Muller/William JOnes/Genesis

Edwin Bryant ebryant at FAS.HARVARD.EDU
Thu May 14 19:45:19 UTC 1998

I haven't come across a reference like this in Muller, but Rajaram
may be confusing him with William Jones (Muller is often the generic
target of anti-Orientalist invective in this genre of work). Jones
ostensibly went to India with the
purpose (or with one purpose amongst others) of settling the controversy
regarding the dates of immense antiquity for the human race that were
being relayed back to a startled Europe by scholars like Holwell, Dow and
Halhed. THese dates, which were being accessed for the first time from
translations of the PUranas, completely undermined OLd Testament
historicity (Usher's 4004 BCE date for the creation) causing much
consternation amongst the orthodox (and much delight to the Voltaire
types striving to break free from the literalism of Genesis).   Jones
fiddled around with the king lists of the Puranas, made his famous
correlations between Puranic and BIblical personalities, and concluded
that Genesis had emerged safe and sound since the beginning of the Indian
chronology was 3800 years prior to his time (ie, the HIndu sources
*verified* the  narrative in Genesis, rather than undermined it).  He also
came up with a figure for the flood (I can't recall if it was 2448
BCE, but this sounds about right, since he figured that the Kaliyuga was
around 2000 BCE, or something, and the flood would have been between then
and creation).

If this is, indeed, a reference to Muller, then please let me
know.    Regards, Edwin Bryant

On Thu, 14 May 1998, Lars Martin Fosse wrote:

> Members of the list:
> On p. 25 of his book "Vedic Aryans and the Origin of Civilization" Navratna
> Rajaram says: "Assuming the date 4004 BCE for the creation of the world (as
> Max Mueller did), leads to 2448 BCE as the date for the Biblical flood."
> As is often the case, Rajaram does not give a reference. Does anybody know
> exactly where Max Mueller supports the Biblical chronology?
> Best regards,
> Lars Martin Fosse
> Lars Martin Fosse
> Haugerudvn. 76, Leil. 114,
> 0674 Oslo
> Tel: +47 22 32 12 19
> Fax: +47 22 32 12 19
> Email: lmfosse at
> Mobile phone: 90 91 91 45

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