Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Hide & Found

Where are today's treasures hidden?
In the past people hid, in time of danger, their treasures of gold, silver or ... - there must be more - in the ground. Hidden to pick up later. At a later time that, in retrospect, never came. Every now and then one of those treasures is found. Mostly by accident. Sometimes by a treasure hunter.

How about the treasures of today? Where do dictators and other thieves hide their money and gold?  I guess hardly anyone puts it in the ground anymore. Somewhere in a Swiss safe or bank account? What happens with their treasure caches when they die and their account numbers and keys are lost? Banker first?

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

To Swallow a Camel

I'm wondering what the Torah, Talmud, Old Testament, New Testament, Qur'an and Sunnah say about the desert. My hypothesis: the image of desert is distinctive in the three above mentioned monotheistic religions.

Hits on 'desert' on The Internet: 211 (Torah), ? (Talmud), 302 (Bible), 19 (Qur'an) and 209 (Sunnah).

Hits on 'oasis': 0 (Torah), ? (Talmud), 0 (Bible), 0 (Qur'an) and 1 (Sunnah).
Hits on 'spring': 74 (Torah), ? (Talmud), 60 (Bible), 38 (Qur'an) and 52 (Sunnah).
Hits on 'camel': 55 (Torah), ? (Talmud), 12 (Bible), 18 (Qur'an) and 1,492 (Sunnah).

Well, this will take me some time to analyze ;)

Let's take a look first at the 12 hits on 'camel' in the Bible:
A camel is transport. It's saddle is a good hiding place. You must not eat them. She-camel? You can make clothes from its hair. Comparator in a metaphor. 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Treasure Virtually Unknown

King Tut. I guess every well educated (wo)man on Earth saw the gold mask and other treasures of pharaoh Tutankhamun #AncientEgypt on TV or in a book. His tomb in the Valley of the Kings, near Luxor, was discovered in 1922, by Howard Carter (1874-1939), after more than 10 seasons digging. To be more exact, the 1922 season was the last season Lord Carnarvon was willing to pay for. What luck, after so many years of fruitless searching! 

What most people don't know is that Tutankamun's tomb is not the only intact tomb found filled with precious treasures of ancient Egypt.

Ever heard of the treasures of Tanis? They are virtually unknown. In 1939-1940 Pierre Montet (1885-1966) found in Tanis (Egyptian 'Djanet'), near Cairo, the intact tombs of 3 pharaohs: Psusennes I, Amenemope and Sheshonk II. In his 11th season of digging! Containing their golden funeral masks, silver coffins (silver was back than considered more precious than gold), jewellery, lapis lazuli and other precious stones. In 1946 Montet also found the intact tomb of general Wendebauendjed who served under Psusennes I. 

Did you know that the Tanis treasures have been recycled through state-sanctioned tomb-robbing of the Valley of the Kings? Robbing!