The Cosmic Mountain in Canaan and the Old Testament

Overview

The term "cosmic mountain" is a rendering of the nineteenth-century German scholarly designation Weltberg, which was derived from ancient Mesopotamian sources. The book offers a critique of the concept, especially as it has been applied to West Semitic religion, chiefly that witnessed to in Ugaritic texts and the Bible. Chapter 2 examines the connection of various Ugaritic deities to sacred mountains—El, Baal, Mot, Anat, and other deities. Chapter 3 studies the concept in Genesis, in the Sinai and Zion ...

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Overview

The term "cosmic mountain" is a rendering of the nineteenth-century German scholarly designation Weltberg, which was derived from ancient Mesopotamian sources. The book offers a critique of the concept, especially as it has been applied to West Semitic religion, chiefly that witnessed to in Ugaritic texts and the Bible. Chapter 2 examines the connection of various Ugaritic deities to sacred mountains—El, Baal, Mot, Anat, and other deities. Chapter 3 studies the concept in Genesis, in the Sinai and Zion traditions, and in the Solomonic Temple. The last chapter looks at the concept in some literature of Early Judaism.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781608997176
  • Publisher: Wipf & Stock Publishers
  • Publication date: 7/1/2010
  • Pages: 236

Meet the Author

Richard J. Clifford, S.J. is Professor of Old Testament at the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry, where he served as Founding Dean from 2008-2010. Prior to the re-affiliation of Weston Jesuit School of Theology with Boston College, he taught biblical studies there from 1970. A graduate of Boston College (AB, MA), Weston Jesuit School of Theology (STL), and Harvard University (PhD), he was General Editor of the Catholic Biblical Quarterly and is a former President of the Catholic Biblical Association. Among his professional scholarly interests are the ancient Near Eastern background of the Bible, the Wisdom Literature, Psalms, Genesis, and the interpretation of the Christian Bible in contemporary culture. Recent books include Creation in the Ancient Near East and in the Hebrew Bible (Catholic Biblical Quarterly Monograph Series 26, 1994), Wisdom Literature (Abingdon), Proverbs (Old Testament Library series), and Psalms 1-72, and Psalms 73-150 in the Abingdon Old Testament Series.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 1

I The Ancient Near Eastern Background 9

The Cosmic Center in Mesopotamia 9

The Mountain in Egypt 25

The Cosmic Mountain among the Hurrians and Hittites 29

II The Cosmic Mountain in Canaan 34

El 35

Baal 57

Mot's Dwelling 79

Anat 86

Koshar wa-Khasis 90

Glyptic Evidence 93

III The Cosmic Mountain in the Old Testament 98

The Genesis Traditions 98

Sinai Traditions 107

Zion Traditions 131

Archaic Traditions Other than Those Concerning Zion 160

Cosmic Mountain Symbolism in the Solomonic Temple 177

IV The Cosmic Center in Intertestamental Literature 182

Conclusion 190

Synoptic Table 193

Bibliography 203

Indexes 213

Biblical References 213

Subject Index 217

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