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ca 1566 schilderij Pieter Bruegel de Oude
Source: nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toren_van_Babel

Toren van Babel
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Pieter Brueghel de Oude, De toren van BabelDe toren van Babel is een bouwwerk gekend uit de bijbel dat refereert aan de Babylonische ziggoerats. Volgens het Bijbelboek Genesis was Babel de eerste stad die de nakomelingen van Noach bouwden in de vlakte van Sinear. Hun leider was Nimrod en onder zijn bewind wilde men een toren bouwen die 'tot aan de hemel' zou reiken.

Om de macht van dat ongedeelde volk te beperken, dat tegen Gods bevel in bijeenbleef, verwarde Hij hun taal en verspreidde hen over de hele aarde. Zo kwam het dat de toren en de stad niet afgebouwd werden. Volgens de bijbel is dit ook de reden waarom de stad Babel genoemd werd. (In het Hebreeuws betekent Balal "verwarren".) Uit deze ontstaansgeschiedenis van de talen is de uitdrukking 'Babylonische spraakverwarring' (Een situatie waarin allen door elkaar praten en niemand er meer wijs uit wordt.) voortgekomen.


[bewerk] Hoogte van de toren
De toren van Babel heeft echt bestaan. Op spijkerschrifttabletten zijn vermeldingen gevonden van een ziggoerat, een trapvormige tempeltoren, die 91 meter hoog was op een basis van 91 x 91 meter. De toren hoorde bij de tempel van Mardoek, de voornaamste god van Babyloni?. De Babyloni?rs noemden hun toren Bab-Iloe, Poort van God.

Uit de spijkergeschriften blijkt dat men met de toren daadwerkelijk de hemel wilde bereiken. De hoogte van de toren is speculatief omdat verschillende bronnen geen eenduidig beeld geven. Omdat de toren de symbolische voorganger is van het verlangen van de mens om hoge gebouwen te maken, is de hoogte van de toren een significant onderdeel van de mythe.


[bewerk] Geschiedenis van de toren
De trapvormige toren werd in 689 v.Chr. verwoest, daarna herbouwd en voltooid (door Nebukadnessar II). De Perzen van Xerxes sloopten de toren opnieuw, in 478 v.Chr.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tower_of_Babel
Tower of Babel
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This article is about the Biblical story. For other uses, see Tower of Babel (disambiguation).

Engraving The Confusion of Tongues by Gustave Dor? (1865), who based his conception on the Minaret of Samarra[citation needed]The Tower of Babel (Hebrew: מגדל בבל‎ Migdal Bavel Arabic: برج بابل‎ Burj Babil) is a structure featured in chapter 11 of the Book of Genesis, an enormous tower intended as the crowning achievement of the city of Babilu, the Akkadian name for Babylon. According to the biblical account, Babel was a city that united humanity, all speaking a single language and migrating from the east; it was the home city of the great king Nimrod, and the first city to be built after the Great Flood. The people decided their city should have a tower so immense that it would have "its top in the heavens." (וְרֹאשׁוֹ בַשָּׁמַיִם). However, the Tower of Babel was not built for the worship and praise of God, but was dedicated to false man-made religion[citation needed], with a motive of making a 'celebrated name' for the builders[citation needed]. - Genesis 11:4. God seeing what the people were doing and sinning[citation needed] against him, confused their languages and scattered the people throughout the earth.

Babel is the Hebrew equivalent of Akkadian Babilu (Greek Babylon), a cosmopolitan city typified by a confusion of languages.[1] The Tower of Babel has often been associated with known structures, notably the Etemenanki, the ziggurat to Marduk, by Nabopolassar (610s BC). A Sumerian view of this story is preserved in Enmerkar and the Lord of Aratta.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nimrod_(king)Though not clearly stated in the Bible, Nimrod has since ancient times traditionally been interpreted to be the one who led the people to build the Tower of Babel. Since his kingdom included the towns in Shinar, it is believed likely that it was under his direction that the building began. This is the view adopted in the Targums and later texts such as the writings of Josephus. Some extrabiblical sources, however, assert to the contrary, that he left the district before the building of the tower.

Nimrod figures in some very early versions of the history of Freemasonry, where he was said to have been one of the fraternity's founders. According to the Encyclopedia of Freemasonry: The legend of the Craft in the Old Constitutions refers to Nimrod as one of the founders of Masonry. Thus in the York MS., No. 1, we read: "At ye making of ye toure of Babell there was a Masonrie first much esteemed of, and the King of Babilon yt called Nimrod was a Mason himself and loved well Masons." However, he does not figure in the current rituals.

It is further often assumed that his rulership included war and terror, and that he was a hunter not only of animals, but also a person who used aggression against other humans. The Hebrew translated "before" in the phrase "Mighty hunter before the LORD" is commonly analysed as meaning literally "in the Face of" in this interpretation, to suggest a certain rebelliousness in the establishment of a human government. Since some of the towns mentioned were in the territory of Assyria, which is connected to Shem's son Asshur, Nimrod is sometimes speculated to have invaded territory that did not belong to him. However, various translations of the Hebrew text leave it ambiguous as to whether the towns in Assyria were founded by Nimrod or by Asshur.

Historians and mythographers have tried to find links between Nimrod and figures from other traditions. One such identification is with Ningirsu, and Ninurta who inherited his role, the Sumerian and later Akkadian god of war, hunting, and agriculture; or Nergal, God of Death and the Plague, who was sometimes called Lugal-Amarada or Lugal-Marad or Ni-Marad. Lugal Marad means "king of Marad," a city, whose name means "Rebellion" in Akkadian, as yet unidentified. The name Ni-Marad, in Akkadian means "Lord of Marad". The chief deity of this place, therefore, seems to have been Nergal, of whom, therefore, Lugal-Marad or Ni-Marad is another name.

Marduk (Merodach), who shared attributes with these earlier gods, has also been suggested as a possible archetype for Nimrod, especially at the beginning of the 20th century. Nimrod's imperial ventures described in Genesis may be based on the conquests of the Assyrian king Tukulti-Ninurta I (Dalley et al., 1998, p. 67).
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