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Jewry: Fake and truth in the Old Testament (OT) according to documents and excavations

New identity by new Jewish history by help of chronology and archaeological research

8. The legend of liberation under a faked Mose with a faked exodus from Egypt to the Red Sea

Pi-Ramesse, excavations
Pi-Ramesse, excavations

by Michael Palomino (2006 / 2010)



from: Israel Finkelstein / Neil A. Silberman: The Bible unearthed. Archeology's New Vision of Ancient Israel and the Origin of Its Sacred Texts; The Free Press, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc., 2001; German edition has got the title "No trombones before Jericho" (orig. German: "Keine Posaunen vor Jericho"): edition C.H.Beck oHG, Munich 2002;

Here in this analysis is used the German version "Keine Posaunen vor Jericho" of DTV, Munich 2004, second edition of 2005. All page indications refer to the German version. I hope the page numbers are not very different.

Moses is said having been the only survivor of a murder action of Egypt pharaoh against boys

AT claims:

-- Pharaoh is said having ordered to murder all Jewish boys by drowning interrupting all descendancy of the Jews in Egypt (p.62)
-- there is said that a Jewish boy in a little basket was put on the Nile river and was adopted by one of the daughters of the Pharaoh (p.62-63), a "Moses" (the name comes from the Hebrew word "draw out", drawing out from the water) (p.63)
-- Moses is said having observed the lashing of a Jewish slave and then having murdered the Egypt culprit and having buried the dead body in the sand, then Moses is said having fled to the desert to Midian and having lived there as a nomad, and near Horeb (the "Mount of God") he is said having received the revelation from the burning thorn bush which never stops burning (p.63).

Now Moses is said having been the liberator of the Jews from Egypt (p.20):

OT claims:

-- God is said having claimed by the thorn bush that he would be God JHWH and Moses together with his brother Aaron in Egypt should demand the liberty for the Jews
-- the first reaction of the Pharaoh to the demand of Moses of freedom for the Jews who suffered allegedly of slavery was negative: Pharaoh is said having worsened the situation for the Jews yet (p.63)

-- as next step God JHWH is said having ordered to Moses threatening the Pharaoh with plagues when he would not give free the enslaved Jews
-- after the alleged new refusal of the Pharaoh giving free the alleged enslaved Jews, there is said that plagues affected Egypt: Nile is said having converted into blood, and frogs, mosquitoes and flies are said having grown to plagues, all cattle is said having died of a strange illness, and the population and the surviving cattle is said having suffered of smallpox and ulcers (p.63)

-- but the Pharaoh is said having been stubborn not freeing the Jews yet, so other plagues are said having come: grasshoppers, a darkness, and the death of all first born of all families and animals are said having happened, but the Jews in Egypt are said having excepted from the dead of all first born children by a special sacrifice rite with sacrificial blood (p.63)

-- Pharaoh is said having lost his first born son by this God's murder action (p.64)

-- only now the Pharaoh is said having freed the enslaved Jews

-- the enslaved Jews are said having left Egypt with their cattle heading to the Red Sea allegedly for reaching Judah passing the desert, allegedly evading wars with the Philistines (p.64)

-- now the Pharaoh is said having got anxiety with the fear that the Jews would conspire with the enemies of Egypt against Egypt and would attack Egypt (p.81)

-- now the Pharaoh is said having ordered that the Jews should be captured and enslaved again, and he is said having sent 600 military cars for capturing them again

-- now there is said that Red Sea parted ant the Jews are said having been capable passing the Red Sea, and the Egypt troops were devoured by the Red Sea which came back (p.64).

What the documents and archeology say: There are many contradictions with the alleged "exodus"

General contradictions with Moses

-- four of five books of Moses are dedicated to the exodus from Egypt which is said having lasted 40 years, with all kinds of miracles (p.61)
-- it seems a great manipulation that for 40 years 4 of the 5 books are written, is seems a great manipulation against Egypt
-- God is said having been the universal divinity
-- the data stated by 200 years of intensive excavations in Egypt do not fit with the data of Moses in the invented Pentateuch (p.61).

The big contradiction is that after the alleged liberation leaving Egypt is said having followed another alleged surrender with the harsh Moses laws (p.62).

More contradictions with Moses:

-- it's not possible that Moses has described his own death
-- the events describe old places, and there is claimed several times that the proofs can for the events are visible "until today"
-- so, the Moses books at least were edited after Moses again (p.22)

-- in Pentateuch exist several versions of the same tale (p.22)
-- creation exists in two versions (1st book of Moses 1,1-3 and 2,4-25)
-- there exist two different family trees for Adam's descendants (4,17-26 and 5,1-28)
-- the migration of the patriarchs, the exodus from Egypt and the rule have two or even three different versions: doubled versions can mainly be found in Genesis (1st book), Exodus (2d book) and Numeri (4th book) (p.23).

Expulsion of the Hyksos according to Egypt historian Manetho

-- Manetho describes how a very good Egypt king is expelling the Hyksos allegedly pursuing them up to the Syrian border (p.69)

-- and Manetho indicates a little bit that these Hyksos found Jerusalem and have built a temple there (p.69).

Expulsion of the Hyksos according to other Egypt sources

-- in the Egypt source of 16th century B.C. there are described the heroic actions of Pharaoh Ahmose of 18th dynasty (p.69)

-- Pharaoh Ahmose let plunder Avaris and let pursue the fleeing Hyksos up to the main fortress of southern Canaan up to Sharuhen in Gaza which was besieged and taken by storm (p.70).

Archeology about the Hyksos, 1570 B.C.

-- according to mid of 16th century in 1570 B.C. Avaris (Tell ed-Daba) was given up by the Canaanites (p.70)

-- the name of "Israel" is never mentioned in Avaris, and there is also no Israelite or Jewish national feeling or identity (p.70)

-- archeology can confirm the existence of the town of Avaris, the expulsion from Avaris in about 1570 B.C., and the destruction of the Canaanite towns in Canaan in about the same time. So, this is a strong indication for a violent persecution or a persecution campaign (p.70).

Evidence: Invasions of the Assyrians, Babylonians and Persians provoking states of fear in Egypt with reproaches of espionage against Canaan

OT claims:

The Jews beginning allegedly an exodus from Egypt under Moses are said having been reproached by the Pharaoh that they would make an alliance with the enemies of Egypt and attack Egypt at the end (p.81).

The documents speak: Such reproaches of espionage have no base before 7th century B.C. But after the invasions of Assyria, Babylonia and Persia in Egypt and in Middle East in 7th and 6th century B.C. such reproaches of espionage would have their base (p.81).

The documents and archeology speak: There was a decline in Canaan after the Egypt expulsion campaign

After the expulsion campaign against the Hyksos in Canaan in the latter Bronze Age from 15th to 11th century B.C. Canaan is only a shadow of it's wealth of before in the mid of Bronze Age of 16th century B.C. (p.91).

According to Egypt Amarna letters to the Pharaohs in 14th century B.C. there are more events:

-- many towns in Canaan are given up or at least are reducing
-- the whole resident population of Canaan includes perhaps 100,000 inhabitants yet - according to archaeological field research, and other parts of the population have changed to be nomads
-- according to the documents tiny military units are enough for protection of Egypt occupations, for example 100 Egypt soldiers are enough for the protection of Megiddo against the attack of the king of Sichem (p.91).

But now comes a first forming of identity: Since the expulsion of Hyksos in 1570 B.C. there probably is a common memory (p.82), whereas details probably have been lost (p.83).

The documents and archeology speak: the new chain of fortresses in Egypt Reich along the coastal road

The emotion against the Hyksos and their expulsion in about 1570 B.C. probably provokes the construction of the chain of manned fortresses along the eastern frontier of the Nile Delta between Egypt and Canaan. This chain of fortresses is detected by archeology, and probably was constructed supervising immigration respectively reducing or blocking it (p.72).

According to archaeological excavations in the 1970s under the leadership of archeologist Eliezer Oren from Ben Gurion University (Tel Aviv) the fortresses erected in the following time are places in distances of daily marches and include corn deposits and wells resp. water deposits. It's a real system of fortresses (p.74).

In outdated Bible the Egypt fortresses are mentioned as "migdol". The Jews under Moses are said having installed their camp between the migdol and the sea (2d book of Mose (Exodus), 14,2) (p.73).

In 13th century B.C. the Egyptians even built some fortresses even in Canaan, and Egypt is the dominating power in Canaan with administration points. Egypt armies occupy the region up to Euphrates in Syria. The well fortified road between Egypt and Canaan becomes one of the strategically most important roads of Egypt (p.73). The road from Egypt to Gaza (250 km) is also called the "way of Horus" (p.73).

[Horus is a main god of Egyptian mythology].

Egypt ruler Thutmosis III reports having passed these 250 km with his troops in 10 days (p.74).

Considering that also First Book of Moses is invoking a frontier line with Euphrates river (in 1st Moses, chapter 15, phrase 18), frontier of Euphrates river in Middle and Mid East seems to have be a magic strategic significance like Rhine river in Europe or Mississippi river in "America"].

The documents speak: There was a new town Pi-Ramesse under ruler Ramesses II after the Hyksos were driven out

Map of Avaris and Pi-Ramesse on Nile
vergrössern Map of Avaris and Pi-Ramesse on Nile river

Pi-Ramesse, excavations
Pi-Ramesse, excavations

Now, after the expulsion of the Hyksos, Ramesses II lets build a big town dedicated to him, the town Pi-Ramesse ("house of Ramesses", "temple of Ramesses"), near the ruins of Avaris (p.72).

For the time of Ramesses II archeology can prove many migrant workers in eastern Nile Delta. They come from many different regions, but not from Canaan (their immigration was blocked by a chain of fortresses along the coastal road). So, according to sure archeology not Canaanites, but workers from other regions built Ramesses town (p.73).


Mass flight under Moses was not possible because of the chain of fortresses - Hyksos mass flight was not an Israeli flight - no Jewish slaves for Ramesses town

A mass flight from Egypt under Ramesses in Moses times considering the chain of fortresses at the eastern border seems absolutely improbable. Also a migration passing the desert and an entrance to Canaan by the eastern side seems to be impossible because also Canaan was under Egypt rule (p.73). Egypt El-Amarna letters of 12th century say that 50 Egypt soldiers were enough to "pacify" upheavals in Canaan (p.73).

There can be admitted an expulsion of the Hyksos (Canaanites) in 1570 B.C. by some reason which is not mentioned, but the expelled surely had no Israeli identity.

Despite a good documentation about the New Reich of Egypt in 13th century B.C. there is no indication of a mass flight from Egypt under a certain Moses. About Israelites in Egypt is not said anything, neither on the temple walls, nor in gave inscriptions, nor in papyrus.

Israel is not mentions during the dynasty of Ramesses, and there are no Canaanite findings in Egypt for this time of 13th century B.C. either. But there are findings of other foreign workers. By this it seems absolutely improbable that Jews have built Ramesses town in slavery (p.73).

All this is an indication that an exodus under Moses of 600,000 persons from Egypt has not happened but it's clear fake. According to archeology there was an expulsion of Canaanites from Egypt in about 1570 B.C. Exodus under Moses 200 years later has not happened because such a great event was not possible because of the fortification chain at the border, and because such an event would have been mentioned in the inscriptions of the Ramesses dynasty].

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Photo sources
-- Pi-Ramesse, excavations: http://www.dematterudolf.com/DematteRudolf/aegykultst1.htm