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Abba Abas (the uncle of Mohammed, the "prophet" of Israel) placed the "Sons of Moses" in the east (in Gabrassa)
and in the west, in "Gabalk"1, meaning France.
Abba Abas was repeating a Jewish tradition. The "Sons of Moses" in Jewish Tradition are usually linked with the Lost Ten Tribes.
There existed a conceptual understanding that linked
Britain and France together with each other and with the Lost Ten Tribes, as described in our Commentary to the Book
Other traditions of apparent JEWISH ORIGIN derived through Arab intermediaries relate a similar tale. These other versions state that the CHILDREN OF MOSES were in the far west in "Djabarka" (i.e. "The Golden Castle"), in the "Islands of the Happy", dwelling in a town wherein the remnants of "Aed" (i.e. Ad 2) were also to be found. Ad (Aed) in Arab folklore and written tradition had belonged to the family of Abraham. A brother of AD and sometimes identified with him was HUD. There are several traditions concerning the geneaology of Hud. Hud is sometimes assimilated with "Abar". Abar was the Arabicized version of the Biblical "Heber". Heber strictly speaking was only a forefather of the Hebrews. In Arab concepts however Hud or Abar (Heber) came to represent the Biblical Israelites or was regarded as a branch of Israel. "HUD" is derived from a word root meaning to "Judaise", or denoting the Jews. "Hud" was identified as ancestor of the Jews says the Encyclopedia of Islam. Hud according to the Koran was sent to the people of his brother, Ad. The Children of Ad refused to receive Hud and therefore the People of Ad 3 were swept away by a violent storm. According to these sources, Ad ("Aed" brother of Hud) was therefore an Israelite people who originally had lived in Iram [i.e. Aram] of the Pillars but because of their sins and refusing to listen to Hud (Judah) had been blown away to the west 4. The original location of Aed, "Iram" (i.e. Aram) of the Pillars, was either intended to refer to the area of Syria ("Aram") in general or it meant a more specific location albeit still one in the former Israelite area. A.J. Wensinck (1916), and more recently Aayko Eyma and Michael Banyai traced Aed ("Ad") to Iram [Aram] of the Pillars in North West Arabia [and not in Hadramaut or Yemen as others claim]. Iram is spelt the same as "Aram" and the area of North West Arabia was in effect an area of Israel east of the Jordan. The "Oadites" of Ptolemy were in this region and so was Thamud 5 (that Assyrian inscriptions mention east of Palestine) who was also associated with Aed. Ptolemy places the settlement of Aramava (cf. Iram, Aram?) west of the OADITAE (cf. Ad) who were north of the Thamidyditae and Thamydeni (cf. Thamud). The Oaditae (of Ad or "Aed") were just south of the Mountains of "Arabia Felix" (a term later applied according to de Rougemeont 6 to the British Isles) and just to the north was the Kingdom of the Saccaea (Scythians), the RAHABENI (of Reuben) and the MASANI of Manasseh. These were all originally the names of Israelite entities. The method of Ptolemy was to record historical names that had existed in the distant past even if they were no longer applicable in his own time and he relied heavily on Phoenician records. The remnant of Ad together with the Sons of Moses were later said by Arabian Chroniclers to have moved to the Western Isles of the Happy, meaning in Classical terms, the British Isles. The story of Ad and Hud is an independent non-Biblical Arabic account concerning the Israelite Lost Ten Tribes of Israel. These Israelites because of their sins had been expelled by the Assyrians (2-Kings ch.17). A portion of the Israelites had been sent by ship to the Atlantic area of "Tarshish". Their exile had come upon them as a punishment from God for sinning (2 Kings ch.17).
Amongst the places they had gone to were the Western "Happy" or "Blessed" Isles meaning those of Britain. The "Islands of the Sea" (Isaiah 11:11) is listed as one of the places of exile. After the Assyrian Conquest part of the Exiles were transported almost immediately overseas to the west 7. [Also belonging to the family of Aed (say the Arab and Persian sources) were the Himyarite kings of Yemen (several of whom were Jewish by religion) and the Eponymous "ZOHAK" 8 representative in Persian and Arabian terminology of both the Scythians and of Israel. The very name "Zohak" is a form of "Isaac".] "The Islands of the Happy" in the far west in which dwelt both the sons of Moses and the sons of Ad were the British Isles. Later the term in Classical Writings would be applied especially to Ireland!
Islands of the Happy
The Roman Avienus wrote a poem "Ora Maritima" which is said to incorporate in part an earlier Phoenician or Carthaginian account of
the west Atlantic area;
Avienus aplies the term "Islands of the Happy" to Ireland.
Other Classical sources refer to Ireland and sometimes to Ireland and Britain together as the Isles (or Isle) of the Happy or Isles of the Blessed,
thus conforming to the Arab transmitted description. The Celtic Welsh called Britain, "The Honey Isle of Beli"9 .
Beli was a Middle Eastern variation of Baal. The Lost Ten Tribes had been exiled for worshipping Baal and other gods
The Arab-Jewish sources said that the remnant of Aed together with the Sons of Moses were in these Western Isles of the Happy. One version of Celtic mythology says that Britain was named after Prydain son of "Aed" the Great10.
Is there a connection between the Aed (Ad) of Arab tradition and Aed of Welsh legend?
There were a people in Gaul named "Aedui" who were considered a brother nation by the Romans with whom they generally collaborated. The Druids in Gaul told a Roman inquirer (Timagene quoted by Ammianus Marcellinus, 15, ch.9) that part of the Gauls were indigenous to their country whereas others had come (in about 500 BCE) from distant isles. These islands, were otherwise known as "The Land of the Dead", or "The Islands of the Happy"11. The intention apparently was to the Islands of Britain and maybe also to the coastlands of Scandinavia. They had been driven out due to a rising of the sea that flooded their own areas.
The Sons of Aed ("Ad") who, along with the Sons of Moses, dwelt in these islands were identified with Israel.
The Celtic god, Aedui, once gave his name to the whole British Isles. In "The Welsh Triads" (a collection of traditions) it says that Britain in honor of Aed was called "Aeddon", or "Eiddyn"12. Aed is still honoured in the name Edinburgh, or "Caer Eiddyn" in Welsh; "Caer" meaning "walled city" based on the Hebrew "KIR" (wall); a "KIRIAH" in Biblical Hebrew meant a walled city. "CAER" and "KIRIAH" use the same Hebrew word root, "KIR". The name AED that was given once to Britain and from which "Edin-burgh" is derived is cognate with AED, which was synonymous in Arabian literature with the Northern Exiles of Israel.
Was "Aed" Joseph?
Ad is usually transliterated from the Arabic as "AD" but the Arabic spelling is the equivalent of the Hebrew "ayin, aleph, dalet" so that a transliteration as "AED" is at the least equally valid. In Hebrew "Ad" (ayin dalet) connotes "jewel" but it is also cognate with a root denoting "exultation" and joy13 and is a root element in the word "aden" meaning pleasure and "adnah" (Genesis 18:12 translated as PLEASURE) connoting sexual delight. We therefore have a tentative link of "Ad" with Happiness. In folklore, traditions, and legends it is not uncommon to find different meanings of the one name all being attributed significance of their own. "Ad" (ayin-dalet) also means "witness": "YE ARE MY WITNESSES" (Isaiah 43:10,12). The word "ad" can also signify the preposition "towards" and the verbal-noun "od" meaning "increase" or addition. From this root we could well derive the English words "add" (addition) and "odd" in the sense of something "extra" and "beyond the usual". The name "Joseph" is also derived from a Hebrew word for Increase: "AND SHE CALLED HIS NAME JOSEPH; AND SAID, THE LORD SHALL ADD (Hebrew: "Yosayf") TO ME ANOTHER SON" [Genesis 30:24] . Commentators (especially Rabbi Abraham Iben Ezra) have noted that Biblical Names sometimes change with other names of the same meaning, e.g. a son of Simeon is called ZOHAR in one passage (Exodus 6:15) and ZERAH in another (Numbers 26:13). The names "Zohar" and "Zerah" in Hebrew both have the same meaning denoting a strong illumination. By the same token "Aed" may have been an alternative for "Joseph" since both names mean the same! The Children of Joseph like the Sons of Aed with whom they must be equated were indeed exiled for their sins and moved to the "Isles of the Happy" in the Western Ocean.See also:
More details on the above theme of Aed are to be found in the work
"Ephraim. The Gentile Children of Israel"
by Yair Davidiy.