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Darkness in Americas at the time of the Crucifixion


Uncle Dale

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I noticed this, in reading an 1806 American edition of Clavigerio's

"History of Mexico" --

Cav. Boturini (g), upon the faith of the ancient histories of the Toltecas, says, that observing

in their own

------------

(g) In a work of his, printed at Madrid, in 1746, under the title of, Sketch of a general History

of New Spain, founded upon a great number of Figures, Symbols, Characters, Hieroglyphics, Hymns,

and Manuscripts of Indian Authors, lately discovered.

-------------

country of Huehuetlapallan, how the solar year exceeded the civil one by which they reckoned,

about fix hours, they regulated it by interposing the intercalary day once in the four years;

which they did, more than one hundred years before the Christian era. He says besides, that in

the year 660, under the reign of Ixtlalcuechahuac, in Tula, a celebrated astronomer called

Huematzin, assembled, by the king's consent, all the wise men of the nation; and with them

painted that famous book called Teoamoxtli or Divine Book, in which were represented, in very

plain figures, the origin of the Indians, their dispersion after the confusion of tongues at

Babel, their journey in Asia, their first settlements upon the Continent of America, the founding

of the kingdom of Tula, and their progress till that time. There were described the heavens, the

planets, the constellations, the Toltecan calendar with its cycles, the mythological transformations,

in which were included their moral philosophy, and the mysteries of their deities concealed by

hieroglyphics from common understandings, together with all that appertained to their religion and

manners. The above mentioned author adds, that that eclipse of the sun which happened at the death

of our Saviour, was marked in their paintings, in the year 7. Tochtli (h); and that some learned

Spaniards, well acquainted with the history and the paintings of the Toltecas, having compared

their chronology with ours, found that they reckoned from the creation of the world to the birth of

Christ, five thousand one hundred and ninety-nine years...

---------

(h) All those who have studied carefully the history of the nations of Anahuac know very well that

those people were accustomed to mark eclipses, comets, and other phenomena of the heavens, in

their paintings. Upon reading Boturini I set about comparing the Toltecan years with ours, and I

found the 34th year of Christ, or 30th of our era, to be the 7. Tochtli: but I did this merely to

satisfy my own curiosity, and I do not mean either to confirm or give credit to the things told

us by that author.

Vol. I, pages 114-115 -- at Google Books

Uncle Dale

.

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But how else would someone interpret a day of darkness, someone without astronomical knowledge?

A solar eclipse lasts about an hour, so a healthy dose of hyperbole would be required to make it last a full day . . . not to mention the three days recorded in the Book of Mormon.

And although the light from the sun is substantially diminished, I am aware of no solar eclipses that have so "put out the lights" that folks couldn't see their hand in front of their face.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

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A solar eclipse lasts about an hour, so a healthy dose of hyperbole would be required to make it last a full day . . . not to mention the three days recorded in the Book of Mormon.

And although the light from the sun is substantially diminished, I am aware of no solar eclipses that have so "put out the lights" that folks couldn't see their hand in front of their face.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

My point is that if you have a report, some 1800 years after the fact, of darkness across the land, what would your assumption be? I think the erroneous assumption of an eclipse would be a not unnatural one.

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A solar eclipse lasts about an hour, so a healthy dose of hyperbole would be required to make it last a full day . . . not to mention the three days recorded in the Book of Mormon.

And although the light from the sun is substantially diminished, I am aware of no solar eclipses that have so "put out the lights" that folks couldn't see their hand in front of their face.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

I was thinking more in terms of the BoM LGT --- If a solar eclipse were visible in

northern Mexico at the time of the crucifixion, then obviously the "vapor of darkness"

over the Nephite lands did not extend so far north, as to block out the eclipse.

I'll leave it for others to debate if there was such an eclipse, and whether the track

of its visibility on Earth, crossed both Palestine and Mexico.

UD

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My point is that if you have a report, some 1800 years after the fact, of darkness across the land, what would your assumption be? I think the erroneous assumption of an eclipse would be a not unnatural one.

I agree with you.

My intent was to respond to what I weaned was the implicit idea in the OP; that a publication equating an eclipse with the death of the Savior was available prior to the printing of the Book of Mormon.

Joseph Smith, or Solomon Spaulding, et al, must have read this particular book and, after inflating the eclipse to three days of darkness, placed the account in 3 Nephi for verisimilitudinal effect.

Although one would think that if that much effort were gone to, somebody would have brought it forth as evidence of Book of Mormon authenticity within Joseph Smith's lifetime.

I think the reference can be just as plausibly looked at as you are doing, CC; that the actual three days of darkness that did occur in the Americas at the death of the Savior trickled down through the centuries in a somewhat distorted image.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

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I was thinking more in terms of the BoM LGT --- If a solar eclipse were visible in

northern Mexico at the time of the crucifixion, then obviously the "vapor of darkness"

over the Nephite lands did not extend so far north, as to block out the eclipse.

I'll leave it for others to debate if there was such an eclipse, and whether the track

of its visibility on Earth, crossed both Palestine and Mexico.

UD

Gotcha, Unc!

I apologize if I attributed a purpose to your thread that you did not intend.

I note in a part of the quote you didn't highlight the following, which sounds remarkably like the Jaredites:

He says besides, that in the year 660, under the reign of Ixtlalcuechahuac, in Tula, a celebrated astronomer called Huematzin, assembled, by the king's consent, all the wise men of the nation; and with them

painted that famous book called Teoamoxtli or Divine Book, in which were represented, in very

plain figures, the origin of the Indians, their dispersion after the confusion of tongues at

Babel, their journey in Asia, their first settlements upon the Continent of America, the founding

of the kingdom of Tula, and their progress till that time.

Now, if only Solomon Spaulding had gone whole-hog after reading this and listed one of the Jaredite names as "Tula," we would be somewhere! :P

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

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...

Now, if only Solomon Spaulding had gone whole-hog after reading this and listed

one of the Jaredite names as "Tula," we would be somewhere! :P

...

I'm sure that Solomon was much too poor to purchase the 1806 American

edition of Clavigero's History of Mexico. It was a leather-bound set of three

large volumes, costing a month's wages for the average worker of 1806.

UD

ps -- and Joseph Smith would have been even poorer in 1823.

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I'm sure that Solomon was much too poor to purchase the 1806 American

edition of Clavigero's History of Mexico. It was a leather-bound set of three

large volumes, costing a month's wages for the average worker of 1806.

UD

ps -- and Joseph Smith would have been even poorer in 1823.

of course he would. Sydney Rigdon must have been the one to purchase the set, after all, he wrote the whole book, right? :P

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of course he would. Sydney Rigdon must have been the one to purchase the set, after all, he wrote the whole book, right? :P

Well -- there was a cheaper edition published in America in 1817.....

But what on earth would Sidney Rigdon have been doing, studying the

History of Mexico? He was just then being baptized into the Baptist Church

and soon after went off to study Divinity full time under a Baptist teacher.

The more likely reader of Clavigero would have been Ethan Smith --

who actually quotes this history, and who speculates that the ancient

god-man who appeared on the American continent was Moses.

I'll get back to you, on what Clavigero had to say about the appearance

of that ancient divine, white, bearded personage in the Americas.

UD

.

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But what on earth would Sidney Rigdon have been doing, studying the History of Mexico? He was just then being baptized into the Baptist Church

and soon after went off to study Divinity full time under a Baptist teacher. The more likely reader of Claverigo would have been Ethan Smith --

DALE!!! Hey, I didn't know you hung out here. Nice to see ya -- er, sort of see you. LoL. Merry Christmas to you.

RA

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DALE!!! Hey, I didn't know you hung out here. Nice to see ya -- er, sort of see you. LoL. Merry Christmas to you.

RA

Yeah -- nice to have some good folks to chew the fat with, now and then.

Gotta get back to my reading Clavigero though -- that, and to Ethan Smith's

speculation regarding Moses appearing to the ancient Americans...

http://olivercowdery.com/texts/ethn1825.htm#pg206a

UD

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I noticed this, in reading an 1806 American edition of Clavigerio's

"History of Mexico" --

No solar eclipse was visible in Mesoamerica between the years 23 and 35 ad. SOLAR ECLIPSES in Mesoamerica from AD 1 to AD 1600

23 10 3 1729733.98 9544 10.37 -18 11.36 -4 p 0.89 12.42 12 12.29 -3.15 Tik

23 10 3 1729733.99 9544 10.43 -26 11.39 -13 p 0.81 12.39 2 12.29 -3.15 Tul

23 10 3 1729733.98 9544 10.38 -18 11.36 -4 p 0.80 12.41 11 12.29 -3.15 Uxm

23 10 3 1729733.98 9544 10.38 -19 11.36 -5 p 0.90 12.41 10 12.29 -3.15 Yax

35 2 26 1733898.23 9401 16.14 49 17.35 59 p 0.56 18.56 58 22.32 -9.37 Chi

35 2 26 1733898.22 9401 15.50 38 17.14 53 p 0.72 18.42 62 22.32 -9.37 Cho

35 2 26 1733898.22 9401 16.06 50 17.22 63 p 0.46 18.39 65 22.32 -9.37 Cop

35 2 26 1733898.22 9401 15.58 43 17.20 57 p 0.62 18.45 62 22.32 -9.37 LaV

The first three columns are year anno domini, month and day, the last abbreviates the name of the modern city. The others are Julian dates and times when eclipses were visible an their duration.

The record mistook an eclipse for another phenomenon.

Lehi

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You are such a tease!

But Solomon Spalding died in 1816 -- so he never read that edition -- much less

copied anything from the 1817 edition into any of his fictional writings.

Case closed.

UD

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I noticed this, in reading an 1806 American edition of Clavigerio's "History of Mexico" --
BTW, this was mentioned by B.H. Roberts in NEW WITNESS FOR GOD (see p. 12, 1909 EDITION, VOL. III):

Bouturini commending the exact chronology of the ancient Mexicans says: "No pagan nation refers primitive events to fixed Mexicans says: "No pagan nation refers primitive events to fixed creation of the world of the deluge of the confusion of tongues at the time of the Tower of Babel of the other epochs and ages of the world of their ancestors long travel in Asia with the years precisely distinguished by their corresponding characters They record in the year of Seven Rabbits the great eclipse which happened at the crucifixion of Christ our Lord.
M

The date assigned for this eclipse of sun and moon darkness and the attendant earthquakes in the foregoing quotations is corroborated in a very remarkable manner by the native Peruvian historian Montesinos quoted by Rivero and Tschudi In giving a list of the Peruvian monarchs when reaching the sixtieth Manco Capac III our authors say:...

M
Kingsborough's Mexican Antiquities Vol VI p 176 note Bouturini is an authority frequently quoted by Prescott who has an extended note upon the valuable collection of native memorials of primitive civilization of America made by Bouturini See Conquest of Mexico Vol I p 126 He was a Milanese by birth and came to America in 1735 on some business of the Countess Santibanez a lineal descendant of Montezuma While in America he traveled extensively in Mexico and Central America and made the before mentioned collection of memorials Baldwin also mentions him with approval (See Ancient America p 195).

So, I guess B.H. Roberts beat you to it. But I think it's been purged from recent editions. Not sure. Also, you might notice a doubling of the text -- an obvious typo: "Mexicans says: 'No pagan nation refers primitive events to fixed Mexicans says: 'No pagan nation refers primitive events to fixed..."

RA

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...B.H. Roberts beat you to it

...

Gee -- I wonder if Elder Roberts had any particular reason for not citing the location of this

unique reference in the 1806 and 1817 American editions of Clavigero's English-language History?

Maybe Roberts thought such extra citations would just confuse his intended readers.

UD

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Gee -- I wonder if Elder Roberts had any particular reason for not citing the location of this unique reference in the 1806 and 1817 American editions of Clavigero's English-language History? Maybe Roberts thought such extra citations would just confuse his intended readers.
Not sure. Interesting question. Also, do you have a copy of the newest New Witness for God. I'll bet that reference is gone.

I've often found all kinds of stuff in old LDS books like this one by Roberts that had lists and lists and lists of proofs for the literal nature of the BOM -- now, they're all gone. Another book you can look in to see this type of stuff (proofs of the BOM) that has since been quietly removed would be The Story of the Book of Mormon by George Reynolds. Check out the 1888 version with what we have now -- rather enlightening.

RA

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Not sure. Interesting question. Also, do you have a copy of the newest New Witness for God. I'll bet that reference is gone.

I've often found all kinds of stuff in old LDS books like this one by Roberts that had lists and lists and lists of proofs for the literal nature of the BOM -- now, they're all gone. Another book you can look in to see this type of stuff (proofs of the BOM) that has since been quietly removed would be The Story of the Book of Mormon by George Reynolds. Check out the 1888 version with what we have now -- rather enlightening.

RA

Well, friend, this is the 21st century -- not the 19th.

The Saints' attention spans are assaulted by many different demands upon

their time, and it's best to shorten down those old instructional texts.

Since the Limited-Geography-Theory is now pretty much the new doctrine,

we can dispense with all those old, confusing pages in Roberts, and instead

book our "Nephite Lands" tour of Tampico-to-Palenque, complete with meals

and tour guide tips, already included in one low, family-discount price.

Clavigero?

What Clavigero?

UD

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Since the Limited-Geography-Theory is now pretty much the new doctrine, we can dispense with all those old, confusing pages in Roberts, and instead

book our "Nephite Lands" tour of Tampico-to-Palenque, complete with meals and tour guide tips, already included in one low, family-discount price.

Yup, pretty much. I really enjoy looking at old LDS books. Take a look at this unqualified, straighforward, plan-as-day remark from George Reynolds A Dictionary of the Book of Mormon (1892) under "Lamanites":

The people who in connection with their kindred the Nephites occupied the American continent from about BC 590 to AC 385 in which latter year they destroyed the Nephites and remained possessors of the entire land.
The American Indians are their degraded descendants
.
These people were of Hebrew origin being members of the half tribe of Manasseh
and are called Lamanites from Laman the eldest son of Lehi who was the leading spirit in the events that led to their separation from the Nephites...

Time + DNA + archaeology + science = presto-chango:

"Lamanites" to describe the American Indians was Joseph's word choice. The few personal statements he made on Book of Mormon geography indicate that he believed it took place on a hemispheric scale, so it would be natural for him to believe that all Native Americans were pure descendants of Laman, and hence were literal "Lamanites." (
).

â??Lamanitesâ? and â??Indiansâ? are made up of both genetic descendants and those who have been adopted into the tribes, or added through â??mixturesâ?¦with other races.â? This goes a long way toward explaining why the critics' DNA attack is fundamentally misdirectedâ??the participants are talking past each other. Church leaders are quite happy, generally, to extend â??Lamaniteâ? status to any Amerindian (or even a white of European descent like President Kimball) because gospel promises are the focus of their attention. . . . We should perhaps be cautious, then, in assuming (as the critics do) that gospel statements about Lamanite ancestry are mostly about genetics, when they are most likely primarily about covenant duties and promises. (
).

So much for what Joseph Smith and all the early Mormons actually believed about Lamanites and one of the key notions upon which they built Mormonism.

RA

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...

So much for what Joseph Smith and all the early Mormons actually believed

about Lamanites and one of the key notions upon which they built Mormonism.

RA

As I said, friend, this is the 21st century, and not the 19th.

How can we build the millennial temple "in the midst of the Lamanites,"

when not one resident of Kansas City, out of a thousand is an Indian?

And how can we gather Zion on the "borders of the Lamanites" when

not one resident of Independence, out of a thousand, is of Manasseh?

Best to say that Smith was wrong and that the Center Stake of Zion,

in the Land of Promise, must be in Chiapas or Tabasco.

So, let the Church of Christ have their Jackson County Temple Lot;

and let the Community of Christ Archives keep their copies of Catherine

Smith's signed editions of Clavigero and Ethan Smith.

That which was has passed away,

and a new day awaits the Saints.

Uncle "next year in Palenque" Dale

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So much for what Joseph Smith and all the early Mormons actually believed about Lamanites and one of the key notions upon which they built Mormonism.

RA

Hi, Richard!

I think it has been demonstrated that the LGT view was current among some Mormon scholars and leaders before DNA was even discovered.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

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