Sunday, June 7, 2015

How did Edom become Rome?

On my Blog on Bible Prophecy I argued based mainly on Biblical Eschatology that Edom became Rome.  Then I further backed that up with a look at what we know about Edomite and Roman Religon.  All of that is also relevant to my current view on Daniel 11:36-45.

On this Blog I've previously touched on the Edom=Rome issue when discussing the Hycsos as the Amalekites.  And to some extent what I said there overlaps with my study on Dan.

Now I want to get into my recently developed thoughts on how Edom became Rome.  Major reason why that's relevant here has to do with Veilkovsky and his followers work on The Dark Age of Greece.

Clearly Greek and Roman mythology are frequently more distorted from the real history behind them then even many other highly distorted mythologies.  A product of them reinventing their mythology multiple times.

I agree that Homer probably actually wrote in the 7th century BC as opposed to the traditional 8th, and that The Iliad is probably an imaginative mixing of characters and events linked to both the 7th century BC fall of Troy VIII and the 12th century BC fall of Troy II.  With perhaps sprinklings of myths not originally linked to Troy at all.

Dating when Aeneas lived based on when Dido lived is a mistake however.  None of the myths connecting Aeneas to Dido began to pop up until after the Punic Wars, or at least after they started.  It was prompted by a desire to give a Romantic background to Rome and Carthage's rivalry for dominance of the Western Mediterranean.

Thing is, I've grown skeptical that Aeneas originally had anything to do with Rome at all.  His connection to Rome did exist before Virgil and Livy, but it still seems late, after they began borrowing more and more from Greece.  Aeneas was definitely an unresolved sequel hook in The Iliad, which I think Roman imagination latched onto.

I think originally like most City-States Rome had one key mythical founder, Romulus.   Now I think some Edomite tribes came to Italy well before Romulus, like the Italian Pelasgians, and the Sabines who were a Spartan offshoot.  But I think Romulus and Remus are the key to how the Edomite kingdom that had been subject to Davidic Kings for generations became Rome.

Now I'm going to do some copying from Wikipedia.
Romulus and Remus were the twin brothers and main characters of Rome's foundation myth. (The pronunciation in English is different from the Latin original Rōmulus and Rĕmus). Their mother was Rhea Silvia, daughter of Numitor, king of Alba Longa. Before their conception, Numitor's brother Amulius seized power, killed Numitor's male heirs and forced Rhea Silvia to become a Vestal Virgin, sworn to chastity. Rhea Silvia conceived the twins by the god Mars, or by the god Hercules. Once the twins were born, Amulius had them abandoned to die in the Tiber river. They were saved by a series of miraculous interventions: the river carried them to safety, a she-wolf (in Latin, lupa) found and suckled them, and a woodpecker fed them. A shepherd and his wife found them and fostered them to manhood as simple shepherds. The twins, still ignorant of their true origins, proved to be natural leaders. Each acquired many followers. When they discovered the truth of their birth, they killed Amulius and restored Numitor to his throne. Rather than wait to inherit Alba Longa, they chose to found a new city.
My hypothesis is, all of this part of the story was only later in it's passing down changed geographically to being already in Italy.  Alba Longa replaced an Edomite City south of the Dead Sea.  And The Tiber replaced a river in that area.  They decided to travel and found a new city somewhere else because this is during the time when Assyria was becoming a threat to the whole area. The Northern Kingdom's fall was approaching.

Eventually 753 BC was settled on as the official Date of Rome's founding, but Ancient sources actually had dates varying from 758 BC to 728 BC.  Ussher argued that it was really in 748 BC.  It could be the restored King Numitor is the king known from Assyrian inscriptions as Kaus-Malaka around 745 BC.  Kaus-Malaka sounds like it's probably a throne name and not a personal one.  But Numitor could also be changed with the people's language change to Latin.

A potential Semitic origin for the name of Romulus (and thus Rome) could be words like Rowmah (Strongs 7317) or Rowman (Strongs 7318) .  Remus could interestingly enough derive from the controversial Semitic word the KJV translates Unicorn.

It might be that as Aeneas was made part of Roman Mythology, stories originally affiliated with Romulus and Remus became attached to him.  At least the key part about being someone who traveled from across the Mediterranean to found a new city.

Later as Romulus's city became successful more Edomites might have migrated there.

Update: Second Hypothosis

I've come up with a second one, still based on the premise that the cycle of myths around Aeneas in Italy were originally peeled off from myths about Romulus.

This time I'm thinking maybe Romulus and Remus should be identified with Ascanius and Silvius, the sons of Aeneas and Lavina.  Lavina could be identified with Rea Silvia and Latinus with Numitor.  Or Numitor and Armulius represent a generation between Latinus and Lavina that had been removed.

And when Aeneas was added to Roman mythology Troy replaced Edom and Aeneas was put in place of a man later deified as Mars.  Mars is another of the Roman deities who's name wasn't borrowed from the Etruscan pantheon, the Etruscan war god was Laran.  The name Mars could have a Semitic origin as Mari (Strongs number  4805) which means rebel or rebellious, it's easy to make a connection between Rebellion and War.

The last reference to Edom in their Biblical region is before the time of the three Edomite kings referred to in Assyrian inscriptions.  I'm actually starting to think the people we assume to be Edomites of Assyrian inscriptions may actually be the Ishmaelite tribe of Dumah, who later became the Idumeans and were also affiliated with Mount Sier.  Since the Assyrian inscriptions actually say Udumi or Udumu.

Speaking of the Etruscans, the official theory on their connection to the Sea Peoples doesn't work well with Velikovskian chronology. Where they came from I'm working on.  That Etruscans are present in the Aeneas cycle of myths could be evidence against whoever was behind those stories living in the 1100s since the Etruscan civilization began around 900 BC.

I think since I'm a writer I may someday write a fictional narrative based on how I think this might have played out.  I really like the 1962 Steve Reeves film The Avenger where he played Aeneas.  He also did one where he played Romulus I haven't seen yet.


  1. Interesting post. I like that Steve Reeves' movie too - and haven't seen the Romulus one yet.

    It's all fascinating. I wish DNA testing could tell us more about what is and isn't true in all these mythologies.

    1. I have a separate post on DNA speculation.