Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Fake metal codices watch: The Economist

FAKE METAL CODICES WATCH: The Economist has taken up the story in the context of Easter and "Hebrew," i.e., Jewish Christianity: Early religious archaeology: An Easter enigma, Whatever happened to the Hebrew Christians? (no author given).

The article is pretty up to date on the story as far as it has been covered by the mainstream media, but note this:
... But a dissonant voice has come from Peter Thonemann, an Oxford University historian who was shown a photograph of a copper engraving, apparently found along with the lead codices; what he saw, at least, was a crude forgery, he insists. But so far, no scientific authority in a position to judge has seen more than a fraction of the objects.
This is misleading and is clearly slanted toward wishful thinking that somehow the bulk of the codices might be genuine. The "copper plate," first, is inscribed in Greek that is an obvious forgery; second, it is a plate in one of the bound codices (see photos here and note the binding); and third, the plate has clear connections with some of the other plates in the other codices. It is from the same cache.

The new line seems to be that we can't judge until all the codices are made fully available for study. That simply isn't true. There's ample evidence from what has been released that the codices are fakes. It would be interesting to have all the material available in order to understand the hoax better, but that isn't going to somehow make some of them genuine.

If only the unnamed author if this piece bothered to consult specialist blogs, he or she would have had much more material and could have produced much better coverage.

Background here, where some of that much better material is collected.