As presented to the newspaper Information
(Danish daily), 26 July 2001 - Literature Article:
Moses - Prince of Egypt?
Whether we deal with biblical reading, Middle East
archaeology, or history studies - we have to face a re-examination of Moses
- according to new, sensational research.
By JURIJ MOSKVITIN, M.A. in Philosophy, Mathematician, Writer
A series of books - in every way unusual - have come to stay. We might as well
take an immediate position on the contents, in which an extensive collection of
sources in itself discloses many of the landmines which actually are to be found
under several recent theological theories. This being of great immediate
interest in the discussions about our understanding of history and its influence
on our comprehension and version of our time.
With this I am referring
to the new books of new information, "The Surpressed Record", and the most
recent, "The Enigmatic Son of Pharaoh's Daughter", presented by the
researcher Ove von Spaeth (and published by C.A. Reitzel Publishers). Especially
the latter book is very topical due to several circomstances within the latest
textual research and the many new archaeological discoveries in the Middle East.
Initially, let me stress
that this is not a review (I may, however, let the readers know that the books
extend to 238 pages and cost DKK 248,-). On the contrary, this is a annotating
meta-comment of a disclosure of new matters of extremely rich perspectives
connecting with the early culturally very influential Moses figure.
Ove von Spaeth, the Writer of the series about Moses, reasoning intriguingly
from the very beginning endeavour to show - for instance by using astronomically
based re-dating of the chronology - that Moses, the Founder of Jewish Monoteism,
is not a mythical figure as often so believed. On the contrary, he was a
historical person of flesh and blood and, at a certain time, an important figure
inside Egyptian history.
Also, if the reader is
interested in mysterious-historical riddles, these books can not avoid arousing
curiosity. If not in any other way, then because they make the reader want to
see how the writer will manage to get unhurt though the attempt of putting such
a thorny and intractable subject on a formula reasonably free of
self-contradictions. So far nobody has succeeded in this without severely
cutting off uncomfortable heels and toes.
No matter how the
result will be considered, the reading of von Spaeth's books - with the
collective title "Assassinating Moses" - will revive a huge amount of material.
However, I do also believe that even strongly interested persons at an
almost-expert level have to exert themselves in order to draw immediate
conclusions to all elements of such a huge collection of material as is the
basis of these books on Moses.
On the other hand, the
strong point of these books is the very fact that so many important facts
hitherto neglected in research have now been included to form a comprehensive
completeness. The re-examined historical circumstances which the books on that
background already have been able to present, should further inspire the
scholarly branches involved to expanding this researching - and this most
immediately. Nevertheless, the discussions aroused following the publication of
the first volume of the book-series on Moses point to the fact that among
certain different opinions even the title of the book(series) also is seen as
being understood as provocative.
A Peculiar Self-Confidence
Many reviews express an honest pleasure with the books; nevertheless, many
critics with a positive attitude are also often (still not all of them)
concluding by claiming that they have no overmastering authority in many of the
subjects, and are thus taking shelter behind a modification of the praises by
saying that "von Spaeth's reasoning is in any case very convincing and
impressive taking into account that he is a non-professional".
On this background it is
interesting that such exact reservations do not characterise the negative
critics, who invoke the authority of their own if not of others.
By this we are in the
peculiar situation that the positively recommendatory critics, among whom we see
a great deal of illustrious capacities in other fields than theology and to a
certain extent Egyptology, nevertheless are modestly hesitant, while the
negative critics claiming to have professional insight either as theologians or
Egyptologists appear with a 100 per cent self-confidence of their cause.
The Existence of Moses
Quite a number of the many who have worked with the historical basis of the
Bible through times, have - like von Spaeth - noted that there seems really not
to be found a proper place for Moses, and even not for the Jews (the
Israelites), within Egyptian history. A history that we believe we are so well
acquainted with and which is, thus, considered to be inconsistent with the place
that Moses and the Israelites have in the Old Testament. Namely where the Books
of the Pentateuch tell the absorbing narrative - although by some reflection not
quite without self-contradictions, which were already noted by a thinker like
Spinoza - the story about a little boy in a wickerwork container floating on the
Nile, and who is recovered by the daughter of Pharaoh and brought up by her in
the royal palace. Such an education worth the son of a princess.
Although throughout times
this narrative has also been interpreted more or less sarcastic - as we know
from Anatole France for instance - nobody is finding faults with the story as
such. But the fact that such a picked up child is later going to become the
liberator from the oppressors of this people (the Israelites) is hardly a myth.
History shows us that in principle this has taken place very often through times
in different ways depending on time and place.
We have another of the
examples from the Bible, where David himself, who is considered a great king,
who was to become a unifying power in Israel, was partly of foreign descent,
i.e. from a line of the Moabites - so often abominated by the Israelites.
Respect to the Facts
Actually, the only
"bad" thing about the old narrative about Moses is of course not the possible
veracity, its structural logic, but the fact that it does not seem to fit into
Egyptian history. And it is so much worse, because we know Egyptian history of
that time rather well, and according to biblical interpreters - and together
with them many researchers believe - here is the timeframe to where Moses
belongs. However, we are without major traces in Egypt of emigrating Israelites
at the time of Ramses II in 1200 BC.
Ove von Spaeth operates
by reversing the issue: We are not going to find a Moses, because we have
placed him in a wrong time. A partly similar principle is known from the
explanation by D.D. professor Sven Holm-Nielsen, namely that the entire
conception is wrong concerning Israel as a definite people - something not
really in existence is being dated at a place and time selected by us, and that
is why we can not make it fit in.
Ove von Spaeth is making,
thus, the proposal - in several ways very reasonable - that the reason for the
lack of Moses and the lack of Israelites is here due to the fact that we have
dated him too late in history. However, if we go back approx. 200 years, i.e.
till 15-1400 B.C., everything will look differently.
In addition, the writer
presents quite a number of indications, which in themselves may very well mean
that Moses is the genuine son of the daughter of Pharaoh. And she is later
historically personified to be Queen Hatshepsut, a queen, who most unusually
became a Pharaoh herself, and whose famous temple we find close to the entrance
road of the Valley of Kings.
Von Spaeth presents us
even with a beautiful and intriguing jigsaw puzzle. However, the critics have been
suspicious about the fact that, for once, the pieces seem to fit in quite
handsomely - the logical plain solution, simply, is not allowed to exist Several
theologically oriented reviewers can here be seen to use quite irrelevant
arguments in their zeal to invent a basis for defaming the research presented by
the writer. This is
not any new, neither that the respect for facts ought to be
greater, also among academics.
Astronomy Makes Precise Dating
In "The Enigmatic Son of Pharaoh's Daughter", the second volume of the
series about Moses, the basis of the chosen dating is being elaborated by means
of a newly established concretizing of the precision of time - hitherto it was
only relative. Ove von Spaeth is the first person to make an
astronomical-scientific dating of the oldest star chart in the world. This
Egyptian chart was placed and signed by Queen Hatshepsut's vizier in his secret
tomb beneath the mentioned temple and is dating back to ca. 1490 B.C. - it
was only discovered 70 years ago.
The writer's paper on
this important dating was published in the international science magazine, the
"Centaurus International Magazine of the History of Mathematics, Science, and
Astronomy" (vol 42, Aug. 2000, pp 159-179). Further, Sir Dr. Patrick Moore, the
British Astronomer, - known from his numerous works and as astronomy commentator
on the BBC for 47 years - and who has himself translated writings about Egyptian
astronomy, thus knowing the problems - has now described this discovery as "a
Along with other exact
indications as new information about the position and time of Moses, an edition
of the star chart - adapted for the readers - has been included in the current
volume 2 of the books of the book-series on Moses. From this the different
interpolations done by von Spaeth are being stretched very reasonably and taking
into consideration that this is a case about so distant events - partly
enveloped in mist. For instance, we know that after the death of Hatshepsut a
strong counter-action took place against her and her reforms. Still, we find the
violent traces of the next sovereign, who to a great extent deleted her relics
And - this not being the
hypothetical conclusion of von Spaeth, but of my own - it is not unlikely that
Moses - being a victim of such a removal - would have taken the lead of a
rebellious group of people.
Tracing the Israelites
Also, concerning the ethnically very mixed up group of Israelites in Egypt, it
can be said that - so far - not many recognizable, exact traces have been left.
This, however, may be easily explained, when taking into account the stormy and
confusing events of the period. Such as those pointed out e.g. by Professor Sven
To this can be added that
it is amazing how many traces the Egyptians have left with the Israelites and
thus with the Jews. Actually, we see something by a corresponding princible
today with the American Jews of Eastern European descend. They have brought a
tremendous number of Russian words into the USA, while on the contrary in
Russia, where the Jews have actually been living for almost a millennium,
remarkably few traces have been left compared to for instance those of the
Vikings, the Mongols, and the Arabs.
traces of all kinds - from biblical relations in Antiquity to contemporary
emigrant customs - make the history of our own times so extremely interesting
and give it further depth. We see it everywhere, from fragments of the history
of Moses - still to be found in a part of our everyday phrases - to the
Hollywood "merchandises" disseminated together with "Prince of Egypt", the Moses
That is also the reason
for the major importance that such a thorough work as the present about Moses is
now being published. And the discussions that followed the publication of Ove
von Spaeth's first book (cf. for instance www.moses-egypt.net) should favourably
be extended upon the publication of "The Enigmatic Son of Pharaoh's
Daughter", the second book from this writer. To the readers I would like to say,
"Enjoy! An exact, exciting voyage of discoveries is ahead of you!"
Ove von Spaeth: "The Enigmatic Son of Pharaoh's Daughter", 238 pages,
illustr., DKK 248,-, C.A. Reitzel Publishers, 2000.
(The essayist/reviewer, Jurij Moskvitin, is a philosopher, mathematician,
concert pianist, film music compositor, and author (Jurij Moskvitin's "Essay on the
Origin of Thought", Ohio University Press, 1974, was soon established as a
true classic); he has formerly been a reviewer for the Copenhagen newspaper
"Politiken" and occasionally for the Danish national television).
(Jurij Moskvitin has, 30.Aug.2001, given OvS. permission to free use of this
By D.I. LOIZOS, Professor in History, Editor-in-Chief
Intro by moses-egypt.net: - Ove von Spaeth's analysis of
the 3,500 year-old Senmut Star Map is included as a special appendix to the
Volume 2 of his book-series on research onthe historical Moses. The text is re-edited to
be used by readers without professional astronomical knowledge, and it
origins from Ove von Spaeth's treatise with documentation for the dating of
Egypt's oldest star map being published in "Centaurus" (42;3, 2000).
The actual analysis
of the Senmut star map follows its own objective purpose: to be concerned
only with the very dating of the ancient Egyptian star map - thus without any
dependence of how the result could be used in other connections. However, apart from the
investigation's totally separated research the data of the
Senmut map have interesting perspectives: - the precise astronomical dating
of the star map implies an enhanced concept of chronology also
contributing to new orientating research on the historical Moses. In relation to Ove von Spaeth's
Moses-series the analysis result of the
star map contains remarkable perspectives: - The material indicates
a special date signified in the star map. The same date seems to appear
in the Rabbinical Writings informing on a specific event for Moses in
Egypt. This possible cross-reference between Egyptian
and Israelite history is demonstrated in the series' Volume 2 (and
"An Egyptian Star Map": - According to the presented analysis, the star map is revealing that it
contain information of an actual celestial event of its time. This pioneering
discovery, by Ove von Spaeth, uncovers thus the earliest exact scientific
description of an otherwise rare but not unknown celestial phenomenon.
The findings were also
exposed, for instance, as in the following review/summary by D.I. Loizos, Professor
of History, Anistoriton History Library, Athens, Greece:
"The study concludes as
follows: The Senmut map depicts an exceptional event in the sky. This seems to
have produced a prototype for all later pictures of similar celestial events -
but with one exception: In the first depiction, in the time of Senmut, Mars is
retrograde in the west when the other planets assemble around Sirius in the
So far has been
demonstrated: - 1) The Senmut maps contain a cosmological and astro-mythological
expression not only as decoration - as hitherto assumed - but also as a picture
of a particular and unique situation in the sky. - 2) This configuration of the
sky can be exactly dated: 1534 BC.
In addition the star maps
may contribute to a much better dating of their creator Senmut and also of the
contemporary Egyptian pharaohs."
By F.J. BILLESKOV JANSEN, Dr. Phil., Professor at the University of
The bold historian Ove von Spaeth writes in an exciting way about the life of Moses -
if it actually IS Moses he is tracing. -
Unlike other historians, he shows the principle that the accounts must be
assumed for being real as long as they are not disproven or unreasonable.
The Danish author Ove von Spaeth seems to be one of our bold scientists.
By being deeply familiar with Hebrew and ancient Egyptian language he is occupying his readers' imagination
with his discoveries about the life of the famous Moses. To himself he prefers a
withdrawn life - von Spaeth will not interviewed, and he evades the press photographers.
As a historian he has his declared distinctiveness. Many people in the
professions in question think that
a source can only be used when fully proven. This historian for Moses shows
the principle that the presented accounts must be assumed for being real as long
as they are not disproven or unreasonable.
What did we, years back,
learn about Moses? In 'The great Danish Encyclopedia's 13th Volume,
1999, there was merely a summary of the Second Book of Moses (Exodus) story of the
who was taken up from his basket on the Nile and was then brought up by Pharaoh's daughter,
and later, at God's command, he led the children of Israel out of Egypt to Canaan's
border, where he died.
In his first volume, 'The Suppressed Record, Assassinating Moses', 1999,
von Spaeth draws on neglected historical sources. For centuries, Jewish rabbis
have recorded the memories which had emerged about Moses in Egypt.
From Rabbi Abrabanel's information we know that Moses was born three years after
the big conjunction in the constellation we know as Pisces, and this appeared in the February-March
1537 BC. Thus,
Moses is born 1534 BC. The Pharaoh's daughter who took him to heart, was Crown
Princess Hatshepsut, crowned as his father's co-regent. Moses is Egyptian prince
and heir to the throne.
However, dramatic events occur, a rival
having Moses driven away and seeking by every
mean to destroy monuments of the outlaw who seeks abroad, comes back, and
becomes the rescuer of the Hebrews.
In the second part or volume, 'The Enigmatic Son of Pharaoh's daughter', 2000, we
are back to the royal court of Hatshepsut. Before his sudden disappearance Moses
according to the rabbis, achieved high-level positions and acquired all the wisdom of
We know now from Egyptian
history that the mighty Hatshepsut after her father,
Tuthmosis I's death ruled Egypt, and that she had a consort of inferior royal
lineage, Tuthmosis II. And a young, highly-ranked minister, Senmut, being inaugurated
in all the secrets of the government.
Senmut's ambitions were without limits. As an enthusiastic architect leader he
constructed temples and
tombs for the queen and for himself also one of royal equipment.
When the political situation came into a changing he created a new secret tomb
to himself, never completed, since a revolution occurred; he disappeared, and
the tomb was only found in 1925.
In this mausoleum Senmut had placed a star map on which the planetary positions forming a conjunction
so rare that it took place only four times from the year 2200 BC
to 200 AD, including the May 1534 BC. This was, so to speak, the moment when the little
Moses was taken up from the Nile and brought to his royal foster mother.
We do not know with what name the queen had called Moses. The name Moses is Egyptian. Now
it is possible that Senmut by pun may suggest that he was the son of the
reigning queen, which promoted his royalty-like position in all ways. When she
died it was murder, a poisoning, six years after Senmuts disappearance. No
burial is not known.
Von Spaeth has for long prepared a brilliant logical end or a veritable stroke
of genius: Senmut
is Moses. It explains that two candidates to the throne disappear. At the
queen's death, a rival becomes the pharaoh, Tuthmosis III.
Our bold author repeats, varies, and increases his evidences that Senmut is Moses.
This confronts the reader with a choice: faith or doubt.
In the turbulent years from when Senmut disappears and till the queen is poisoned and the
corpse becomes missing, everything can happen. Concerning the presented evidences
the reader must
distinguish between Senmut's and Moses' fate.
The astronomical timing of Senmut's star map is unambiguous, but that this
certain time coincides with
Moses' Nile 'baptism' may be a coincidence. Our information on Moses' Egyptian data
depend on dispersed rabbis' writings through the centuries, and here it will be
even with von Spaeths tolerant criterion: the evidences are true until proven
otherwise - not easy to overcome an instinctive doubt. However, let me as Holberg
suspend my judicium (judgment) and await the final volumes.
Ove von Spaeth: The Enigmatic Son of Pharaoh's
Daughter. Moses' identity and mystery re-evaluated", - Assassinating Moses,
(F.J. Billeskov Jansens's written permission
2.Oct.2001 for free text use by Ove von Spaeth)
Publishers who want to publish
editions of these books in English, German, Spanish,
French, Japanese and other languages may use this address:
A special treasure of knowledge and wisdom
of Greece, Rome, and the Renaissance had originated in Ancient Egypt -
and was here known to connect also with the historical Moses' dramatic
fate and mystery.
Ove von Spaeth has
written an intriguing, new-orientating work presenting this still
influential background of our civilization. • His interdisciplinary
research on history, archaeology, and anthropology goes deeply into
Egyptian tradition, history of religion, initiation cults, star-knowledge,
and mythology - relating to biblical studies, the Rabbinical Writings,
and the authors of Antiquity. • Each volume offers unique insights not
Special information is
presented by clicking on the individual cover illustrations:
(ed.note: reading the orientation is highly
recommended. The books are being translated into English)
News about the book-series: