The Garden of Eden has been found!!!!!
- You'd think this was an April's fool's joke but evidently they are quite
serious about it.
Jim West, ThD
http://web.infoave.net/~jwest -- Biblical Studies Resources
http://petrosbaptistchurch.blogspot.com -- Weblog
- --- RUSSELLGMIRKIN@... wrote:
In an earlier thread I proposed Berossus as a possible
source for the (Hellenistic) tradition of the four
rivers at Gen. 2:14.
You are suggesting that a literary source such as the
Babylonaica in Greek, but written by a native of
Mesopotamia, somehow influenced the composition of
the Hebrew text of Gen. 2:14. But it is Tigris that
appears in the description of the prologue of
Berossus' lost work: "He begins by saying that the
land of the Babylonians lies between the Tigris and
Euphrates rivers" (FGrH 273). So this is not a likely
source for Hiddekel in the Hebrew text.
As a footnote to that discussion, I was reading Pliny
today and I came across the following interesting
passage: "But some statement about the Tigris itself
may also be suitable here. The source of the Tigris
is in a region of Greater Armenia, and is clearly
visible, being on level ground; the name of the place
is Elegosine, and the stream itself in its
comparatively sluggish part is named Diglitus, but
where its flow accelerates, it begins to be called
the Tigris, owing to its swiftness - tigris is the
Persian word for an arrow" (NH 6.31.127).
This passage combines references to Tigris and Diklit
in a Graeco-Roman source. (Pliny was of course Roman,
but utilized many Greek historians and geographers.)
Pliny here is likely drawing on several sources. One
major source used by Pliny for this region (and
extensively throughout book 6) was Juba of
Mauretania, who wrote about this area in books on
Arabia (which included portions of Mesopotamia) and
Assyria. The latter book in turn drew directly on
Berossus. Besides the Babylonians, the Babyloniaca
also dealt with the later Persian kings, customs and
such. So there is a case to be made that the mention
of Tigris (with its Persian derivation) and Diklit in
Pliny came from Berossus by way of Juba of Mauretania.
Regardless how 'Diglitus' found its way into Pliny,
and your theory, in my opinion, seems reasonable but
speculative, it is important to note that the Hebrew
Hiddekel with initial laryngeal would seem to preserve
the earliest form of the name (IDIGNA in Sum., Idiqlat
in Akk.) whereas deqlat in Aramaic, for example, does
not. So without further speculating that Berossos used
the earlier form but Juba drawing upon Berossus did
not, therefore Pliny drawing upon Juba did not, the
evidence available at present does not support that
Berossos was ultimately the source of the Hebrew name.