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In the years , James Ussher set out to write a history of the world from creation to A.D. The result was published in as the.
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It's pretty heavy going though - even heavier than John Knox's History of the Reformation in Scotland. There are lots of names and places, every single one of which is unfamiliar, since the names have changed multiple times since then.

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For good measure, some names keep on appearing, and I kept wondering where I had read them before Lysander and Timothy, and, oh dear, I forgot the other man. Reading the history of the ancient world gave me a good feel for the amount and quality of ancient records, and a much better appreciation for the quality of the history in in the Bible - I can understand how Sola Scriptura is an entirely defensible position. In terms of capturing the flow of history and providing an understanding of the times, the writings of Herodotus, Diodorus, Tacitus and Josephus don't match it.

The book was quite useful for research for "Partial Recall" where I referenced the battle of Marathon it's science fiction, and I recall reading someone else's tribute to the battle of Marathon stored in a murderous snow globe or cube. It is also a source of endless trivia - understanding the actual morality of Alexander the Great and his generals - and for good measure that it was not unusual for the time.

Julius Caesar burning the library at Alexandria came up in conversation. The attitude of the ancient world towards the Jews is also quite remarkable they thought them barbaric, uncivilised, and extremely dangerous. I'll have to read this book again, but since I haven't finished, I'm off the hook for now. When I do, I will keep a map of ancient names handy so I can solve the puzzle of who went where when. Nov 15, Fred Kohn rated it it was ok Shelves: I was very excited to find this book in the public library; not so excited to see that the editor is associated with that horribly dishonest organization Answers in Genesis.

The book itself is fascinating though dry reading— three stars for that. The editing was better than I expected it would be, but I still have to subtract a star for numerous problems. The editor puts this book on a very high pedestal that it is not up to. One would think that it is almost as reliable as holy writ itself!

So, I was very excited to find this book in the public library; not so excited to see that the editor is associated with that horribly dishonest organization Answers in Genesis.

See a Problem?

So, for example, the editor finds himself defending Ussher's assertion that the Jubilee occurred in the 49th year rather than the 50th year. Admittedly, keeping the calendar straight can be confusing, as I found out quickly as I tried to retrace Ussher's steps. In this case, the author argues that since when a man is 49 years old, he is in his 50th year. The distinction here is between cardinal and ordinal numbers, which can sometimes have to be converted. But not here, since the sabbatical and Jubilee count uses only ordinal numbers.

The 49th year can never be the 50th year.


At any rate the point is moot, since Ussher puts the first year of the sabbatical count in AM paragraph and the first Jubilee in paragraph , which would be the 56th year. So one must tread carefully using this edition for any serious study. It would help to have the original to compare. Fortunately, I have easy access to both the Ohio State University rare book collection, which has both the Latin original and the first English translation, as well as access to Early English Books Online, which has a searchable PDF of the original English version. This came in handy when I was trying to figure out what possible 17th century English phraseology could lie behind the very modern sounding "Hence, Bagoas had revenge against Orsines because he disapproved of Bagoas' homosexual lifestyle.

This is another major problem with this edition: At this point it has taken me about two years to get a bit more than half way through this massive tome. I expect to finish it in a year or so, at which time I may or may not return to this review. I have noted a few other minor errors in the editing that I don't know whether are worth pointing out.

Documents that Changed the World: Annals of the World, | UW News

Very good reference this book is a classic. May 10, Joel Hoyt rated it really liked it. It was kind of fun to get some high level perspective on how some civilizations rose and fall. The faithful scholarship of Bishop Ussher 4 January — 21 March has been overshadowed by debates regarding the age of the earth.

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Ussher's self-imposed, life long project was to create a timeline from every primary source document available. This was a challenging endeavor in the seventeenth century that required months of travel to various libraries and collections, as well as hours, days and weeks spent evaluating and documenting texts. In addition to the physical challenges, there we The faithful scholarship of Bishop Ussher 4 January — 21 March has been overshadowed by debates regarding the age of the earth.

In addition to the physical challenges, there were numerous intellectual conundrums for the good Bishop to resolve. For example, tracking of time. Groups of people tracked time by the lunar cycle, the solar cycle, the Roman Indiction, the Julian calendar, or a local dynasty! Additionally, different languages use different nomenclature for months and days. Ussher's ambition was to synthesize these systems, so that knowable historical events could be numbered up from 1 "Creation of the World" to what came to be , dated 73 AD, the resolution of the Roman conquest of Jerusalem.

Ussher didn't just put everything in order, he cited the over 13, documents he surveyed and pointed out conflicts among them. Some of these sources have been lost in time through disasters, such as the fire in Dublin that destroyed part of Ussher's own library. Tremendous honor also needs to go to a gentleman named Larry Pierce. Ussher, of course, published his findings in in Latin. Pierce translated and edited the complete text, systematizing the documentation with the modern Loeb Classical Library, and creating a paragraph organizational structure that makes reference and retention easier for the contemporary reader.

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Pierce's work extends to Editor's introductory essays Preface, Epistle, Explanatory notes, Key to references , through the text itself, to the 8 Appendices Appendix A: Roman Calendars Appendix B: In the years , James Ussher set out to write a history of the world from creation to A. The result was published in as the literary classic "The Annals of the World.

Ussher traveled throughout Europe, gathering much information from the actual historical documents. Many of these documents are no longer available, having been destroyed since the time of his research. In its pages can be found the fascinating history of the ancient world from the Genesis creation through the destruction of the Jerusalem temple.

The Annals of the World by James Ussher

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