Camels in Religion, Science, and History

Archaeologists and other scientists are attempting to determine when camels were domesticated in the Arabian peninsula. Their findings question religious and historical accounts of early Jewish history.

The New York Times reports: “There are too many camels in the Bible, out of time and out of place.”


“Camels probably had little or no role in the lives of such early Jewish patriarchs as Abraham, Jacob and Joseph, who lived in the first half of the second millennium B.C., and yet stories about them mention these domesticated pack animals more than 20 times. Genesis 24, for example, tells of Abraham’s servant going by camel on a mission to find a wife for Isaac,” according to the New York Times.

“These anachronisms are telling evidence that the Bible was written or edited long after the events it narrates and is not always reliable as verifiable history. These camel stories ‘do not encapsulate memories from the second millennium,’ said Noam Mizrahi, an Israeli biblical scholar, ‘but should be viewed as back-projections from a much later period.'”

The New York Times has published an article on the recent archaeological findings.

This entry was posted in Historiography of Religious Violence, Judaism and Religious Violence, Religious Nationalism, Science and Religion. Bookmark the permalink.

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