.. is the 22 volume historical work I’m digging into at the moment.
How far have I come? Uhm. 2 of 22. I’ve "finished" with the Egyptians, the Babylonians and the Assyrians, but I’m still in Little Asia and man have I learned new stuff! Of course we must not let ourselves be drawn completely away with the Swedish historian, Carl Grimberg’s way of writing history, since he did not live to see the hermeneutical revolution in terms of interpreting meaningful material. And this is bloody meaningful!
We’ve all heard about how the Egyptians had a cultural elite back then (which is more than 4000 years ago), not only how they built the pyramids, but also how they lived for the life after death, how laws and letters were written etc ad infinitum. But not much have we heard about the other great places, the places you would want to be, like Babylon and Assyria. (And what we have heard are mostly distorted, jaleous tales from the first book of Moses in the Old Testament.)
At least if you’re anything like me. Far from a history nerd, but close to becoming one.
And I’m looking forward to reading the next twenty of them, even including the ones about our Modern Society (21 and 22). Why is that? History is boring! It’s just alot of names and numbers! Carl Grimberg makes it far from boring! His personalized way of telling chronological (and parallel) history in a down-to-earth way, including examples from what they know (or believe to know) about everyday life. It’s like a looking glass into the past, far from Discovery Channel and National Geographic, since the text goes alot deeper.
After reading the two first books, I’ve come to the realization that the biblical Flood (remember Noah?) probably took place somewhere near Eufrat and Tigris (Norwegian adaptions of the real names) some 3-4000 years B.C. I’ve also learned that Tutankhamun was probably named Tutanankot, since his father tried to introduce monotheism and advocated the love of the Sungod, and that his reign was not more than 6-10 years or so, before he was succeeded (he himself died from a leg injury).
Reading Grimberg is fun, educational, but WATCH OUT! a lot of the information is outdated. He is writing in a typical 18th century, Christian way, having no problem calling nomads primitive and even the blood of the dark-skinned Nubians (who lived south of Egypt) culturally hostile. But it serves as a good foundation to do a little cross-referencing from, while leaning back getting entertained.