By Pascal Richet
For many of historical past, humans relied on mythology or faith to supply a solution to the urgent query of the earth's age, although nature abounds with clues. In "A traditional background of Time", geophysicist Pascal Richet tells the attention-grabbing tale of ways scientists and philosophers tested these clues and from them outfitted a chronological scale that has made it attainable to reconstruct the historical past of nature itself. the hunt for time is a narrative of ingenuity and backbone, and prefer a geologist, Pascal Richet rigorously peels again the strata of that background, giving us an opportunity to surprise at every one layer and really savor how a ways our wisdom - and our planet - have come.
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The priests of the religion that had in the meantime been codified into Judaism then divided the Creation into six days of labor followed by one day of rest. This allowed them to give a theological foundation to the Jewish practice of the Sabbath, for everybody, not just for the clergy. To these priests, then, we owe the account of the creation of the various families of living beings. ” At that time the Babylonian sources of the Bible were unknown; they were discovered in 1834, when excavations in Mesopotamia unearthed thousands of cuneiform tablets that had been buried under the ruins of lost cities.
Seismic destruction, volcanic violence, gullied hillsides, alluvia deposited by torrential rains, the filling in of the seas at the mouths of great rivers such as the Nile—the entire range of the great “remodeling agents” working on the earth’s surface deploy themselves in few geographical areas so evidently and so consistently as they do in the eastern Mediterranean basin. A hundred years before Aristotle, the clear-sighted Herodotus had already described the considerable effects of the Nile’s flooding and the related accumulation of sediments.
The alliance between the Hebrew nation and their new God sealed at the summit of Mount Sinai was a propitious time—with its great kings David and Solomon, Israel dominated Palestine during the tenth century BC—but shortly thereafter disunity took over. Stemming from a schism that occurred upon the death of Solomon, the kingdoms of Israel and Judah both suffered severe defeats: the first in 721 BC by the Assyrians, and the second in 587 BC by the Babylonians under Nebuchadnezzar II. Fifty years later, the Babylonians themselves were conquered by the Persians under Cyrus the Great.