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mike Meehan

Noah's Ark and all that

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Joanna Lumley made a program relating to Noah's Ark which was broadcast a few nights ago which was interesting but set me off thinking further.

No explanation was given for 'The Flood' but thinking about it, the most probable explanation is likely to be the melting of ice at the end of the last Ice Age.

During the Ice Age there is evidence to conclude the the levels of the Mediterranean and the Black Seas were much lower than their present levels, in fact it is suggested that they were landlocked with the latter being a large freshwater lake.

Overall the melting caused the sea levels worldwide to rise by some 150 metres inundating the landbridge between the British Isles and the continent until the ancient land of 'Doggerland' finally gave up its quest to remain dry land circa 8,200 years ago, whilst Ireland became separated some 10,000 years ago.

Prior to this there would have been settlements in low lying regions around the various coasts and on islands, now submerged.

The melt water would have caused some rise in the Mediterranean and the Seas but it is likely that the rise in the level of the Atlantic Ocean were faster, so much so that the waters from the Atlantic overflowed into the Mediterranean until these two bodies achieved the same level.

As the depth of the Mediterranean increased, this in turn overflowed into the Black Sea, flooding the coastal regions and turning a fresh water lake into the salt water sea we know today. This is believed to be some 6,000 to 7,000 years ago, a time when Middle Eastern communities were changing from a hunter/gatherer life style to a more settled farming life style, within the time frame, in my view, for these events to be remembered in folk lore.

Flood legends are not just confined to the Middle East but they are contained within the folk lore of peoples across the globe, so it appears to me that the rising sea levels on a global scale from the melting ice could give rise to legends of floods from the peoples living in the then low lying coastal areas.

http://christiananswers.net/q-crs/crs-blacksea.html

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Huge thick ice sheets on land above sea level lock up huge volumes of water. As climate fluctuates these sheets either become bigger or start to melt. Meltwater runoff will eventually reach the open sea, usually in a leasurely but significant way. Other times landlocked lakes formed by glacial till dams or ice dams can give way suddenly. Can't remember what prog or chanel but I've seen a theory that large ice dam and lake in N. America released so much water that the sea level rose in a couple of years and it was sufficient to flood coastal areas of the Med and then over into the Black Sea. This deluge, if it occured, would have had significant impact on the local population of the time. It also implied that it helped the spread of farming technology by forcing these peoples to take to boats and seek new lands.

There is also the complex question of how the North Sea was formed when Doggerland was inundated. Was this a gradual event or catastrophic in nature?

http://www.bbc.co.uk...t-fife-18687504

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Huge thick ice sheets on land above sea level lock up huge volumes of water. As climate fluctuates these sheets either become bigger or start to melt. Meltwater runoff will eventually reach the open sea, usually in a leasurely but significant way. Other times landlocked lakes formed by glacial till dams or ice dams can give way suddenly. Can't remember what prog or chanel but I've seen a theory that large ice dam and lake in N. America released so much water that the sea level rose in a couple of years and it was sufficient to flood coastal areas of the Med and then over into the Black Sea. This deluge, if it occured, would have had significant impact on the local population of the time. It also implied that it helped the spread of farming technology by forcing these peoples to take to boats and seek new lands.

There is also the complex question of how the North Sea was formed when Doggerland was inundated. Was this a gradual event or catastrophic in nature?

http://www.bbc.co.uk...t-fife-18687504

There is a suggestion that the final inundation was caused by a tsunami as a result of a landslip into the sea off Norway.

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I've tended to wonder as to whether we could have had pockets of highly organised societies that were lost during the last inundations?

We worry today at the impacts of global warming and sea level rise on some of our major cities. We traditionaly sited these at the lowest bridging point of major rivers.

When we look at ice age Europe all the major rivers drained into one mega river that entered the Atlantic off Portugal. Could there have been major settlement on the flood plain of this drainage basin? What of Asia and it's continental shelf/drainage basins?

Is 'Atlantis' another collective memory of a pre flood society that did not survive the inundation? Was there some kind of 'Eden' with long settled Hunter gatherer societies following the prehistoric herds on the old coastal plains? Could they have had a structure in their society that allowed for 'holy men' that had great natural wisdom/spirituality? Do the first ritual centres we find reflect a fragmented knowledge of this past 'religion'?

We seemed to live quite well in the tribal groups of the united states and conditions on our own 'great plains' would have been similar to the pre-settler great plains so why not as sophisticated as those tribes before 'the flood' took land and animals?

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To be honest I think Noah would have been board watching Ms Lumley, it didn't really offer very much in this area.

As mentioned having seen previous documentaries on this they all suggest the Med bridging the gap and flowing openly into the Black sea, which sorta aligns where she was at. The program itself didn't really offer fresh explantations, and others have already been there.

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It's repeated from 5.15 today on ITV 1.

Whatever the possible kernel of truth, I can't see that what we now call Mt Ararat is that likely to have been swamped by sudden flooding in the Med. basin as it's too far away and too high even for the base of it to have got swamped. I haven't seen the programme, so don't know whether she looked at the other candidate sites.

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It's repeated from 5.15 today on ITV 1.

Whatever the possible kernel of truth, I can't see that what we now call Mt Ararat is that likely to have been swamped by sudden flooding in the Med. basin as it's too far away and too high even for the base of it to have got swamped. I haven't seen the programme, so don't know whether she looked at the other candidate sites.

Thanks CR, red button pressed smiliz39.gif

May get chance to watch it tomorrow, if i can gain access...sorry.gif

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It's repeated from 5.15 today on ITV 1.

Whatever the possible kernel of truth, I can't see that what we now call Mt Ararat is that likely to have been swamped by sudden flooding in the Med. basin as it's too far away and too high even for the base of it to have got swamped. I haven't seen the programme, so don't know whether she looked at the other candidate sites.

Mt Ararat is not that far from the coast and if the level of the Black Sea suddenly rises by some 150 metres it could be that the ark settled on what is now the coastline but was previously a foothill to that area.

In any case these legends are often embellished through time and although it is more than likely there is an element of truth, I doubt that the incident occurred in exactly the same way as it has been described in the Bible.

I think it more likely that Noah had the good fortune to be on a boat which was able to withstand the forces of a turbulent current to eventually come to rest against dry land when most of his neighbours would have perished. Of course back in those days you would say that you had been saved by God and no doubt believed it; add a few more embellishments and we have the story as we understand it today.

But Noah would have been the only one to survive hence the other stories from around the globe.

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The Mediterranean has also been a below sea-level area suddenly inundated through Gibraltar more than once

Also these earlier civilisations must have come across fossilised sea creatures in places now high above the sea.

The story is not without foundation but evolved from a folk memory of sudden apocalyptic flooding into the moral tale about you must be good people or God will get angry and nature will rise up and destroy civilisation.

This concept is still being used to add weight to unproven theories today.

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The results so far on this thread really are mind boggling and I would suggest they show a mostly neglected field of research where there is far more to learn.

Having reviewed the contents so far it appears likely that by the end of the ice age that the majority of civilised mankind, i.e. that living in settled cities and having a farming life style as opposed to hunter/gathering, would have lived in more coastal areas just as a great many of the large cities of the world are located today,

This suggests that civilisation goes back much further than what I have previously been led to believe, i.e. circa 10,000 years ago. The river referred to in Gujarat would well have been formed by the melting glaciers on the Himalayas, hence the volume of water.

More sudden inundations where the general sea level rose quickly could have been caused by the breach of the 'dam' on the Laurention ice sheet, the waters of which went on to carve out the Grand Canyon amongst other things.

When you think about it, it must have been a real catastrophy with only a minority, in some cases where the flooding was swift, surviving.

It probably put back the development of mankind by several hundreds of years, if not thousands.

It really makes you wonder what other cities there are hidden beneath the waves, perhaps we are on the wrong track with Atlantis and it may not have been the island which exploded near Crete some 3,500 years ago but some city and lands buried beneath the waves somewhere. It is often said that nowadays we know more about space than we do about our oceans and seas.

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Local legend around these parts is that the Ark is buried beneath Glastonbury Tor. Given the flooding issues lately and the repercussions on the Somerset levels, I reckon they ought to excavate it pronto.

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Local legend around these parts is that the Ark is buried beneath Glastonbury Tor. Given the flooding issues lately and the repercussions on the Somerset levels, I reckon they ought to excavate it pronto.

Naw - after all this time it is bound to have a few holes in it - just wouldn't be safe to sail - best stick to the rubber dinghies, welly boots and waders.

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I think it best to stick to the 'core' of the myth and not the 'validation' others sought to put in place later. We have been out of Africa (2nd wave) for 40 thousand years so we saw the last ice age and obviously thrived and survived in the less blighted areas. The odds are that many of these areas were coastal (as we moved out of Africa we followed coasts and up rivers to points where we could cross them) and so impacted by the collapse of the ice sheets and sea level rises this drove. Some places will have seen rapid inundations as key sections of the ice sheets underwent catastrophic collapse (ten year periods of rapid sea level change?) as we see from reconstructions of sea levels at the end of the last ice age.

Sections of every population on the planet will have lived through these changes and, being far removed from the ice, would have had no explaination for the rises and loss of good habitat. Loss of ways of life and forced change would have you wondering what you have done to deserve it?

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I think it best to stick to the 'core' of the myth and not the 'validation' others sought to put in place later. We have been out of Africa (2nd wave) for 40 thousand years so we saw the last ice age and obviously thrived and survived in the less blighted areas. The odds are that many of these areas were coastal (as we moved out of Africa we followed coasts and up rivers to points where we could cross them) and so impacted by the collapse of the ice sheets and sea level rises this drove. Some places will have seen rapid inundations as key sections of the ice sheets underwent catastrophic collapse (ten year periods of rapid sea level change?) as we see from reconstructions of sea levels at the end of the last ice age.

Sections of every population on the planet will have lived through these changes and, being far removed from the ice, would have had no explaination for the rises and loss of good habitat. Loss of ways of life and forced change would have you wondering what you have done to deserve it?

The difference between then and now being that now we have available worldwide communication and some understanding of what is going on whereas in the times of yore the people would have put it down to displeasing the gods.

However if we were to put more research into the discovery of 'drowned cities' it would help us understand more and possibly, as I suspect, push back the beginnings of civilisation further back in time.

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I believe we have a Turkish site that could be over 10,000yrs old so we are already pushing 'settled' living back to the end of the ice age?

Of course Turkey has a Black sea coast so would have had folk who witnessed the innundation from the Med. 8,000yrs ago?

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