Mysteries :  The Official GrahamHancock.com forums
For serious discussion of the controversies, approaches and enigmas surrounding the origins and development of the human species and of human civilization. (NB: for more ‘out there’ posts we point you in the direction of the ‘Paranormal & Supernatural’ Message Board). 
Welcome! Log InRegister
Sizes in ancient texts sometimes used hyperbole e.g. "as many as the grains of sand on the shore" is a typical example. But also a factor in ancient languages is that they used homonyms just as the English language does, and distinguished differences from context. (Example: "row" has several meanings in English, I can think of 3 immediately and there may be more.)

To take a biblical example, "אלפ" means thousand in ancient Hebrew. But it originally meant "head" or "head of an ox", and in context regarding numbers of people in the 12 tribes it also meant "head of the household".

So in Numbers 2 where you see the listing of the peoples, you might see a modern translation like: "The leader of the people of Judah is Nahshon son of Amminadab. His division numbers 74,600." Then: "The leader of the people of Issachar is Nethanel son of Zuar. His division numbers 54,400." And so on.

But if you add up all the numbers you get: 74,600+54,400+57,400=186,400; 46,500+59,300+45,650=151,450; 40,500+32,200+35,400=108,100; 62,700+41,500+53,400=157,600. Then 186,400+151,450+108,100+157,600=603,550. However there is something strange. If you then go right to numbers 3:43 it says: "The total number of firstborn males a month old or more, listed by name, was 22,273". So really -- if there were 603,500 men able to fight, but between them all they only had 22,273 firstborn sons? Something is wrong.

One attempt at handling this is to assume in context that Judah consisted of 74 households of 600 men, and Issachar had 54 households of 400 men, and so on. This approach results in 598 households of 5,550 men. But this results in too small of a number of men, because they couldn't have 22,273 firstborn sons. Or if it was 22 households with 273 firstborn sons, that is too few firstborn sons for 5,550 men.

So no matter how you slice it, the numbers are messed up. A clue exists in the name of the book (Numbers) but no one has I think ever figured out an explanation that satisfies everyone.

Options: ReplyQuote


Subject Views Written By Posted
Case for an Older Baalbek 2029 Thanos5150 11-Apr-18 06:04
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 327 MDaines 11-Apr-18 08:28
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 261 Origyptian 11-Apr-18 11:15
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 254 Thanos5150 11-Apr-18 22:34
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 229 Origyptian 12-Apr-18 13:25
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 235 MDaines 12-Apr-18 13:39
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 208 Eddie Larry 12-Apr-18 22:47
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 223 Thanos5150 11-Apr-18 22:31
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 190 Origyptian 12-Apr-18 13:01
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 237 MDaines 12-Apr-18 13:25
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 202 Audrey 12-Apr-18 17:49
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 194 Origyptian 12-Apr-18 22:36
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 205 Audrey 12-Apr-18 23:08
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 196 Origyptian 13-Apr-18 01:44
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 200 Thanos5150 13-Apr-18 03:07
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 182 Eddie Larry 13-Apr-18 03:26
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 195 Origyptian 13-Apr-18 04:00
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 227 Audrey 13-Apr-18 03:16
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 186 Origyptian 13-Apr-18 04:18
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 259 Barbelo 11-Apr-18 11:41
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 222 Thunderbird 11-Apr-18 15:02
Re: Case for no King Solomon 242 Thunderbird 11-Apr-18 15:19
Re: Case for no King Solomon 215 Thanos5150 11-Apr-18 22:51
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 238 Audrey 11-Apr-18 16:42
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 204 Thanos5150 11-Apr-18 23:11
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 212 Eddie Larry 11-Apr-18 20:40
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 217 Thanos5150 11-Apr-18 22:18
How Big Was The Forest? 217 Barbelo 11-Apr-18 23:25
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 201 Origyptian 12-Apr-18 13:58
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 200 Thanos5150 12-Apr-18 16:18
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 224 MDaines 12-Apr-18 16:54
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 197 Audrey 13-Apr-18 03:29
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 210 Thanos5150 13-Apr-18 15:20
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 216 Audrey 14-Apr-18 01:57
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 254 Eddie Larry 14-Apr-18 04:12
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 201 Barbelo 14-Apr-18 10:25
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 198 Eddie Larry 14-Apr-18 15:54
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 151 Barbelo 14-Apr-18 22:13
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 184 Eddie Larry 14-Apr-18 22:45
Re: Beer bottles Fly......Duck! 187 Thunderbird 14-Apr-18 22:26
Re: Beer bottles Fly......Duck! 187 Eddie Larry 14-Apr-18 22:37
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 173 Thanos5150 15-Apr-18 02:49
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 179 Eddie Larry 15-Apr-18 02:56
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 196 Thanos5150 15-Apr-18 03:36
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 177 Eddie Larry 15-Apr-18 04:21
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 213 Barbelo 15-Apr-18 05:45
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 169 Eddie Larry 15-Apr-18 14:00
Zagros, Shoulder of the Cosmic Matriarch 218 MDaines 16-Apr-18 07:41
Re: Zagros, Shoulder of the Cosmic Matriarch 167 Thunderbird 16-Apr-18 12:59
Re: Zagros, Shoulder of the Cosmic Matriarch 228 MDaines 16-Apr-18 13:30
Re: Zagros, Shoulder of the Cosmic Matriarch 200 Thanos5150 16-Apr-18 19:39
Re: Zagros, Shoulder of the Cosmic Matriarch 219 MDaines 17-Apr-18 07:40
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 188 Thanos5150 14-Apr-18 14:43
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 205 Mike D 20-Apr-18 13:15
Re: Did the Russians visit Baalbek? 174 Thunderbird 20-Apr-18 13:56
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 174 Thanos5150 20-Apr-18 16:00
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 191 Eddie Larry 20-Apr-18 16:09
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 175 Thanos5150 20-Apr-18 17:00
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 180 Eddie Larry 20-Apr-18 17:11
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 197 Barbelo 20-Apr-18 20:47
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 172 Origyptian 20-Apr-18 21:45
Re: How Big Was The Forest? 271 Barbelo 20-Apr-18 22:57
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 191 Thanos5150 12-Apr-18 00:53
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 193 Eddie Larry 12-Apr-18 03:56
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 202 Corpuscles 12-Apr-18 00:34
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 216 Thanos5150 12-Apr-18 01:39
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 206 Eddie Larry 12-Apr-18 03:52
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 180 Thanos5150 12-Apr-18 04:36
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 199 Eddie Larry 12-Apr-18 14:12
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 198 Thanos5150 12-Apr-18 14:44
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 157 Eddie Larry 12-Apr-18 17:01
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 211 Thanos5150 13-Apr-18 00:47
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 144 Eddie Larry 13-Apr-18 03:40
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 211 Audrey 13-Apr-18 05:44
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 187 Thanos5150 14-Apr-18 01:32
Re: Baalbek.....Home of the God's 200 Thunderbird 13-Apr-18 15:14
Re: Baalbek.....Home of the God's 189 Audrey 14-Apr-18 02:30
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 180 Audrey 12-Apr-18 19:42
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 172 Eddie Larry 12-Apr-18 20:43
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 187 Audrey 12-Apr-18 16:56
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 201 Eddie Larry 12-Apr-18 17:08
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 192 Origyptian 12-Apr-18 21:42
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 174 Eddie Larry 12-Apr-18 22:41
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 183 Origyptian 12-Apr-18 22:58
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 169 Eddie Larry 13-Apr-18 17:52
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 178 Thanos5150 13-Apr-18 19:06
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 174 Origyptian 13-Apr-18 21:08
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 193 Thanos5150 13-Apr-18 21:37
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 175 Origyptian 13-Apr-18 22:06
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 191 Thanos5150 13-Apr-18 22:41
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 193 Origyptian 14-Apr-18 15:14
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 176 Jon Ellison 14-Apr-18 22:20
Re: For God's sakes Lee!... 188 Thunderbird 16-Apr-18 00:15
Some Give A Shit 237 Barbelo 12-Apr-18 05:11
Re: Some Give A Shit 240 MDaines 12-Apr-18 07:48
Re: Some Give A Shit 207 Audrey 12-Apr-18 20:42
Re: Some Give A Shit 208 Barbelo 12-Apr-18 21:43
Re: Some Give A Shit 188 Audrey 12-Apr-18 23:21
Re: Some Give A Shit 180 Barbelo 13-Apr-18 00:44
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 189 Origyptian 12-Apr-18 15:03
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 194 Thanos5150 12-Apr-18 17:11
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 235 MDaines 12-Apr-18 17:55
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 192 Origyptian 12-Apr-18 22:18
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 200 Thunderbird 12-Apr-18 22:53
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 182 Audrey 13-Apr-18 00:28
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 217 Thunderbird 13-Apr-18 03:31
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 194 Thanos5150 12-Apr-18 04:46
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 243 Race Jackson 12-Apr-18 22:54
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 251 MDaines 13-Apr-18 08:20
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 219 Audrey 14-Apr-18 00:40
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 264 MDaines 14-Apr-18 08:04
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 218 Manu 13-Apr-18 18:10
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 192 Thanos5150 13-Apr-18 19:28
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 201 Manu 13-Apr-18 19:50
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 189 Thanos5150 13-Apr-18 20:53
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 198 Manu 13-Apr-18 21:31
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 199 Barbelo 13-Apr-18 20:26
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 32 Thanos5150 14-Sep-19 15:17
Re: Case for an Older Baalbek 42 Eddie Larry 14-Sep-19 15:50


Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.