Damien F. Mackey
A budding revisionist wrote to me:
It’s a joy to find your work. About seven months ago, I became very interested in chronological revisionism, first concerning the exodus from Egypt and conquest of Canaan, but then more radical revisionism so that the Egyptian civilization (and others) might postdate the Flood (around 2274 BC in my estimation). I’ve read the work of David Rohl and Peter James, who appear to be “soft revisionists”- reworking the chronology so that the exodus and conquest make good sense, and I’m starting to read Donovan Courville right now. The difficulty is that I, as a non-expert, have virtually no way of evaluating the merits of these respective chronologies, especially where they diverge (concerning whether the Old Kingdom ought to undergo a radical revision and concerning the dates of the Amarna period on).
Do you have any recommendations as to where I should begin, and what work I should read first?
Thanks much ….
To which I replied (modified and updated now):
I can well appreciate how perplexing you must find the whole thing to be. There is the conventional system of which one ought to have a solid grasp, and then there are all of those quite different revised systems, none fully agreeing.
Peter James and David Rohl have been important, inasmuch as they have corrected some of the mistakes made by Dr. I. Velikovsky (who was a pioneer).
Peter James’s Centuries of Darkness is a classic, and ought to be read.
But I would agree with you that their (Rohl’s and James’s) revisions are “soft”, floating precariously as they do halfway between Velikovsky and convention.
Martin Sieff is, to my thinking, the pick of the revisionists writing in that quite productive period of the mid-late 70’s and the 80’s. Amongst the following one will find some classics of his:
- “Velikovsky: The Score of Success”, SIS Newsletter 1, April 1975
- “Velikovsky: The Open Minded Approach”, SIS Newsletter 2, September 1975
- “In Defence of the Revised Chronology”, Peter James & Martin Sieff, SIS Review v1 No. 1, January 1976
- “Diana at Ephesus”, Martin Sieff assisted by Peter James, SIS Review v1 No. 2, Spring 1976
- “Planets in the Bible: I — The Cosmology of Job”, SIS Review v1 No. 4, Spring 1977
- “The Two Jehorams”, SIS Review v2 No. 3, Special Issue 1977/78
- “Velikovsky and His Heroes”, SIS Review v5 No. 4, 1984
- “The Bible Through a King James Filter”, SIS Workshop no. 1, March 1978
- “Book Review”, SIS Workshop no. 4, February 1979
- “The Father of the Gods?”, SIS Workshop vol.3 No.2, October 1980
- “Voyager: Questions and Answers”, SIS Workshop vol.3 No. 3, January 1981
- “The Hittites in Israel”, SIS Workshop vol.4 No.1, July 1981
- “Assyria and the End of the Late Bronze Age”, SIS Workshop vol.4 No. 2, September 1981
- “Limited Fusion” and “Anode-Stars”, SIS Workshop vol.4 No. 3, December 1981
- “The Emerging Revision of Ancient History: Recent Research”, Velikovskian vol. 2 No. 1, 1994
- “The History Of The Revisionist Debate: A Personal View”, Velikovskian vol. 3 No. 4, 1997
- “The Road to Iron: 8th and 7th Century Metallurgy and the Decline of Egyptian Power”, Catastrophism & Ancient History, Volume IV, Part 2, July 1982
- “Scarab in the Dust: Egypt in the Time of the Twenty-First Dynasty”, Catastrophism& Ancient History, Volume VII, Part 2, July 1985
- “The Libyans in Egypt: Resolving the Third Intermediate Period”, Catastrophism& Ancient History, Volume VIII, Part 1, January 1986
- “Assyrians, Sodom, and Red Herrings”, Catastrophism & Ancient History, Volume X, Part 1, January 1988
- “The Oracle of Cadmus”, Catastrophism & Ancient History, Proceedings of the Second Seminar of Catastrophism and Ancient History (Held Dec 1983)) 1985
- “The Chaldeans of Sumer”, Aeon vol.1 No. 2, Feb 1988
- “The Hyksos Were Not Assyrians”, Aeon vol.1 No.4, Jul 1988
- “Remembering Velikovsky”, Aeon vol.4 No. 2, Aug 1995
Dr. Courville is very good, systematic, but rather heavy going. He, too, was a pioneer and stands in need of some modifications. But he will generally set you on quite a good path.
There are some anchors that I personally would insist upon, and you will find these within my articles at Academia.edu See e.g. my article:
Better archaeological model for Abraham
Also, and most importantly, the Middle Bronze I people as the Exodus Israelites:
The Bible Illuminates History and Philosophy. Part Seven: Middle Bronze I Israelites
Bringing early Egyptian history into line with the Bible, especially using the perceptive stratigraphy of Dr. John Osgood for the period of Abram (Abraham).
Dr. Courville has missed the compelling link between Joseph of Egypt and the genius Vizier Imhotep. See my attempt to correct this in my series:
Moses – may be staring revisionists right in the face
beginning with Part One:
Velikovsky’s thesis that the United Kingdom of Israel and Egypt’s 18th dynasty were contemporaneous, with Hatshepsut as the Queen of Sheba and Thutmose III as the biblical Shishak.
See e.g. my articles (for Hatshepsut):
and (for Thutmose III):
Dr. Velikovsky’s vitally important connections of El Amarna’s kings of Amurru with biblical kings of Syria (in Ages in Chaos, I).
Peter James’s important correcting of El Amarna’s Abdi-hiba of Urusalim (Velikovsky’s king Jehoshaphat) to Jehoshaphat’s son, Jehoram, instead. See e.g. my series on this:
Another certain thing, the conventional view of Ramses II as a contemporary of Moses is hopelessly wrong. See e.g. my articles:
The Exodus in need of a realistic time-frame
New Revision for Ramses II
Highly important (at least I think), too, is the synchronisation of king Sennacherib’s loss of his massive Assyrian army in Israel at the time of the heroine Judith, and narrated in the Book of Judith. See e.g. my article:
I hope that this will be of some use to you ….
My best regards,