« He and His Name 3: Is Keser one of the ten sefiros. | Main | Supernatural or Scientific Stick ? by Dr. Chaim Gershon »

February 02, 2012



R' Jack Love (Chair, Dept of Halakhah, Yeshivat Chovevei Torah and a friend) notes something about the camels.

As Bible Critics are wont to point out, there are three Wife-Sister stories: Avraham and Par'oh, Avraham and Avimelekh, Yitzchaq and Avimelekh. But there is one detail that is unique to the first one -- the mention of receiving camels as part of the gift from Par'oh. Egypt had domesticated Dromedaries since 2000 BCE or so in numbers that archaeologists were never misled to think otherwise. While academics now admit that there were camels in Israel at the time, they still must have been more rare in what is now the Gaza Strip than in Egypt proper. The camel, rather than an anachronism, is a detail that actually reflects the period.


I don't see what this gets us. From the Persian period?


I think the point was that ethrog pollen was found inside the plaster laid when the palace was built, in the Time of Chizkiahu.

I wondered about another dogma, that Koheles was written during the Persian period because we find the Persian word "Pardes" used there. This discovery shows that gardens were built by kings in Judea, may be even by Shlomo. Perhaps they modeled such gardens after Persian gardens and that is why they are called "pardes".


The article says: "Most of the plants were wild, but in one layer of plaster, apparently from the Persian period (the era of the Jewish return from the Babylonian exile in 538 B.C.E. ) they found pollen from ornamental species and fruit trees, some of which came from distant lands."


Yes, but think about it. One spring they happened to be plastering at the flowering time and ethrog happened to be flowering and so pollen ended up in the wall. Even assuming that their dating is correct (how do you tell with certainty when the plastering was really performed), it strongly suggests that these trees have been there for a long time before.

I think we tend to undercount the amount and quantity of communication between different areas of the anceint world. If a specie or items were found on one area, chances they made their way, at least in small quantities, to other places along trade routes. That is what probably happened with camels - why not with ethrog?

The comments to this entry are closed.