Sunday, July 6, 2014

Comments from Readers – Part VII

We continue to have comments, questions and criticisms being sent in from readers of our blog. Here are a few more with our responses. 
   Comment #1: When the Spaniards arrived at Cumorah (Qumarkah) in Mesoamerica, it was the capitol of the Quiché Nation and the people there were also bilingual. Both the Quiché and the Nahuatl languages were spoken there when Alvarado and the Catholic priests arrived in 1524. How could two groups that started so close and shared their origins and much of their history have developed two languages so different yet with some commonalities? The other branches of the Maya share similar origins and their languages are closer. Still when one has a Hebrew root word, often it can be recognized in Yucatec, Chortí, Quiché, Mam, Ch’ol, and Cakchiquel, etc. The spelling and pronunciation of these words can be very different, but when they are lined up together one can often recognize that the words share a common source. Many of the Nahua words are also recognizable but they seen to have been changed much more than is commensurate with their historical closeness” Hugo D.
Response: Sometime line up German, English, Dutch, Austrian, etc. You will be amazed at how closely the written words resemble one another, though the pronunciation is different. Many language groups can also be lined up in such a way so that words look much alike or closely aligned, though pronunciation is different. Languages of closely aligned people, such as those living in close proximity to one another, especially over a long period, often have similar languages, or at least several similar words, such as England, Holland, and Germany:
English-water; Dutch-water; German-wasser
English-life; Dutch-lijf; German-leib
English-craft; Dutch-kracht; German-kraft
English-mouth; Dutch-mond; German-mund
English-us; Dutch-ons; German-uns
English-day; Dutch-dag; German-tag
English-breast; Dutch-borst; German-brust
English-book; Dutch-boek; German-buch
English-brown; Dutch-bruin; German-braun
English-hail; Dutch-hagel; German-hagel
English-room; Dutch-ruim; German-raum
English-swarm; Dutch-zwerm; German-schwarm
On the other hand, some languages have similar words where people do not live as close to one another, such as Scandinavia and England:
English-all; Norweigian-alle;
English-rug; Norwegian-rugga; Swedish-rugg;
English-keg; Norweigian-kasgg; Swedish-kagge
English-squall; Norweigian-skval; Swedish-skvala
English-troll; Norwegian-troll; Swedish-troll; Danish-trold
English-walrus; Norweigian-hvalross; Swedish-vlaross; Dutch-walros
English-scrub; Norwegian-skrubbe; Danish-skrubbe
English-Simper; Norweigian-semper; Danish-semper; Dutch-semper
English-nudge; Norwegian-nugge; Icelandic nugga
English-scald; Norwegian-skald; Danish-skjald; Icelandic-skáld
English-maelstrom; Norwegian-malström; Dutch-maalstroom; Danish- malstrøm
English-iceberg; Norweigian-isfjell; Dutch-ijsberg; Danish-isbjerg
    As for the Americas, the word for white in Hebrew is zak, which also means clean or pure. In Quiché, Chortí and Mam it is sak. In Nahua it is iztac. It would seem these words all came from the same root, such as Hebrew, but there are probably other explanations. On the other hand, Hebrew root words should be found throughout South, Central and North America among indigenous natives, since Hagoth’s ships transported thousands of people into northern lands (Alma 63:4).
    Comment #2: “I read this recently on the net and wondered if you agree with this—‘The Nahua are the Nephites that departed and traveled northward, while the Quiché are the Nephites that remained in Mormon’s lands. The Quiché also show the contribution of the Jaredites and the Mulekites. The extent of the spreading is not certain. The Lenca went down into Colombia and the peoples of Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia also have roots in the Guatemala area. Is there a relationship between the Quiché and the Quichua, or between the Xinka and the Inca’?” Marek C.
Response: First of all, there is little, if any, evidence of north to south travel in the ancient Americas—all evidence that has been found to-date favors and shows a south to north movement. The ruins in Andean South America are far older than those in Central or Mesoamerica, Secondly, there would be no connection between the Inca and anyone in Central America since the Inca were an isolated group that began or moved into the Cuzco area as an unimportant small tribe somewhere around the late 13th Century A.D. and only began to gain any type of prominence around 1420 or so. In their expansion, they did not get into modern-day Colombia in the north, and there is no record of their being a seafaring people at all. Third, there is no evidence of any kind that the Nahua were Nephites—the seven Nahua tribes that pillaged and plundered a divided Mexico after the Mayan civilization had all but faded, disposed and enslaved the previous inhabitants around the 14th Century A.D. Obviously, there would be no connection between the Nahua and the Nephites, since the latter had been annihilated a thousand years earlier.
The Quiché (K’iche kingdom) were a Mayan people around the early 13th Century A.D. in highland Guatemala and southern Mexico and were known as the K’iche’ forefathers—nothing is known of them before this time, though it is said they began sometime in the late B.C. period, but there is no evidence of this in any documented history, including the Popul Vuh (left). No recorded evidence is available that anyone from Central America, especially from Mesoamerica, reached Peru or Ecuador in the Nephite period, though there is much evidence of a reversal of that, with those from Peru sailing to Central America, including trade routes, etc. 
    Comment #3: “I read recently where the ancient Jewish calendar, the one in effect during Lehi’s time, was based on a Lunar month, or “Twelve-month Lundar” cycle. Since the people of Zarahemla told Ammon that Coriantumr lived with them nine moons, it would seem the Mulekites used the Jewish calendar in the Land of Promise” Kurt.
Response: You make a good point. “He made the moon to mark the seasons” Psalm 104:19. It would also seem likely that the Nephites used a lunar calendar, too. In fact, from very early times, the Mesopotamian lunisolar calendar was in wide use by the countries of the western Asia region, including the Israelite calendar, who inserted an additional month to bring the cycle closer to the solar cycle. The Jewish term Rosh Chodesh (Rosh hodesh), meaning the beginning of the month (head of the month) was the name for the day of every month in the Hebrew calendar, marked by the appearance of the new moon, and was marked by the day and hour that the new crescent moon was observed, and was considered a minor holiday, like the intermediate days of Passover and Sukkot, or Feast of Booths (Psalm 81:3). Perhaps Lehi and Nephi continued this calendar in the Land of Promise.

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