Re: Amarna Tablets, after all
- The suggestion that some of the Amarna tablets were "casts" is, to put it
mildly, very interesting. In our book we rigorously examined the possibility
that some of the tablets were copies made in Egypt, and were able to refute
this option completely on the basis of the mineralogical, chemical and
structural composition of the tablets. The only copies made in Egypt of
Akkadian texts that we located were the scholarly texts ascribed to the
Amarna scribal school, but alas, these were found by Sir W.M.
Flinders-Petrie during his well-recorded excavations and not looted by the
farmers. Therefore, this suggestion is completely baseless and reflects very
poor reading of our book. It should be emphasized that the petrography and
geochemistry of Egyptian clays and ceramic materials have been extensively
studied by an endless list of scholars for nearly a century now. Moreover,
the fact that the composition of the letters of known city rulers and kings
of identified kingdoms reflected the clay and lithological compositions of
their locations clearly indicates that there were no "casts". This is true
of course unless someone before 1887 traveled to Bogazkoy to collect the
local clay in order to produce the tablets of the Hittite king, to Ras
Shamra in order to collect the very typical clay of Ugarit (unknown as such
till the 1920's), to Cyprus in order to collect Pachna marls and produce the
Alashiya letters (unidentified at this period as such), to the Judean
Mountains to collect clay of the Moza Formation and make the letters of
Labayu of Shechem and Abdi Heba of Jerusalem, and so on and so forth. The
list is endless and one can get it by reading our book. So I take this
option as highly unlikely, even regardless of the fact that the first
geological mapping of the southern Levant was made approximately at this
time. I mention all these trivial details only for the record, because
whoever will read our book will find them there. Of course, this is not the
case for someone who attempts to criticize a work without reading it.
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