Inspired by the Flood Story

The above featurette about the making of the ark for the upcoming movie Noah has gotten me much more excited about the movie than I was before. It is not the first adaptation of the flood story to take creative license. That is, in actual fact, what the Bible’s flood story did with earlier versions. [Read More...]

Noah’s Precursor

Irving Finkel in the New York Times and The Telegraph and also Jerry Coyne on his blog (reprinted in The New Republic) have noted the interesting story (mentioned here a while back) about a Mesopotamian version of the flood myth, another one that is much older than Genesis, featuring a coracle – i.e. a round boat. Click through any [Read More...]

Utnapishtim’s Coracle

For some reason the fact that a Mesopotamian version of the flood story contains an enormous circular ark is making news headlines in the Daily Mail and the International Business Times. HT All Mesopotamia [Read more...]

Recycled Stories in the Bible: The Flood

In today’s class, we discussed how awareness of an earlier tradition of telling versions of the same story – as in the case of the Genesis flood story, paralleled in ancient Mesopotamian literature in the Atrahasis and Gilgamesh epics – can be important for understanding the later version of the story in question. [Read more...]


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