Tag Archives: forgery

More Lead Codices, More Stamps…

(Click to enlarge)

So, as you can see above, the Elkingtons have released more pictures of the so-called Lead Codices, and every single one of them seems to have one thing in common.

To misquote Stanley from Terry Pratchett’s ‘Going Postal’:*

Dan McClellan also found another prominent stamp that was used on several other codices.  Surprise surprise.

Every time that we find such stamps, printing the same nonsense characters down to every stroke and detail but staggered and interrupted to make it look as if there is more text than they depict:

It is consistent with forgery.

It’s a cheap way to make something look authentic to unlearned eyes that demonstrably carries no semantic or logical content. Make one set of characters and stamp, stamp, smudge, stamp later you have a paragraph of arcane-looking babble-text.

Or, as my wife observed, quoting Mr. Spools:*


* Terry Pratchett’s “Going Postal” is a fanciful tale of how con-artist Moist VonLipwig is caught after years of forging bonds and swindling hundreds of people and roped into restoring the Ank Morpork Post Office on pain of death by using his con-artist skills for the side of good rather than the side of selfishness (well, mostly πŸ™‚ ). Acorn Media did an awesome 2-part miniseries which I highly recommend with Richard Coyle as Lipwig and Clare Foy as Adora Belle Dearheart. Pure excellence. πŸ™‚

The Pre-Easter Update – Forgeries & Follies

Sensationalist Lenten offerings for your enjoyment. πŸ™‚

Sorry for being on hiatus with all things blogging for a long while. Lots of family stuff has been going on (houses selling, people moving), I was sick for nearly all of January (rolling cold, flu and other unpleasantness), catching up on my business backlog nearly all of February, and starting a brand new project with my wife and my sister that will hopefully end in something awesome.

I hope to pick back up in time for the February top blogs list and get things back on the road.

Anyways, it’s Lent!
And do you know what that means?
Sensationalist Biblical news in the run-up to Easter! πŸ˜€

So far we’re off to a *great* start with two three things on our plate:

First, the Markan Fragment — the Under Glass Edition! — that looks like a Greek student’s doodle on a piece of mail-order papyrus. And I should know, I’ve done $%^& like that to unsuspecting people for fun and laughs [1][2][3][4]. πŸ™‚

Many bloggers have chimed in with their doubts. I will add my voice to them: “CALL ME THOMAS! (no, not that Thomas; but I’m sure he agrees with me) I’M A DOUBTER!

Second, another “Golden Letters on Animal Hide” manuscript that supposedly predicts the coming of the Prophet Muhammed, and that some people think might be the lost Gospel of Barnabas, prove one world religion superior to another, solve Rubix cubes by itself, yadda yadda yadda

Let me put this bluntly: Vellum is expensive. Sharpie markers are cheap. Tourists will buy crap. Put all three of these together and you get your standard “golden letters on leather/animal hide trinket.” I have seen no fewer than 3 of these in the past 5 years (2 in pseudo-Syriac, 1 in copied Hebrew) and I will take a metaphorical bite out of my hat if the writing has no trace of modern (or at the very least seriously anachronistic) ink.

UPDATE:  Number 3! James Tabor and Simcha Jacobovici are also gearing up for another Lent release (last year it was the real nails of Jesus, remember?). James McGrath reports on Simcha’s latest grab for attention: “The Jesus Discovery.”

“This book documents a new archaeological discovery in a 1st century Jewish tomb in Jerusalem that relates to the earliest faith of Jesus’ followers. The tomb is located less than 200 feet away from the controversial Talpiot β€œJesus family tomb,” raising the question of their relationship. Authors James Tabor and Simcha Jacobovici analyze the new discovery as well as its implications for understanding the Jesus tomb. Expect to be surprised at the conclusions.”

Really? … Really? …. *sigh*…

Then there is the old business of the Jordan Lead Codices — now with ugly leather covers! — which first appeared in full force a few Easters ago. As expected, nothing really new has happened. No earth-shattering revelations. No examples of anything to show they’re authentic (in fact, many examples that show how they’ve biffed it royally with these fakes; read all the back posts on this blog).

Just keep an eye out. I’d guarantee there will be another “tidbit” on these in the near future to try and grab some “Easter-share” away from the two three others I’ve mentioned.

In any case, I hope to be back to blogging soon. Until then!


Jordan Lead Codices Page on The Biblioblog Reference Library

On The Biblioblog Reference Library:

In early March 2011 the media reported upon an amazing discovery: Twenty to seventy codices, cast in lead, that potentially held untold secrets about early Christianity. However, from the very beginning something about the discovery appeared improper. Over the course of seven months, an informal group of Bibliobloggers (scholars and students who blog about Biblical Studies) took the time to form a private email list to investigate and discuss the objects and the people behind them. This page serves as a place to showcase their collective insights.

The current consensus is that the Jordan Codices released to date are not authentic.

Read more here. πŸ™‚


Jordan Codices: Another Stamp Identified – Marcus Ambiblius’ Prutah

(HT to Tom Verenna)

The “weeping  palm” icon was hand-copied very much like the helmet motif on Herod The Great’s 8-Prutot Piece (scroll down to the animated gif), only from a poor example.

This motif is only found in one other piece in antiquity, and that is on the coins of Coponius, who was Ambiblius’ predecessor (6-9 AD) with slight variation.

I was able to find a good example of a worn specimen that illustrates exactly how similar these illustrations are.

Taking everything into account (as this motif is found on plates that contain repeated, stamped text as well), this yet another strong evidence of forgery/fakery as the iconography on the Codices continues to betray itself as a pastiche of disparate eras, crudely copied en-masse.


Jordan Lead Codices: The Video

Tom Verenna with his limitless and bountiful zeal has taken the time to painstakingly compile a video that outlines the current evidences against the authenticity of the Jordan Lead Codices.

This video comprises a good chunk of the collaborative research and discussion between Jim DaVilla, Dan McClellan, Jim West, David Meadows, Joel Watts, James McGrath, Tom and myself that has been going on for the past few months. Tom’s efforts in making this video should be commended. πŸ™‚

Also of note, this video was censored at least a half a dozen times from the Jordan Codices Facebook page, and for screenshots of that (as well as other censored comments made by an archaeologist) take a peek at Dan McClellan’s latest post.

In a bit, I’ll have another post that actually goes over some clarifications that have been made to one of the metallurgical reports by the researcher who compiled it.