In our time line, there is a rich history of interaction of supernatural forces with mankind and his environment. Though there are diverse opinions as to the reality of these otherworldly entities -- including the prevailing view among intellectuals that such entities do not exist -- for the purpose of this alternate history the recorded history as found in the Bible is to be assumed. However, all instances of supernatural intervention are totally absent. There is to be no divine revelation and no "miracles" performed on the behalf of priests or prophets. No supernatural interference from "unfriendly" sources is permitted either. The point of divergence is on the sixth day of creation as Adam and Eve, having been created separately, find their way into a tropical paradise.
- A note to readers: I will be using the original Hebrew and Aramaic names of people and nations for a feel of "authenticity." For example, Isaac will be spelled "Yitskaq" (more acurately Yitskhaq) to reflect the letter kheth (gutteral H, phonetically [x]). Rebekah become "Ribqah" (sorry, but that's the Hebrew for you). The suffix of "-i" is used for a people group or nation in most cases, though the ancient "-im" is also used in places. The best way to keep up is to be familiar with the Bible. That is by design, in fact, to encourage readers to "check out" the time line with the record in OTL.
- An additional note: I encourage anyone to challenge my assumption of success among the Biblical Abrahamic peoples. Ancient history would continue about the same without them, and I am not sure if it would be too much different today. My premise is basically that some people will believe a Creator God exists based on pure reason - or just a gut instinct - and choose a "deistic" approach to acknowldeging this.
The First Humans
See main article: The Ancients
Waking up from his sleep, the man found himself on a beach near a jungle full of a diversity of plants and animals. He was young, with no memory of any life before that moment. After a matter of hours, he became hungry and instinctively picked fruit from trees near him. Mangoes, oranges, and grapes abound. Other fruit and seeds seem abundant as well. Soon, though, he found that he was competing with various animals for the food. But the food was plentiful, so he was happy.
Within months, he began noticing the actions of other animals that had paired with each other. He realized that there were none like himself to pair with. And so, he began to feel lonely. Having left his camp - with its abundance of food - he searched for others like himself. Within days, he came upon the camp of another human. He carefully approached the camp as to not startle the creature.
It was not like him in all ways. In fact, its basic structure seemed defective. As he watched he wondered how it could walk upright with its large swollen torso. He wondered if it was older than himself since the hair on its head was longer than his own. Finally, having determined that he was stronger than the creature, he decided to approach it. It turned out that though the creature was startled, it too had been hoping to find one of its own kind.
Both the man and the other creature spent time pointing and touching each other, and finally made sounds to each other. Much to their surprise, they had the same language. In fact, neither one had spoken before they had met. After a while, the other creature pointed out that it had been noting the differences in some of the pairs of haired animals it had met. It then pointed out that some of those differences were apparent on their own bodies as well. Together they discovered the "concept" of male and female.
In the course of time, the first humans naturally understood the purpose of their differences, and children were born. But before that, the woman had discovered a tree with fruit incredibly beautiful from a distance. When she mentioned it, she found that the man was not interested in making the difficult journey across a ravine to get to the new orchard. So the woman struck out on her own to see if she could get some of the fruit for her own consumption. After many days, she found her way there and back, having eaten some and wanting to share it with her man. He agreed with her that it was delicious. Unfortunately, it was a poison to their systems, beginning a process of decay that would eventually kill them. But that was a long way off.
What they realized immediately though, was that the world around them had begun to change. They became aware of emotions and attitudes that had been absent before. For some unknown reason, the picking of this fruit had changed the nature of the universe. Before long, their idyllic surroundings became unbearable and they struck out on a journey into the world outside the jungle. They would settle on the banks of the river out of sight of the jungle, though they could see the peak of the mountain in its midst. The animals of the plain, though, seemed more hostile than those in the jungle. First contact with some of them proved dangerous. but they survived by demonstrating their superiority to all other forms of land animals. They would find carcasses of dead animals, though, that proved that death was a way of the earth.
In time, their clan would grow, being divided into two tribes when their firstborn son killed his brother some time early in the second century. By that time they had begun to take long life for granted. The woman, who the man had named "Khavah" after a word meaning "life" when she gave birth to their first child, was so devastated by the murder that the man, or "Adam" in their language, had to comfort her to the extent of producing yet another child as a "replacement" for the dead one. Khavah, who had long lost interest in producing any more children, surprised everyone when she became pregnant once again.
A New MankindSometime after the death of Adam, one of his descendants became curious as to the changes that had come to mankind over the years. Records showed an increase in violence as tribe fought tribe in attempts to rule the earth. No one seemed satisfied with their portion of the vast continent on which they lived. Of course, the population had grown large in the thousand years or so since the first humans had left the jungle. Some even said that the earth could not support many more people as it was. And so, wars continued. And a son was born who was named "Noakh," meaning "rest," expressing a hope that many wished for.
Five hundred years later, after a life in which he distinguished himself as that of a warrior and builder of great cities, the man named "Rest" decided to settle down. But his days traveling the world in conquest had lead him to the realization that mankind might not survive much longer at the rate it was going. From what he could figure, massive mining of deep earth minerals to power the war machines would one day cause a world-ending catastrophe. Taking to himself a wife in his old age, he found that he was able to produce children again. Three sons were born in a short period, and then he began a plan to build a fortress that would survive the coming destruction of mankind.
His research indicated that the deep mining would most likely cause ruptures in the oceans' floors that would shake the earth to such an extent that it would quite literally "sink into the sea." His fortress, then, would be in the form of a large box with no foundation - one that would float on the sea long enough to come ashore on any land that might prove to survive the "end of the world." In a stroke of genius, he devised a plan to create a display of the earth's land animals inside the structure. Over the years he would fund his construction through fees for viewing and studying the varied wildlife that he collected. At the same time he collected all manner of food - for the animals and for his family - which he stored for later use as seed and feed.
Though some over the years were suspicious, by the time the earth began to crumble under their feet, no one outside of Noah's immediately family - his wife, their three sons and their wives - suspected that the huge structure had been designed as a refuge. And so, as the rains began, Noah pulled the doors closed from the inside and waited. Within a week everyone outside was dead. A year later the huge barge would "come ashore" on a mountaintop. Eight people and thousands of animals would exit to build a new world.
King of the MountainThe sons of Noah had many children, and as the families grew the expanding tribe of Noah sought a land that was less harsh than the foothills of the Mountain of the Landing. They ended up in a fruitful plain near to rivers which they named after rivers of the world from which Noah had come. The greater of these rivers was called the Euphrates. It was there that a man named Nimrod rose to power over the collected tribes of the plain. Tales of the Mountain lingered among the people, as many tried to explain the destruction of the previous world in terms of forces otherworldly - even of a being or beings greater than any could imagine.
Nimrod knew better, however, being aware of the great accomplishments of mankind in the ancient times. And that knowledge was not lost. Though men lived on average only half as long as the ancients, they still were capable of much of the same if they set their minds to it. He gathered around himself such people.
Using labor of willing workers, or better yet, weak-minded servants, Nimrod built a mountain that reached into the clouds. He harnested the power of the lightning within those clouds to do wonders unseen since well before the great flood. He seemed unstoppable. However, after time many of his subjects rebelled, and after years of war, mankind was divided once again. Tribes and individual families spread three directions, taking much of the technology of Nimrod's land to the west and east. Others, without much technology, struck out toward the Mountain of the Landing in hopes of salvaging the original records rumored to be still in Noah's vessel. It would not be found, and for two millennia these peoples would be wonderers.
The land between the rivers, though near Nimrod's original structure, had many tribes. One such tribe was known as the "Kadedim" and a city there was named "Ur." The man known as "Abram" in our time line never had an encounter with the Creator God in this time line.
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This area was the domain of the southernmost tribes descended from Yepet, son of Noakh. In the time of the First Rebellion, Ashur led his tribe to the headwaters of the Tigris River, finding support in the foothills of the very mountains said to contain Noakh's vessel -- and the knowledge of the Ancients! But alas, neither was found in the mountains still holding their secrets under ice caps. In time, the tribe of Aram, a Semi, began to mingle with the Jepeti, though they stubbornly refused to acknowledge the royal line of Yepeti as their sovereign.
Down closer to the Great Sea, the tribe of Aram arose to prominence. However, they were no more a friend of the sea than were the mountain dwellers to their north. The memory of the Great Flood lingered in the collective memory over the millennia. The Arami were always glad to trade with their brothers from down the Tigris River, coming up from Ur and even from Babylon and Ninevah, cities of the Chami. When the family of Terah came, they stayed. Terah had been the leader of a religious order that worshiped the Mighty One named Ur, son of Sem. It was this "god" who had founded the great Chaldean civilization soon after the Rebellion. Sem himself, though, had disappeared from Babylon, and was believed to have stayed for a time among the Arami.
Terah's son Abram was a wanderer, restless and wanting to find land he could call his own. He would stay with his father only until the older man died, and then he would migrate south into the fertile land ruled by the Khami known as the sons of Qan'an. This tribe was known for its ferocious warriers and wanton disregard for what "civilized" people thought. It was rumored that the Ancients had returned to breed among them to create these warriors, but the only proof of this was circumstantial.
This port city, literally "The Rock" was founded by the Khami to keep bands of raiders in floating craft from invading from the Ashuri lands to the north. Years later they would develop their own ships after plans rumored to have been passed down from Noakh himself! They would bring their technology to the Mithrai tribes on the southern shores of the great sea. For a millennium they would be the masters of the sea.
The land of the Qan'ani was indeed fair. They were a people that loved food and other sensuous pleasures. A religion had developed around their obsession with their crops. The founder of the tribe, Qan'an, was the grandson of Noakh, and had lived to see the seventh generation. This had been long enough to be considered practically a "god" in its own right. Legend and myth had taken over and a cult of the Ba'al - the Husband - had arisen. Qan'an had taken an untold number of wives in his life, many at one time, and he had let people believe that sexual relations with his daughters was the way to assure good crops.
From among the Qan'ani had come a band of wanderers much like Abram, known as the Paleshi. They had become traders with both the Tsuri and the Mishrai tribes by way of caravan. The Tsuri and Mishrai tribes had been the first to take to the water centuries after the Great Flood, but the Paleshi were content to just trade by the land route between the two sea-faring peoples.
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Descendants of Abram, the "Arabs" (the `Arbi) would become increasingly important in modern times. The great desert of the Great Peninsula would host trade routes, but the most trade would be along the coasts between the gulf and the Red Sea (a gulf separating Arabia and home in our time line to many of Abram's descendants.
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The Ice Age
As a consequence of the great flood, much of the north became covered with ice and snow. Those people that sought a new life in the north found survival the first priority. Only the strongest survived, and some have argued that it was this mindset that somehow was genetically passed on, supposing that these people were "more inventive." Most likely, though, they were just "more crafty," and they were more able to outwit the less crafty.
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See main article:Abram (No Supernatural Intervention)
Abram of Ur had not set out to create a kingdom. But from his eight sons would arise a people that would rule the Great Peninsula set between the kingdoms of the Mitsraim (Egypt), the Ashurim (Assyria) and the Babillim (Babylon). All roads of commerce went through the land, making it a target for overthrow time and time again. Abram would first step out on his own late in the fourth century after the flood (AM) and over the next millennium his descendants would fight the Khami tribes of the Qan`an for dominance in the land west of the Jordan River (the "highway of kings"). East of the River, and towards the interior of the peninsula had quickly become a wasteland across which few travelers dared to venture.
The sons of Ishmael, the firstborn, would rule the area east of the Jordan in the years following the death of Abram. However, their influence would wain as they became wanderers like their grandfather, trading with various cities and nations from tents and caravans.
See main article: Yitskaq (Nation)
Abram's son Yitskaq would produce only two sons, twins Yaqob and `Eshu, both of which would have large families. However, Yaqob would cheat his brother, just moments older, out of the rights of the firstborn. This would result in estrangement between the brothers, but generations later they would unite under Shaul Ben-Kish, from the smallest of the Yacobi tribes. Shaul would be succeeded by David Ben-Yeshi of the neighboring tribe of Yahuda. Under David, old emmity between Yacobi and `Edomi tribes would be healed. Along with the tribes descending from Lot's sons, the lands on both sides of the Jordan were under one rule.
The united kingdom, called Yitskaq, would last only one hundred twenty years before David's grandson would lose control of the northern half of the nation, which would retain the name of Yaqob and eventually would fall to the Ashuri. Only two tribes of the Yitskaqi would remain with their cousins, the Edomi, lasting centuries longer as the nation of Yahuda before falling to a third empire claiming to be Bab-El of ancient times.
`Eshu would lose his birthright when physical hunger would lead him rashly to demand a bowl of red bean soup at the price of the honor of inheriting the "double portion" that traditionally went to the firstborn son. As a result, he became known as "Edom" from the word for "red." Often, outside of the family, he would be called Eshu-edom, "Eshu the red," and people would assume it was because of his ample red hair.
Existing in the shadow of their cousins, The Edomi would come to rule the Yaqobi in the 24th century AM by an agreement with the new Roman government that had recently subjugated the land. This man, named Herod, would overthrow the ruling Yahudi kings and establish a dynasty that lasted until after Yeru-Shalem was destroyed (2504 AM).
The sons of Abram's old age would dominate the region of the interior of the Great Peninsula, and come to rule the strategic coast between the gulfs that lead into the land of the Elami and the Mitsrai. These nations would not be large, and would not become "empires," but their location on the ocean would prove crucial in the development of civilization to the north.
The Rise of the Ashuri
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The Rebirth of the Babeli
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The Persian Empire
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The Greek Empire
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The Rise of Rome
The Rebirth of the Abrami
See main article: Renaissance (No Supernatural Intervention)
With the rise of the 'Abri', the anemic Roman Empire, crumbling in on itself, presented a challenge that rejuvenated many nations which had arisen during its latter days. As the "children of Abram" were advancing through the the eastern Mediterranean towards Byzantium, and the Norse tribes were asserting their separate destiny, southern and western Europe realized the need to "modernize." This lead to a renewed interest in the works of the Greeks that were collecting dust in libraries in Rome and Constantinople. Science became the driving force in the survival of their culture. This period of roughly a thousand years - 1250 AU to 2250 AU (500 - 1500 AD) brought Europe to into the age of exploring whole new continents.
The Nordic Conquests
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