Book Review: Thesis: The Hittites And The Bible

Thesis: The Hittites And The Bible, by William Wright

What makes this work remarkable, as a student of Hittite literature and history [1], is that it was written and published originally in 1882, soon after the rediscovery of the lost Hittite capital of Hattusa. Even more notably, the author himself (who had lived in the Middle East for several years) was himself a researcher who found and properly interpreted archeological finds relating to the Hittites, who were thought not to have existed in the 19th century, one example (among many) where those so-called scholars who dismissed the historical veracity of the Bible were found to have been mistaken because the absence of list civilizations was simply due to a failure to remember and properly recognize the past rather than any fault on the side of the scriptures themselves, something that has been found over and over again (whether one deals with evidence of the city of Nineveh or King David).

This book, which is very brief, is clearly and straightforwardly divided into three parts. The first section looks at the references to the Hittites within the Bible over the span of about a thousand years from Genesis to 2 Kings. The second section confirms the might of the Hittites from Egyptian and Assyrian sources, which as imperial rivals of the Hittites carry with them a high degree of credibility. Of great interest is the fact that the Hittites were apparently allies of the kings of Hazor who periodically oppressed Israel at one point in history and later the supposed allies of Israel during the twilight of their power. The book then closes with a short introduction to some of the earliest discovered Hittite texts, texts which in the more than century since then have been greatly supplemented by a variety of treaties whose similarities with biblical covenants demonstrate the biblical historicity even more.

There are many books, if not very commonly read, that deal with the subject of the Hittites in far more detail than this book does, largely because they have more material to work with that has been uncovered in various Anatolian and Levantine ruins. That said, this was a thesis written towards the beginning of Hittite studies, and one that set an admirable standard for judgment and accuracy of statements largely because of its focus on staying congruent with the Bible and with the historical record, as opposed to the judgments of biased historians then and now. By sticking close to the most reliable sources and the trunk of the evidentiary tree, this book sets a good example for historical theses in general. That alone makes it worth the read, whether as a source for one’s own research or for a short read about an obscure aspect of biblical history.

[1] See, for example:

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
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2 Responses to Book Review: Thesis: The Hittites And The Bible

  1. Pingback: Book Review: Anglo-Saxon And Norse Poems | Edge Induced Cohesion

  2. Pingback: Book Review: The Hittites | Edge Induced Cohesion

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