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June 30, 1947

Dr. Immanuel Velikovsky
526 West 113th St.
New York City

Dear Dr. Velikovsky:

It was extremely good of you to let me see the manuscript of your book, Ages in Chaos: Reconstruction of Ancient History.

When you first discussed with me your revolutionary conclusions, your drastic revision of the accepted chronology of the period before Cyrus the Great, your startlingly new parallels between the Bible and ancient Oriental texts, I was greatly disconcerned and somewhat skeptical.

Since then five or six years have passed and, although I cannot say that I have accepted your conclusions in toto, my confidence in the traditional chronology has been greatly shaken in the mean time. You have brought down the dates in Egyptian, Hittite, and Near Eastern histories (excepting Israel’s) by six hundred years. In the mean time, as you know, the archaeological discoveries at Mari on the Euphrates have forced us to bring down the date of Hammurabi from 1900 to 1750 B.C. (with a resulting similar reduction of Hittite and Syrian chronology before 1400 B.C.) and in the latest issue of the Journal Asiatique the Middle Kingdom of Egypt chronology is brought down by about 200 years.

It would seem that your discoveries have anticipated somehow the revision of ancient chronology which archaeological discoveries and technical researches have made necessary. Even though your book is still sensational, ancient historians will be less shocked byu it now than six years ago. While I do not anticipate that your views will be accepted at once by scholars, I am certain that they will be greatly stimulated by your brilliant volume, filled with innumerable new observations, parallels, and conclusions of detail. the present text of your book has been greatly improved over its form five years ago, through your revisions. I am eager to see it in print as soon as possible.

With all good wishes,


Yours faithfully,

  Robert H. Pfeiffer
Chairman of the Department