[Chapter Nine: Seth and Typhon—The Catastrophic Cosmos]


Chapter Ten: Noah and Menes—The Ark at Thebes

... I propose that the Egyptian language and culture came from two sources:
first, from the western Sahara, hence the Chadic parallels,
and, second, from Proto-Semitic-Berber,
which had spread through southwest Asia and across northern Africa.
—Martin Bernal, Black Athena. Vol. 3, The Linguistic Evidence

Genesis of the Sahara

'Twixt these two ways, I trod the middle path,
Which brought me to the fair Elysian green,
In midst whereof there stands a stately tower,
The walls of brass, the gates of adamant.
—Thomas Kyd, The Spanish Tragedy

Before we deal with the notion of a universal deluge, there is another geophysical event that paralleled the events that gave rise to the legend and serves, to some extent, to describe its broader characteristics and may even allow us to understand its origins and implications. In short, what are we to make of the sudden desiccation of the region we now know as the Sahara Desert? Is there any historical evidence of just how this vast dead scar upon the face of the earth came into existence, when it had for so long supported vast herds of terrestrial and aquatic animals and human populations? We dealt with the cause of this event in the last chapter, but we will now explore the myths and legends that tell us how this sudden desiccation was visited upon what once was the garden remembered in wistful tones by the authors of Genesis and embroidered upon in his tale of the ideal society by Plato.

In "The Arabian Myths," in his Ragnarok: The Age of Fire and Gravel that followed his book on Atlantis, Ignatius Donnelly tells us of the story of Talib, who tells Caliph Abdelmelik that he knows where to find the brass bottles used by Solomon to imprison genii. They are in a land far to the west, where one might land when blown off course on the way to Sicily, a theme reminiscent of Jason and the Argo, as well as Eneas after the Trojan War. This story is from the Thousand and One Nights. The "son of Sahl" marched off to the west.

Talib first reached "a deserted palace in a desolate land, the palace of 'Kosh the son of Sheddad the son of Ad, the greater.' He read an inscription":

Here was a people, whom, after their works, thou shalt see wept over for their lost dominion. And in this palace is the last information respecting lords collected in the dust. Death hath destroyed them and disunited them, and in the dust they have lost what they amassed.

And Talib and his party go on still farther, and find 'the City of Brass,' a weird, mysterious, lost city, in a desolate land; silent, and all its people dead; a city once of high civilization, with mighty, brazen walls and vast machinery and great mysteries; a city whose inhabitants had perished suddenly in some great calamity. And on the walls were tablets, and on one of them were inscribed these solemn words:

Where are the kings and the peoples of the earth? They have quitted that which they have built and peopled. And in the grave they are pledged for their past actions. There, after destruction, they have become putrid corpses. Where are the troops? They repelled not nor profited. And where is that which they collected and hoarded? The decree of the Lord of the Throne surprised them. Neither riches nor refuge saved them from it.

And they saw the merchants dead in their shops; their skins were dried, and their bones were carious, and they had become examples to him who would be admonished.

Everywhere were the dead, "lying upon skins, and appearing almost as if they would speak." Their death seems to have been due to a long period of terrible heat and drought.

We continue from the version of the Thousand and One Nights published in the Harvard Classics:

They then passed on, and found a saloon constructed of polished marble adorned with jewels.... In it was a pavilion of brocade, raised upon columns of red gold, and within this were birds, the feet of which were of emeralds; beneath each bird was a net of brilliant pearls, spread over a fountain; and by the brink of the fountain was placed a couch adorned with pearls and jewels and jacinths, whereon was a damsel resembling the shining sun. Eyes had not beheld one more beautiful. Upon her was a garment of brilliant pearls, on her head was a crown of red gold, with a fillet of jewels, on her neck was a necklace of jewels in the middle of which were refulgent gems, and upon her forehead were two jewels the light of which was like that of the sun; and she seemed as though she were looking at the people, and observing them to the right and left. When the Emir Musa beheld this damsel, he wondered extremely at her loveliness, and was confounded by her beauty and the redness of her cheeks and the blackness of her hair. Any beholder would imagine that she was alive, and not dead. And they said to her, Peace be on thee, O damsel! But Talib the son of Sahl said to the Emir, May God amend thy state. Know that this damsel is dead. There is no life in her. How then can she return the salutation?—And he added, O Emir, she is skillfully embalmed; and her eyes have been taken out after her death, and quicksilver hath been put beneath them, after which they have been restored to their places; so they gleam; and whenever the air putteth them in motion, the beholder imagineth that she twinkleth her eyes, though she is dead.

There was a golden tablet near this "damsel" that read in part:

In the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful.... O son of Adam, how ignorant art thou in the long indulgence of hope! and how unmindful art thou of the arrival of the predestined period!... O thou, if thou know me not, I will acquaint thee with my name and my descent. I am Tedmur, the daughter of the King of the Amalekites, of those who ruled the countries with equity. I possessed what none of the Kings possessed, and ruled with justice, and acted impartially towards my subjects; I gave and bestowed, and I lived a long time in the enjoyment of happiness and an easy life, and possessing emancipated female and male slaves. Thus I did until the summoner of death came to my abode, and disasters occurred before me. And the case was this:—Seven years in succession came upon us, during which no water descended on us from heaven, nor did any grass grow for us on the face of the earth. So we ate what food we had in our dwellings, and after that we fell upon the beasts and ate them, and there remained nothing. Upon this, therefore, I caused the wealth to be brought, and meted it with a measure, and sent it by trusty men, who went about with it through all the districts, not leaving unvisited a single large city, to seek for some food. But they found it not; and they returned to us with the wealth, after a long absence. So thereupon we exposed to view our riches and our treasures, locked the gates of the fortresses in our city, and submitted ourselves to the decree of our Lord, committing our case to our Master; and thus we all died, as thou beholdest, and left what we had built and what we had treasured. This is the story: and after the substance there remaineth not aught save the vestige.

There are elements in this story from a later age, added no doubt by the storyteller to lend familiarity to his story. But, as we shall see, the underlying tale is from the time just following the final fall of the Amazon capital. In particular, the term "Amalekites" appears to have been substituted for "Amazons." Before traveling westward, Talib had traveled from Syria to what appears to be Nubia, the ancient "Ethiopia" of the Egyptians, where he obtained the assistance of Sheik ’Abd-Es-Samad, who served him as a guide on his journey to the west. Though this trip was likely to be quite hazardous, the sheik reassured his son Harun by "pretending to him that the place in which were the things that the Prince of the Faithful desired was four months' journey distant, on the shore of the sea, and that throughout the whole route were halting-places adjacent one to another, and grass and springs." This prevarication was not simply a subterfuge. It recalled a time when one could travel westward from the Nile River across the Sahara all the way to the Atlantic Ocean, as Livio Stecchini informs us in "The Sahara," his unpublished article that appears at the website Metrum.org. De Prorok (1929) proposed a similar expedition for 1930, traveling from west to east, but the plan never came to fruition. Leaning heavily on Herodotus, Stecchini tells us that:

After having described the part of Libya closer to the Mediterranean coast, Herodotus resumes his description, again starting from Egypt but following the latitude of the deserts. "Beyond this wild beasts' land there runs a ridge of sand that stretches from Thebes of Egypt to the Pillars of Herakles" (IV 181). In his description of the "ridge of sand" Herodotus states that there is a series of inhabited stations, oases with water wells, spaced "about 10 days of march" or 5°. In saying that they go from Thebes in Egypt to the Pillars of Heracles, Herodotus refers to the longitudes of these two locations.

Leone Africano, a Moor who was taken as a prisoner to Italy in the sixteenth century and there published a description of Africa, presents the area along the tropic from the Atlantic coast to Egypt as an alignment of five deserts, each being identified by the name of the tribe that roams through it. Herodotus states (IV 185) that along the line that he describes he is acquainted with the names of the first five tribes; this means that his exact information extends to the meridian 0 (i.e., 6°48'E). But he knows that the line extends to the west of this longitude, continuing by segments of 10 days of march or 5° to a salt mine at the longitude of the Pillars of Herakles and even beyond, obviously to the Atlantic Coast.

As we have seen, the tropic extends through the Hoggar, the mountain of Atlas, all the way to the island of Cernê in a bay of the Atlantic, so that it is apparent where the expedition of Talib was heading in search of their genii in bottles. They were looking for the lost capital of the Amazons in the land now inhabited by those veiled, seven-foot tall, blue-robed, sword and gun-toting warriors astride white camels—the Tuareg—whose ancestors were conceivably the source of the Old Testament notion of the giants who were finally killed off in Syria, according to Josephus, by the armies of the Assyrian Old Kingdom. And if we are to take the historical sources of the fictional Thousand and One Nights at all seriously, they managed to find it, along with the last ruler of the Amazons. The references to the sea have to do with the confusion of the mountain of Atlas with the palace at Chersonesus on the Mediterranean noted by Stecchini and purportedly discovered by Paul Borchardt, which simply adds support to the authenticity of the story.

There is a certain symmetry here, for, as we shall see below, the lack of rain in the Sahara paralleled a definite excess of precipitation farther to the east causing the land of Egypt to flood as far south as Lake Moeris and to be transformed into a marsh nearly as far as the southern capital of Thebes. That the desiccation remained, and even continued to expand after the flooding in Egypt had subsided, indicates that there were permanent changes to the weather patterns of earth. If Herodotus is right, at least for some unspecified period prior to his time, in placing the source of the Nile to the west of Syene near the Hoggar, it is even possible that the flooding of Egypt had to do specifically with the transference of the sources of the Egyptian river to the regions southward and away from those to the west. Mythologically, this transformation is expressed by the sequentially closely linked Fire of Phaëthon and Flood of Deucalion. Clube and Napier, in The Cosmic Serpent, point out that though "the linking of the world conflagration and the deluge has proven particularly vexatious for the classicists because it makes no dramatic sense," "the association of fire and flood is a very old one." They then quote W. V. Englehardt who specifically links Phaëton's fall and Deucalion's flood, the latter occurring directly upon the completion of the former, so that even as the remnants of the Amazon civilization were disappearing beneath the sterile sands of the desert, the kingdom of Egypt was emerging from the primeval waters of creation, to speak in plainly metaphorical terms.

The clear political implication is that Menes did not simply emerge from the mists of Egyptian prehistory to rule over the Two Lands. His conquest was rather that of a foreign invader whose original territory had been decimated by the forces of cosmic and meteorological cataclysm so that the continuation of his original North African kingdom must have required that he assume the kingship of a foreign or simply previously subservient territory, and the limitation of his recorded forebears to seven generations was simply an accidental result of the destruction of earlier records and says nothing about those who preceded them. If there was a single point when the theological notion of a 6000-year-old universe came into existence, it was with this destruction of the records of this North African kingdom. Menes may not even have been a legitimate heir to the throne, the system having clearly been matriarchal at its core and not patriarchal at all despite the local tendency toward male domination. Even as power was passed down almost exclusively from male to male among the descendants and successors of Menes, the fiction of matriarchy was continually honored in theory if not in fact.

Not everyone faced the fate of those who tried to ride out the drought in what would become the Sahara. In his introduction to the first American edition of Leonard Cottrell's The Bull of Minos, Alan Wace tells us that the inhabitants of Crete and Hellas at the end of the Neolithic period were not Indo-Europeans and spoke a language remnants of which survive in place names and other terms used by the Greeks. The cities of Korinthos, Mykene, and Parnassos; the plants terebinthos and kolokynthos; as well as the words labyrinthos and asaminthos; all represent fragments of the language spoken by the early Goddess worshipping Minoans and, perhaps, the even earlier Amazons. For 800 years after the Deluge in Egypt, these southerners would rule Greece, and they would rule Crete until the Phoenician invasion of the late 18th century BC. Until now it has been difficult to imagine how events of the late Neolithic Age in Africa managed to make their way into Greek legend without postulating an Egyptian link in the chain of transmission. But if the Minoan inhabitants of Greece that preceded the Indo-Europeans were truly the direct descendants of the Amazons, then we can at least imagine that the latter passed their legends directly to the former on Crete and even solidly on the southern mainland of Europe.

The transfer of dynastic power to the land of Egypt and to Crete, both of which were ruled by Menes or Minos, was the final act of the Amazonian drama. Earlier another, more militaristic, act had unfolded toward the end of the antediluvian age.


The Antediluvian World

In the Bhavishya it is stated that
"Vaivaswata (sun-born) Menu
ruled at the mountain Soomér
[Sacred Méru]."
—Lieut.-Col. James Tod,
Annals and Antiquities of Rajast'han

It is not known where the battle between the Amazons (or "Atlanteans") and Mopsus (or Mopsos) took place. It is commonly assumed that this was somewhere near Thrace, north of Greece, and western Scythia, but that is only conjecture based upon the places of origin of Sipylus and Mopsus. In actuality it could have occurred anywhere between Greece to the west and Syria to the east, and between Scythia to the north and Central Africa to the south. It might appear that this battle was so vast in scope and scale that its memory survived as far east as India in certain elements of the story of the great Battle of Kurukshetra described in the Mahabharata, where Krishna, perhaps a distant echo of Horus, takes part in the battle, driving the chariot of Arjuna, though he never lifts a weapon. But there is no indication of the Amazons ever penetrating as far east as India, though the Greeks claimed that tribes of the same name occupied the coast of the Black Sea, so that the Amazon War may be seen as an earlier conflict that was followed by the one on the plains of India before the final destruction of antediluvian civilization.

There are other indications of world war during the period just preceding the Flood of Deucalion. According to Rasmus B. Anderson's Norse Mythology, transmitted to us by Ignatius Donnelly in his Ragnarok, the Elder Edda echoes the conditions described in the bible that led to the Deluge. Even recalling the story of Cain and Abel, the Edda tells us that "Brothers slay brothers; sisters' children shed each other's blood. Hard is the world! Sensual sin grows huge." As Donnelly writes, this time referring to the Younger Edda: "The world has ripened for destruction; and 'Ragnarok,' the darkness of the gods, or the rain of dust and ashes, comes to complete the work. The whole story is told with the utmost detail, and we shall see that it agrees, in almost every particular, with what reason assures us must have happened. 'There are three winters,' or years, 'during which great wars rage over the world.' Mankind has reached a climax of wickedness."

At this point we must take a closer look at the so-called antediluvian kings compared in Chapter Eight. Is it possible to determine the underlying identities of these characters from the distant past? When exactly do they cease to be mythological and become historical? The pairs Eve & Adam and Isis & Osiris are fairly transparently the moon and the sun, the primeval Mother and Father of the ancient religion of all earth and the supposed ancestors of all of the kings and queens whose claim to power is ultimately genealogical, blatantly so in the case of the kings of Rajasthan. Seth, their purported son, is none other than the Serpent, the "comet" Typhon whom we examined in Chapter Nine. As we saw there, the third person of this trinity was later identified with the planet Venus, thus confusing Velikovsky and leading to his identification of Typhon with that planet. The very foundation stone of Velikovsky's theoretical superstructure is the myth that Venus (the goddess) was born from the head of Jupiter (the god). This theme is explored in his unfinished and unpublished sequel to Worlds in Collision in which he tries to establish that the planet Venus literally erupted from the planet Jupiter sometime in the historical past. As we learned in Chapter Nine, Godfrey Higgins identified Jupiter, the Zeus of the Greeks, with the sun, as he did all of those father gods from civilizations around the world. This is the precise point where Velikovsky went wrong, for once we realize that the god Jupiter is not the planet Jupiter but rather the sun, we have to ask whether the goddess Venus is actually the planet Venus or is, in fact, some other object. The symbolism of an astronomical body being "born" from the sun is fairly obvious. It refers to an object in orbit about the sun as it clears the blinding light of the corona and travels far enough away from it to be visible in the night sky. We can see how this myth could later be applied to the planet Venus, for Venus travels in an orbit within that of the earth and is periodically obscured by the sun only to reemerge—to be born from its head—later on. But this logic can be applied to other objects as well, the planet Mercury, for example, and to any non-planetary body bright enough to be visible from earth and following an orbit that takes it close to the sun. Hence we have the myth of a comet, in this case the female equivalent of Seth, literally the daughter of Adam and Eve, being born from the head of her father. This is not terribly far from the idea of Eve being born from the rib of Adam, so that we have to wonder whether Eve wasn't originally the daughter rather than the wife.

Only with Abel, the Apollo of the Greeks, do we come to the first incarnation of the sun on earth, the prototype for all those other avatars who claimed to be sons of the sun. Menes, or Noah, with whom we shall identify him below, is the direct descendant of this "first" true human—or rather Abel is his earliest ancestor of which any record has survived. If Abel can be identified with Apollo, then he was the father, not the brother, of Kenan, or Cain, and suddenly all of those prototypical stories of sons murdering fathers begin to make a bit more sense, so that Cain was the type of the Oedipus Rex of the Greeks after whom Freud named one of his psychoanalytic complexes. The implication of all of this is that the first historical event described in the bible is the murder of Abel by Cain and that the migration of Cain to Nod "on the east of Eden" was not a peaceful affair but points toward a missing account of the very Amazon War referred to by Diodorus.

Eliminating some of the noise from the table of antediluvian kings, adjusting for overlapping reigns, and adding alternate Greek equivalents, we are left with the following:

Hebrew: [Born/Lived]
Ruled BC




Egypt [Manetho]*

"Daughters" of Atlas (Nysiades)

Indian (Col. Tod)—
Lunar/Solar [Ch1]*









Seth (Comet Typhon)




Electra (a comet)

[3204] 3154–3129




Horus (a falcon)

Halcyonê (kingfisher)


3195: Expulsion from Eden     Flood of Ogyges      

[3181] 3129–3106

Kenan (Cain)

Cassius & Libanus

Gaia, mother of Uranus

Thoth (moon) [Ares]


Chandra or Soma (moon)/— [Fuxi]

[3164] 3106–3090

Mahalalel (Mehujael)

Memrumus & Usous

Ma'at [Anubis]



[3148] 3090–3068

Jared (Irad)

Agreus & Halieus

Uranus, father of Cronus

Her [Herakles]

Steropê, friend of Herakles

(Heri) [Shen-nung]

[3108–3078] (did not rule)









3072: Kali Yuga

[3091] 3068–3011

Methusaleh (Methushael)

Chrysor or Vulcan

Cronus, brother of Titan

[Ammon2, brother-
in-law of Cronus]

companion of Vulcan

Buddha (Krishna)/
Mireecha [Huang Di]


Titan3, uncle of Zeus

Tutu [Tithoes]


            2986: Kurukshetra War

[3045] 30112981





wife of Prometheus, mother of Deucalion

Yáoû/Surya [Yao]

[2999] 2981–2920

Noah (Menahem)




Nohas/Manu [Shun/Nuwa]

2949: Deluge of Noah



Flood of Deucalion



Flood of Manu



Misor then Taautus


Teti [Athothis]



*Square brackets in this heading identify the source of entries that appear in brackets below and are not parenthetical.

Chinese.  2Diodorus has Hammon.
3Titan and Zeus would appear to be equivalent to the Omorka (Thalatth/Tiamat) and Bel (Marduk) of Berossos.

 At first I could not quite wrap my brain around the fact that some of the kings in the Egyptian list matched those in the Hebrew and other lists and some didn't. It wasn't until I was reading The Greek Myths by Robert Graves on the aid rendered by the Amazons to King Ammon that I realized that the various antediluvian king-lists were not simply local variations on the same list, but individual lists of local kings where some of the entries appeared on more than one list due to the shifting fortunes of war, as a result of which the king of one country sometimes found himself ruling over another. In short, the kings of the antediluvian world were not simply legendary. They were real figures living in the real world where idealized lists of primordial kings were a future product of the fading memories of a later age and not an accurate representation of contemporary events. More importantly, the source of Graves' account, Diodorus Siculus, beginning with Chapter 68 of Book III of his Library of History, tells us just exactly where Ammon, the successor of Her in the above list, ruled—and it was not the "Upper Egypt" of the postdiluvian world. According to Diodorus, Ammon, who was synchronous with Methusaleh, was king of Libya, specifically "that part of Libya" mentioned in his previous paragraph, the region from the ocean, apparently the Atlantic, eastward to the island of Nysa and beyond. Ammon also controlled territory that included the Ceraunian Mountains, a range that turns out to be in modern Albania. One has to wonder if the pyramids recently discovered in Bosnia were a product of this civilization.

The city of Nysa was located on an island "surrounded by the river Triton" and is clearly identical with Plato's island of Atlantis and the biblical Eden. The Triton matches Wadi Inharhar on the map from Chapter Eight. So again we have the motif of an empire that runs from central Africa all the way to southern Europe. The identification with Eden is supported by the following description from Diodorus derived from the writings of Dionysius.

The land of the island is rich, is traversed at intervals by pleasant meadows and watered by abundant streams from springs, and possesses every kind of fruit-bearing tree and the wild vine in abundance .... The whole region, moreover, has a fresh and pure air and is furthermore exceedingly healthful .... Everywhere along the lanes, the account continues, springs of water gush forth of exceeding sweetness, making the place most pleasant to those who desire to tarry there.

Now Dionysius has Ammon at Nysa, where he leaves his son Dionysus to be raised, so that we have ancient testimony that this King Ammon visited the island where Poseidon supposedly founded the capital of Atlantis. Ammon was driven from power by Cronus, who is also concurrent with him in the above table, fleeing to Crete. He only regained power with the help of Dionysus, the Nysean allies of Dionysus, as well as the Libyans and the Amazons, the latter of whom fought under Athena. These Amazons lived across from Pharos in Egypt according to Graves, the implication being that they had lost control of part of their former African territory by this time, four generations after Myrina, and that it was now in the hands of whichever power was represented by Ammon.

The Antediluvian World from Horus to Menes


Year BC

  Birth of Horus  
  Tree ring event. Flood of Ogyges 3195
  Horus becomes king of Nysa  
  Birth of Her 3148
  Amazon War  
  Horus dies. Thoth becomes king of Nysa  
  Ma'at becomes king of Nysa  
  Her ("Hercules"/Jared/Uranus) becomes king of Nysa 3090
  Her conquers India  
  Cataclysm ca 3072
  Her dies. Ammon becomes king of Nysa 3068
  Ammon overthrown by Cronus and the Titans. Tithoes becomes king of Nysa  
  Libyan Amazons aid Dionysus in defeating Cronus and restoring King Ammon  
  Sosos (Zeus/Dionysus?) becomes king of Nysa 3011
  Birth of Menes (Minos/Manu/Min/Priapus) 2999
  Battle of Kurukshetra. Dionysus conquers India? 2986
  Menes becomes king of Upper Egypt 2981
  Menes becomes king of Lower Egypt, Crete, and India 2950
  Flood of Deucalion. Deluge 2949
  Menes dies 2920

Earlier, Her, the Hebrew Jared or Irad, ruled the kingdom part of which would next be ruled by Ammon. According to Philostratus, in The Life of Apollonius of Tyana, the empire of the "Egyptian Hercules" ran all the way to India.  Diodorus Siculus echoes this with a terribly mangled account of the conquests of this Egyptian Hercules, placing the kingship in the hands of Osiris but identifying Hercules as "general of all the land under his sway." Diodorus further tells us in Chapter 39 of Book II that according to the Indians this Hercules,

was born among them and they assign to him, in common with the Greeks, both the club and the lion's skin.... And marrying several wives, he begot many sons, but only one daughter; and when his sons attained to manhood, dividing all India into as many parts as he had male children, he appointed all his sons kings, and rearing his single daughter he appointed her also a queen. Likewise he became the founder of not a few cities, the most renowned and largest of which he called Palibothra. In this city he constructed a costly palace and settled a multitude of inhabitants, and he fortified it with remarkable ditches which were filled with water from the river.

The existence of a prehistoric world empire that ran from Central Africa to India is reinforced by the identification of a "seven percent [genetic] contribution from India" among the sub-Saharan population of the Sahel, according to the February 28, 2010, issue of the online DNA Tribes Digest.

How Cronus came to find himself in a position to challenge the power of Ammon is described in the earliest part of the Sibylline Oracles, sometimes called the Pseudo-Sibylline Oracles, since they were not the original oracles stored at Rome but were compounded later on from many sources, the most interesting of which have been ascribed to Jewish hands. The author of part of this early material, having identified Iapetus with Japheth, places the events he describes after the Deluge. But, in fact, Iapetus, Cronus, and Titan were sons of Her, or Jared, as we can deduce from the tables of antediluvian kings in the present chapter and in Chapter Eight, so that any related geophysical events, if they did not derive from the process of synthesis that led to the final biblical account, had to do with the approach of Typhon in 3072 and not in 2949. The translation is that of Milton S. Terry published in 1899, from which I have removed the confusing poetic format from the blank verse. We have already read part of this in Chapter Eight:

... Then the generation tenth appeared of mortal men, from the time when the flood came upon earlier men. And Cronos reigned, and Titan and Iapetus; and men called them best offspring of Gaia and of Uranus, giving to them names both of earth and heaven, since they were very first of mortal men. So there were three divisions of the earth according to the allotment of each man, and each one having his own portion reigned and fought not; for a father's oaths were there and equal were their portions. But the time complete of old age on the father came, and he died; and the sons infringing oaths stirred up against each other bitter strife, which one should have the royal rank and rule over all mortals; and against each other Cronos and Titan fought. But Rhea and Gaia, and Aphrodite fond of crowns, Demeter, and Hestia and Dione of fair locks brought them to friendship, and together called all who were kings, both brothers and near kin, and others of the same ancestral blood, and they judged Cronos should reign king of all, for he was oldest and of noblest form. But Titan laid on Cronos mighty oaths to rear no male posterity, that he himself might reign when age and fate should come to Cronos. And whenever Rhea bore beside her sat the Titans, and all males in pieces tore, but let the females live to be reared by the mother. But When now at the third birth the august Rhea bore, she brought forth Hera first; and when they saw a female offspring, the fierce Titan men betook them to their homes. And thereupon Rhea a male child bore, and having bound three men of Crete by oath she quickly sent him into Phrygia to be reared apart in secret; therefore did they name him Zeus ....

But when the Titans heard that there were sons kept secretly, whom Cronos and his wife Rhea begat, then Titan sixty youths together gathered, and held fast in chains Cronos and his wife Rhea, and concealed them in the earth and guarded them in bonds. And then the sons of powerful Cronos heard, and a great war and uproar they aroused. And this is the beginning of dire war among all mortals....

And all of Titans and of Cronos born died. But then as time rolled around there rose the Egyptian kingdom ....

Whether Ammon was the same individual as Methuselah, and whether he was another son of Uranus, are not provable at this late date, but the limited evidence points in that direction. That Methuselah ruled, somewhere, for 57 years implies that he lived, at least for a while, beyond the sphere of influence of the other sons of Uranus, an implication that places him, perhaps, on the island of Crete where Ammon fled, the very birthplace of Zeus and his son, Minos, who would rule Egypt under the name Menes. Does this mean that the antediluvian Hebrew kings actually ruled on the island of Crete, far from Canaan and even farther from Mesopotamia? Perhaps. If it does, we may begin to suspect that their alternate names were recorded in the language represented by the Linear A, perhaps even the same as that spoken along the River Triton before the collapse of the Saharan civilization.

Later, after Tutu had ruled in Ammon's stead, Zeus became king. This Zeus appears in the king-list of Manetho as Sosos, who preceded Menes. Diodorus has Dionysus installing Zeus on the throne, and the form of his name would suggest this connection, dios being the genitive form of the nominative Zeus, and Dionysus being formed, according to one account, from the elements dios and Nysa, the place of his birth. Dionysus was in turn the father of Priapus, the Greek version of Min, worshipped at the town of Qoph just north of the Egyptian Thebes and a deified version of Menes, the successor to Sosos, as Minos was the son of Zeus; so that we have here an ancient dispute over whether Menes was the grandson of Ammon or his enemy Cronus, and a suggestion that Dionysus and Zeus were one and the same person.

Upon the elevation of Zeus to the position of father of the gods by the patriarchal Greeks, a transformation that seriously distorted many of the familial relations among the rulers of the antediluvian world, Dionysus himself was demoted to a son of Zeus and took on the responsibility for developing the cultivation of the grape and inventing wine, as Noah, the son of Lamech, was the inventor of wine among the Hebrews. Graves suggests that the actual sequence involved the original production of wine from wild grapes on the southern shore of the Black Sea and that it spread through Palestine to Libya and from there to Crete, from which it was transmitted to the Greeks. Graves goes so far as to suggest that Dionysus was the same individual as Deucalion, the name, according to him, from deucos and halieus, meaning "new wine sailor," a perfectly cryptic description of Noah.


The Deluge

The notion of a flood that covered the entire earth, that washed across the mountain tops like a giant tidal wave, is, of course, quite ridiculous, a fantasy of those who would see the miraculous in the merely catastrophic. Certainly, the Deluge was no mere summer cloudburst. It must have rained heavily for a long time, and the result was massive flooding of at least some of the early river valley civilizations as they existed at the very beginning of the 3rd Millennium before the Common Era. The accounts of this event vary from nation to nation, and river to river, and to some extent there may have been an intermingling of the accounts as its global nature began to dawn on the literate peoples of the ancient world, but the specific variation found in the Hebrew Scriptures would appear to have had its origin in the description that survived of this Deluge as it played out in Egypt.

It will be useful at this point to reproduce a table due to Jacques-Julien Bonnaud in his Herodote: Historien du Peuple Hébreu sans le Savoir, extracted from the Abbé du Rocher's Histoire Véritable des Temps Fabuleux and found in Higgins' Anacalypsis in its original French. I have attempted to maintain Higgins's original orthography.

Bonnaud's Table of Thebes and the Ark

Egyptian History

Sacred History

1. Menes is he who ruled the first men.

1. Noah, of which the name in Hebrew is Né or Mnée, which means repose, is the common father of all peoples: he is in the Scriptures the first man who reigned in a sense after the deluge: he who found himself the chief and natural sovereign of all humanity then reduced to his family.

2. At the time of Menes all Egypt was only a marsh with the exception of the single nome or canton of Thebes, that is to say, it was totally inundated.

2. At the time of Noah, not only Egypt, but the entire earth was inundated by a deluge, and that nome of Thebes, which was the only one that wasn't, was the ark which escaped the deluge. THBE or as one pronounces it THEBAH, is the word constantly employed in the Hebrew text to signify ark.

3. The inhabitants of Thebes called themselves the oldest men.

3. Thbe or Thebah (the ark of Noah) contained in effect the fathers of all men, and consequently the oldest men of all, dating from the deluge which was a renewal of the human race.

4. At Thebes was constructed a great ship nearly three hundred cubits long.

4. The Thbe or Thebah, the ark of Noah, was three hundred cubits long.

5. Herodotus says that two doves flew from Thebes to different regions.

5. Noah let fly a dove two times from his Thbe or from his ark, to assure himself, before going out, that the earth was dried up.

6. The animals, following the Egyptians, were formed first in the land of Thebes.

6. Scripture says that all the animals were contained in the ark, and in coming out, Thbe in Hebrew means ark, there is how all the animals came out of Thebes.

7. Menes taught the people to honor the gods and to make sacrifices to them.

7. Mnée otherwise Noah on coming out of the ark raised an altar to the Lord, says Scripture...and made burnt offerings on that altar, consequently, sacrifices.

8. Menes was the first to introduce table luxury [luxe de la table].

8. Noah after the deluge gave express permission to eat meat.

9. The inhabitants of Thebes boast of having been the first to know the vine.

9. Noah after leaving the ark (Thbe) was the first who planted the vine.

 Menes is unique among all the members of the antediluvian king-lists that have survived to the present day (see Chapter Eight), for only he can be identified with a real living person, the first king who ruled over Lower and Upper Egypt at the very beginning of the Dynastic Period that would last for three thousand years, the great unifier of all Egypt from the Nile Delta to the island of Elephantine. According to Herodotus, as recently translated by Robin Waterfield, when Menes (or Min) ruled over Egypt, "the whole of Egypt, except for the Thebaïd province, was a marsh and the whole present country below the lake of Moeris ... was under water." Clearly, this was a temporary phenomenon, for they were building pyramids at Giza by the 26th century BC. It is thus not unreasonable to see this lack of solid ground below Moeris as a result of the Noachian Deluge. The notion of some Arab historians that the Great Pyramid was built as a refuge from that same deluge is thus lacking in verisimilitude, though there is no reason to believe that it had nothing to do with some deluge or other catastrophic event. The one that we have placed near 2723 BC is a prime suspect. There is physical evidence of an earthquake at Giza in the form of severe cracking of the horizontal ceiling stones of the inner chambers of the Great Pyramid of Khufu (Cheops) sometime in its early history.

As for the relation between the names Menes and Noah, beyond the Abbé de Rocher's contention that the original (in French orthography) was Mnée, there is the further fact that the father of Samson, another of the solar heroes enumerated in Chapter Eight, had a father named Manoah. And more to the point, Louis Ginzberg tells us in The Legends of the Jews (reproduced in The Flood Myth, edited by Alan Dundes) that, "By the name Noah he was called only by his grandfather Methuselah; his father and all others called him Menahem," a clearly parallel form to "Manoah."


The Global Presence of the Flood Story

I will not reproduce here the extensive literature documenting the worldwide presence of The Flood Myth, as Dundes calls it in his compilation of scholarly papers on flood stories from around the world. Graham Hancock also uses these stories, mainly from the New World, as evidence for his theory of prehistoric civilization in the Ice Age (à la Hapgood), in his more popularly oriented Fingerprints of the Gods. Suffice it to say that there is overwhelming evidence that the story of the Flood may be found everywhere except the darkest reaches of sub-Saharan Africa, and even this lacuna has recently been challenged. What is not clearly understood by many of these researchers is that the presence of the story is not evidence of a universal deluge. What it is evidence of is the nearly universal presence of what is essentially a primary element of a religious system. This is not to say that the Deluge itself didn't happen—somewhere. The underlying events may even have had their local variations around the world, but the fact is that civilization had not reached a sufficient level of development in many of these places to allow for the preservation of local accounts of their consequences. Despite attempts by some scholars to explain these so-called myths as universal psychological motifs, there is really only one convincing reason why this historical account, solidly embedded within its religious context, should appear globally. We can only conclude that some earlier form of the religion within which the story of the Deluge was ultimately perpetuated in the Near East managed to penetrate vast expanses of the populated world sometime after the events described, events that occurred, by the current reconstruction, somewhere toward the middle of the 30th century BC. Whether the spread of such a nearly universal religious system followed in the footsteps of some sort of global political authority, a vast empire, is not immediately obvious, but there is at least limited evidence that it did. As we shall see in the next chapter, Sargon of Akkad may well have conquered a vast swath of the civilized world, including Egypt, where the Akkadians would have encountered the historical and religious records of the Egyptians. His conquest of Egypt may be placed somewhere near the year 2323 BC, about six centuries after the Egyptian Deluge, and the account of this event would then have been available for diffusion throughout the empire by means of the systems of communication and transport of the time. All surviving fragments of the Assyro-Babylonian and Sumerian flood stories date from not much earlier than 2000 BC, three centuries after the apparent invasion of Egypt by Sargon and almost a thousand years after the actual event.

In the 19th century an attempt was made to explain the presence of certain elements in the bible with obvious parallels in the newly discovered Babylonian mythological system by postulating diffusion from the civilization of Babylonia, the so-called theory of Panbabylonism. Unfortunately, as we have just seen, the actual flood described may very well have occurred in Egypt rather than Mesopotamia, and though the term Panheliopolitanism has a certain ring to it, we will forgo for the present any attempt to coin a new term for the currently developing theoretical construction and remain content with simply looking at some of its more peculiar elements, in hopes of finding further clues to its underlying structure.


Descendants of Noah (Menes) to the End of the First Dynasty of Egypt
(After Manetho but Adjusted for a Six-month Unit of Time)


Years Ruled

Year BC
Birth of Menes   2999
Begin 1st Dynasty. Menes (Narmer/"Noah") becomes king of Egypt, rules 30 years 30 2950
Deluge   ca 2949
His son Hor-Aha (Athothis) becomes king of Egypt   2920
His son Djer (Kenkenes) becomes king   ?
His son Djet (Ouenephes) becomes king   ?
Den (Ousaphaidos/Hesep-ti) becomes king 10 2869
Anedjib (Miebidos) becomes king 13 2859
Semerkhet (Semempses) 9 2846
Qa'a (Bienekhes) becomes king 13 2837
Typhon approaches earth   2826
End First Dynasty   2824

Diodorus of Sicily tells us that the first 52 kings of Egypt beginning with Menes formed an unbroken line of descent and that they ruled for a total of 1040 years. The latter figure clearly results from assigning a nominal period of 20 years to each reign, but 52 is the approximate number of kings from Menes until the end of the 6th Dynasty, a period of approximately 628 years. At the end of this period, Egypt fell into the hands of the Akkadians, as we will discuss in the next chapter.


[Chapter Eleven: Sargon, Naram-Sin, and the Egyptian Seventh Dynasty]


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