By nameBy dateNext

Reader’s Report on: Immanuel Velikovsky, AGES IN CHAOS

Spring 1949

Dr. Velikovsky has reached the conclusion that the chronology of Egypt and the Near East before Alexander the Great is utterly wrong and chaotic. In the current histories of ancient Egypt the same events are related twice with a gap from six to eight centuries, the kings appear twice with different names, descendants become ancestors, etc.

The present volume is devoted to the discovery and correction of such errors. His clues and evidence are chiefly:

  1. Parallels between biblical and Egyptian literary and historical texts.
  2. Philological parallels between words, which make it possible to identify, for instance, Agag (Amalekite King) with Apop (Hyksos king); Amuru and Arameans; etc.
  3. Textual revisions: in Exodus 4:22-23 “first-born” is changed to “chosen”; in Psalm 78:49 “sending evil angels” is changed to “invasion of king-shepherds.”

Dr. Velikovsky discloses immense erudition and extraordinary ingenuity. He writes well and documents all his statements with the original ancient sources.

His conclusions are amazing, unheard of, revolutionary, sensational. If his findings are accepted by historians, all present histories for the period before Alexander the Great (who died in 323 B.C.) must be discarded, and completely re-written. If Dr. Velikovsky is right, this volume is the greatest contribution to the investigation of ancient times ever written.

The present reviewer would not undertake to guess the reaction of his colleagues to the rearrangement of ancient history proposed by Dr. Velikovsky. This reviewer is somewhat bewildered by this book, but even though shaken by some of the evidence adduced, he is still perversely obdurate, unable to discard the history he has learned and taught, unable to accept the revolutionary new presentation of Velikovsky. Even though this attitude is subjective and unimportant, it may be that of some other historians. The reviewer, however, would like to have the volume published and have a copy in his library: he would like his students to read it, being convinced that only out of the discussion of opposite views may the truth, or an approximation thereto, be attained.

By nameBy dateNext