The Earth Chronicles deal with the history and prehistory of Earth and humankind. Each book in the series is based upon information written on clay tablets by the ancient civilizations of the Near East. For the first time, the entire Earth Chronicles series is now available in a hardcover collector's edition.
About the Author
Zecharia Sitchin (1920-2010), an eminent Orientalist and biblical scholar, was born in Russia and grew up in Palestine, where he acquired a profound knowledge of modern and ancient Hebrew, other Semitic and European languages, the Old Testament, and the history and archaeology of the Near East. A graduate of the University of London with a degree in economic history, he worked as a journalist and editor in Israel for many years prior to undertaking his life’s work--The Earth Chronicles.
One of the few scholars able to read the clay tablets and interpret ancient Sumerian and Akkadian, Sitchin based The Earth Chronicles series on the texts and pictorial evidence recorded by the ancient civilizations of the Near East. His books have been widely translated, reprinted in paperback editions, converted to Braille for the blind, and featured on radio and television programs.
Read an Excerpt
In Search of Paradise
There was a time -- our ancient scriptures tell us -- when Immortality was within the grasp of Mankind.
A golden age it was, when Man lived with his Creator in the Garden of Eden-Man tending the wonderful orchard, God taking strolls in the afternoon breeze. "And the Lord God caused to grow from the ground every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for eating; and the Tree of Life was in the orchard, and the Tree of Knowing good and evil. And a river went out of Eden to water the garden, and from there it was parted and became four principal streams: the name of the first is Pishon ... and of the second Gihon ... and of the third Tigris ... and the fourth river is the Euphrates."
Of the fruit of every tree were Adam and Eve permitted to eat-except of the fruit of the Tree of Knowing. But once they did (tempted by the Serpent) -- the Lord God grew concerned over the matter of Immortality:
Then did the Lord Yahweh say: "Behold, the Adam has become as one of us to know good and evil;
And the Lord Yahweh expelled the Adam from the Garden of Eden...And He placed at the east of the Garden of Eden the Cherubim, and the Flaming Sword which revolveth, to guard the way to the Tree of Life.
So was Man cast out of the very place where eternal life was within his grasp. But though barred from it, he has never ceased to remember it, to yearn for it, and to try to reach it.
Eversince that expulsion from Paradise, heroes have gone to the ends of Earth in search of Immortality; a selected few were given a glimpse of it; and simple folk claimed to have chanced upon it. Throughout the ages, the Search for Paradise was the realm of the individual; but earlier in this millenium, it was launched as the national enterprise of mighty kingdoms.
The New World was discovered -- so have we been led to believe -- when explorers went seeking a new, maritime route to India and her wealth. True -- but not the whole truth; for what Ferdinand and Isabel, king and queen of Spain, had desired most to find was the Fountain of Eternal Youth: a magical fountain whose waters rejuvenate the old and keep one young forever, for it springs from a well in Paradise.
No sooner had Columbus and his men set foot in what they all thought were the islands off India (the "West Indies"), than they combined the exploration of the new lands with a search for the legendary Fountain whose waters "made old men young again." Captured "Indians" were questioned, even tortured, by the Spaniards, so that they would reveal the secret location of the Fountain.
One who excelled in such investigations was Ponce de Leon, a professional soldier and adventurer, who rose through the ranks to become governor of the part of the island of Hispaniola now called Haiti, and of Puerto Rico. In 1511, he witnessed the interrogation of some captured Indians. Describing their island, they spoke of its pearls and other riches. They also extolled the marvelous virtues of its waters. A spring there is, they said, of which an islander "grievously oppressed with old age" had drunk. As a result, he "brought home manly strength and has practiced all manly performances, having taken a wife again and begotten children."
Listening with mounting excitement, Ponce de Leon -- himself an aging man -- was convinced that the Indians were describing the miraculous Fountain of the rejuvenating waters. Their postscript, that the old man who drank of the waters regained his manly strength, could resume practicing "all manly performances," and even took again a young wife who bore him children -- was the most conclusive aspect of their tale. For in the court of Spain, as throughout Europe, there hung numerous paintings by the greatest painters, and whenever they depicted love scenes or sexual allegories, they included in the scene a fountain. Perhaps the most famous of such paintings, Titian's Love Sacred and Love Pro Profane, was created at about the time the Spaniards were on their quest in the Indies. As everyone well knew, the Fountain in the paintings hinted at the ultimate lovemaking; the Fountain whose waters make possible "all manly performances" through Eternal Youth.
Ponce de Leon's report to King Ferdinand is reflected in the records kept by the official court historian, Peter Martyr de Angleria. As stated in his Decade de Orbe Novo [Decades of the New World], the Indians who had come from the islands of Lucayos or the Bahamas, had revealed that "there is an island ... in which there is a perennial spring of running water of such marvelous virtue, that the waters there of being drunk, perhaps with some diet, make old men young again." Many researches, such as Ponce de Leon's Fountain of Youth: History of a Geographical Myth by Leonardo Olschkil have established that "the Fountain of Youth was the most popular and characteristic expression of the emotions and expectations which agitated the conquerors of the New World." Undoubtedly, Ferdinand the king of Spain was one of those so agitated, so expectant for the definitive news.
So, when word came from Ponce de Leon, Ferdinand lost little time. He at once granted Ponce de Leon a Patent of Discovery (dated February 23, 1512), authorizing an expedition from the island of Hispaniola northward. The admiralty was ordered to assist Ponce de Leon and make available to him the best ships and seamen, so that he might discover without delay the island of "Beininy" (Bimini). The king made one condition explicit: "that after having reached the island and learned what is in it, you shall send me a report of it."The Stairway to Heaven. Copyright © by Zecharia Sitchin. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Table of ContentsI. IN SEARCH OF PARADISE
II. THE IMMORTAL ANCESTORS
III. THE PHARAOH'S JOURNEY TO THE AFTERLIFE
IV. THE STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN
V. THE GODS WHO CAME TO PLANET EARTH
VI. IN THE DAYS BEFORE THE DELUGE
VII. GILGAMESH: THE KING WHO REFUSED TO DIE
VIII. RIDERS OF THE CLOUDS
IX. THE LANDING PLACE
X. TILMUN: LAND OF THE ROCKETSHIPS
XI. THE ELUSIVE MOUNT
XII. THE PYRAMIDS OF GODS AND KINGS
XIII. FORGING THE PHARAOH'S NAME
XIV. THE GAZE OF THE SPHINX
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
If you can take the leap of faith required to enjoy Sitchen's works you will be greatly rewarded.
And they are completely water proof.
Recommend for those interested in the afterlife.