William Walker III calculated that the star data applies only at a location around 42.5°N, i.e. supporting the idea that the Biblical Patriarchs came from the Black Sea Flood submergence. Our cardinal date for that calculation was 3117 BC, using a location at 42.5°N.
We have since recalculated the starting location of the Biblical Patriarch stellar data with the Starry Night Pro software and have discovered that the start of the data at the rising and setting of the star Arcturus, given the starting date of the Hebrew Calendar at 3761 B.C., would be in a geographic area at about 37° to 38° N, and we now think that to be the more accurate location for the astronomical start of the reigns of the Biblical Patriarchs as calculated by astronomy.
Our previous position was that the Biblical data related to a starting date of ca. 3117 B.C. In that era at ca. 3117 BC, according to Starry Night Pro, at the latitude 42°30" N, as one can see in the graphic below, Arcturus, at which the reigns of the Biblical Patriarchs begin with Adam, is more or less right at the horizon and ready in a few years to lose its circumpolar status at that latitude.
42°30" N 3117 BC
Already one degree below that at 41°30" N in 3117 B.C., Arcturus is no longer a circumpolar star in that epoch and is definitely subject to description as a rising and setting star, as in our star realms of the Biblical Patriarchs.
In terms of chronological time, Arcturus also reaches this same position at 42°30" N in ca. 2950 BC.
We thought and still think Arcturus was used as the first star of this Biblical Patriarch series because at this time in history - at the right latitude (which still remains to be fixed) - Arcturus goes from being a circumpolar star to being a star that also dips below the horizon due to the 25920 year cycle of the wobble of the earth, which leads to precession and a change in the position of the celestial equator, which then of course changes the position of Arcturus in the sky. In this epoch, Arcturus was slowly dropping.
Arcturus at the horizon is also what one would see ca. 38°N to 37°N in 3761 B.C.
Accordingly, what we wrote previously at LexiLine at http://www.lexiline.com/lexiline/lexi154.htm was in the general ball park of accuracy as far as the rising and setting of Arcturus is concerned for 3117 B.C., using the reference point of 42°30" N, which William Walker calculated.
However, if our theory of the "star ages" or "star realms" of the Biblical Patriarchs is true, which we think it is, it only holds true if their reigns were recorded for posterity for a starting date of ca. 3117 BC, but using the positions of the stars at 42°30" N. But this is highly unlikely, since in 3117 BC the Black Sea was already submerged.
Accordingly, a change in the point of reference in terms of time and location is necessary.
We ourselves have never been happy with the 42°30" N latitude theory (but saw no choice but to adopt it due to the data given to us) and have always thought that the star eras of the Biblical Patriarchs must apply to a more southerly location, where the data was actually calculated and recorded by the Hebrew scholars in a later epoch.
Accordingly, instead of the 3117 B.C. cardinal date, we recently took the starting date of the Hebrew Calendar for our astronomical calculations.
We now assume that these star realms of the Biblical Patriarchs were in fact recorded taking a starting date as 3761 BC, which is the start of the Hebrew calendar.
At what latitude in that epoch would Arcturus then start its non-circumpolar status? i.e. at what latitude does Arcturus start to dip minimally below the horizon during the daily rotation of the stars in 3761 B.C.?
In the year 3761 B.C., according to Starry Night Pro, Arcturus begins its non-circumpolar status somewhere around latitude 38° N to 37°N. Above that latitude in that epoch it still remains circumpolar and would not and could not be used as a rising or setting star to calculate the star realms of the Biblical Pharaohs.
This brings us new observations. A location of 38° N to 37°N as the location for calculating the data with a starting reference date of 3761 B.C. is very interesting indeed.
According to the legends of the MIddle East, the city of Ur, the birthplace of Abraham, is not the Babylonian Ur, but the city of Urfa (ca. 37° N.), ancient Anatolia, in today's southeastern Turkey, just above the Syrian border.
The Wikipedia writes:
"The city has been known by many names: Ուռհա, Urhai in Armenian, ܐܘܪܗܝ, Urhay in Syriac, Riha in Kurdish, الروها,Ar-Ruha in Arabic, Ορρα, Orrha in Greek (also Ορροα, Orrhoa). For awhile it was named Callirrhoe or Antiochia on the Callirhoe (Greek: α`ντιόχεια η επί Καλλιρρόης). During Byzantine rule it was named Justinopolis. Although it is often best known by the name given it by the Seleucids, Εδεσσα, Edessa.
'Sanli' means great, glorious, dignified in Turkish and Urfa was officially re-named Sanliurfa (Urfa the Glorious) by the Turkish GrandNational Assembly in 1984....
Urfa is a city in south-eastern Turkey, and the capital of Sanliurfa Province. Urfa is situated on a plain under big open skies, about eighty kilometres east of the Euphrates River. The climate features extremely hot, dry summers and cool, moist winters. The urban population of Urfa is mainly Kurdish while the outlying regions are mixed Turkish and to a lesser degree Arabian.... It was one of several cities in the Euphrates-Tigris basin, the cradle of the Mesopotamian civilization. According to Turkish Muslim traditions Urfa (its name since Byzantine days) is the biblical city of Ur, due to its proximity to the biblical village of Harran. However, the Iraqis also claim the city of Ur in southern Iraq, as do many historians and archaeologists. Urfa is also known as the birthplace of Abraham, commemorated by a mosque in the city and the birthplace of Job."
Burak Sansal writes:
"This is an Anatolian city which has figured in all the religions of the book. Old Testament prophets such as Jethro (Hz. Suayp), Job (Hz. Eyup), Elijah (Hz. Elyasa) and Abraham (Hz. Ibrahim) lived in this city, which in ancient times was known as Edessa, and Moses (Hz. Musa) lived in the region for seven years working as a shepherd before returning to Egypt with his staff. It was in Sanliurfa that early Christians were first permitted to worship freely, and where the first churches were constructed openly. Pagan temples were converted to synagogues, synagogues to churches and churches to mosques, resulting in a uniquely eclectic architecture."
As can be read at the site of the Sanliurfa Museum, the region is marked by numerous tumuli, many now destroyed by dams:
"A testament to the rich past of the region of Sanliurfa is the large number of tumuli and old settlements. Harran, located 44 kilometers south of Sanliurfa, is one of the most notable of these settlements and was continuously inhabited from 3000 BC to the 13th century. It was especially noted for its peculiar civilian architecture.
Salvage excavations are being conducted in the settlements threatened by the dams of Ataturk, Birecik and Kargamis. Starting from 1978, foreign teams conducted excavations in the Lidar and Hassek tumuli which were to be submerged under Ataturk Dam Lake, while the museum directorate was involved in the excavation of Cavi Field and Nevala Cori. Salvage excavations have been taking place since 1996 in Tilbes Tumulus which will disappear under the waters of Birecik Dam; Apamea, a Hellenistic city threatened by the same dam, has been excavated since 1998....
In Sanliurfa museum, pieces obtained from Harran and other cultural assets recovered from other tumuli and ancient settlements are exhibited in different cases in alphabetical order. Pieces from the time of the Assyrians, Babylonians and the Hittites are exhibited in the entrance hall.
The second and third halls of the archaeology section have cutting and piercing devices made of flintstone (8000-5000 BC), stone idols and vessels, plain and painted ceramics with geometric designs made of baked soil belonging to the period 5000-3000 BC, seals, pithoi, necklaces, pieces of imprinted cubes made of baked soil dating back to the Early Bronze Age (3000-2000 BC), animal figures, metal artifacts, and ornaments."
A good distance southwest of Urfa and Harran and 55 km SW of Aleppo in Syria we find the ancient city of Ebla (Tell Mardikh. In view of the name of Ebla's most illustrious king, Ebrium or Ibrium (in my opinion this could be a reference to Abraham), Ebla most certainly was Ebra and the "land of the Hebrews" at that time. Ebla has become increasingly important in archaeological assessments of the Ancient Near East (text misspellings corrected in the following quotations):
"c. 3.0 tya BCE :
Semitic people called the Canaanites inhabit ancient Palestine and Phoenicia. "Phoenicia" is the Greek translation of "Canaan--the land of purple merchants" referring to the dye they used to color cloth. Indeed, it is from the time of Canaan that Bethlehem is believed to have derived its name, Bethlehem - 'BeitLahem' in Arabic ("The house of Lahman" - a Canaanite God). The term 'Semitic' is generally synonymous with 'Jewish' but is said to include the related group of people who spoke Hebrew, Aramaic, Arabic and Amharic. These languages are all classified by linguists as a group of tongues constituting the Afro-Asiatic Language Family.
More recent archaeological discoveries which tend to promote the importance of the civilization centered in the city of Ebla...(as opposed to Mesopotamia)... indicate that it may be useful to name some of the levantine discoveries as "Pre-Eblaic, Elbaic or Post-Eblaic", ... the cause of the decline of this culture is not yet well elucidated."
The Eblaites, because of their writings, might be considered the descendants of the Sumerians, who were the Indo-European people of the Black Sea Flood:
"In 1964, Italian archaeologists from the University of Rome La Sapienza directed by Paolo Matthiae began excavating at Tell Mardikh. In 1968 they recovered a statue dedicated to the goddess Ishtar bearing the name of Ibbit-Lim, a king of Ebla [after whom Bethlehem was named?]. That identified the city, long known from Egyptian and Akkadian inscriptions. In the next decade the team discovered a palace dating approximately from 2500-2000 BC. About 15,000 well-preserved cuneiform tablets were discovered in the ruins. About 80% of the tablets are written in Sumerian, the others in a previously unknown Semitic language that is being called 'Eblaite.' Pettinato and Dahood believe the Eblaite language is West Semitic, however Gelb and others believe it is an East Semitic dialect, closer to Akkadian. Ebla's close link to southern Mesopotamia, where the script had developed, establishes further the links between the Sumerians and Semitic cultures that certainly already existed before the first texts appear in Sumer in 3000 BC. Vocabulary lists were found with the tablets, allowing them to be translated." [emphasis added]
Clifford Wilson writes about the many thousands of Ebla Tablets found at Ebla:
"When the first tablets were found, it was soon realized that this city used a very ancient language in the North West Semitic group which was previously unknown. Professor Pettinato labeled this "Paleo-Canaanite." In layman's terms, this means "ancient Canaanite." At the close of this article in Biblical Archaeologist Professor Pettinato tells us,
The pronominal and verbal systems, in particular, are so clearly defined that one can properly speak of a Paleo-Canaanite language closely akin to Hebrew and Phoenician.These Ebla tablets are written in a Sumerian script, with Sumerian logograms adapted to represent Akkadian words and syllables. About 1,000 words were recovered initially (hundreds more later) in vocabulary lists. The words are written out in both Sumerian logograms and Eblaic syllable-type writing. These offered an invaluable key to the interpretation of many of the Ebla texts. The vocabularies at Ebla were distinctively Semitic: the word "to write" is k-t-b (as in Hebrew), while that for "king" is "malikum," and that for "man" is "adamu." The closeness to Hebrew is surprising.""
The Ebla tablets mention Ur (Urfa).
Yes, and there is a Pharaonic connection as well:
"Most of its trade seems to have been directed towards Mesopotamia (chiefly Kish), and contacts with Egypt are attested by gifts from pharaohs Khafra and Pepi I."
Now, why would the Pharaohs be giving gifts to Ebla unless there was a close blood relationship between them?