Flood Legends

Flood Legends

A gigantic flood may be the most common of all legends—ever. Almost every ancient culture had legends telling of a traumatic flood in which only a few humans survived in a large boat.a This cannot be said for other types of catastrophes, such as earthquakes, fires, volcanic eruptions, disease, famines, or drought. More than 230 flood legends contain many common elements, suggesting they have a common historical source that left a vivid impression on survivors of that catastrophe.

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Figure 39: Chinese Word for Boat. Classical Chinese, dating to about 2500 B.C., is one of the oldest languages known. Its “words,” called pictographs, are often composed of smaller symbols that themselves have meaning and together tell a story. For example, the classical Chinese word for boat, shown above, is composed of the symbols for “vessel,” “eight,” and “mouth” or “person.” Why would the ancient Chinese refer to a boat as “eight-person-vessel”? How many people were on the Ark?



~ by mlmcbride33 on July 28, 2008.

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