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John Parsons
06-08-2010, 04:27 AM
I am looking for some background information on the Ancient Near East during the time of Abraham (and earlier). I am also interested in ancient Egypt. Does anyone recommend a resource on this subject they have personally found helpful? Ideally I would like a popular - yet accurate - introduction to these ancient cultures.

Thanks for any help you might give!

- John

Adelphos
06-08-2010, 07:10 AM
This link to Amazon will give you several books by Pritchard, which are considered the authorities on texts and inscriptions in the ANE --

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=pritchard

You can also explore this thread that was discussed here some time ago --

http://www.bibleworks.com/forums/showthread.php?4459-ANET-and-quot-The-Context-of-Scripture-quot&highlight=ancient+near+east

Dale A. Brueggemann
06-08-2010, 12:02 PM
....Ancient Near East during the time of Abraham (and earlier)... ancient Egypt.... Ideally I would like a popular - yet accurate - introduction to these ancient cultures.



Kitchen, Kenneth A. On the Reliability of the Old Testament. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans, 2003. Quite substantial but still readable.
Kitchen, Kenneth A. The Bible in Its World. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, Ill., 1977. At a more popular level.
Kitchen, Kenneth A. “Some Egyptian Background to the Old Testament.” Tyndale Bulletin 5–6 (1960): 7–11.

See also:


Petrie, W. M. Flinders. Egypt and Israel. Rev. ed. New York: Macmillan, 1923.
Hoffmeier, James K. Israel in Egypt: The Evidence for the Authenticity of the Exodus Tradition. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997.
Hoffmeier, James K. Ancient Israel in Sinai: The Evidence for the Authenticity of the Wilderness Tradition. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.

Adelphos
06-08-2010, 12:31 PM
Dale, I don't know what font you're using, but a fair amount of the vowels in your sig are not placed properly. For example, the hireq is between the kaf and the yod. It's below them, but not directly underneath either one, but between the two. A number of other vowels are also misplaced.

I'd be curious to know what may be causing this.

Michael Hanel
06-08-2010, 12:41 PM
Dale, I don't know what font you're using, but a fair amount of the vowels in your sig are not placed properly. For example, the hireq is between the kaf and the yod. It's below them, but not directly underneath either one, but between the two. A number of other vowels are also misplaced.

I'd be curious to know what may be causing this.

Hmm, must be a combination of things. While his font is rather inelegant looking compared to yours, the vowels do line up right in my viewing. (Firefox 3.6.3 on Windows 7)

Adelphos
06-08-2010, 02:02 PM
Hmm, must be a combination of things. While his font is rather inelegant looking compared to yours, the vowels do line up right in my viewing. (Firefox 3.6.3 on Windows 7)

I'm using IE 8 on XP. I think lava lamps will be back en vogue before the unicode issue ever gets solved.

Michael Hanel
06-08-2010, 02:42 PM
I'm using IE 8 on XP. I think lava lamps will be back en vogue before the unicode issue ever gets solved.

Unicode *is* better, but it has yet to be the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The first problem is that the Unicode map still is a moving target. I think most characters are pretty fixed but diacritics and other random obscure languages still seem to be in flux. The second is that even if all the positions were fixed, Unicode fonts still don't support every single character. So yeah, better, but definitely not perfect.

Dale A. Brueggemann
06-09-2010, 11:18 AM
Dale, I don't know what font you're using, but a fair amount of the vowels in your sig are not placed properly.

I think it was Arial, and it looked fine on my screen, which like Hanel's is Firefox but in Windows Vista. I changed the font to Georgia. Does that improve the vowel placement on your screen, or does it show the same problem?

And as for how it's generated, I think I probably cut from BW, pasted it into Nota Bene, then cut and pasted it into the forum signature.

Adelphos
06-09-2010, 11:33 AM
I changed the font to Georgia. Does that improve the vowel placement on your screen, or does it show the same problem?

It does look better -- a lot better compared to the former -- but there are still misplacements with some of the vowels.

For example, the hireq is still not directly under the kaf in the first word, but the kaf and the yod are now close together so that there is no space between the two consonants as in the previous font, but the hireq is still between them, although that doesn't appear anywhere near as significant as it did with the previous font.

SkipB
06-09-2010, 03:47 PM
I just opened this page in Firefox, IE and Chrome.
The differences were amazing. In all of them, in Dale's signature, a vowel comes after and not under a doubled consonant. Scott's signature appears like a completely different face in each browser. Does that make sense to anyone?

SkipB
06-09-2010, 03:57 PM
וְאָהַבְתָּ אֵת יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ בְּכָל־לְבָבְךָ This is a paste, using chrome.

mtp1032
06-09-2010, 05:16 PM
I'm using IE 8 on XP. I think lava lamps will be back en vogue before the unicode issue ever gets solved.

Lava Lamps are out of vogue?

Adelphos
06-09-2010, 05:35 PM
Lava Lamps are out of vogue?

Well, yes... everywhere except Mississippi, that is.

Skip, your Hebrew looks fine on my setup, IE 8, XP.

Dale A. Brueggemann
06-10-2010, 12:16 AM
I just opened this page in Firefox, IE and Chrome.... In all of them, in Dale's signature, a vowel comes after and not under a doubled consonant.

And in my own browser it all looks perfect, including the holem after the dotted sin of la'asot. I think it goes to show that Scott's worries about Unicode not being quite ready for prime time have some basis in what we're seeing.

SkipB
06-10-2010, 12:56 AM
Unicode is a lot closer than we used to be. I remember my Epson MX-80: you could load user defined fonts. It was radical to be able to include Greek and Hebrew printed not hand written, in the actual text of a paper. Now we're quibbling over vowel placement, on the Internet.

The text in my previous post, was a straight copy and paste from BibleWorks, I just enlarged the text size. Very straight forward.

John Parsons
06-15-2010, 04:34 AM
Well apart from the digression about Unicode font issues (which is interesting nonetheless), it seems we only had a couple answers to the original topic question. Thanks Scott and Dale! Any other ideas? I think it's interesting that Abraham's father, for example, was a Sumerian priest, and I wonder how that might have affected Abraham's sense of calling... Moreover, the Torah states that until Abraham arrived in Canaan, the ancestors of Israel "served other gods" (Josh. 24:2), and these “gods” were part of ancient Near East mythology that derived from ancient Babel in the land of Shinar (Gen. 10:10). Hence we see Rachel stealing her father’s idols (i.e., “teraphim,” תְּרָפִים) before fleeing Haran (Gen. 31:19), and we see Jacob later commanding his family to “put away the foreign gods among you” (Gen. 35:2). It’s clear, then, that the influence of this ancient religious system extended long before the captivity of the Jews under Nebuchadnezzar II in the 6th century BC.

Shalom

John Parsons
06-21-2010, 02:54 AM
This topic is bumped here

jthomp
06-25-2010, 12:04 PM
I am looking for some background information on the Ancient Near East during the time of Abraham (and earlier). I am also interested in ancient Egypt. Does anyone recommend a resource on this subject they have personally found helpful? Ideally I would like a popular - yet accurate - introduction to these ancient cultures.

Thanks for any help you might give!

- John

Don't you just hate it when your original post gets hijacked? :eek: Guess that's just the nature of forums... Anyway there's a book by JJM Roberts you might be interested in titled The Bible and the Ancient Near East. I think you will find it of some value.

James

John Parsons
07-20-2010, 02:19 AM
Thanks James... It's good not to be overlooked! I will chase down the title you recommended. :)

Greg Crawford
07-21-2010, 02:58 AM
I am looking for some background information on the Ancient Near East during the time of Abraham (and earlier). I am also interested in ancient Egypt. Does anyone recommend a resource on this subject they have personally found helpful? Ideally I would like a popular - yet accurate - introduction to these ancient cultures.

Thanks for any help you might give!

- John

How about:
John H. Walton The Lost World of Genesis One. IVP Academic. 2009
John H. Walton Ancient Near Eastern Thought and the Old Testament. Baker Academic. 2006.