The Travels ofinto Europe. This article is a review of a book, available at the British Library, Euston. The title page is as follows: Note: This book uses source material of questionable origin, known as “pseudo-Berosus”. For details see the Lost Works of Berosus.
“AN HISTORICAL TREATISE OF THE TRAVELS OF
As also a breefe recapitulation of the Kings, Governors, and Rulers commanding in the same, even untill the first building of Troy by Dardanus.
Done into English by Richard Lynche, Gent.
Tempo’e Figliuola di Verita
Printed by Adam Islip
See also the complete text.
This book gives an insight into the ancient world, and especially the family of, based mainly on fragments that are alleged to have come from Berosus, a third century BC Chaldean priest. Berosus was a celebrated historian in his time, and a copper statue was built in his honour in Athens. He wrote three books in the language, but they are now lost, and his works are only available in fragmentary citations.
This summary is a list of events and related issues, roughly in the order that they occur in the book.
Noah and His Pre-Deluvian Family
Noah was a. That doesn’t mean he was bad, as are normally supposed to be. Instead he was a “good ”. His wife was called Tytea (otherwise called Aretia).
His first three sons were:
- Sem, which means “famous”. He was otherwise called Melchisedech.
- , which means “subtlety and craft”. He was the second son, although Berosus affirms him to be the youngest. (I wonder if he was the second, but was relegated to third in Noah’s estimation because of his misdeeds).
- Japheth, which means “liberty and freedom”. (If was relegated to third, Japheth becomes “the elder” as in Gen. 10:21).
Noah and his family lived in a city called Enos, the first city of the world, which was built by Cain the son of Adam, at the foot of the mountain Libanus in the land of Syria, in the province of Phoenicia, not far from the famous city of Jerusalem.
There were manyin Enos, and also there were astronomers and wise soothsayers who predicted the . The were impious, except for the good giant Noah and his family which was Titea his wife, his three sons Sem, Cham and Japheth, and their wives Pandera, Noela and Noegla.
The world was destroyed on 18th April, in the 600th year of Noah, and this brings an end to the First Age of the World, according to the computations of Philo the Jew.
When the waters of thesubsided, the Ark rested on a high hill called Gordicus in Armenia. Noah and his family, eight people altogether, came out of the ship, 833 years before the foundation of Troy and 2317 years before the birth of Christ.
Noah passed along the land and found on a plain a pillar of marble, where he engraved the story of the Flood. The stone is called to this day (1601), Myri-Adam, meaning the “Issue of Noah”, and stands in the country of Armenia.
Additional Children of Noah, After the Flood
Noah begat of his wife Tytea, after the flood, 30 children (although I only count 29 in this list). They were:
- Tuyscon the giant.
- Prometheus, Iapetus, Macrus.
- 16 titans which were all giants.
- Cranus, Granaus, Oceanus, Tipheus.
Araxa surnamed The Great,
Regina, Pandora, Crana, Thetis.
Some authors allege more (although I am not sure if this means more sons and daughters, or just daughters).
Titles of Noah
Noah was called Ogyges Saga, which means Scythian, Great Patriarch, Sovereign Priest, and Mighty Sacrificer. Berosus affirms it saying “Primium itaque dixerunt Ogygam Sagam, id est, illustrem sacrorum pontificem Noam”.
The Scythians and Armenians called him Olybarma and Arsa which means Heaven and the Sun.
He built many cities and named them after himself and his wife Titea.
He is also called Ianus which in Scythian means “giver of wine”. He was first to find out the use of it, and was not able to endure its strength. He invited many of his friends and became drunk.
The Mischief of Cham
Cham was into magic art, and was called Zoroast. He hated his father, because he thought himself least loved by him. (Is this the well known “second child syndrome”?). By his magic he bewitched his father in the “places of generation” (genitals), so that he disabled him forever to have the use of women, or to get more children. For these and his other detestable impieties, he incurred the wrath and displeasure of God, in a most grievous manner, and was afterwards banished from his father, who afflicted him with no further punishment.
Distribution of the World
- Sem Melchisedech went to Asia with 25 rulers of his family. He built Salem (Jerusalem) and lived until the time of Abraham.
- Japheth went to Europe with 14 rulers of his generation.
- Cham was out of favour with his father, but he had his heritage allowed to him, the other third part of the world.
Noah went on a voyage to distribute the world to his sons.
About 120 years after his return from this voyage, Noah began to divide kingdoms and to erect monarchies in the world. The first was Nembroth the giant, son of his (nephew?) Cush the son of Cham. Nembroth was the first Saturn over the Babylonians and Assyrians.
Note: In medieval literature, the word “nephew” sometimes appears to mean grandchildren or other descendants. We know that Cush was the grandson of Noah.
After the confusion of languages, Nembroth lived in peace for 56 years.
Not many years after setting up Babylon, Noah divided four kingdoms in Europe:
- Italy. The king was Comerus Gallus (Gomer), the eldest son of Japheth.
- Spain. The king was Tuball, also called Inball, the 15th son of Japheth.
- France. The king was Samothes, surnamed Dis, the 4th son of Japheth. (But he is the 6th son of Japheth, and king of Celtica which includes Britain and France, according to Holinshed. See my article on the Samotheans).
- Almaign (Germany). The king was the giant Tuyscon, one of the sons of Noah.
Noah went on a second voyage into Europe, leaving Sabatius Saga his (nephew?), and brother to Nembroth, to govern Armenia. Sabatius Saga was called Saturn, and had all the country of Bactria, lying toward India (Tartaria).
Keys of Janus
Noe Ianus has two keys in his hand, to show that he was the inventor of gates and doors, and also the locking of them and making them fast, so that holy temples and sacred places should not be polluted.
Exploits of Cham
Cham was surnamed Esenus, the infamous god Pan. He ruled Egypt for a long time, even to the 56th year of the reign of Jupiter Belus, the second king of Babylon. Then he began to travel, and came to Italy (which was then called Kytim). He usurped the kingdom of Comerus Gallus after his death, and currupted the youth with all sorts of impiety.
Cham had a sister called Rhea (who might be the missing person in the list of Noah’s children, making the number up to 30). She was married to Hammon the king of Lybia, but Hammon had an adulterous relationship with a woman called Almanthea, and by her he had a son called Dionysius. He was brought up in a city of Arabia, called Nyfa, and the matter was kept secret from his wife Rhea, but she found out about it. In her jealousy and rage, she left Hammon and went to her brother Cham, who was in Sicily, and they were married. Some writers say that Noegla, the wife of Cham, was alive at the time.
After the marriage of Cham and Rhea, they left Sicily and went to Lybia, to take revenge on king Hammon. They raised an army, and with the help of their 16 brothers (the Titans) they fought with Hammon and overthrew him, and he fled to Crete (later known as Candia).
Shortly after this, Cham and Rhea had a son called Osyris, later surnamed Iupiter Iustus. He was a noble and gallant prince, different from the wickedness of his father.
About the 43rd year of Nynus, king of Babylon, Dionysius the son of Hammon and Almanthea took revenge on Cham and Rhea for the wrong they had done to his father. He expelled them out of the country and established himself as king. However, he was merciful to their son Osyris, and received him as his adopted son, and called him Hammon and Jupiter in remembrance of his father. He brought him up carefully in the study of letters, and appointed a learned man called Olympus as his tutor. Osyris took his name so that he was surnamed Olympicus.
Cham and Rhea retired to a distant and obscure corner of Egypt, and they had a daughter called Iuno, also called Isis the Great. She was born in the first year of the reign of Semyramis, which was 302 years after the Flood. But her father Cham was not content to remain in Egypt. He invaded Bactria near Persia and subjugated the people using necromancy. Then he attacked the Assyrians and fought against Nynus the young, the son of Semyramis, but he failed and was killed in the battle.
Children of Cham
According to the Bible, the sons of Cham were Cush,, Phut and Caanan.
Berosus lists them as follows:
- Typhon, his eldest son, by his first wife Noegla. He was a giant, and he followed the malicious dispositions of his father.
- Cus, from his first wife Noegla. He was the father of Nembroth.
- Osyris, from his second wife Rhea, as already discussed. Holinshed suggests that Osyris was Mizraim (see my article on the Samotheans).
- Isis, a daughter from his second wife Rhea, as already discussed.
Osyris married his sister Isis, and they became king and queen of Egypt. He was 60 years old, and she was about 50 when they were married, although they were both very youthful. They excelled in goodness and virtue, as their father Cham had excelled to the contrary. They applied themselves to the study of the nature of herbs, and the planting, tilling and sowing of corn. They instructed their people in these matters, including their neighbours dwelling in Palestina, where Sem, surnamed Melchisedech, was the first that ever offered bread and wine to God.
Children of Osyris
Osyris had many children, from his wife Isis and from many other women, to whom he must have been married as there is no suggestion of adultery. Just a few of his children were:
Note: Holinshed (1) gives two different descriptions of Neptune, sometimes as the son of Osyris and sometimes as his brother.
Exploits of Osyris
Osyris travelled to many countries, accompanied by some of his children, and left his queen Isis in charge of Egypt. He took with him an army and subdued many tyrannical giants, establishing his own rule and teaching the people about agriculture, victuals and justice. One of the many giants was Typhon, who was in the place where Troy was later erected.
Death of Osyris
When Osyris returned to his kingdom of Egypt, his brother Typhon went into a conspiracy with many other malicious giants, and by subtlety and craft they entrapped and murdered him. They divided his body into 26 pieces and distributed them among themselves, one for each giant. Some time later, his wife Isis found the parts and gathered them together and buried them, with due solemnity and honour. After that, the Egyptians worshipped him as a god, so that he was also called Serapis, and the ancient poets called him Dionysius, Liber Pater and Bacchus.
Osyris was killed in the prime and flower of his age, having attained only 300 years. He was born about the time of Ninus, the third king of Babylon, and died in the reign of Baleus, the eleventh king. His wife Isis survived him 280 years, and after she had carried out his funeral, she encouraged her children to avenge his death.
Exploits of Hercules
The children of of Isis followed her instruction, and went into battle against Typhon and his associates and defeated them, by the river Oris in Arabia. After that, Isis continued to reign over Egypt in peace.
Hercules was the most valiant of all those who fought against Typhon, and encouraged by his own success, he went on many other journeys, subduing giants as his father Osiris had done.
Wives and Children of Hercules
Hercules had three wives, Araxa, Omphale and Galathea.
- Araxa is likely to have been a descendant of “Araxa the Great”, one of the daughters of Noah born after the Flood, but this is not stated specifically.They had a son called Tuscus, from whom descended Dardanus the first founder of Troy.
- Omphale, about whom little is said, except that she gave Hercules a son called Athus, who became known as “Athus the Great”. His fourth-generation descendant, also called Athus, entertained Dardanus when he arrived in Phrygia.
- Galathea was the daughter of Iupiter Celtes, the king of Gaule, otherwise known as Celtica or Samothea. She was a good giantesse, and her father would not allow her to marry anyone who was unworthy of her. Eventually he gave her to Hercules, because he had proved his valour. Hercules and Galathea had a son called Galathew (Galatheus) who became king of France. The complete genealogy, from Noah is:
Noah, Japheth, Samothes, Magus, Sarron, Druius, Bardus, Lucus, Iupiter Celtes, Galathea, Galathew.
Death of Hercules
Hercules died at about the age of 350, having reigned and commanded in France, Italy and Spain for 67 years. His death was greatly lamented, and the people of Spain erected great and costly monuments. He was buried in a rich and stately tomb, close to the place which is known as the Pillars of Hercules, or Straits of Gibraltar.
Hesperus, a descendant of Gomer, succeeded Hercules as the twelfth king of Spain.
Family of Dardanus
Dardanus was descended from Hercules on his father’s side and from Atlas Italus, a descendant of Gomer on his mother’s side.
Tuscus, the son of Hercules and Araxa, was king of Italy, and the province of Tuscany was named after him. When he died, Altheus his son reigned in his stead.
When Altheus was king of Italy, Hesperus was expelled from Spain by his brother Atlas, surnamed Italus. Atlas was not content with the kingdom of Spain, so he came to Italy and overthrew Altheus. He called it Italy after himself, and before that time it was called Comera, after Comerus (Gomer). Atlas was an astrologer, and the poets say that he upheld the heaven with his shoulders.
Altheus had a son called Blascon, and a grandson called Camboblascon. Atlas deprived them of all authority and principality in Italy, and then as a recompence for all their injuries, he gave his daughter Electra to Camboblascon in marriage, together with a dowry consisting of all the towns and countries around the Alps, and then he died. He was succeeded by his son Morges, a holy and religious man who recognised all the wrong that had been done to Altheus and his heirs. He voluntarily despoiled himself of his crown and transferred it to Camboblascon.
Camboblascon and Electra had three children:
- Armonia, a daughter who never married.
Iasius was created Coritus and Patriarche of Italy while his father was still alive. (His father had been given the office of Coritus and then called “Iupiter Coronatus”. From this, I suppose we get the word “coronation”). A year later, Iasius was also given the kingdom of France. There been good relations between Tuscus and Galatheus, the two sons of Hercules, and Iasius was considered to be the most desirable successor to the French monarchy.
Iasius married a noble and wealthy lady called Ipitis Cibeles, and there was great feasting, pomp and celebration. They had a son called Coribantus, so that the arrival of an heir to his throne increased his status still further.
Dardanus, his younger brother, was given no authority in any part of the kingdom, so that compared with Iasius he was like a base person or slave. He went privately to Iasius to ask for leave and licence, so that he might depart from the country and seek for better fortunes elsewhere. (This probably amounts to a request for ships, money and supplies). The request was refused, and Dardanus raised an army against him. The people were divided, so that those on the south of the Tiber supported Dardanus, and the people in the north supported Ianius. Dardanus was unable to overcome his brother with his rebel army, so he sneaked up on him while he was at a spring, washing himself, and killed him.
This was considered to be an act of treachery, throughout the whole kingdom. Coribantus succeeded his father Iasius as king of Italy but not of France. There was no king of France for a while, until they elected someone who was nearest to the lineage of Hercules, and his name was Allobrox.
Dardanus was still left without a kingdom, and he sailed away, but had to stop at an island of the Ciclades, because of heavy storms. When the weather improved, he sailed away again and arrived at an island incalled Samos or Samothrace, near Constantinople (according to the poet Virgil in his Aneid). He was favourably received by Athus, king of Meonia in Lydia, who was also a descendant of Hercules. He then went to the Hellespont and built his city of Troy.
The descent of Dardanus is as follows:
- On his father’s side: Noah, Cham, Osyris, Hercules, Tuscus, Altheus, Blascon, Camboblascon, Dardanus.
- On his mother’s side: Noah, Japheth, Gomer, then possibly some unknown generations, then Atlas, Electra, Dardanus. (Atlas is described as a “descendant” of Gomer).
This list of names, from Hercules to Dardanus, is confirmed by the The O’Clery Book of Genealogies which gives the descent of Philip of Spain. However, it suggests that Hercules was rather than Egyptian and gives his descent as: Noah, Japheth, Javan, Dodanim, Hercules.
Theft of Hercules
According to Berosus, there was never a Greek Hercules. Instead they stole him from the Egyptians. The real Hercules of Lybia became deified as a god, because of his great exploits, and this became an excuse for denying his existence as an ordinary man. Then, in place of the Egyptian Hercules, they invented their own “Hercules Graecus”, claiming that he was the son of Amphitrito, and he was a great and mighty conqueror. They also made him into a pirate. This deception lasted for almost seven hundred years before it was exposed.
This criticism of theaffirms the reliability of Berosus. If he had falsely accused them of stealing Hercules from the Egyptians, they would never have built a statue in his honour. He reached his high standing among the , not for flattery, but for telling the truth and helping them to understand their own history.
The theft of Hercules probably explains why the O’Clery Book of Genealogies has got it wrong. They were misled by the false notion that Hercules was a Greek, descended from Javan.
Foundation of Rome
Atlas Italus, who overthrew Altheus and usurped his kingdom in Italy, had a daughter called Rhoma, and appointed her as duchess of the people and nation called the Aborigines. She was married to a prince of Tuscany and they had a son called Rhomanessos, who was the first that ever laid the foundation of the city of Rome (according to an author called Sempronius). This disposes of the notion that the city was founded by Romulus at a much later date. It is true that Romulus enlarged and beautified the city, but he was not its founder. He came to the city by accident, and he did not name it after himself, instead he named himself after the city.
The early history of Spain is described as follows:
The very first inhabitation and peopling of this countrey of Spaine, was by those people that came from the other side of the Caspian sea, called Iberi, Persae, Phenices, and Paeni, as Plinie in the third booke of his naturall hystorie doth alledge; as also Marcus Varro, and Cato in his originals doe affirme the same . . . and after these people, the Gothes and Alani came and lived in Spaine long time, and continued for the most part of them untill this very present wherein wee now live, from whome and from the rest before mentioned, it is delivered for certaine by many auncient, grave, and learned writers, this countrey of Spain deriveth her first beginning and principall foundation.
Some time ago I wrote an article called The Voyage of Alanus, in which I pointed out that Nennius gives a genealogy from Noah to Alanus, and then the descendants of Alanus. Some of the names resemble Turkish place names, as if they established towns and named them as they migrated eastwards across Asia Minor. The trail ends with two coastal towns called Fethiye and Alanya, and after that there are no more place names. I have therefore speculated that Alanus and his people set off in ships and sailed off elsewhere, but I did not know where.
Now I see that some of the early inhabitants of Spain were called the “Alani”. A piece of research that I thought had reached a dead end has become alive, because the Alani might be the people who came with Alanus.
The Rest of Europe
Berosus gives many more details about the peoples and nations of Europe, and their origins. I do not have space to write about all of it here and I would encourage you to read the book if you have the opportunity. I will be interested in any bookshops and libraries where it may be found, other than the British Library in Euston.
1. There is definitely a Babylonian history of the Flood, which corresponds to the Biblical history, but with a different emphasis:
- The Biblical post-flood history begins with Noah and gives a brief account of the dispersal of nations, including the rebellion at Babel and the confusion of tongues which caused them to scatter. It then continues, in much more detail, with the family of Shem, until the coming of Yeshua the Messiah.
- The Babylonian post-flood history also begins with Noah, but places more emphasis on the families of Cham and Japheth. This holds true whether we use the authenticated fragments of Berosus or the pseudo-Berosus.
2. Berosus, in the third century BC, must have had many documents available to him that have long since perished.
4. This story, if it is true, fills a gap in the history of the ancient world. If, at the same time, the story of Brutus can be accepted, together with his descent from Dardanus and the succession of British kings that came after him, it means the descent of the Welsh monarchy, and probably most of the English monarchy, can be traced all the way back to Noah and hence to Adam.
1. Holinshed’s Chronicles of England, Scotland and Ireland. Raphael Holinshed and others, 1587 edition. Reprinted 1807 for J. Johnson and others, London. Facsimile reprint 1965 by AMS Press Inc, New York, NY 10003. Volume 1, England, pp. 432-3.