Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Science

Recent Discovery Contains Oldest Depiction of the Tower of Babel 309

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the tower-built-by-java-developer dept.
smitty777 writes "The recent discovery of the Tower of Babel stele by a team of scholars shows what might be the earliest depiction of the ancient Tower of Babel. The stele belongs to Martin Schøyen, who also owns a large number of pictographic and cuneiform tablets, some of the earliest known written documents. The tablet (reconstruction) depicts King Nebuchadnezzar II, under whom Babylon was a cultural leader in astronomy, mathematics, literature and medicine. It's also interesting to note the somewhat recent Slashdot article linking the common ancestry of languages to this area."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Recent Discovery Contains Oldest Depiction of the Tower of Babel

Comments Filter:
  • by brit74 (831798) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @01:48PM (#38516950)

    "Babylon was a cultural leader in astronomy, mathematics, literature and medicine. It's also interesting to note the somewhat recent Slashdot article linking the common ancestry of languages to this area."

    From the other article:

    The relationship that emerges suggests the actual point of origin is in central or southern Africa, and that all modern languages do, indeed, have a common root."

    Dear Slashdot editors: Do you know where Babylon and Central/Southern Africa are?

    I'd also bet money that the timeline is also completely wrong. Babylon existed a few thousand years ago. The origin of language is much, much older.

  • by MightyMartian (840721) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:00PM (#38517094) Journal

    This article is pretty blood suspicious. First of all, it isn't the Tower of Babel, it's the ziggurat of Babylon. The Babel story may indeed reference the ziggurat of Babylon, or not, but no serious scholar goes around calling it the Tower of Babel.

    The origin of language nonsense reveals that this is clearly the creation of some Biblical literalist. The breaking of the tongues story from Genesis is myth. No linguist has seriously believed it in well over two hundred years, and pretty much everyone accepts that humans developed full language in Africa. The language Nebuchadnezzar spoke; Akkadian, was an Afro-Asiatic language, and those languages likely developed either in the Arabian Peninsula or in East Africa, most certainly not in Mesopotamia.

    Come on Slashdot editors. What's next, an article about humans and dinosaurs living together, or Biblical Flood confirmation stories? Is this the low that the post-Taco era is going to sink to?

  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:00PM (#38517106)
    That's not socialism [wikipedia.org]. You're describing a totalitarian state.
  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MightyMartian (840721) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:07PM (#38517174) Journal

    The story is nonsense. By the time the ziggurat was built, pretty much all the language families known today were already in existence. The breaking up of languages very likely happened in Africa tens of thousands of years before the first mud bricks that were used to construct the Ziggurat were formed.

    And no, it's not socialism, not in any meaningful sense of the word. It was, as another poster pointed out, a dictatorship, or more properly an absolute monarchy. It would be like calling the government of Louis XIV a socialist government.

  • Tower of Babel (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Stargoat (658863) * <stargoat@gmail.com> on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:07PM (#38517176) Journal

    It's funny how much the Tower of Babel looks like every other ziggurat (tell) ever dug up in the Middle East. Oh wait....

    When the fuck will people grow up and realize that not every city unearthed with breached walls is Jericho, not every cross dug up is the True Cross, not every Roman spear is the Dolourous Lance, not every Babylonian leader is King Nebuchadnezzar, and not every old cup is the Holy Grail? It's awesome enough that there is an old Babylonian cuneiform tablet without it also fitting into Biblical narrative.

  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:3, Insightful)

    by lightknight (213164) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:14PM (#38517244) Homepage

    Not quite. If I remember correctly, God dropped by to check out the tower (various unnamed parties were worried it would actually reach heaven), and found a woman performing manual labor while her baby was unattended. Something like that. Which pissed him off.

    Something of a hidden message which states humanity has to deal with its social / welfare issues before trying to reach the stars. Or technology is evil; hard to tell after that garden story. Possibly, anyways. I've found trying to gather understanding from this book to be on par with examining the liver of some poor animal for 'signs' or trying to read tea leaves. If I ever open a practice of psychiatry for the biblically-minded, I'm going to use that book instead of an ink-blot -> "So, what do you think the Bible was trying to tell you this week? Uh huh, that's nice. And how did that make you feel?" However, I never will. Having seen what religion of any sort has done to the minds of mankind, I cannot believe that my tinkering with it would help.

  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:4, Insightful)

    by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:15PM (#38517258)
    I'm not sure if it's supposed to be a deliberate parody of religion, or genuine crazy. Impossible to tell sometimes. It's also very common in US poltics for the term 'socialism' to be thrown around to scare people without any obvious relation to its correct meaning - the cultural relics of the Red Menace never entirely left the country.
  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Daniel Dvorkin (106857) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:18PM (#38517292) Homepage Journal

    And no, it's not socialism, not in any meaningful sense of the word. It was, as another poster pointed out, a dictatorship, or more properly an absolute monarchy. It would be like calling the government of Louis XIV a socialist government.

    To right-wing nutballs, anything they don't like is socialism. How do they know it's socialism? Because they don't like socialism, and so if there's something they don't like, socialism is what it must be!

    Any attempt to point out the flaws in this line of reasoning is, of course, socialist propaganda.

  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AngryDeuce (2205124) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:21PM (#38517338)

    Well, you know how it is. Look at how many people call Nazi Germany "socialist" just because the word "Socialist" is in the name, but people do it all the time. It is about as stupid as calling The Democratic People's Republic of Korea a democracy or a republic.

    Hell, the sheer number of people that equate socialism and fascism, let alone socialism and communism, or socialism and a social democracy...it's all ridiculous. Ignorance is our greatest threat in this nation, not terrorism.

  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:3, Insightful)

    by rickb928 (945187) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:25PM (#38517386) Homepage Journal

    Wow. thanks for distilling the essence of the right-wing.

    Not. Go call Bill Maher and ask him for a more insightful analysis, as even that would indeed be more insightful.

  • by amanicdroid (1822516) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:31PM (#38517460)
    Recent Discovery Contains Oldest Depiction of Cthulu
  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:4, Insightful)

    by h4rr4r (612664) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:40PM (#38517568)

    Who are these many "scholars"?

    Real scholars will tell you that this is a myth and the division of human languages had far more to do with our spread out of Africa than anything else.

  • by halivar (535827) <bfelger&gmail,com> on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @02:55PM (#38517756) Homepage

    Biblical literalist? Hardly. Nebuchadnezzar had nothing to do with the Tower of Babel, and it's clear the author has only passing knowledge of either bible story. The article manages to completely mangle both philology and biblical theology. It's stupid enough for everyone to hate.

  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jms (11418) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @03:48PM (#38518360)

    At any rate, whatever meaningful socialism there was in Hitler or in Nazism was wiped out ... during the Night of the Long Knives.

    Whatever meaningful socialism there was in _______ was wiped out during ________

    1) the USSR / Stalin's purges
    2) communist China / Mao's purges
    3) Cuba / Castro's purges

    and on and on.

    Socialism / Communism isn't a way of running a society. It is a method used to disrupt and destroy a society. The nuances and differences between socialism, communism and Progressivism are as meaningless as the nuances and differences between the effects of different types of nuclear weapons on a city. Socialism, Communism and Progressivism are a means to achieving totalitarianism, no more, no less.

  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:4, Insightful)

    by mrsquid0 (1335303) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @03:59PM (#38518478) Homepage

    Oh not this nonsense again. The Nazis were socialist in the same sense that the former East Germany was a democratic republic.

  • by plsenjy (2104800) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @04:08PM (#38518588)

    This is a good example of the infotainment Discovery and all of its subsidiaries have used to replace what was once great, informative programming. Remember the long, droll documentaries you used to watch on the History Channel that were fascinating, somewhat layered, and informative? That all changed the day David M. Zaslav (former head of NBC, http://corporate.discovery.com/leadership/david-zaslav/ [discovery.com]) took the helm in 2007. Since then the organization has worked tooth and nail to dissolve its reputation as a place to learn something by replacing any programming focused on science, history, or biology with Big Log Muckers, UFO specials, End-of-the-World simulations, When Animals Attack and anything that can go out on a limb to find scientific proof for Biblical anecdotes. It follows the logic that those who are watching television are uneducated and then offers the lowest common demoninator in order to lull larger audiences. What a blight that man's leadership is.

  • Re:Tower of Babel (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cowboy76Spain (815442) on Wednesday December 28, 2011 @06:00PM (#38519780)

    It's often argued (correctly in my opinion) that *****lism inevitably leads to a totalitarian state. Read [A book (of millions that are out there) written by someone with my same ideas (and who nobody knows about) as a proof of what I think] for further info.

    There, fixed that for you. Now you have a generic argument for whatever your opinions are.

Aren't you glad you're not getting all the government you pay for now?

Working...