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do We Believe Joseph Smith or Lds Apologists? Joseph Says He Could Translate Egyptian.


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2 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

I'm sorry. I missed them. Perhaps you can repost your answers.

I could but it would be much easier for me to just tell you to go back and read what I wrote.  My original posts are still there.

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1 hour ago, Bob Crockett said:

I don't have a second handle.  I can assure you that I am not Tim Tribe.  I don't think I am intellectually constipated.  I don't know what is funny about my questions.

What straw man?  What am I "full of?" 

The questions at hand:

1.  Any of those phrases in the Green Mountain letter or in the times and seasons claimed to be Egyptian, are they so?

2.  Is there evidence that Joseph Smith was aware of Champollion's translation?

I don't care if you have ever posted anything that says that Joseph Smith could translate Egyptian.  But I am asking you now.

Wow.  You're struggling.  Again,

1. No.  I don't think so.

2. Yes.  The first, which Ritner is surprisingly ignorant of, is that that information was being published in the Americas.  The availability itself is evidence.  Further, Joseph Smith had more interaction with this field than most people at the time.  He owned a mummy, for crying out loud!  And the fact that Martin Harris knew to go to Charles Anthon, who was likely more knowledgeable on the subject than anyone in the Americas, is both the medium and opportunity to learn the very nature of the characters he was showing to Anthon.

But it gets even better.  Remember, Harris actually met with 3 people - Bradish, Mitchell, and Anthon.  Harris likely already knew Bradish.  And Bradish had actually lived in Egypt in 1821 and returned to America in 1825.  He likely knew more than any other American, first hand.

And then it gets even better!

From James Gordon Bennett’s article, published in September 1831:

"They attempted to get the Book printed, but could not raise the means till Harris stept [sic] forward, and raised money on his farm for that purpose. Harris with several manuscripts in his pocket, went to the city of New York, and called upon one of the Professors of Columbia College for the purpose of shewing them to him. Harris says that the Professor thought them very curious, but admitted that he could not decypher them. Said he to Harris, “Mr. Harris you had better go to the celebrated Doct. Mitchell and shew them to him. He is very learned in these ancient languages, and I have no doubt will be able to give you some satisfaction.” “Where does he live,” asked Harris. He was told, and off he posted with the engravings from the Golden Plates to submit to Doc. Mitchell—Harris says that the Doctor received him very “purlitely,” looked at his engravings—made a learned dissertation on them—compared them with the hieroglyphics discovered by Champollion in Egypt—and set them down as the language of a people formerly in existence in the East, but now no more."

So, yeah.  According to Martin HarrisMitchell compared the characters to the characters that Champollion "discovered" in Egypt.  This is a report of the account by Martin Harris.  Martin Harris identified Champollion.  And, Bennett didn't need to explain who Champollion was or why he was important.  His contribution to the field was understood.  There's your link.  Case closed!

And no, I don't think Joseph Smith could translate Egyptian as we use the word, "translation."  I do believe, however, that he could translate Egyptian as he used the word, "translation."

Edited by PacMan
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1 minute ago, PacMan said:

And no, I don't think Joseph Smith could translate Egyptian as we use the word, "translation."  I do believe, however, that he could translate Egyptian as he used the word, "translation."

I find myself agreeing, generally speaking. I would like to hear your view more specifically elaborated, if you don't mind. How did Joseph use the word "translation?"

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4 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

I've searched and searched and found this.   Evidence?  

 

I said more than that so you are not impressing me much with your research skills.  Oh well.  Those who seek will find as long as they keep seeking until they find.

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6 minutes ago, PacMan said:

And no, I don't think Joseph Smith could translate Egyptian as we use the word, "translation."  I do believe, however, that he could translate Egyptian as he used the word, "translation."

I suppose it depends on who you think of as this "we" you speak of.  I believe I understand and use the world translate as Joseph understood and used it.  Some other people don't, apparently.  As usual, not everybody agrees on everything.

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30 minutes ago, Ahab said:

I said more than that so you are not impressing me much with your research skills.  Oh well.  Those who seek will find as long as they keep seeking until they find.

I hope that my posts don't hurl insults.   I apologize if I do and will promise not to do so.

Edited by Bob Crockett
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19 minutes ago, PacMan said:

Wow.  You're struggling.  Again,

1. No.  I don't think so.

2. Yes.  The first, which Ritner is surprisingly ignorant of, is that that information was being published in the Americas.  The availability itself is evidence.  Further, Joseph Smith had more interaction with this field than most people at the time.  He owned a mummy, for crying out loud!  And the fact that Martin Harris knew to go to Charles Anthon, who was likely more knowledgeable on the subject than anyone in the Americas, is both the medium and opportunity to learn the very nature of the characters he was showing to Anthon.

But it gets even better.  Remember, Harris actually met with 3 people - Bradish, Mitchell, and Anthon.  Harris likely already knew Bradish.  And Bradish had actually lived in Egypt in 1821 and returned to America in 1825.  He likely knew more than any other American, first hand.

And then it gets even better!

From James Gordon Bennett’s article, published in September 1831:

"They attempted to get the Book printed, but could not raise the means till Harris stept [sic] forward, and raised money on his farm for that purpose. Harris with several manuscripts in his pocket, went to the city of New York, and called upon one of the Professors of Columbia College for the purpose of shewing them to him. Harris says that the Professor thought them very curious, but admitted that he could not decypher them. Said he to Harris, “Mr. Harris you had better go to the celebrated Doct. Mitchell and shew them to him. He is very learned in these ancient languages, and I have no doubt will be able to give you some satisfaction.” “Where does he live,” asked Harris. He was told, and off he posted with the engravings from the Golden Plates to submit to Doc. Mitchell—Harris says that the Doctor received him very “purlitely,” looked at his engravings—made a learned dissertation on them—compared them with the hieroglyphics discovered by Champollion in Egypt—and set them down as the language of a people formerly in existence in the East, but now no more."

So, yeah.  Mitchell compared the characters to the characters that Champollion "discovered" in Egypt.  There's your link.  Case closed!

And no, I don't think Joseph Smith could translate Egyptian as we use the word, "translation."  I do believe, however, that he could translate Egyptian as he used the word, "translation."

I'm not struggling. I know what I'm asking.

So, you concede that Joseph Smith's Egyptian phrases in the Green Mountain letter and the Times and Seasons are not Egyptian as we know it today.  

I will accept your description of the facts that Joseph Smith was aware of Champollion, but not necessarily that Champollion had done any translation.  I don't believe for a second that the "caractors" were Egyptian hieroglyphs.  

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4 hours ago, PacMan said:

Please, do not misuse the word "evidence."  It's a pet-peeve.  Further, don't try to summarily refute a claim you know nothing about. 

Thomas Young's work was published in both the Encyclopedia Britannica and the Encyclopedia Americana.  I'd actually point you to it, but given your intellectual constipation it's literally not worth my effort to turn around in my chair and pull out my file that is 3 feet away from me.

Wow.  You went straight to the ad hominem and didn't even try.  That's just...pure arrogance.  For the record, evaluating evidence is a professional duty of mine...I'm an expert witness, counselor.  Moreover, the existence of publication in the two referenced encyclopedias is NOT evidence Joseph Smith ever saw or considered such published work.  Had he mentioned it in his writings?  Had any of his scribes mentioned it in their writings?  Did any witnesses mention Joseph talking about such published work by Young?  Absent such evidence, I continue to assert your statement is nothing but speculation...something I would be excluded from presenting in court...you know, as an expert.

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1 hour ago, PacMan said:

The first, which Ritner is surprisingly ignorant of, is that that information was being published in the Americas.  The availability itself is evidence. 

I am pretty sure that if you are tying to defend what Joseph Smith claimed to receive through revelation. you do not want to make this argument.

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1 hour ago, OGHoosier said:

I find myself agreeing, generally speaking. I would like to hear your view more specifically elaborated, if you don't mind. How did Joseph use the word "translation?"

Read the preface to the Book of Moses.  Then try to make sense of it.  You really can't unless you understand that Joseph had a much broader definition of "translation" than we use.

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1 hour ago, Bob Crockett said:

I'm not struggling. I know what I'm asking.

So, you concede that Joseph Smith's Egyptian phrases in the Green Mountain letter and the Times and Seasons are not Egyptian as we know it today.  

I will accept your description of the facts that Joseph Smith was aware of Champollion, but not necessarily that Champollion had done any translation.  I don't believe for a second that the "caractors" were Egyptian hieroglyphs.  

That Champollion had done any translation?  That makes no sense.  Champollion only came to public attention after his 1822 Lettre à M. Dacier.  The point was not his translation.  The point was that Champollion was known for building on Thomas Young's work and demonstrating that Egyptian had an alphabet.  The nature of Egyptian is what's important to the BoA manuscripts--not a translation of the Rosetta Stone.  I have demonstrated beyond reasonable doubt that Martin Harris--by virtue of even knowing who Champollion was--had all the information to know the nature of Egyptian.  That is what needs to be remembered in context of the BoA manuscript analysis.

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1 minute ago, CA Steve said:

I am pretty sure that if you are tying to defend what Joseph Smith claimed to receive through revelation. you do not want to make this argument.

No if I were him I would go straight to it as he did.  Charles Anton and his expertise.  Martin Harris showed him some characters from the Book of Mormon source material and Charles Anton said they were Egyptian characters.

Then Charles asked Martin where he got those characters and when Martin told him they had come from a person who was then an angel, Charles recanted and destroyed the note he had given to Martin as evidence of what he had said.

But Martin remembered and told us what happened.  Plus God has also given us his word that Joseph really did translate the Book of Mormon from reformed Egyptian to then modern English.

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21 minutes ago, ttribe said:

Wow.  You went straight to the ad hominem and didn't even try.  That's just...pure arrogance.  For the record, evaluating evidence is a professional duty of mine...I'm an expert witness, counselor.  Moreover, the existence of publication in the two referenced encyclopedias is NOT evidence Joseph Smith ever saw or considered such published work.  Had he mentioned it in his writings?  Had any of his scribes mentioned it in their writings?  Did any witnesses mention Joseph talking about such published work by Young?  Absent such evidence, I continue to assert your statement is nothing but speculation...something I would be excluded from presenting in court...you know, as an expert.

Another pet-peeve: the misuse of the word "ad hominem."

For the record, knowing what evidence is a professional duty of mine.  I litigate in both state and federal court.  And we both know that expert witnesses know nothing about evidence.  It's the attorney's role to make sure that the expert meets Daubert.  Talk about pure arrogance....

Go ahead and ignore Bennett's report in 1831 that Martin Harris explicitly referred to Champollion.  Go right ahead.  As even Bob notes, this is not reasonably debatable.

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9 minutes ago, PacMan said:

Another pet-peeve: the misuse of the word "ad hominem."

For the record, knowing what evidence is a professional duty of mine.  I litigate in both state and federal court.  And we both know that expert witnesses know nothing about evidence.  It's the attorney's role to make sure that the expert meets Daubert.  Talk about pure arrogance....

Go ahead and ignore Bennett's report in 1831 that Martin Harris explicitly referred to Champollion.  Go right ahead.  As even Bob notes, this is not reasonably debatable.

I'm not ignoring that, at all.  There is still no evidence Joseph Smith utilized or even considered that information when it came time to "translate" the Book of Abraham.  There is no evidence he had an understanding of Champollion's work such that it informed or influenced his work on the Book of Abraham.  Is there something in the various Kirtland Papers mentioning Champollion or Young about which I am unaware?

Oh, and for the record, the day I abdicate my responsibility to meet Daubert standards to an attorney, is the day I stop performing expert witness services.

As to your ad hominem comment - did you, or did you not, immediately impugn my intellect on a personal level rather than providing a well-reasoned substantive response?

Edited by ttribe
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14 minutes ago, PacMan said:

Read the preface to the Book of Moses.  Then try to make sense of it.  You really can't unless you understand that Joseph had a much broader definition of "translation" than we use.

I am in favor of using broad definitions.  Words generally have multiple meanings and I do not like to be trammeled by those who seek to have me believe there is only one way to understand words.

Translating is essentially a matter of putting something of one form into another form of the same thing.  People can be translated, language can be translated, text can be translated... many things can be translated in various ways.

The way Joseph Smith translated the Book of Abraham or Book of Mormon may not be the way some people think he did it, but he still did it, however he did it.

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29 minutes ago, ttribe said:

I'm not ignoring that, at all.  There is still no evidence Joseph Smith utilized or even considered that information when it came time to "translate" the Book of Abraham.  There is no evidence he had an understanding of Champollion's work such that it informed or influenced his work on the Book of Abraham.  Is there something in the various Kirtland Papers mentioning Champollion or Young about which I am unaware?

Oh, and for the record, the day I abdicate my responsibility to meet Daubert standards to an attorney, is the day I stop performing expert witness services.

As to your ad hominem comment - did you, or did you not, immediately impugn my intellect on a personal level rather than providing a well-reasoned substantive response?

No.  You impugn your own intellect.  What I said was: "Further, don't try to summarily refute a claim you know nothing about. "  That's a statement of objective fact.  You are trying to refute a claim you know nothing about.  As evidence, I did give a well-reasoned, substantive response.  You just ignored it because you didn't like it...or couldn't addressed it.

Beyond that, you utterly fail to understand the issue.  The question is why the characters in the BoA manuscript are adjacent to the BoA text.  The critical approach is that JS believed that the characters produced a paragraph of information.  That is inconsistent of the research of the day, which I have now proven that Martin Harris knew by mere mention of Champollion.  Consequently, the critics needs to revisit their arguments.  As I mentioned above, there is no causal relationship between the Egyptian characters and the BoA.  It is comparative.  That is the only way to juxtapose what we actually know--including why sometimes it looks like the character came before the text, and then other times when it looks like the text came before the characters.

The BoA manuscript holds no controversy AT ALL.  The document with characters and text was meant to be comparative in nature--not casual.  That is the only way to make sense of the actual evidence.  Prove me wrong.  FYI, you can't.

In case you're still not getting it, I have singlehandedly dismantled one of the greatest pits of doubt in all of Church History.  All 'them apostates that left the church over the BoA manuscript should be feeling awfully silly/penitent right about now.

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7 minutes ago, PacMan said:

No.  You impugn your own intellect.  And I did give a well-reasoned, substantive response.  You just ignored it because you didn't like it.

Beyond that, you utterly fail to understand the issue.  The question is why the characters in the BoA manuscript are adjacent to the BoA text.  The critical approach is that JS believed that the characters produced a paragraph of information.  That is inconsistent of the research of the day, which I have now proven that Martin Harris knew by mere mention of Champollion.  Consequently, the critics needs to revisit their arguments.  As I mentioned above, there is no causal relationship between the Egyptian characters and the BoA.  It is comparative.  That is the only way to juxtapose what we actually know--including why sometimes it looks like the character came before the text, and then other times when it looks like the text came before the characters.

The BoA manuscript holds no controversy AT ALL.  The document with characters and text was meant to be comparative in nature--not casual.  That is the only way to make sense of the actual evidence.  Prove me wrong.  FYI, you can't.

In case you're still not getting it, I have singlehandedly dismantled one of the greatest pits of doubts in all of Church History.  All 'them apostates that left the church over the BoA manuscript should be feeling awfully silly/repentant right about now.

All by yourself, huh.  With no help at all from Joseph Smith or God or the Holy Spirit or anyone else... you mean singlehandedly in that sense?  No, I didn't think so.

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2 minutes ago, PacMan said:

No.  You impugn your own intellect.  And I did give a well-reasoned, substantive response.  You just ignored it because you didn't like it.

Beyond that, you utterly fail to understand the issue.  The question is why the characters in the BoA manuscript are adjacent to the BoA text.  The critical approach is that JS believed that the characters produced a paragraph of information.  That is inconsistent of the research of the day, which I have now proven that Martin Harris knew by mere mention of Champollion.  Consequently, the critics needs to revisit their arguments.  As I mentioned above, there is no causal relationship between the Egyptian characters and the BoA.  It is comparative.  That is the only way to juxtapose what we actually know--including why sometimes it looks like the character comes first to the text, and then other times when the text comes before the characters.

The BoA manuscript holds no controversy AT ALL.  The document with characters and text was meant to be comparative in nature--not casual.  That is the only way to make sense of the information.  Prove me wrong.  FYI, you can't.

In case you're still not getting it, I have singlehandedly dismantled one of the greatest pits of doubts in all of Church History.  All them apostates that left the church over the BoA manuscript should be feeling awfully silly/repentant right now.

Wait, wait, wait...you just sat there, presumably with a straight face, and claimed that you "singlehandedly dismantled one of the greatest pits of doubts in all of Church History?"  That is one of the most entertaining things I've ever seen on here.  Thank you for that.

I guess you better tell Dr. Gee and Dr. Muhlstein to hang up their apologist hats; you've rendered them obsolete..."singlehandedly."

I guess someone like Dr. Ritner holds no candle to your knowledge and understanding of the topic, because you "singlehandedly" showed that an expert reading of the published Facsimiles is unnecessary; you know those pesky Facsimiles where Joseph Smith attempted to explain the images...as if they were the causal link to the Book of Abraham.

Have you let SLC know about your "singlehanded" accomplishment?  They will surely wish to revise their Gospel Topic Essay on the matter (https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/gospel-topics-essays/translation-and-historicity-of-the-book-of-abraham?lang=eng)

Never mind that whole "written by his own hand on papyrus" thing that clearly indicates Joseph Smith, at least, believed he was doing a literal translation from the papyrus...you know...causally, and all that (https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/scriptures/pgp/abr/1?lang=eng).

This is a landmark day!  Shout it from the hills!  Someone get the Church Newsroom on the line!  Someone call the Deseret News!  PAC MAN HAS "SINGLEHANDEDLY DISMANTLED ONE OF THE GREATEST PITS OF DOUBTS IN ALL OF CHURCH HISTORY!"

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21 minutes ago, ttribe said:

Wait, wait, wait...you just sat there, presumably with a straight face, and claimed that you "singlehandedly dismantled one of the greatest pits of doubts in all of Church History?"  That is one of the most entertaining things I've ever seen on here.  Thank you for that.

I guess you better tell Dr. Gee and Dr. Muhlstein to hang up their apologist hats; you've rendered them obsolete..."singlehandedly."

I guess someone like Dr. Ritner holds no candle to your knowledge and understanding of the topic, because you "singlehandedly" showed that an expert reading of the published Facsimiles is unnecessary; you know those pesky Facsimiles where Joseph Smith attempted to explain the images...as if they were the causal link to the Book of Abraham.

Have you let SLC know about your "singlehanded" accomplishment?  They will surely wish to revise their Gospel Topic Essay on the matter (https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/gospel-topics-essays/translation-and-historicity-of-the-book-of-abraham?lang=eng)

Never mind that whole "written by his own hand on papyrus" thing that clearly indicates Joseph Smith, at least, believed he was doing a literal translation from the papyrus...you know...causally, and all that (https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/scriptures/pgp/abr/1?lang=eng).

This is a landmark day!  Shout it from the hills!  Someone get the Church Newsroom on the line!  Someone call the Deseret News!  PAC MAN HAS "SINGLEHANDEDLY DISMANTLED ONE OF THE GREATEST PITS OF DOUBTS IN ALL OF CHURCH HISTORY!"

So how are you feeling right now?  awfully silly or repentant?  Maybe a little bit silly?  Maybe?

Hold on.  It may take you a while before you start to feel it.

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34 minutes ago, ttribe said:

Wait, wait, wait...you just sat there, presumably with a straight face, and claimed that you "singlehandedly dismantled one of the greatest pits of doubts in all of Church History?"  That is one of the most entertaining things I've ever seen on here.  Thank you for that.

I guess you better tell Dr. Gee and Dr. Muhlstein to hang up their apologist hats; you've rendered them obsolete..."singlehandedly."

I guess someone like Dr. Ritner holds no candle to your knowledge and understanding of the topic, because you "singlehandedly" showed that an expert reading of the published Facsimiles is unnecessary; you know those pesky Facsimiles where Joseph Smith attempted to explain the images...as if they were the causal link to the Book of Abraham.

Have you let SLC know about your "singlehanded" accomplishment?  They will surely wish to revise their Gospel Topic Essay on the matter (https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/gospel-topics-essays/translation-and-historicity-of-the-book-of-abraham?lang=eng)

Never mind that whole "written by his own hand on papyrus" thing that clearly indicates Joseph Smith, at least, believed he was doing a literal translation from the papyrus...you know...causally, and all that (https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/scriptures/pgp/abr/1?lang=eng).

This is a landmark day!  Shout it from the hills!  Someone get the Church Newsroom on the line!  Someone call the Deseret News!  PAC MAN HAS "SINGLEHANDEDLY DISMANTLED ONE OF THE GREATEST PITS OF DOUBTS IN ALL OF CHURCH HISTORY!"

I think he was just talking about the part where people take the BoA manuscripts to be the original translation manuscripts of the Book of Abraham, and thus take them to be representative of Joseph's translation methodology. 

But I admit, I laughed. 

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14 minutes ago, Ahab said:

So how are you feeling right now?  awfully silly or repentant?  Maybe a little bit silly?  Maybe?

Hold on.  It may take you a while before you start to feel it.

Truth be told, the Book of Abraham was a drop in the bucket in my faith loss.

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8 minutes ago, ttribe said:

Truth be told, the Book of Abraham was a drop in the bucket in my faith loss.

What?  Sorry to hear.  Drop me a note at Bob[a]bobcrockettlaw.com.

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4 hours ago, Bob Crockett said:

Do you know the answer to my questions?  Again:

1.  Any of those phrases in the Green Mountain letter or in the times and seasons claimed to be Egyptian, are they so?

2.  Is there evidence that Joseph Smith was aware of Champollion's translation?

Why should I care?

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