Isaiah - Chapter 9
nos. 1 & 2: The Stages of Exile
[Isaiah 9:1] BUT THERE WILL
BE NO GLOOM FOR HER THAT WAS IN ANGUISH. IN THE FORMER TIME HE BROUGHT INTO
CONTEMPT THE LAND OF ZEBULUN AND THE LAND OF NAPHTALI, BUT IN THE LATTER
TIME HE WILL MAKE GLORIOUS THE WAY OF THE SEA, THE LAND BEYOND THE JORDAN,
GALILEE OF THE NATIONS.
This verse is referring to the Exile of the northern Tribes of “Israel” who
lost their identity and became known as “The Lost Ten Tribes of Israel”.
The above translation is that of the King James Version. It fits the Hebrew
but this verse in The Hebrew was also understood by Jewish Commentators to
say something like the following: (I am paraphrasing and using my own comprehension
– do not take it as authoritative without checking elsewhere):
“For the oppression will not be lightened; It will be more burdensome than
the relatively light (easier) exile that the Land of Zebulon and the Land
of Naphtali experienced. The last exile was [or WILL BE] more burdensome
[IT WAS?] by way of the sea, across the Jordan, the highlands of the nations.
I do not exactly understand this verse and so too the Commentators appear
to all disagree with each other concerning the details. It is however agreed
that the verse involves a comparison of the different stages of exile and
comes to teach us something about them.
The Exile of the northern tribes to different parts of the Assyrian Empire
was in stages. As background we will impart part of what we understand concerning
these stages of exile.
The following extracts are unedited and a bit jumbled, confused and perhaps
confusing BUT they do contain information of great value.
From “The Tribes” (2nd edition)
The original Twelve Tribes of Israel had split into
two kingdoms. Two tribes comprising "Judah" were in the south, and the ten
tribes of "Israel" were in the north. The Ten Northern Tribes were entirely
taken away by the Assyrians to places in northern Mesopotamia, to the Caucasus
area and to eastern Iran.
The Bible says that,
“The King of Assyria took Samaria, and carried Israel away into Assyria,
and placed them in Hala, and in Habor, and in the cities of the Medes" (2-Kings
17;6). The Bible also mentions “Hara” (1-Chronicles 5; 26) in eastern Iran
as a place of exile. The Talmud and archaeological findings enable the identification
of these places of re-settlement. Shortly after the exile and re-settlement
every one of the said places became a centre for a group of peoples who then
appeared for the first time. They are known to history as the Cimmerians,
Scythians, and Guti or Goths. It will be shown that these entities were (at
least in part) the Lost Ten Tribes of Israel!
The Northern Ten Tribes of Israel had been conquered and
exiled by the Assyrians. They were taken at first to several areas which
are designated, by Biblical and Talmudical sources, as Halah, Habor, the
River Gozan, Cities of the Medes1, Hara2, the Snowy Mountains3, Caspii4,
Mountains of Darkness5, Har-Mannae6, Sambation7, Afrikey8, and so on. The
said names often prove to be alternative appellations for the same or adjacent
The exile of the northern Israelites by the Assyrians
is described in the Book of Kings that speaks of the capture of Samaria and
exile of Israel. "Samaria" was the name of the northern Israelite capital
and is sometimes used as an eponym for the Northern Kingdom.
“The King of Assyria took Samaria, and carried Israel
away into Assyria, and placed them in Hala, and in Habor, by the river of
Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes" (2-Kings 17;6).
The exile took place in several stages and before the
exile of "Samaria" (Menasseh, Ephraim, and Zebulon), the Tribes to the north
(Dan, Asher, Issachar, and Naphtali) had been taken away by the Assyrian
monarch who "carried them captive to Assyria" (2-Kings 15; 29). Likewise,
the tribes east of the Jordan (Reuben, Gad, and half Menasseh) had been carried
"unto Halah, and Habor, and Hara, and to the river Gozan" (1-Chronicles 5;26).
The place of exile nominated as "Assyria" refers to the
province by that name which encompassed most of Mesopotamia9 and extended
into the Zagros Mountains in the east, while in the west it reached unto
the shores of the Black Sea. Halah, Habor, the River Gozan, and many of the
cities of the Medes were within the confines of "Assyria" or close to its
fringes. "Hara” was much further to the east in the region straddling the
borders of present day Iran and Afghanistan. "Hara" encompassed places named
Aria, Ariana, and Arachosia, by the Greeks10. "Hara" was called "Haraiva"
and "Hare" by the Persians11, and known under its correct name "Hara" to
the Medes12, just as it is still called "Hara" by the locals today13. It
is crossed by the Hari Rud or "River of Hara" and contains the city of Harat.
The Assyrians ruled the Hara area and all of the surrounding
region and settled a portion of the Israelite tribes there in, specifically
part of those tribes from east of the Jordan: Rueben, Gad, and half Menasseh,
since only concerning their exile is the name "Hara" mentioned:
"The God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul king of
Assyria, and the spirit of Tiglath-pilneser of Assyria, and he carried them
away, even the Reubeni, and the Gadi, and the half tribe of Menasseh, and
brought them unto Hala, and Habor, and HARA, and to the river of Gozan unto
this day" (1-Chronicles 5;26).
Assyrian control of the Hara area is proven by inscribed
claims of Assyrian monarchs to have received tribute from Magan and Meluhha
which nations (in neo-Assyrian nomenclature) were either by the Indus delta
or to the east of it14. Hara adjoined Bactria and Roman and other accounts
related that the Assyrian Semiramis (wife or widow of "Pul"): had conquered
Bactria to the north of Hara as well as parts of India to its east15. The
Assyrians sent frequent expeditions to Mount "Bikni" meaning the "Mount of
Lapis Lazuli" and most (if not all) the lapis lazuli of Assyria came from
Badakhshan to the northeast of "Hara"16. According to Greek and Iranian sources
the Assyrians had planted colonies in the region of Kabul and Gandhara to
the east of Hara17. Indian scripts also recall the "Asurya" with their god
"Asura" (meaning the Assyrians with their deity "Ashur") who had colonies
in Hara and Sakastan18. Assyrian cultural influences in this area and cultural
influences from this area on Assyria confirm the Assyrian presence in this
Extracts from “Lost Israelite Identity”:
"Hear, this word, ye kine of Bashan, that are in the mountain
of Samaria, which oppress the poor, which crush the needy, who say to their
husbands, Bring, and let us drink.
"...he will take you away in big ships and your posterity in fishing boats.
"Each woman will be carried straight out through the breaches
and cast out beyond the mountains of Mannae"*11 (Amos 4;1 3).
.* Amos (4;3) refers to the "kine of Bashan" "in the mountain of Samaria"
(Amos 4;1) who shall be cast "into the palace" . "Into the palace" has been
translated from the Hebrew "Harmona" which is also translatable as saying
"To the Mountain of Mannae" and so it is understood in the Talmudically-approved
Aramaic version of Yehonathan. Mannae was in the general area of Armenia
to which Jewish and local sources say the Israelites were taken. See Encyclopedia
Judaica, "Armenia", "Georgia", "Caucasus".
"Hear this word, ye kine of Bashan, that are in the mountains
of Samaria, which oppress the poor, which crush
the needy, saying to their husbands, bring and let us drink...the days shall
come upon you, that he will take you away in TsINOT [i.e."large boats” in
Hebrew*3*] and your remnant in SIROT DUGAH [i.e. "Fishing boats" in
Hebrew*3] And your breached remnant will be taken away one woman for each
other and they shall be cast out into the mountain of Mannae"4 (Amos 4;1
The verse in the Hebrew may therefore be understood as
saying that one part of the exiles would be taken away in large and small
sailing vessels and another part would be exiled to Mannae in which area
the previous section showed exiled Israelite "Cimmerians" and Scythians to
have indeed appeared.
The Prophet Isaiah foresaw that in the Last Days,
"The LORD shall set his hand again the second time to
recover the remnant of his people, that shall be left from Ashur, and from
Mitsrayim, from Patros, and from Cush, and from Shinar, and from Hamath,
and from the Isles of the Sea:" (Isaiah 11;11).
The said places were those to which the Ten Tribed Exiled
Hebrews were taken immediately after their exile or which they somehow gravitated
towards shortly afterwards and from there move on.. They are not in every
case those places which they are now found in and from which they will directly
return. In other words those who were in the above places in the Last Days
will return from wherever they will be at the time. At all events, "Isles
of the Sea" referred here primarily to the Isles of Britain as explained
elsewhere. Getting to the "Isles of the Sea", implies travel by boat.
Another verse in the Book of Isaiah associated with the Ten Tribes' exile says,
"At the first the lighter affliction was visited upon
the land of Zebulon and the land of Nephtali and (BUT) the latter one was
made heavier by way of the sea, beyond Jordan, in Galilee of the nations"
The expressions "Isles of the Sea”, "Way of the Sea",
"large boats", "fishing-boats", in connection with the exile of Northern
Israel is consistent with transportation by sea which was logistically possible
at that time and had been effected in other cases by Phoenician seafarers.
Israelites seem to have always participated in Phoenician seafaring ventures.
Additional verses prove that the exiled Israelites were
destined to be found in the "Isles of the Sea" which were associated with
"Tarshish" in the Atlantic Ocean. Other passages show that from Phoenician
Tyre settlement was to be made in Tarshish. Both the Israelites and Phoenicians
had had a long standing connection with Tarshish.
The extent of ancient international connections is demonstrated
by the Prophet Ezekiel's description of Phoenician Tyre and its maritime
extension. This has implications concerning the fate of the Israelites
after their exile since a portion of them were taken overseas (as will be
shown) by Phoenician agency.
The Prophet Hosea spoke of Ephraim together with Phoenician
Tyre as if their fates were entwined, and as if part of Ephraim was settled
in Tyre, and both suffered from the Assyrian conquest*6:
"Ephraim, as I saw Tyre, is planted in a pleasant place:
but Ephraim shall bring forth his children to the murderer “ (Hosea 9;13).
"Ephraim is smitten, their root is dried up...
"My God will cast them away, because they did not hearken
unto him: and they shall be wanderers among the nations (Hosea 9;16
In Amos (ch.1.), it is prophesied that the Phillistines
(Ashkelon, Ashdod, Gaza*7, Ekron) and Phoenicians (Tyre) will be punished
for betraying an entire exile into the hand of Edom who accompanied Assyria.
Both the Phillistines and Phoenicians were sea-farers*8. Tyre is upbraided
for not remembering the Covenant of brotherhood which once existed between
itself and Israel..
"...For three transgressions of Tyre ...I will not turn
away the punishment thereof: because they delivered up the whole captivity
to Edom, and remembered not the covenant of brothers" (Amos 1;9).
The deliverance to EDOM is connected to the transference by sea of a portion of the exiles to the west.
A Midrash names Daphne of Antiochea (on the north Syrian
coast) as one of the three places to which the Ten Tribes were exiled. Slouchz
believed that those exiled to "Daphne of Antiochea" represented Israelites
of Phoenician culture who disappeared and whose fate was connected with their
All of the Tribes of Israel had been accustomed to ascend
three times a year to Jerusalem and there to offer sacrifice in the Temple.
After the secession King Jeroboam of northern Israel feared that continued
religious attachment to Jerusalem would eventually lead to the people demanding
political re unification with the south:
"Whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves
of gold, and said unto them, It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem:
behold your deities, O Israel, which brought you up out of the land of Egypt.
"And he set the one in Beth-el, and the other put he in Dan (1-Kings 12;28-29).
King Jeroboam had introduced new religious practices as a result of which it was prophesied in his time:
"For The LORD shall smite Israel, as a reed is shaken in the water,
and he shall root up Israel out of this good land, which he gave to their
fathers, and shall scatter them beyond the river, because they have made
their sacred poles, provoking The LORD.
"And he shall give Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam
who did sin, and who made Israel to sin. (1-Kings 14;15-16).
As soon as the Tribes of Israel split in two there occurred
an immediate decline in their position. The Tribe of Menasseh had two halves,
one half in lands west of the Jordan River, and the other half in the area
east of it. This second half was dominated by the clans of Machir and his
Altogether, there were two and a half tribes east of the
Jordan River. These were Reuben, Gad, and the half tribe of Menasseh. In
addition segments of some of the other tribes were also to be found in this
region. At that time there were forests in the land, and there was more greenery,
more precipitation, the climate was colder and water was more plentiful.
The country east of the Jordan was highly productive agriculturally and provided
plentiful pasture and mineral deposits.
The Hebrews' enjoyment of their patrimony was to be curtailed
due to war with Assyria. The lands of Israel were to be conquered and all
of the people exiled. The Tribes east of the Jordan were among the first to
be taken away.
"And the God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul king
of Assyria and the spirit of Tiglath pileser king of Assyria, and he carried
them away, even the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half tribe of Menasseh
, and brought them unto Halah, and Habor, and Hara, and to the river Gozan,
unto this day.
(1-Chronicles 5;25 26).
The above Biblical passage may be understood (in the Hebrew)
to infer that PUL king of Assyria and Tiglathpileser king of Assyria were
one and the same person and modern researchers (in the light of additional
evidence) so understand the case to be. Nevertheless, other evidence indicates
that Pul and Tiglathpileser were separate individuals and the verse is also
understandable in that way*4.
"PUL" may well have been another name for Tiglathpileser
as well as that of another monarch who preceded him which monarch ALSO had
been responsible for an earlier exile of Israelites. The implications for
the present study are that the tribes east of the Jordan may have been exiled
in two stages with some time between them and that the exile and re-settlement
may have began much earlier than commonly supposed*5.
“In the days of Pekah king of Israel, Tiglath-Pileser
came and took Ijon, Abel Beth Maachah, Janoah, Kedesh, Hazor, Gilead, and
Galilee all the land of Nephtali; and he carried them captive to Assyria”
(2-Kings 15;29). How many Israelites were exiled has been debated but the
fact is that they all went, the northern Israelite Kingdom along with its
inhabitant disappeared from the Israelite area.
The exile of all Israel from the northern Galilee is recorded
in an inscription of Tiglathpileser who boasts of exiling all of "Bit Khumria"
except for a small remnant which he left around the city of Samaria6 which
city was then the capital and had been built by King Omri. "Bit Khumria"
was the name which the Assyrians gave to northern Israel presumably in remembrance
of King Omri ("Khumri" in Assyrian) whose son Achab had once fought and defeated
the Assyrian forces7. Previously the area of Israel and Syria had been referred
to in Akkadian inscriptions as "The Land of Amurru". It will be demonstrated
that the exiled Israelites became identifiable with part of the Cimmerians
whose monarch was described by the Assyrians as "King of Amurru" which implies
"King of Israel".
The Assyrian ruler Tiglathpileser (745-727) was followed
by Shalmaneser (727-722) and he by Sargon (722-705) and then came Senacherib
( 705-681). All of these kings participated in the exile and resettlement
of Israelites. After the eastern Tribes and the northern ones had all been
exiled, there remained only a rump state centred around the city of Samaria
in the south and these too were to be exiled*8.
8.* "Then the king of Assyria came up throughout
all the land, and went up to Samaria, and besieged it three years.
"In the ninth year of Hoshea, the king of Assyria took
Samaria, and carried Israel away into Assyria, and placed them in Halah,
and in Habor, by the city of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes" (2-Kings
"And the king of Assyria did carry away Israel,
unto Assyria, and put them in Halah, and in Habor by the river of Gozan,
and in the cities of the Medes.
"Because they obeyed not the voice of The LORD their
God, but transgressed his covenant, and all that Moses the servant of The
LORD commanded, and would not hear them, nor do them" (2-Kings 18;11- 12).
An Assyrian inscription recalls the taking of Samaria
and the exile of its inhabitants. This inscription says that the king of
Assyria took to himself more than 27,000 people and the rest he removed to
Assyria. The inscription may be understood to mean NOT (as is commonly claimed)
that Sargon took only 27,000 plus people from Samaria into captivity BUT
rather that Sargon took ca. 27,000 people for his own (military) purposes
and the remainder of the people he settled in Assyria9*10.
10.* "I counted as spoil [2)7,280 people..and the rest of them I resettled in Assyria".
On the basis of this inscription it is sometimes claimed (even in
Encyclopedias!!) that not many more than 27,000 were ever actually exiled!!!
This claim belies the facts: The inscription applies only to remnants of
city of Samaria after a siege of several years whereas other Assyrian inscriptions
mention the exile of all Israelite inhabitants from other areas of the country.
The inscription itself appears most readily understandable as saying that
the 27,000 plus were taken by the king for his own personal or military needs
and all of the remainder were packed off maybe even without bothering to
The inscription is also rendered as;
"I took as booty 27,290 people who lived there. I formed a unit of 50 chariotry from them .."
Another version says 200 chariotry instead of 50, and adds, "and I settled the rest in Assyria."
S.Dalley (p.36) renders the Nimrud prism account of Sargon thusly:
"The Samarians who had [conspired] against the king [ my predecessor] not
to endure servitude nor to bring tribute, became angry and did battle.
With the army of the great gods my lords I fought against them. I counted
as spoil [x+]7,280 people including [their] chariotry and the
gods their help. I formed a unit of 200 chariots from them as
part of my royal army, and I resettled the rest of them in Assyria. I repopulated
Samaria more than before, and put into it people from the countries which
I had conquered".
Other renditions of this inscription (such as that of
H.Tadmor) similarly show that it is possible to read the inscription as saying
that Sargon took for his own purposes more than 27,000 captives and the rest
of them (i.e. all those that remained apart from the 27,000) he transported
Sargon (722-705) mentions above his taking 50 (or 200 in another version) charioteers from Samaria11.
The people of Samaria were besieged and exiled after all
the rest of their brethren had already been taken away en masse.
Following the exile of Samaria, the Bible says that, "there
was none left but the tribe of Judah only" (2-Kings 17;18). The Talmud12
and Midrashim13 also speak of the Lost Ten Tribes having all been exiled.
One late Midrash14 suggests that one in eight remained but the exact meaning
of this source is uncertain. Here and there, there do exist hints that a
small percentage of the northern tribes remained and became assimilated amongst
the Jews of Judah. Archaeologists have discovered a neighbourhood in Jerusalem
which apparently was settled by refugees from northern Israel15*16. These
newcomers show the strong influence of Egyptian and foreign culture and for
a while appear to have practiced cremation which is forbidden by Jewish
Law. Also Levites and other religious refugees had began to drift southward
long before the Assyrian invasion. Nevertheless, SINCE NOTHING REALLY SIGNIFICANT
REMAINED OF THEM THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY MUST HAVE GONE INTO EXILE AS THE
BIBLE SAYS THEY DID!!
Archaeological excavations also prove the completeness
of deportation. For the period after the Assyrian conquest of Israel there
is a gap in archaeological finds everywhere with accompanying traces of burning
and destruction. For some time afterwards there is no real new settlement
and when organised habitation does begin it is small and impoverished, at
least at first and nowhere can it be ascribed to the previous Israelite dwellers*17.
In addition to the exile of the northern Israelites, Sennacherib
boasted of having conquered cities in Judah and deported more than 200,000
people. This event is spoken of in Midrashim18 and other sources of Jewish
tradition even though it is merely hinted at in the Bible:
"Now in the fourteenth year of king Hezekiah did
Sennacherib king of Assyria come up against all the fenced cities of Judah
and took them" (2-Kings 18;13).
The Prophet Isaiah had predicted that after all the Assyrian
Exilations of northern Israel and Judah were completed only one in ten of
the original population would remain and these apparently would be those
in Judah who would later endure an additional exile of their own:
"If there yet remain a tenth in it, it also shall be consumed" (Isaiah 6;13).
The Jews who remained in Judah were destined to be exiled
to Babylon and from there to return under the leadership of Ezra and Nehemiah.
The Jews of Judah who had been exiled to Babylon did however retain consciousness
of their national identity whereas the others ultimately did not. Those Jews
who had been taken into exile previously by Sennacherib remained unheard
of. They assumedly joined their brothers from the Ten Tribes and became assimilated
[Isaiah 9:2] THE PEOPLE WHO WALKED IN DARKNESS HAVE SEEN A GREAT LIGHT;
THOSE WHO DWELT IN A LAND OF DEEP DARKNESS, ON THEM HAS LIGHT SHINED.
“THE PEOPLE WHO WALKED IN DARKNESS”: One commentary says this refers
to the Lost Ten Tribes (LTTs) [see MeAm Loaz]. This source says that after
the Assyrian King Sennacherib besieged Jerusalem and had hisarmy destroyed
by a miracle the Lost Ten tribes who already in exile were released from
bondage. This explanation could explain a lot of things but what it is based
upon is uncertain.
At all events the LTTs being in darkness is also reported in Isaiah 49;9
but since at the present rate it will be some time before we get there we
will consider it now:
Extracts from “Ephraim” chapter four:
"That thou mayest say to the prisoners, Go forth;
to them that are in darkness, Shew yourselves. They shall feed
in the ways, ‑and their pastures shall be in all high places" (Isaiah 49;9).
The Midrash (Numbers Rabah 1;6, ‑Eichah Rabah 2;9, Jerusalemi Sanhedrin ch.17, L.6,29) on these verses, comments:
~Rabbi Berachiah and Rabbi Chelbo in the name of Rabbi
Shmuel bar Nachman said: To three places was Israel exiled, one to beyond
the Sambation River, one to Daphneh of Antiochia, and one to where
the Clouds came down and covered them; in the same way that they [i.e.the
northern Israelites west of the Jordan River] were exiled to three places,
so too were the Tribes [east of the Jordan River] of Reuben, Gad, and half‑Menasseh,
exiled to three places. When they shall return so too will Reuben, Gad, and
half‑Menasseh return with them. How do we know all this?
~` ‑‑From the verse, "Say to the prisoners go forth" (Isaiah 49;9):
‑These are those exiled beyond the Sambation River.
"To them that are in darkness, shew yourselves" (Isaiah
49;9):‑ These are those whom the cloud descended upon and covered.
"They shall feed in the ways, and in all high places their
pastures" (Isaiah 49;9):‑ These are those who were exiled to Daphne of Antiochea.~'
Now from those places to which the Lost Ten Tribes were exiled
there emerged the Cimmerians, Scythians, and Gothic ethnic groups. There
is much evidence that these peoples were either mainly Israelite or that
at least Israelites were a significant element amongst them and that the
bulk of Israelite exiles were to be found in their midst.
Like the third part of exiled Israelites in
the Midrash, so too, were the Cimmerians in Classical Literature to be associated
with Clouds, Mountains, or simply regions, of Darkness. A word‑root
"‑comer" (reminiscent of "Cimmerian") in both Hebrew and Latin connates
"darkness"!16 At one stage a portion of the Cimmerians were to be found
in the Crimean Peninsula. At that time the climate was much wetter
in the Crimean region than it is now and the area was apparently always cloudy.
In Latin Literature there existed a phrase "Af tenebrae Cimmeriae"
meaning "Cimmerian Darkness" and applied to the Crimea17.
The bulk of the Cimmerians via the Balkans entered
Europe and moved westward. They are identified in general with the Celts.
The name "Celt" has been interpreted as:
"meaning hidden ‑ the word which gives us the Irish
form `ceilt', i.e. concealment or secret, and the word which gives us the
English word kilt"18.
The Scottii who from Scythia reached Ireland and from
there went to Scotland were counted as Celts and their name ("Scotoi") in
Greek was understandable as meaning obscure or hidden19. In Britain and Brittany
(Gaul) lived a people called Ostrynimians by the Carthaginains and Phoenicians
and this name also is said to means hidden20 from the hebrew root "sater".
The god Saturn who allegedly reigned in the British Isles too has a name
derivable in Hebrew from the same root ("sater") and connoting the "hidden
god". Saturn in Greek-Phoneician Mythology was taken to represent the
god [“god” in their eyes, “God” in ours] of Israel or to personify the exiled
of Israel, thus the exiled of Israel (i.e. “Saturn”) ruled in the British
Amongst the Celts, the Cimmerians are specially linked
with the Galatians n and with the Cimbri of Scandinavia and the Cymry of
The Orphic Argonautica (supposed ca.500 b.c.e.) placed
the Cimmerians far away in the north somewhere in the British Isles:
"Cimmerii who were hidden from the sun rising by the mountains
of Ripaeus in Britain near the vicinity of Hades21..."
"....far away in the north on the way to the Iernian [Ireland?] islands22.. ".
Homer (in the "Odyssey" 11;19) mentioned,
"The deep sea of Oceanos [i.e.The Atlantic Ocean] which
is the World's boundary. There is the city of the Cimmerian people. Night
is forever spread over these unhappy mortals".
It is generally agreed that both these above passages are placing Cimmerians
in Britain and it was be noticed that both use expressions implying darkness
Plutarch seems to have identified the Cimmerians
with the Cimbri of Scandinavia and the North sea coast ‑as did other Roman
Plutarch says of these Cimmerian‑descendants:
"Part of them still inhabit the remotest regions
upon the outer Ocean. These... live in a dark and woody region hardly
penetrable by the sunbeams...their days and nights being equally continuous,
they divide their year into one of Each..(Plutarch: "Caius Marius").
A.W.Whatmore also noted the linkage
in Classical works of the Cimmerians with the Dark in the Caucasus, in Crimea,
in Britain, and in Scandinavia23.
Denmark was settled at one stage
by the Cimbri descendants of the Cimmerians and then later by the Danes from
the Israelite Tribe of Dan.
This overlapping of Cimbri with the Danes of Dan is interesting.
A Midrash commented on the Tribal‑Order of Marching forward in the Wilderness
when the ancient Israelites had escaped from Egypt yet still had not been
allowed to enter the Promised Land. The Midrash infers that this positioning
was indicative of future developments. The Position of Dan, says the Midrash
(Numbers Rabah 2), "was in the north, whence darkness comes".
The Cimmerians also gave rise to the Cimbri
The Cimbri, claimed Plutarch, in their migrations carried a metal bull
with them25. The Cimbri in Scandinavia are known to have had a bull cult
of Mediterranean origin26. The Israelites in the Wilderness were punished
for making a golden bull‑calf (Hebrew: "aegel") which they intended to go
before them in their wanderings (Exodus 32;1‑4). Excavations in the area
of northern Israel have unearthed metallic statuettes of bulls which are
dated to the period of Israelite occupation prior to their exile27. King
Jeroboam‑1 from the Tribe of Ephraim was the first king of northern
Israel after it broke away from the south. He set up a bull‑calf cult
with golden statues and cultic centres at Dan and in Beth‑el (2‑Kings 12;28‑29).
These golden statues, according to one source, were later smashed. They may
have been exchanged for metallic ones. Sargon, the Assyrian king after defeating
northern Israel said, "I counted the gods on whom they trusted
as spoil"28. The statue at Beth‑el (Beth‑aven) was captured by the
Assyrians and "carried unto Assyria" (Hosea 10;6). The Cimbri practice of
carrying a metallic bull with them may have been a carryover from their north
The Cimbri were later to be found
throughout Scandinavia29 especially in Denmark‑Jutland which Procopius ("Gothic
Wars 2.1.7) referred to as "Brittania" whereas the isle of Britain (home
of the British Cymry) he called "Brittia". Part of the Cimbri reached Holland
in their wanderings and there too the presence of a tribe of "Bretons"
was reported (Pliny N.H.4;17)30. Isaiah (ch.49) placed the Lost Israelites
in "Isles of the Sea" and said they would establish a "Brit‑Am" i.e. A People's
Covenant or Commonwealth.
Whatmore ("Insulae Britannicae", 1913) showed
that in Classical Literature the Islands of Britain were considered the edge
of the world, the last section of Scythia, and associated with Cimmerian
darkness. The same characteristics were ascribed to Scandinavia and
then later Scandinavian writers said the same things about North America
wherein Viking Scandinavians attempted to settle!
Leif Ericson in the 1100s c.e. visited the coasts
of North America and an effort at colonisation was made. A Chronicle of the
event gave the names Helluland, Markland, and Vinland to the countries visited.
Whatmore equated "Markland" with North America31. After drawing parallels
between the Danish‑Norwegian word "merke" and the Russian "mrak", he said
that the name "Markland" (given to North America) signified DARKNESS.
The Scandinavian Chronicler was continuing the Classical
tradition and Whatmore concludes that "Markland" (i.e. the name given
to North America),
"is quite as likely an echo of the dark Kimmerian
It follows that in Biblical and Rabbinical tradition
the Lost Ten Tribes or at least a portion of them were associated with
Darkness, Clouds, and Concealment in general. Both linguistically and conceptually
these same attributes were attached to the Cimmerians and to those who emerged
from them. Proofs from other fields confirm that these same entities were
descended largely from Israel.
[Isaiah 9:3] THOU HAST MULTIPLIED THE NATION, THOU HAST INCREASED ITS
JOY; THEY REJOICE BEFORE THEE AS WITH JOY AT THE HARVEST, AS MEN REJOICE
WHEN THEY DIVIDE THE SPOIL.
[Isaiah 9:4] FOR THE YOKE OF HIS BURDEN, AND THE STAFF FOR HIS SHOULDER,
THE ROD OF HIS OPPRESSOR, THOU HAST BROKEN AS ON THE DAY OF MIDIAN.
This is referring to Gideon of the Tribe of Menasseh who defeated the Midianites
(Judges chapters 6,7,8). Gideon later had to contend with
the men of Ephraim (Judges8;1) who were jealous of his leadership. Gideon
came from the clan of Abiezer within Gilead within Menasseh. Abiezer
is the same as Je-ezer (Numbers 26;30). In Hebrew “Je-ezer” is Ai-y-azar
and Abiezer is Avi-y-azar so they are actually closer than they appear in
Englisjh translation. Ai-y-azar was pronouncable as Ai-y-(g)azar. This
links them with the Agathyrsi or Agazari (Acatziri) who became known as the
Khazars. The Khazars had a tradition that they were descended from the Tribes
of Menasseh and Simeon. Their Israelite ancestry was recognized by most Jewish
authorities in their tribe. They converted to Judaism and for a period ruled
over southern Russia. They beat back Arab invaders and together with the
Frank Charles Martel in the west saved Europe from Muslim domination.
Some people claim that the Khazars were Turks and that the Turks are Edomites
and therefore so were the Khazars. They then say that the Jews are mainly
descended from Khazars and therefore the Jews are Edomites. This may sound
ridiculous but there are those who sincerely believe in it. Not all those
who hold these views are necessarily anti-Jewish. Some appear to be sincerely
As for the Turks being Edomites I never saw anything really convincing and
do not believe it. There may have been Edoimite elements amongst Turkish
peoples but I doubt if they were numerically significant.
As for the Khazars having been Turks I looked up the sources and all it means
is that the Khazars may have spoken a Turkish dialect as did some white “Nordic”
peoples, some “Turkish” peoples and some “Mongolians”.
It is not even certain what language they did speak since all we have are
a few “Runes” that appear like a Central Asian Turkish-related dialect and
MAY belong to the Khazars. At one stage the Turks did rule over the Khazars
and they did dominate the region of Southern Russia for a period. So some
influence was to be expected.
This does not say much and even this is uncertain. Some of the Khazars
spoke Finnish. Polak believed their original tongue was a Gothic dialect.
I think they originally spoke Hebrew. The Khazars were actually reported
of in southern Russia long before the Turks were ever heard of.
I have written on this matter and will write again Steven Collins has also
written a very pertinent and interesting article on the subject which will
be published in our magazine BRIT-AM.
I just bought a book “The Jews of Khazaria” by kevin Alan Brook. The book
is interesting. The man also has a Web Site. He believes the Khazars were
a Turkish people. From reading the book however the opposite conclusion appears
the more acceptable.
Why are the Khazars Considered Turkish?
[Very Summarised] Claims:
Some Jewish sources say they were.
A letter from King Joseph of Khazaria relates them to Togarmah.
They are believed to have spoken Turkish and had Turkish customs.
Their ruling house is claimed to have been of Turkish origin and to have ruled over Turks.
Most contemporary Jewish sources relate the Khazars to Israel. Sources that
relate them to Togarmah are mainly later ones and less reliable. Those who
knew them at first hand considered them Israelite.
The letter from King Joseph is in several versions. It has been doctored.
The segment relating them to Togarmah appears from its style to be an interpolation.
Both the Khazars themselves and Jewish authorities considered them to be
of Israelite descent.
Little evidence of Turkish nput. All that there was can easily be explained by cultural contact.
The same ruling house also ruled over part of the Huns, the Goths, and the
Parthians. The deeper we go into these matters the more remote the possibility
of Turkish connections become.
As for most Jews being descended from the Khazars this too does not fit in with the known facts.
If we thought it were so we would admit it since it does not matter (from our point of view) much anyway.
Ephraim Hirsch has written an article describing the Khazars as kind
of an “American” type people riding forth in cowboy fashion to establish
civilised values over the steppes of Russia.
Most of the article is given below:
The opinions expressed are his own. His account is highly
idealised and maybe exaggerated nevertheless sources do exist that render
most of his claims defensible. The article concerns the Khazars who were
related to the Parthians. The Parthians were also known for their tolerance
and for a laissez faire administration that was successful. Both Parthians
and Khazars were descended from the Lost Ten Tribes and both were kinsfolk
to entities now amongst nations of northwest European descent.. Maybe the
ambition to realise human potential through constitutional freedom is a recurring
urge of the Israelite Peoples.
The basic core of the Khazars were the Agathyrsi descendants of Aiezer [Ai-g-ezer]
of Menasseh. The North Americans are also dominated by Menasseh and
the account below reads like another version of the American Dream.
Edward (Ephraim) Hirsch:
“The Khazars are coming”
It sounds like the plot from an Arnold
Schwarzenegger epic. A nomadic people in the South Russian steppes
rise up against tyranny and barbarism. Surrounded by wild tribes who yoked
their women to chariots, they enjoyed all the comforts of civilized nations
, a well-constituted and tolerant government, a flourishing trade, and a
well-disciplined standing army. At a time when fanaticism, ignorance and
anarchy reigned in western Europe, this kingdom could boast of its just and
broad-minded administration. They practiced complete freedom of religion.
Christian, Jew and Muslim rode together as brothers under the same flag.
......They were an equal opportunity employer.
They ruled over Russia from the lower course of the Volga and the northern
slopes of the Caucasus, as far as the lands bounded by the sea of Azov and
the Caspian. Their kingdom lasted a thousand years. During that span, they
saved Christianity, rescued the Jews, and embraced the Muslims as partners.
They gave sanctuary to an outcast Byzantine emperor and risked their lives
and empire for the poor and oppressed. They chose their king from the most
humble of their subjects and he never made a public appearance, lacking the
status of even a figurehead. Their women were reputed to be among the most
beautiful in the world and were married off to the most powerful rulers in
history. This will-o’-the-wisp people appeared out of nowhere in the second
century and disappeared with hardly a trace in the twelfth. They spoke an
unknown language, unrelated to their neighbours of which only fifty words
remain. They left virtually no artifacts, no ruins and no written documents.
Although at one time their capital city, Atil, named after the mythical land
of Atlantis, was the richest and the greatest on the globe.
As unlikely as this scenario may sound, every word is
historical truth. They were the Khazars, a tribal union that emerged in the
aftermath of a series of migrations of nomadic people from Inner and Central
Asia. Like everything else about them, their racial origin is unknown. Scholars
first argued that they were of Finno-Ugrian extraction, but later maintained
they were a Turkish off-shoot. Eventually, the leading academicians decided
they had no idea where they came from. Readers of Gibbon are familiar with
the name of Leo the Khazar, an Emperor of the Greeks, whose mother was one
of those glamorous Khazar princesses. More recently, inveterate viewers of
late night television saw the Khazars on cable. The descendants of the Khazars
are those guys storming the Hitler bunker on the documentary “World at War”.
The Khazars were known by their enemies as the most valiant warriors
of their epoch and the tradition has lingered. The Russians used the mountain
Tats, reputed to be the last of the Khazars, as shock-troops. .......
Among the accomplishments of the Khazars, according to
historians, is holding the line between the advance of the Muslim hordes
and Europe, much as Charles Martel fended off the Moors at Tours. The Khazars
also are known for the conversion of the royal family to the Jewish religion
in the eighth century. Scholars claim that this came about as the result
of a religious debate when emissaries of the three faiths were sent to the
kingdom. The Khazars adopted the Jewish religion because of their imperative
to help the oppressed, in the same way that the king of Denmark later donned
a Star of David to show solidarity with the besieged people.
The Khazars did things like that.
In their spare time they invenDemocracy. Although the Greek philosopher
Pericles is generally credited with the idea, it is known that Herodotus,
a buddy of Pericles visited Khazaria shortly before Pericles came up with
this inspiration that has shaped modern thought.
Historians report that the Khazar king dreamed that God spoke to him, saying
“your intentions are good but your works leave a lot to be desired”. Thereafter,
the Khazars not only preached total freedom and justice, they implemented
it. Their government consisted of a council of two Christians, two Jews,
two Muslims, and a barbarian. They never withdrew loyalty once granted.
No man was so despised that he could not find forgiveness in the Khazar kingdom.
......... They invented the concept of liberty, fraternity and equality.
According to D.M. Dunlop of Colombia University, the foremost
American scholar of the Khazars, the reason the Khazars are not generally
known by the public is that the historical records exist mistily in Arabic
and Turkish texts. Also, the thrust of history as taught in our schools concerns
itself mostly with Greece, Rome and western Europe. But Dunlop says “It can
scarcely be doubted that but for the existence of the Khazars in the region
north of the Caucasus, Byzantium, the bulwark of European civilization in
the east, would have found itself outflanked by the Arabs, and the history
of Christianity and Islam might well have been very different from what we
Khazaria derived its wealth from its international trade
routes that crossed its territory linking the Byzantine Empire, the Arab
Caliphate and Northern Europe. In order to protect their commercial interests,
the Khazars strove to maintain peace in the region and to exclude or neutralize
any nomadic invaders from the east......Shielded by this peace accord, the
East Slavic tribes north of the open steppe were able to expand further southward
and to prosper in their livestock-raising pursuits.
Although Khazaria subsequently became known as the first
land whose rulers embraced Judaism in the Medieval Period the Khazars had
[previously] been most renowned for their prowess in commerce. The
Khazars were the first true capitalists as well as the first democratic political
An account of the Khazars was in fact given by the Cambridge
historian J.B. Bury in a chapter of his History of the Eastern Roman Empire,
and the Khazars are mentioned in most encyclopedias and dictionaries.
The Khazars are found in our hearts. The Khazars were never a nation in the
real sense. They were an empire of the senses, a trading organisation and
a confederation of peace loving people. They were the law west of the Pecos
-- and the Volga, Dnieper, and Don for that matter. Our ideals, our vision
and even our system of government were forged by the Khazars.......
“Much has been written by the authorities respecting the kingdom of Cozar
(the Khazars) which Basnage in his History of the Jews is inclined to consider
an imaginary region, but which, whether a real or an ideal monarchy and wherever
situated affords proof that in the rabbinical tradition, they build a tabernacle
perfectly like that which Moses set up in the wilderness. They are said to
have been happy and potent, to have triumphed over their enemies...” Lord
Kingsborough (Edward King) quoted by Edward Hirsch Dec.5 1995.
Isaiah 9 no-4
Please note a good portion (often all or most) of this commentary is derived
from Traditional Jewish sources. I usually do not quote the exact sources
for pragmatic reasons. It would simply slow everything down and at present
we want to put out as much as we can.
[Isaiah 9:5] FOR EVERY BOOT OF THE TRAMPING WARRIOR IN BATTLE TUMULT AND EVERY
GARMENT ROLLED IN BLOOD WILL BE BURNED AS FUEL FOR THE FIRE.
[Isaiah 9:6] FOR TO US A CHILD IS BORN, TO US A SON IS GIVEN; AND THE GOVERNMENT
WILL BE UPON HIS SHOULDER, AND HIS NAME WILL BE CALLED "WONDERFUL COUNSELOR,
MIGHTY GOD, EVERLASTING FATHER, PRINCE OF PEACE."
This was in the immediate sense speaking about Hezekiah. The child was already
in existence. He would be a king and return the people to the worship of
God. At that time in the Middle East a monarch upon ascending the throne
would change his name. The new name or names would be intended to express
what style and aims his rulership would hopefully attain to. This prophecy
was also pertinent to a degree to the rule of the future Messiah.
[Isaiah 9:7] OF THE INCREASE OF HIS GOVERNMENT AND OF PEACE THERE WILL
BE NO END, UPON THE THRONE OF DAVID, AND OVER HIS KINGDOM, TO ESTABLISH
IT, AND TO UPHOLD IT WITH JUSTICE AND WITH RIGHTEOUSNESS FROM THIS TIME FORTH
AND FOR EVERMORE. THE ZEAL OF THE LORD OF HOSTS WILL DO THIS.
This perhaps pertains more to the future.
[Isaiah 9:8] THE LORD HAS SENT A WORD AGAINST JACOB, AND IT WILL LIGHT UPON ISRAEL;
[Isaiah 9:9] AND ALL THE PEOPLE WILL KNOW, EPHRAIM AND THE INHABITANTS
OF SAMARIA, WHO SAY IN PRIDE AND IN ARROGANCE OF HEART:
“EPHRAIM” was a general name for all the northern Ten Tribes.
AND THE INHABITANTS OF SAMARIA “Samaria” was the capital of the Northern
Kingdom or one of the capitals. Technically it was in the territory of Menasseh
(though some say Issachar?). At all events “Samaria” is also used as a general
term for all the Northen Kingdom.
[Isaiah 9:10] "THE BRICKS HAVE FALLEN, BUT WE WILL BUILD WITH DRESSED
STONES; THE SYCAMORES HAVE BEEN CUT DOWN, BUT WE WILL PUT CEDARS IN
They thought the disasters coming upon them were of natural cause and not
sent by God. They consoled themselves that if a building fell down they would
build a better one. They did not take the message sent to them to heart.
[Isaiah 9:11] SO THE LORD RAISES ADVERSARIES AGAINST THEM, AND STIRS UP THEIR
Because they did not take to heart relatively “minor” warning their trouble were multiplied and enemies came against them.
[Isaiah 9:12] THE SYRIANS ON THE EAST AND THE PHILISTINES ON THE WEST
DEVOUR ISRAEL WITH OPEN MOUTH. FOR ALL THIS HIS ANGER IS NOT TURNED AWAY
AND HIS HAND IS STRETCHED OUT STILL.
THE SYRIANS [in Hebrew “Aram”]ON THE EAST These were allies of Israel against
Judah. Even so they were oppressing Israelites and contributing to
the corruption and approaching destruction of northern Israel. They
were openly against her but Israel did not want to see. Nowadays the Palestinians
openly attack modern Israel and say they want to kill all the Jews. Many
refuse to see this. Similarly nations that the USA backs at the expense of
the Jewish State of Israel and of Britain are against her.
AND THE PHILISTINES The Palestinians are named after the Latin way of pronouncing “Philisitia”.
Historically it now appears that many of the original Philistines may have settled in what is now Austria.
ON THE WEST DEVOUR ISRAEL WITH OPEN MOUTH
[Isaiah 9:13] THE PEOPLE DID NOT TURN TO HIM WHO SMOTE THEM, NOR SEEK
THE LORD OF HOSTS.
[Isaiah 9:14] SO THE LORD CUT OFF FROM ISRAEL HEAD AND TAIL, PALM BRANCH
AND REED IN ONE DAY--
[Isaiah 9:15] THE ELDER AND HONORED MAN IS THE HEAD, AND THE PROPHET
WHO TEACHES LIES IS THE TAIL;
[Isaiah 9:16] FOR THOSE WHO LEAD THIS PEOPLE LEAD THEM ASTRAY, AND THOSE
WHO ARE LED BY THEM ARE SWALLOWED UP.
Our leaders are often worse than us. It should be the opposite.
[Isaiah 9:17] THEREFORE THE LORD DOES NOT REJOICE OVER THEIR YOUNG MEN,
AND HAS NO COMPASSION ON THEIR FATHERLESS AND WIDOWS; FOR EVERY ONE IS GODLESS
AND AN EVILDOER, AND EVERY MOUTH SPEAKS FOLLY. FOR ALL THIS HIS ANGER IS NOT
TURNED AWAY AND HIS HAND IS STRETCHED OUT STILL.
[Isaiah 9:18] FOR WICKEDNESS BURNS LIKE A FIRE, IT CONSUMES BRIERS AND THORNS;
IT KINDLES THE THICKETS OF THE FOREST, AND THEY ROLL UPWARD IN A COLUMN OF
[Isaiah 9:19] THROUGH THE WRATH OF THE LORD OF HOSTS THE LAND IS BURNED,
AND THE PEOPLE ARE LIKE FUEL FOR THE FIRE; NO MAN SPARES HIS BROTHER.
When things are difficult and people get desperate and loyalty is not valued natural ties are disregarded.
[Isaiah 9:20] THEY SNATCH ON THE RIGHT, BUT ARE STILL HUNGRY, AND THEY DEVOUR
ON THE LEFT, BUT ARE NOT SATISFIED; EACH DEVOURS HIS NEIGHBOR'S FLESH,
We eat each other up and hurt ourselves.
[Isaiah 9:21] MANASSEH EPHRAIM, AND EPHRAIM MANASSEH, AND TOGETHER THEY ARE
AGAINST JUDAH. FOR ALL THIS HIS ANGER IS NOT TURNED AWAY AND HIS HAND IS
STRETCHED OUT STILL.
MANASSEH EPHRAIM, AND EPHRAIM MANASSEH, AND TOGETHER THEY ARE AGAINST JUDAH
This is on one hand a parable using familiar names for how people act (or
will act) on an individual level. On the other hand it says that Menasseh
(USA?) and Ephraim (Britain & Co) or the Menasseh section of the USA
versus the Ephraim section (?). In the American Civil War the Confederates
were almost de facto allies of Britain against the North. Was this Menasseh
AND TOGETHER THEY ARE AGAINST JUDAH Increased anti-semitism? Negative policies towards the State of Israel?