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Scribe

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  1. This is a key part of the apologetic approach to the entire book, not just the canopic jars. One of Gee's arguments in support of the attempted sacrifice of Abraham is a Coptic text that narrates the attempted execution of a Christian named Abraham in the reign of Shapur II of Persia in the fourth century AD! Another is an Egyptian love spell in which Osiris appears on the lion-bed in an illustration and Abraham's name appears amid a string of magical nonsense words (Egyptian spells from the time period often included names of Egyptian gods, Greek gods, and Jewish patriarchs and angels, all in
  2. This is a key part of the apologetic approach to the entire book, not just the canopic jars. One of Gee's arguments in support of the attempted sacrifice of Abraham is a Coptic text that narrates the attempted execution of a Christian named Abraham in the reign of Shapur II of Persia in the fourth century AD! Another is an Egyptian love spell in which Osiris appears on the lion-bed in an illustration and Abraham's name appears amid a string of magical nonsense words (Egyptian spells from the time period often included names of Egyptian gods, Greek gods, and Jewish patriarchs and angels, all in
  3. From an Egyptological perspective, the central questions are not complex and are not difficult to explain to a lay audience. The papyri are Egyptian funerary papyri and say exactly what you'd expect from Egyptian funerary papyri. Multiple other copies of the same text as Papyrus Joseph Smith 1 have been discovered, read, and studied. Muhlestein tries to obfuscate this point by pointing to loose similarities between some of the elements of the Egyptian text and some of the elements of the Book of Abraham, but the text in the papyri never mentions Abraham or relates any part of the narrative in
  4. If you're implying that conventional hieroglyphs couldn't have conveyed the contents of the Book of Abraham and would have to be adapted in some way, that's simply not true. Hieroglyphs were simply a means of rendering the spoken Egyptian language (though with very inefficient and conservative orthography), and the Egyptian language was about as flexible as any spoken language of its time.
  5. This is kind of like saying that young-earth creationism is intellectually impressive because evolutionary biologists keep trying to refute it. Actually, if you're talking about Egyptologists dealing with the Book of Abraham, or archaeologists specializing in the Americas, they don't deal with the Book of Abraham or Book of Mormon all that often. (Scholars who study Mormonism itself are obviously another matter.) Before Ritner got involved, about twenty years ago, there were only two major episodes of Egyptological involvement with the book: the Spalding letter in 1912, and the rediscovery of
  6. Mr. Thompson, I don't mean to put you on the spot, let alone to push you into criticizing Gee or Muhlestein, but given what you've written in the past, it's hard not to ask this. In your Dialogue article in 1995 (posted at https://www.academia.edu/11345124/Egyptology_and_the_Book_of_Abraham, for those who haven't seen it), you said the Book of Abraham doesn't match ancient Egyptian religious practices, and that "anachronisms in the text of the book make it impossible that it was translated from a text written by Abraham himself". Given that you posted the paper online yourself, I'm guessi
  7. Perhaps Gee and Muhlestein should be reviewed by Stephen E. Thompson, then.
  8. Borrowing general imagery of judgment and punishment in the afterlife — concepts that cultures all across the Mediterranean had in common in Hellenistic and Roman times, although the details differed — is very different from taking an illustration of a characteristically Egyptian practice, with characteristically Egyptian gods, and using it as an illustration of a completely different story with a completely different context. People just don't do that, except perhaps as parody, which the Book of Abraham definitely isn't. What you're suggesting is a possibility that one can imagine, but it's n
  9. No, it has not. The parallels that Barney cites are textual. They are not ancient Egyptian religious vignettes relabeled to tell a completely different story. And the textual parallels are pretty general; the only characteristically Egyptian image in either one is the "weighing" of souls in the Testament of Abraham.
  10. Muhlestein wrote the following: This is misleading. The text of the Papyrus of Hor is a standard-issue Book of Breathing, and there is nothing unusual about it. The vignette that became Facsimile 1 is unusual among Egyptian papyri, but only slightly. Embalming scenes from Books of Breathing are usually somewhat different from this particular vignette, but a scene where a person lies on or gets up from a lion-headed bed would always signify a scene of embalming or resurrection. Moreover, Ritner thinks the scene in the Papyrus of Hor may be copied from a temple relief, and temples from t
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