What an adventure!
Special report: Amazing 'Ark' exposé - aranfraneasmi.cf
Finkel's excitement is entirely understandable. As his own and Smith's examples both demonstrate, the ability to decipher cuneiform is one that gives to those rare few possessed of it a heady privilege: the prospect of making remarkable discoveries in texts that have been unread for millennia. Such is Finkel's desperation to convey to those unversed in Sumerian or Akkadian just how thrilling this can be that he reaches for metaphor after metaphor.
An undeciphered clay-tablet is described by him as variously a potato waiting to be harvested, a sponge to be squeezed as tightly as possible and a bombshell that might go off at any minute. The great achievement of his book is to demonstrate not only how challenging he found it as a young man to master cuneiform, but how richly rewarding the effort of his discipleship has been ever since. Small wonder, then, that Finkel should confess to a strong sense of fellow-feeling with the ancient scribes whose tablets he has devoted his life to reading.
Cuneiform, so he poetically declares, is "a magic bridge to a long-dead world populated by recognisable fellow humans". But it is hard not to wonder whether perhaps Finkel might be pushing the claims of kinship a bit far.
It is certainly the case, as Finkel points out, that Babylon was a metropolis with high-rises, bankers and immigrants; but it was at the same time very different from London or New York. Kingship was its heartbeat; fish-garbed priests played out cultic rituals in its streets; its scholars laid claim to a heritage that reached back to the first fashioning of the world out of mud.
Above all, it was a city whose people consciously aimed to set the rest of mankind in their shadow.
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This, surely, is the context that best explains the biblical appropriation of the Mesopotamian flood myth. The Judaeans were not graduate students in some Ivy League college, but the bewildered and embittered victims of superpower aggression. By plundering the heritage of Babylon, they were at once paying homage to its cultural prestige, and annexing it to their own ends. In a similar manner, its legends were made to serve the self-mythologisation of the Jews.
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Reuse this content. Order by newest oldest recommendations. Show 25 25 50 All. Threads collapsed expanded unthreaded. Huibers had plans to sail the ark to Brazil, but those fell through, too.
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Just like me. A view of the half-built bow seen in Dorderecht in In the Bible, God warns Noah, a righteous man, of an approaching flood.
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He instructs Noah to build the ark with his family and collect pairs of animals so they may survive the deluge, which was meant to cleanse the Earth of the sins of humankind. By contrast, Huibers got the idea to build an ark from reading a story about it to his children after supper one evening in But it drew little more than an incredulous chuckle from her.
So I sold the smaller one and built a life-size one, too.
The foot-long vessel is 75 feet tall. Huibers said his crew was made up of amateur carpenters without real training, adding to the overall authenticity of the vessel.
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A lot of stuff here is a bit crooked. Its cavernous interior is surrounded by side decks whose impressive size is magnified even further by their curvature.
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It is relatively dark inside. The ship features an open amphitheater in its center, connected to the raised deck by a series of stairs that many thousands of visitors, most of them children, have climbed. The ark is currently closed to visitors because of disagreements between Huibers and this municipality.
Huibers said the ship is safe, insured and equipped with better fire extinguishing equipment than required by law. When it was open to the public, the ark had a small petting zoo, of which only an aviary with parakeets and other small birds remains. Courtesy of De Ark van Noach.
People never are.