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The Challenge of Jewish History

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There is a well-known conundrum concerning Jewish history: The conventional chronology of the Western world – and academia – is in direct conflict with traditional Jewish sources over the history of … history. Incredibly, there is a gap of roughly 200 years: For instance, the Talmud says the Second Temple stood for roughly 400 years, while mainstream historians today conclude that it stood for almost 600 years.

This conflict has major implications on what occurred to who, and when. It also seems to question the accuracy of the entire Jewish tradition as accepted dating methods seem to contradict core parts of the traditional Jewish narrative.

In presenting fresh and startling astronomical, mathematical and archaeological evidence, Rabbi Alexander Hool has charted new ground in his quest to find the solution to this ancient problem. The Challenge of Jewish History is revolutionary: it questions all assumptions, dispels unfounded myths, and transports us back in time over 2,500 years.

With a subject of great significance and fascination to all those interested in history, and a wealth of scholarship and sources to impress academics, this intriguing book gives us a new perspective on Jewish — and world — history.

 

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Book Description

There is a well-known conundrum concerning Jewish history: The conventional chronology of the Western world – and academia – is in direct conflict with traditional Jewish sources over the history of … history. Incredibly, there is a gap of roughly 200 years: For instance, the Talmud says the Second Temple stood for roughly 400 years, while mainstream historians today conclude that it stood for almost 600 years.

This conflict has major implications on what occurred to who, and when. It also seems to question the accuracy of the entire Jewish tradition as accepted dating methods seem to contradict core parts of the traditional Jewish narrative.

In presenting fresh and startling astronomical, mathematical and archaeological evidence, Rabbi Alexander Hool has charted new ground in his quest to find the solution to this ancient problem. The Challenge of Jewish History is revolutionary: it questions all assumptions, dispels unfounded myths, and transports us back in time over 2,500 years.

With a subject of great significance and fascination to all those interested in history, and a wealth of scholarship and sources to impress academics, this intriguing book gives us a new perspective on Jewish — and world — history.

About The Author

Rabbi Alexander Hool grew up under the tutelage of his father, Rabbi Maurice Hool of Kingsbury, London, UK. He learned in Gateshead Yeshivah for many years under the direction of the Rosh Yeshiva, Rav Avrohom Gurwitz, and then moved to Israel where he has been studying, in Ponevezh Yeshivah and Kollel, for over twenty years.

An eminent scholar, he has developed a particular expertise in history, dating, mathematics, and other unique and intriguing subjects. He is the author of the acclaimed work Toras Yom VoLaylah (on the complex Halachic definitions of day, twilight, and night and their ramifications) and has published a fundamental study on ancient astronomy and its implications regarding the Halachic Dateline, as well as an analysis of the Murex Trunculus as a possible source of the ancient blue dye techelet. His most recent publication is a comprehensive investigation of the classification and calibration of measures and distances used in the Middle East before the Common Era (entitled Shiur HaShiurim).

Book Reviews

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Praise

According to secular historians, the duration of the Second Temple period extends
many more years than what we, as orthodox Jews, traditionally believe …. many
varied authors have tried to explain … however they have never entirely answered
the problem. This author has shown through the power of his keen insight a clear
path to answer the problem…
– Rav Yisroel Belsky

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The Challenge of Jewish History
The Challenge of Jewish History
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