Book of Mormon Geography

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Zosimus
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Re: River Sidon and the Ace of Hearts

Post by Zosimus »

Shulem wrote:
Tue Oct 31, 2023 2:37 pm
You asked about MANTI earlier in this thread beginning here, do you recall? My response extends for several posts and I gave you a partial explanation with a promise that more would come in due time when I was ready to reveal/explain more. I keep my cards close to chest and play to win.
I do remember. As I'd responded then, it is problematic to place Manti and the head of the Sidon north of Zarahemla. This would mean you'd also need to shift the defensive cities of Antiparah, Judea, Cumeni and Zeerom to the north, and the internal geography quickly falls apart.

All good, I'll wait for your revelation/explanation

As you know, my hypothesis is that Joseph was riffing on the stories of Captain Kidd and the treasure of his galley, the Kedah Merchant.

The founder of Kedah was named Maroni, the same spelling that Joseph gave to the treasure gaurdian.

Maroni = an Arabian warrior chief and founder of Kedah, known in Arabic geographies as Kamarah or Comoro
Maroni (as spelled in Joseph Smith's earliest written account) = the warrior chief tasked with guarding the treasure of Cumorah

It could be a coincidence, but its a highly unusual one, especially given that the geography of Maroni's Kedah aligns with the geography on the "plates of gold upon which there was engravings which was engraven by Maroni & his fathers."

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Soon I'll explain how this information reaches Smith, via a friend of Martin Harris and E.B. Grandin. who also happened to be a literary agent from Palmyra.
Last edited by Zosimus on Fri Nov 03, 2023 6:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: River Sidon and the Ace of Hearts

Post by Shulem »

Zosimus wrote:
Thu Nov 02, 2023 2:46 am
Shulem wrote:
Tue Oct 31, 2023 2:37 pm
You asked about MANTI earlier in this thread beginning here, do you recall? My response extends for several posts and I gave you a partial explanation with a promise that more would come in due time when I was ready to reveal/explain more. I keep my cards close to chest and play to win.
I do remember. As I'd responded then, it is problematic to place Manti and the head of the Sidon north of Zarahemla. This would mean you'd also need to shift the defensive cities of Antiparah, Judea, Cumeni and Zeerom to the north, and the internal geography quickly falls apart.

All good, I'll wait for your revelation/explanation
I can appreciate that. Thank you.

My map with cities pasted on it is not necessarily an exact science with so many of the cities being plopped down in a general sense but several are exact as I understand the text and how they should be positioned on the landform. My map needs improvement, I admit that.

Smith mumbled city names while his face was in a hat and mentioned several places or communities by name, some of which are only mentioned once or at a minimum just to include their existence as a place of origin. For those places, I don’t think Smith was overly concerned with an exact placement of them as he visualized them in his mind’s eye because they were only mentioned briefly in passing and did not serve to represent key places such as Zarahemla, City of Lehi-Nephi, Bountiful, etc. So, several places are just thrown into the story in a general sense and meld their way in. What’s important is when he mentions cardinal direction such as the city of Moroni. We know that is a city on the east coast. Gid, Omner, Mulek were eastern cities bordering the coast along with others mentioned in the text. But as I say, several places are mentioned briefly, in haste -- in a passing sense and are hardly considered an exact geographical position because they aren’t important. And yes, it could be argued that the storytelling about travels and geography do fall apart as so many places are mentioned in passing.

But I will go into Manti later and show how it relates to Zarahemla as Joseph Smith tells his tales with his face in a hat.

So, what do you think about the direction of the current of river Sidon? For me, there is no question that it leads to sea west. I’ve demonstrated that with the text and used examples to put it together in a cohesive way. And that is not a good think for the apologists who have avoided coming to that understanding because for them -- it leads nowhere. It dooms their models!
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Re: River Sidon and the Ace of Hearts

Post by Shulem »

Zosimus wrote:
Thu Nov 02, 2023 2:46 am
As you know, my hypothesis is that Joseph was riffing on the stories of Captain Kidd and the treasure of his galley, the Kedah Merchant.

The pre-Islamic Arabian [1] founder of Kedah was named Maroni, the same spelling that Joseph gave to the treasure gaurdian.

Maroni = an Arabian warrior chief and founder of Kedah, known in Arabic geographies as Kamarah or Comoro
Maroni (as spelled in Joseph Smith's earliest written account) = the warrior chief tasked with guarding the treasure of Cumorah

It could be a coincidence, but its a highly unusual one, especially given that the geography of Maroni's Kedah aligns with the geography on the "plates of gold upon which there was engravings which was engraven by Maroni & his fathers."
I think the contributions you’ve made in trying to understand the mystery of Joseph Smith’s geography are valuable to the discussion and you’ve hit on some things that really make us take notice. Perhaps these things heavily influenced his ideas for his story he planned to invent and things he thought a lot about while in his youth. In fact, it could be that Smith first pondered the Asian peninsula before he ever decided to land Lehi on Delmarva! Perhaps Malay was where he first made connections and visualized his story and then moved it to the US proper and in doing so found Delmarva as a good match.

Have you thought of that, Zosimus? Think about it. The plates have to get to Cumorah! They can’t get to New York via Asia but can from Delmarva which is very similar in landform compared to Malay and those names (Maroni, Comoro) could be borrowed as a kind of proxy. The bottom line when it comes to the Book of Mormon is the hill CUMORAH.
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Re: River Sidon and the Ace of Hearts

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Shulem wrote:
Thu Nov 02, 2023 1:01 pm
So, what do you think about the direction of the current of river Sidon? For me, there is no question that it leads to sea west. I’ve demonstrated that with the text and used examples to put it together in a cohesive way. And that is not a good think for the apologists who have avoided coming to that understanding because for them -- it leads nowhere. It dooms their models!
For the Sidon to flow south into the sea west, Manti would need to be north of Zarahemla. It's not easy to square that with the text, but will wait for your explanation how that works.

My conclusion is that the River Sidon flows south to north. The head of the river starts in a wilderness area in Manti, southeast of the Land of Zarahemla. The Sidon headwaters flow from east to west and then turn north somewhere south of the City of Zarahemla. It then flows north through the Land of Zarahemla and passes by the City of Zarahemla. It drains into the Sea East north of Zarahemla.

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Re: River Sidon and the Ace of Hearts

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Zosimus wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2023 2:41 am
For the Sidon to flow south into the sea west,

<snip>
All you need do is embrace the text about Sidon flowing and running into sea west. I provided verses to that effect and other examples to support the text. The key word is “running” which is directly associated with kinetic flow of the river from east to west leading into the sea.
Websters 1827 Dictionary wrote:RUN'NING, noun

1. The act of running or passing with speed.

2. That which runs or flows; as the first running of a still or of cider at the mill.
The evidence expressed by the Ace of Hearts is definitive in explaining exactly how the river flowed and where it ended up. If you cannot accept this then that is your choice. It’s absolutely crystal clear to me.
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Re: River Sidon and the Ace of Hearts

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Shulem wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2023 4:18 am
All you need do is embrace the text about Sidon flowing and running into sea west. I provided verses to that effect and other examples to support the text. The key word is “running” which is directly associated with kinetic flow of the river from east to west leading into the sea.

The evidence expressed by the Ace of Hearts is definitive in explaining exactly how the river flowed and where it ended up. If you cannot accept this then that is your choice. It’s absolutely crystal clear to me.
I wish I had your confidence bcuz nothing about the geography in the Book of Mormon is crystal clear for me :D Especially the parts about the Sidon River. If we remove the punctuation, like it was in the original text, it becomes even less clear. I don't know if Mormon is saying the wilderness runs from east towards the west, or the river runs east towards the west. Even the apologists disagree on this, some say its the wilderness. others say its the river. Some say Sidon flows north others say it flows south. Its not at all clear.

But for it to flow south into the sea west, you have to place Manti north of Zarahemla. I can't really comment on your interpretation that it flows south into the sea west until I understand how you place Manti north of Zarahemla.
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Re: River Sidon and the Ace of Hearts

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Zosimus wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2023 5:06 am
I wish I had your confidence bcuz nothing about the geography in the Book of Mormon is crystal clear for me :D Especially the parts about the Sidon River. If we remove the punctuation, like it was in the original text, it becomes even less clear. I don't know if Mormon is saying the wilderness runs from east towards the west, or the river runs east towards the west. Even the apologists disagree on this, some say its the wilderness. others say its the river. Some say Sidon flows north others say it flows south. Its not at all clear.
I can appreciate your observation on that point and perhaps a closer look would be helpful. I understand the verses in question to apply the word running with the river as it runs through the land. In another situation with geography, however, the word running is used exclusively with the land wherein a river (Missouri River) within the very vicinity is not specifically mentioned.

For example:
D&C 57 wrote:...the land of Missouri, which is the land which I have appointed...Independence is the  center place; and a spot for the temple is lying westward...and also every tract lying westward, even unto the line running directly between Jew and Gentile;
In Moses 3:10 the geography states how the Lord “caused a river to go out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads;” contrast that with the Book of Abraham, a clear example of the word running is used with the river:
Book of Abraham 5:10 wrote:There was a river running out of Eden, to water the garden, and from thence it was parted and became into four heads.
Let’s review other examples I provided earlier:
  • I beheld a beautiful stream of water which ran from the east to the west
  • And when my father saw that the waters of the river emptied into the  fountain of the Red Sea, he spake unto Laman, saying: O that thou mightest be like unto this river, continually running into the fountain
  • Houses of Parliament, Buckingham Palace &c. South lies the River Thames running from west to east, with five large arched bridges across it
We may reasonably conclude that Alma’s “head of the river Sidon, running from the east towards the west” follows suit with other examples that demonstrate how the course of a river moves through the land.

It’s really rather simple. River Sidon is reported by Alma to run from east to west whereby it must empty into the nearest sea. Joining the name of a river with the word running means they are inseparable and define the direction of flow, for example:

the river Mississippi, running
the river Missouri, running
the river Potomac, running
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Re: River Sidon and the Ace of Hearts

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Zosimus wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2023 5:06 am
Even the apologists disagree on this, some say its the wilderness. others say its the river. Some say Sidon flows north others say it flows south. Its not at all clear.
You will agree that the apologists have a harder time trying to explain how all those bones ended up in the “sea.” At least your map provides a fighting chance for the bodies to actually make it to sea, sort of, maybe, I guess.

The Ace of Hearts is a two-fer! You gotta it.

8-)
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Re: River Sidon and the Ace of Hearts

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Shulem wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2023 2:34 pm
You will agree that the apologists have a harder time trying to explain how all those bones ended up in the “sea.” At least your map provides a fighting chance for the bodies to actually make it to sea, sort of, maybe, I guess.
Hmmm. Hard to say. Where is Smith’s river Sidon?

Map of the East India Isles, John Cary, London / 1801

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Re: River Sidon and the Ace of Hearts

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Shulem wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2023 1:26 pm
We may reasonably conclude that Alma’s “head of the river Sidon, running from the east towards the west” follows suit with other examples that demonstrate how the course of a river moves through the land.

It’s really rather simple. River Sidon is reported by Alma to run from east to west whereby it must empty into the nearest sea. Joining the name of a river with the word running means they are inseparable and define the direction of flow, for example:

the river Mississippi, running
the river Missouri, running
the river Potomac, running
Apologists force themselves to interpret “running from the east” refers to the region or land in general rather than the river being the actual feature that is running. But I don’t think that is the case. Here are a pair of examples in early church history where the clause “running from the” refers directly to the noun that precedes it; the Acres & Street are running rather than the river nearby which serves as a point of reference:
  • two acres of land running from the east described tract to the Mississippi river
  • Wells Street be opened, running from the Temple Lot South to the River
So, when Alma says “by the head of the river Sidon, running from the east towards the west,” I take it to mean he refers to the actual course of the river. I feel this interpretation is fully justified.
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