a decade of the destruction of Solomon’s Temple. See F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., pp. 730–1. See also Peter Calvocoressi, Who’s Who in the Bible, op. cit., pp. 101–2.

102 2 Maccabees 2:1, 4.

103 See Deuteronomy 34:1.

104 Mount Nebo is on the eastern side of the Dead Sea, in the modern state of Jordan, overlooking Jerusalem and Jericho.

105 Because he foretold – and welcomed – the destruction of the Temple by Nebuchadnezzar, whom he saw as God’s chosen instrument for chastising Judah, ‘He was frequently in personal danger from his own people, physically assaulted and for several years in hiding’ (Peter Calvocoressi, Who’s Who in the Bible, op. cit., p. 101). See also F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., p. 730: Jeremiah faced ‘the hostility of the official representatives of the Jewish religion’.

106 Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. IV, p. 320: ‘The Holy Ark, the altar of incense, and the holy tent were carried by an angel to the mount whence Moses before his death had viewed the land divinely assigned to Israel. There Jeremiah found a spacious cave in which he concealed these sacred utensils.’

107 For further details on the Wailing Wall and on the current politico-religious status of the Temple Mount the reader is referred to the appropriate entries in Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Judaism, op. cit., pp. 696–7 and 727–9.

108 See Meir Ben-Dov, In the Shadow of the Temple: the Discovery of Ancient Jerusalem, Harper & Row, New York, 1985, p. 24.

109 Ibid., p. 25.

110 Ibid., pp. 19–20.

111 See Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Judaism, op. cit., p. 695 and 481–3.

112 Meir Ben-Dov, In the Shadow of the Temple, op. cit. See in particular Chapter 2, ‘Remains from the Kingdom of Judah’. The rest of this excellent book, from p. 57 forward, is devoted to the finds relating to other periods.

113 Ibid., pp. 16–18. See also Neil Asher Silberman, Digging for God and Country: Exploration, Archaeology and the Secret Struggle for the Holy Land, 1799–1917, Knopf, New York, 1982, pp. 89–99.

114 Neil Asher Silberman, Digging for God and Country, op. cit., pp. 89–99.

115 Ibid., p. 93.

116 Ibid., pp. 94–7.

117 Meir Ben-Dov, In the Shadow of the Temple, op. cit., p. 18.

118 Kathleen Kenyon, Digging up Jerusalem, op. cit., p. 31.

119 See Neil Asher Silberman, Digging for God and Country, op. cit., pp. 180–8. In general I am indebted to this useful and informative work for the account of the Parker expedition that follows.

120 Ibid.

121 Kathleen Kenyon, Digging up Jerusalem, op. cit., p. 30.

122 See ‘Tom Crotser has found the Ark of the Covenant – or has he?’, Biblical Archaeology Review, May/June 1983, pp. 66–7.

123 Ibid., pp. 66–7.

124 Ibid., p. 66.

125 Ibid., p. 67.

126 Ibid., p. 68, quoting UPI reporter Darrell Day.

127 Ibid., p. 68.

128 Ibid., p. 68.

129 Ibid., p. 68.

130 Ibid., pp. 68–9.

131 Ibid., p. 69.

132 Richard Elliott Friedman, Who Wrote the Bible?, Jonathan Cape, London, 1988, p. 156.

133 Ibid.

Chapter 15 Hidden History

1 Richard Elliott Friedman, Who Wrote the Bible?, Jonathan Cape, London, 1988, p. 156.

2 Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, The Queen of Sheba and her Only Son Menelik: being theBook of the Glory of Kings(Kebra Nagast), Oxford University Press, 1932, pages 99 and 100. See Chapter 3, n. 94 above.

3 Josephus, Jewish Antiquities, Loeb Classical Library (Heinemann), London, 1934, books V-VIII, p. 665.

4 1 Kings 10:2.

5 E. A. Wallis Budge, A History of Ethiopia, Nubia and Abyssinia, London, 1928, Preface.

6 See David L. Edwards, A Key to the Old Testament, Fount Paperbacks, London, 1989, pp. 209–11, in particular p. 210.

7 Ibid. See also Richard Elliott Friedman, Who Wrote the Bible?, op. cit., p. 146.

8 1 Kings 8:6–8 (emphasis added). New English Bible translation, Oxford and Cambridge University Presses, 1970, p. 384.

9 See David L. Edwards, A Key to the Old Testament, op. cit., p. 210.

10 William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act III, Scene 2, line 25.

11 Julian Morgenstern, ‘The Book of the Covenant’, in Hebrew Union College Annual, vol. V, 1928, reprinted by KTAV Publishing House, New York, 1968, p. 29, footnote 37.

12 Kings 8:9 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

13 Deuteronomy 10:5 (New English Bible translation). The Jerusalem Bible translation states: ‘and there they stayed’; the King James Authorized Version states: ‘and there they be’.

14 Julian Morgenstern, ‘The Book of the Covenant’, op. cit., p. 29, footnote 37.

15 Ibid. Emphasis added.

16 Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia, 1909, vol. IV, p. 282.

17 Hebrew-English Edition of the Babylonian Talmud, Soncino Press, London, Jerusalem, New York, 1974, Tractate Yoma 53b.

18 John Oates, Babylon, Thames & Hudson, London, 1988, p. 128.

19 Ibid., pp. 126–9.

20 2 Chronicles 34:33 (Jerusalem Bible translation); 2 Chronicles 35:2–3 (King James Authorized Version translation).

21 2 Chronicles 35:19 (cf. 2 Chronicles 35:1–3).

22 This date is arrived at by simple mathematics, since it is known that Josiah came to power in 640 BC (see Jerusalem Bible, Eyre & Spottiswoode, London, 1968, Chronological Table, p. 345), the eighteenth year of his reign must therefore have been 622 BC.

23 Jeremiah began his prophetic ministry in 626 BC – see Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, Jerusalem Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1989, p. 380. I attribute the date of 626 BC to the verses quoted because they are recognized by leading biblical scholars as being amongst ‘Jeremiah’s earliest prophecies’. See Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1978, reprinted in 1985 by Eisenbrauns, Winona Lake, Indiana, p. 281.

24 Jeremiah 3:16–17 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

25 Jeremiah’s authorship of the book of Jeremiah is not in doubt – although he probably dictated it to an amanuensis. See, inter alia, Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, op. cit., pp. 380–1; Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Introduction to the book of Jeremiah, p. 1067; F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, Oxford University Press, 1988, pp. 730–1.

26 Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel, op. cit., p. 281.

27 See Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, pp. 344–5. The fifteen kings between Solomon and Josiah were Rehoboam, Abijah, Asa, Jehosophat, Jehoram, Ahaziah, Athaliah, Joash, Amaziah, Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, Hezekiah, Manasseh and Amon.

28 The Holy Bible, King James Version (Electronic First Edition, KJ21), Franklin Computer Corporation, New Jersey, 1989. Throughout my research I made exhaustive use of this marvellous investigative instrument.

29 See Numbers 12:10 and discussion in Chapter 13 above.

30 The occurrences were: Exodus 25:22, Numbers 7:89; 1 Samuel 4:4; 2 Samuel 6:2; and 1 Chronicles 13:6.

31 2 Kings 7:3.

32 Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 345.

33 2 Chronicles 26:16.

34 2 Chronicles 26:19.

35 See Leviticus 10:1–2.

36 See Chapters 12 and 13 above for a fuller discussion.

37 2 Chronicles 26:21–3.

38 Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Judaism, op. cit., p. 575: ‘the precise dating of individual psalms is impossible.’

39 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., p. 1139. See also Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Judaism, op. cit., pp. 574–6; and Stephen Bigger (ed.), Creating the Old Testament: The Emergence of the Hebrew Bible, Blackwell, Oxford, 1989, pp. 254–8.

40 Ezekiel 10:2; Ezekiel 10:6; Ezekiel; 10:7.

41 For the dating of Ezekiel see ‘The Book of the Prophet Ezekiel’, The Cambridge Bible Commentary, Cambridge University Press, 1974, Historical Table, p. xi.

42 Ezekiel 8:1–3: ‘the spirit lifted me up between the earth and the heaven, and brought me in the visions of God to Jerusalem.’

43 Ezekiel 10:20–2, especially 21.

44 Ezekiel 10:1, 15, 20.

45 Ezekiel 10:19, 5.

46 Isaiah 37:16; 2 Kings 19:15.

47 Isaiah 37:14–16.

48 2 Kings 19:14–15.

49 Biblical scholars are unanimous that chapters 1–39 of the book of Isaiah, including this chapter of course, were written by Isaiah himself. See Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Judaism, op. cit., p. 369. See also Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., ‘Introduction to Isaiah’, p. 970. See also Peter Calvocoressi, Who’s Who in the Bible, Penguin, London, 1988, pp. 87–8. Some of the later chapters in Isaiah, from 40 onwards, were certainly written later. The antiquity of chapter 37, however, the one in which the reference to ‘between the cherubims’ crops up, is not in doubt. Moreover since the chapter refers to a known historical event – Sennacherib’s invasion – it can be dated fairly precisely to 701 BC (see Jerusalem Bible, Chronological Table, p. 345; and F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., p. 715.

50 See Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., ‘Introduction to the Book of Isaiah’, p. 970. See also F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., p. 715.

51 Isaiah 6:1–3, and Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., p. 970.

52 Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 345, for dates.

53 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., p. 715. See also Handbook to the Bible, Lion Publishing, London, 1988, p. 376. See also the Encyclopedia of Judaism, op. cit., p. 369. ‘Modern scholars maintain that the book of Isaiah is a composite work written by more than one prophet, and that only chapters 1–39 are the words of Isaiah.’ The verse quoted above falls safely within this range, in chapter 37 of Isaiah.

54 Isaiah 37:6–7. See also Handbook to the Bible, op. cit., p. 376; The Encyclopedia of Judaism, op. cit., p. 369.

55 Isaiah 37:14.

56 Isaiah 37: 17–20.

57 Isaiah 37:33, 35.

58 Isaiah 37:36–7.

59 See, for example, Paul Johnson, A History of the Jews, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London, 1988, p. 73.

60 Ibid.

61 See Chapters 12 and 13 above.

62 Isaiah 37:14. The house of the Lord’ is of course a synonym for the Jerusalem Temple (compare Jerusalem Bible translation of the same verse).

63 Isaiah 37:14.

64 1 Kings 3:15.

65 2 Samuel 6:5.

66 Deuteronomy 10:8.

67 Dates from Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 345.

68 2 Kings 21: 2–7.

69 Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., p. 419. See also Irving M. Zeitlin, Ancient Judaism, Polity Press, Cambridge, 1986, p. 173.

70 1 Kings 6:19 (Jerusalem Bible translation). With specific reference to the Ark, Solomon had asked: ‘But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee: how much less this house that I have builded? Yet have thou respect unto the prayer of thy servant, and to his supplication, O Lord my God, to hearken unto the cry and to the prayer, which thy servant prayeth before thee today: that thine eyes may be open towards this house night and day, even toward the place of which thou hast said,My name shall be there”.’ 1 Kings 8:27–9. See also 2 Samuel 6:2: ‘the Ark of God, whose name is called by the name of the Lord of Hosts that dwelleth between the cherubims.’ (Emphasis added.)

71 E.g. see 1 Chronicles 28:2.

72 2 Kings 21:16 (Jerusalem Bible translation).

73 2 Kings 21:20–1, 23–4.

74 2 Kings 22:1.

75 2 Chronicles 34:3.

76 2 Chronicles 34:3.

77 2 Kings 23:6 (amalgam of King James Authorized Version and Jerusalem Bible translations).

78 2 Chronicles 34:7–8.

79 2 Kings 22: 6.

80 Professor Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel, op. cit., pp. 277, 278, 288, 281.

Chapter 16 Door of the Southern Countries

1 Jill Kamil, Upper Egypt, Longman, London and New York, 1989, p. 35.

2 Ibid., p. 36.

3 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine: the Life of an Ancient Jewish Military Colony, University of California Press, Berkeley, Los Angeles, 1968, p. 110. ‘The length of the Temple was at least sixty cubits. A width of approximately twenty cubits may be inferred from the presence of two buildings lying northeast of the Temple.’ An ancient cubit measured eighteen inches – see Dr J. H. Hertz (ed.), The Pentateuch and the Haftorahs, Soncino Press, London, 1978, p. 327. The Jerusalem Bible, footnote (b) p. 887, concurs (Jerusalem Bible, Eyre & Spottiswoode, London, 1968).

4 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., p. 110.

5 1 Kings 6:2: ‘the length thereof was threescore cubits, and the breadth thereof twenty cubits.’

6 Emil G. Kraeling (ed.), The Brooklyn Museum Aramaic Papyri: New Documents of the fifth century BC from the Jewish Colony at Elephantine, Published for the Brooklyn Museum by the Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1953, p. 101.

7 1 Kings 6:9.

8 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., p. 133; Emil G. Kraeling, The Brooklyn Museum Aramaic Papyri, op. cit., p. 100.

9 Bezaleel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., pp. 13 and 133.

10 Ibid., pp. 109, 152. See also Emil G. Kraeling, The Brooklyn Museum Aramaic Papyri, op. cit., p. 85.

11 E.g. Numbers 10:33; 35–6.

12 I.e. after the promulgation of the Deuteronomistic code during the reign of Josiah – see Emil G. Kraeling, The Brooklyn Aramic Papyri, op. cit., p. 85.

13 Ibid., p. 85.

14 Ibid., p. 85.

15 1 Samuel 4:4.

16 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., p. 299.

17 See Chapter 15 above.

18 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., pp. 121–2.

19 Ibid., p. 115.

20 Ibid., pp. 115–16.

21 1 Chronicles 28:2.

22 Emil G. Kraeling, The Brooklyn Museum Aramaic Papyri, op. cit., p. 24.

23 See Chapter 14 above.

24 In 609 BC. See 2 Kings 23:29–30. See also Bruce Metzger, David Goldstein, John Ferguson (eds), Great Events of Bible Times, Guild Publishing, London, 1989, p. 105. See also Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 345.

25 ‘The occasionally canvassed origin of the Falashas from the Jewish garrison of Elephantine or the conjecture that Jewish influences in Abyssinia had penetrated by way of Egypt are devoid of any reliable historical basis’, Edward Ullendorff, Ethiopia and the Bible, published for the British Academy by the Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 117.

26 In the 1930s, for example, Ignazio Guidi, an Italian scholar, had canvassed exactly this possibility in his Storia della letteratura etiopica (Rome, 1932, p. 95). And later, in 1960, a former President of Israel had argued that the solution to the puzzle of Falasha origins must lie in Elephantine (Y. Ben-Zvi, Erets Israel, Jerusalem, 1960, vol. VI, p. 146). The strongest and most persuasive case, however, had been put forward much more recently by David Kessler, Chairman of the Falasha Welfare Association of London and the author of an excellent book entitled The Falashas: the Forgotten Jews of Ethiopia (Schocken, New York, 1985). See in particular pp. 41–7.

27 This point is particularly cogently argued by David Kessler in The Falashas, op. cit.

28 See Chapter 6 above.

29 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., p. 201.

30 See Chapter 6 above.

31 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., pp. 109 and 154–5. Emil G. Kraeling (ed.), The Brooklyn Museum Aramaic Papyri, op. cit., p. 91.

32 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., p. 155.

33 See Chapter 6 above.

34 1 Kings 8:54.

35 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., p. 19.

36 Ibid., p. 20.

37 Emil G. Kraeling (ed.), The Brooklyn Museum Aramiac Papyri, op. cit., p. 102–3.

38 See Chapter 9 above.

39 James Bruce reports his discovery of Meroe in his Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile in the Years 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1772 and 1773, Edinburgh, 1790, vol. IV, pp. 538–9. For independent confirmation that the Scottish explorer was indeed the discoverer of Meroe see William Y. Adams, Nubia: Corridor to Africa, Allen Lane, Princeton University Press, 1984, p. 295.

40 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., p. 45.

41 See Professor Edward Ullendorff, The Ethiopians: An Introduction to Country and People, Oxford University Press, 1973, pp. 1–2.

42 For example in 529 BC. See Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., p. 15.

43 Herodotus, The History, translated by David Green, the University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 1988, pp. 142–3; emphasis added.

44 Herodotus was referring to Psammetichus II. Dates from John Baines and Jaromir Malek, Atlas of Ancient Egypt, Equinox Books, Oxford, 1990, p. 37.

45 Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine, op. cit., p. 8, citing ‘the letter of Aristeas’.

46 That tireless and prolific scholar of ancient Egypt and Ethiopia, Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, made his own analysis of the report of Herodotus and likewise concluded that the ‘land of the Deserters’ ‘must have been situated in some part of western Abyssinia’. See Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, A History of Ethiopia, Nubia and Abyssinia, London, 1928, p. 62.

47 Edward Ullendorff, Ethiopia and the Bible, op. cit., p. 5.

48 Numbers 12:1 (King James Authorized Version translation). The Jerusalem Bible refers to Moses’s Ethiopian wife as a ‘Cushite woman’. So, too, does the New English Bible.

49 See, for example, Josephus, Jewish Antiquities (translated by H. St J. Thackeray), Loeb Classical Library (Heinemann), London, 1978, vol. IV (books I-IV), pp. 269–75. See also Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia, 1909, vol. II, pp. 286–9, vol. V, pp. 407–10. For a discussion see also Tessa Rajak. ‘Moses in Ethiopia: Legend and Literature’, Journal of Jewish Studies, Oxford Centre for Postgraduate Hebrew Studies, vol. 29, no.2, Autumn 1978.

50 Genesis 2:13 (King James Authorized Version translation).

51 See Part III above.

52 See Major R. E. Cheesman, Lake Tana and the Blue Nile: An Abyssinian Quest, Cass, London, 1936, pp. 71 and 75. For a discussion see also Professor Edward Ullendorff, Ethiopia and the Bible, op. cit., p. 2. Ullendorff states of the Ethiopian traditions regarding the Blue Nile/ Gihon: ‘There is no valid reason to doubt the essential accuracy of this identification.’

53 Jon D. Levenson, Sinai and Zion: An Entry into the Jewish Bible, Harper & Row, San Francisco, 1987, p. 19.

54 Psalm 68:1: ‘Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered: let them also that hate him flee before him.’ This is a virtual mirror-image of the ancient passage in Numbers 10:35 which states: ‘And it came to pass, when the Ark set forward, that Moses said, Rise up Lord, and let thine enemies be scattered; and let them that hate thee flee before thee.’

55 Psalm 68:31.

56 See Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., ‘Introduction to the Minor Prophets’, p. 1256.

57 Ibid.

58 Isaiah 18:1–2.

59 See Geoffrey Wigoder (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Judaism, Jerusalem Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1989: ‘modern scholars maintain that the Book of Isaiah is a composite work written by more than one prophet, and that only chapters 1–39 are the words of Isaiah.’ The verses quoted, from chapter 18 of Isaiah, fall comfortably within this range.

60 See Chapter 15 above.

61 Jerusalem Bible, op. cit., Chronological Table, p. 345, for kings’ dates. For the dating of Isaiah’s lifetime see F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, Oxford University Press, 1988, p. 715.

62 F. L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, op. cit., p. 715. See also Louis Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews, op. cit., vol. IV, pp. 278–9 and vol. VI, pp. 371 and 396.

63 See Chapter 9 above.

64 Genesis 21:33.

65 See Frederick C. Gamst, The Qemant: A Pagan Hebraic Peasantry of Ethiopia, Holt, Reinhart & Winston, New York, 1969, pp. 5–6.

66 See, for example, A. H. M. Jones and Elizabeth Monroe, A History of Ethiopia, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1966, pp. 7–8.

67 See Donald N. Levine, Greater Ethiopia: The Evolution of a Multiethnic Society, University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 1974, pp. 34 and 37. The Agaw, Falasha and Qemant all belong to the ‘Central Cushitic’ language family and ethnic group. See also Frederick C. Gamst, The Qemant, op. cit., p. 1: ‘The Qemant, an ethnic group with an estimated population of 20,000 to 25,000, are a remnant of the Cushitic-speaking Agaw peoples, the original inhabitants of northern and central Ethiopia.’ The Agaw language has today all but died out amongst the Falashas, although some elders in remote communities still speak it. See Wolf Leslau, Falasha Anthology, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1979, pp. xx–xxi. In general see also Edward Ullendorff,The Ethiopians, op. cit., pp 37–8.

68 Balthazar Tellez, The Travels of the Jesuits in Ethiopia, quoted in Sydney Mendelssohn, The Jews of Africa, London, 1920, p. 5.

69 Jacqueline Pirenne, ‘Des Grecs à l’aurore de la culture monumentale Sabéenne’, in T. Fahd (ed.), L’arabe préislamique et son environment historique et culturels (Actes de colloque de Strasbourg, 24–27 juin 1987), published by the Université des sciences humaines de Strasbourg, 1989.

70 Ibid., p. 262.

71 R. Schneider, ‘Documents épigraphiques de l’ethiopie’, Annates d’ethiopie, vol. X, 1976, pp. 88–9.

72 Ibid., pp. 88–9.

73 Jacqueline Pirenne, ‘Des Grecs à l’aurore de la culture monumentale Sabéenne’, op. cit., pp. 264–5.

74 Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, translated with an introduction by Brian Stone, Penguin Classics, London, 1974, p. 100.

75 Ibid., p. 100.

76 Ibid., p. 103.

Chapter 17 Supping with Devils

1 Graham Hancock, Richard Pankhurst, Duncan Willetts, Under Ethiopian Skies, Editions HL, London and Nairobi, 1983 (reprinted 1987 and 1989).

2 Graham Hancock, Ethiopia: the Challenge of Hunger, Gollancz, London, 1985, 110.

Chapter 18 A Treasure Hard to Attain

1 J. Theodore Bent, The Sacred City of the Ethiopians: Travel and Research in Abyssinia in 1893, Longmans, Green, London, New York and Bombay, 1896, p. 196.

2 See Chapter 1 above.

3 See Chapter 5 above.

4 See Chapter 5 above. See also B. T. Evetts (trans. and ed.), Abu Salih, Churches and Monasteries of Egypt and some Neighbouring Countries, Oxford, 1895, p. 288.

5 See Chapter 5 above.

6 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, Penguin Classics, London, 1980. See for example pp. 393 and 397.

7 Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival, op. cit., p. 232.

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