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A solution to a misunderstood etymology and a new theory on ancient oceanic trade.

Sometimes I wonder if we actually have scholars working in the translation field, or if they may simply be puppets of some agenda that does not allow for some truths to become exposed to the light.  I don’t wish to be harsh, but the evidence is clear that a proper study and competent research is within their grasp, and that inherent in their professionalism is a desire for the truth. It is an enigmatic situation when they examine an etymology for a popular and important ancient geographic location such as a trade city and yet do not seem capable of putting together all of the clues and arriving at that truth.

I’ve struggled to obtain an answer to the question of whether or not their acts are intentional but I have been unable to obtain a firm answer.  To make it short, we certainly need to re-examine with fresh eyes nearly everything about our history that is commonly held to be understood.

While researching the end times and the reported battles that are held by many Christians to begin with the Second Coming, at some as yet unpublished date in the future, I came across the traditional etymology offered for the Tell (mount, hill) Megiddo (place of crowds) from Biblical tales, better known by the Greek translation’s butchering of that name to one of Armageddon.

[The modern word Tell was known to the Hebrew people as Har, and so the Har-Megiddo became the Armageddon of the Greek translation in the Septuagint. This appears only once under the Greek name in Revelation 16:16.]

I’m going to lay out a series of facts in evidence, and then propose a theory that connects all of these into one neat package, along with a proposal for further historical research further afield.

During the Bronze Age, Megiddo was an important Canaanite city-state and during the Iron Age, a royal city in the Kingdom of Israel.  It’s situated on the main ancient trade route between Egypt and Mesopotamia, but this route also connected Egypt with Syria and Anatolia (modern Turkey) as well.  And with Sumerian ships plying their routes as far as India, the road near Megiddo represented an important link in the chain of commerce.

Megiddo guarded the western branch of a narrow pass on the most important trade route of the ancient Fertile Crescent, linking Egypt with Mesopotamia and Asia Minor and known today as Via Maris. Because of its strategic location, Megiddo was the site of several battles. It was inhabited approximately from 5000 to 350 BCE, or even, as Megiddo Expedition archaeologists suggest, since around 7000 BCE.

Megiddo is located in the Jezreel Valley in Palestine, about 52 miles north of Jerusalem.  It’s also located about 20 miles south-east of Haifa, an important port in modern Israel.  But most importantly it was located very close to the Kishon River which drains the Jezreel Valley that contains Megiddo.  Today its upper reaches are dry in summer and torrential in winter, but prior to the end of the Bronze Age there was much more water flowing down to empty at Haifa.  The Kishon empties into the Mediterranean Sea about two miles northeast of Haifa.   The Kishon River collects the streams from the western slopes of Gilboa in the rainy season; and the water from the strong spring at Jenin. Contributions also come from the copious fountains in the neighborhood of Megiddo.

Haifa, scene of a large Bay on the Mediterranean Sea, and built on the slopes of Mount Carmel,  has a history spanning no more than about 3,000 years. The earliest known settlement in the vicinity was Tell Abu Hawam, a small port city established in the Late Bronze Age (14th century BCE).  However, just north of there on the same bay is Acre.

Acre, known locally as Akko or Akka, is a city in the coastal plain region of the Northern District of Israel.  It sits in a natural harbor at the northern extremity of Haifa Bay on the coast of the Mediterranean’s Levantine Sea.  [The ancient Phoenician port of Tyre is also located not far from the Haifa area.]    The remains of the oldest settlement at the site of modern Acre were found at a tell (archaeological mound) located 1.5 km (0.93 mi) east of the modern city of Acre. Acre was known as Tel Akko in Hebrew and Tell el-Fukhar in Arabic, and its remains date to about 3300 BC or during the Early Bronze Age.  And so the trade flowing down the Kishon from Megiddo to the port at Acre, could have, as early as 3300 BC, found its way to ports throughout southern Europe, and perhaps even a bit further.

One evidence of the early flowering of Megiddo as an important development is the Great Temple, a circular alter-like shrine from the Early Bronze Age period.  This  5,000 year old “Great Temple”, (ca. 3000 BCE), has been described by its excavators as “the most monumental single edifice so far uncovered in the  Levant and ranks among the largest structures of its time in the Near East.” The structure includes an immense, 47.5 by 22 meters sanctuary. The temple was more than ten times larger than the typical temple of that era and was determined to be the site of ritual animal sacrifice. Corridors were used to store bones after ritual sacrifice. More than 80% of the animal remains were of young sheep and goats; the rest were cattle.  Much of this would have been dedicated to the worship of Ba’al (or Baal, and similar gods such as Marduk), who were later equated by the early Christians and Hebrews as a reference to Satan.

The Old Testament contains several mentions of Megiddo, one of which affirms its ancient access to substantial waters:   Judges 5:19 “The kings came and fought, then fought the kings of Canaan in Taanach by the waters of Megiddo; they took no gain of money.”

According to the Book of Revelation in the New Testament of the Christian Bible, Armageddon  from Ancient Greek:  Harmagedon, from Hebrew: Har Megiddo) is the prophesied location of a gathering of armies for a battle during the end times, which is variously interpreted as either a literal or a symbolic location. The term is also used in a generic sense to refer to any end of the world scenario. In Islamic theology, Armageddon is also mentioned in Hadith as the Greatest Armageddon or Al-Malhama Al-Kubra (the great battle).  And the “battle” that they speak of is said to represent the final battle between the forces of a returned Jesus Christ and the hordes of Satan, or the forces of light versus the forces of darkness.

I notice that our scholars attempt to connect Megiddo with the Babylonians and roughly with the 1900s BC era as the earliest exchanges between the two.  This is patently false.  We have mentions of Megiddo in earlier Sumerian tablets (2600 BC) and copies of the Epic of Gilgamesh in a very old form were uncovered in Megiddo.  But we can go back much further, as I will outline below.

The Sumerians had invented sailboats in order to more efficiently trade with neighboring civilizations.  The Sumerian sailboat was constructed from light materials which not only enabled it to float but allowed the boats to easily be ferried from land to sea and back again. We find boat symbolism in artifacts from the ancient urban centers of Uruk, an important city in Sumerian times (3600-3100 BC was the Late Uruk period), when Uruk and Ur (both are now part of Iraq), were much closer to the Persian Gulf than they are today.  While reed boats were used on the two rivers (Euphrates and Tigris), these sailing craft carried trade goods to as far as the coasts of India and cities in between.

Parts of the Kishon River between Megiddo and Haifa Bay/Acre are swampy.  We no longer have records to tell us if they were that way during the period prior to the droughts of the Late Bronze Age, but perhaps we can rely on other sources to provide both that information and an early connection between the merchant ships of the Sumerians and the eager buyers of goods in Mediterranean ports.

We can provide a true etymology for the name of Megiddo (Armageddon) and show not only its connection to the merchants of Sumeria as early as 3300 BC but also to its historical understanding as an important trans-shipment point between the ancient trade routes of Egypt and the countries that border upon the Mediterranean.  And we owe that connection to the Egyptian-appointed governor of Megiddo, by the name of Biridiya.  His correspondences (eight letters) with Pharaoh are part of the collection known as the Amarna Letters, dated to between 1360 and 1332 BC.  But what’s interesting about them is that portions of them are written in the Akkadian language, popular in that time period as well, but with Sumerian cuneiform as the actual underlying alphabet.

He referred to Megiddo in his letters to Egypt as Ma-gid-da ki.  Our scholars tell us that these words are from the Akkadian language.  I would love to see their evidence of that.  Those words are very easily confirmed as being from the much earlier Sumerian language, and not the Akkadian. And yes, they would know this, since Akkadian is part of the Semitic language family and Sumerian is a language isolate; it is not in any way similar to either Akkadian or any other language. So why would they “hide” this knowledge from us – this link between 3300 BC Sumerian merchants who had ships and the Kishon river area of Megiddo, established and with Great Temples even earlier than that era, which had direct access to Acre, Tyre and then on to all of the ancient ports on the Mediterranean Sea and perhaps beyond?

I believe that it is time that I provide the evidence that I hinted at in the beginning of this report, and that is in regard to the true etymology of the city of Megiddo and its connection to the Sumerians of 3300 BC.

Ma-gid-da ki, the name provided by its governor, is easily recognized as being composed of words used popularly in Sumer as early as 3300 BC:

Magid, or ma2-gid2 in Sumerian, is defined as “to haul a boat or ship”.  Ma2 actually indicates a ship or boat, and gid2 means “to drag or tow a boat upstream, to pass along, to transfer”.

The da portion is defined as:  “line, edge, side”, and their word ki has always meant “place; ground, earth, land; toward; country; lower, down below”.

Putting these together, the Sumerian etymology for Megiddo gives us:  The place on the line (trade route or edge of same) where ships or boats are dragged upstream (along the Kishon River towards the bay at Acre). For some areas of the Kishon River that were swampy, the light ships of Sumer would need to be hauled manually to the bay on the Mediterranean.

For some reason, this evidence is not entertained by modern scholars. Is it due to the fact that the Sumerians used their sailboats to trade with people as far away as India, and thus, using the men of Megiddo to haul their ships upstream to the Mediterranean harbor, could have used those same craft to visit Greek, Italian, Spanish, or even English ports, much as the Phoenicians did but as early as five thousand and more years ago?  With willing sellers and anxious buyers, could trade from India, Egypt, Sumer and the Levant not have reached the western Mediterranean or perhaps further?

When we hear rumors and read the reports from very early settlers in Brazil that there were at one time ruins of very ancient cities in the mountains of northern Brazil, containing columns whose designs had never been seen by those explorers, and with writings on those columns that were not recognizable by them, can we posit a visit by early Sumerian merchants? This is the speculative portion of my report, obviously, but I believe it is something that we might consider.

When markings on stone and on cave walls are uncovered in Great Britain, in locations that were inhabited very early in history, can we not at least speculate about the possibility that the Sumerians, as well as the Phoenicians, may have visited those shores in early times?

Are those ideas of early Sumerian sailors the type of historical connections that we, the common folk, are not normally going to be taught? Evidence that the Sumerians not only were in Megiddo (in modern Palestine) over five thousand years ago, and probably even gave their name to that city – named for the local barge haulers or cargo trans-shippers of that early period, certainly does not fit in with the reports of history that we are being sold today in our Universities and in peer-reviewed archaeological reports.
Other than boats made of cane that they used on the local rivers, were you ever taught that the Sumerians had invented other craft, in the form of ships of sail, at an early date?

Why did it take until now for us to learn that the origin of the city of Megiddo is very clear and easy to determine?  Why do they insist on selling us on an Armageddon that is much, much younger than it actually is?  Are they trying to keep us from even researching the site of Armageddon?

Here is a recap of my evidence:

The Sumerians had sailing ships that roamed as far as India, as early as five thousand years ago.

The words that make up the name for Megiddo are clearly Sumerian in origin, and they are from a period that corresponds to this same time period of five thousand years ago.  Its meaning relates to hauling ships and goods upstream along the Kishon river to a nearby natural bay at the ancient port of Acre.

Megiddo itself has Great Temples dating to that period and earlier, and is situated on the Kishon River, which has portions that are swampy and would require boats or ships to be hauled – either with animals or by humans.

Acre, on the bay of modern Haifa, is at least that old, and was an ancient port, as well as the nearby port at Type in Phoenicia, for the entire Mediterranean.  These Phoenicians were also known as early sea-faring folk, but from about 1500 BC or so.

I would certainly appreciate your thoughts and comments on this idea.