Philistines and Israelites in the West.

Part One. Who Were the Philistines?
by Yair Davidiy

The Philistines as Agents of Israelite Exile.
Ethnic and Cultural Origins of the Philistines.
Crete was the birthplace of Minoan Civilization.
The Egyptian Connection.

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The Philistines as Agents of Israelite Exile.

Philistines       We saw that it had been prophesied that a portion of the Israelites would be exiled by Sea [Isaiah 9:1, 11:11], in large ships and fish-boats (Amos 4:2).
[See the Brit-Am Commentary (BAC) to these verses and all others quoted in this article. ].
The Ten Tribes from Samaria were to be taken away by the Philistines  (Gaza, Ashdod, Ashkelon, and Ekron, see Amos 1:6,8) and delivered to Edom in Europe.

Gaza, Ashdod, Ashkelon, and Ekron were Philistine cities.
A Portion of The Israelites were also to be taken away by the Phoenicians of Tyre (Amos 1:9) . Scripture and Archaeology indicates that the Philistines and Phoenicians were intertwined with each other to some degree.

We shall see how knowledge concerning the movements of both Philistines and Phoenicians towards the west can help us confirm where the Ten Tribes went to.

Ethnic and Cultural Origins of the Philistines.
Strict distinctions between Minoans, Mycenean Greeks, and the Phoenicians belong more to a later date. At the beginning (or rather the Intermediate stages) there was a great deal of intermixing and a sharing of culture and civilization.
The Philistines were similar to the Canaanites. In addition to strong Canaanite similarities the Philistines possessed a Minoan (Isle of Crete type) civilization overland with Mycenean (Greek) associated culture.
The Philistines were associated with Crete and/or Cyprus which is identified with Caphtor.

The Bible says the Philistines were a branch of the Egyptian Race.
Genesis 10:
13 Mizraim [Egypt] begot Ludim, Anamim, Lehabim, Naphtuhim, 14 Pathrusim, and Casluhim (from whom came the Philistines and Caphtorim).

Jeremiah 47:
4 Because of the day that comes to plunder all the Philistines,
To cut off from Tyre and Sidon every helper who remains;
For the Lord shall plunder the Philistines,
The remnant of the country of Caphtor.

Amos 9:
7 'Are you not like the people of Cushim to Me,
O children of Israel'' says the Lord.
'Did I not bring up Israel from the land of Egypt,
The Philistines from Caphtor,
And the Syrians from Kir.

We see from the above the Philistines could be linked with both Egypt and Caphtor.
Caphtor were the Philistines came from has been identified with the Egyptian Keftiu and the Isle of Crete though some Egyptian inscriptions seem to locate Keftiu in Northern Syria.
There was in fact a branch of the Philistines located in Northern West - Tell Tainat (near Alalkh) also referred to as Pattin, Hattin, Wadasatini, Padasatini, Palastini.
Brit-Am Now no. 1291
#4. Ancient History: Philistines in Northern Levant'

BAMBINO no. 35
#2. New Findings: Philistine Enclave in Northern Syria!






Israelites from the Tribes of Dan (Smal of the Dananu) and Judah (Yadi) were also in this area.
Caphtor has also been identified with Cyprus but Cyprus was more Phoenician in character and at one state was also ruled over by the Tribe of Dan and in Akkadian is referred to as Ydnna or "Isle of the Dananu".
In Greek Mythology Dan is also associated with Crete.

Crete was the birthplace of Minoan Civilization.
The Minoans used two scripts, Linear A and Cretan hieroglyphs
Cyrus Gordon claimed that Linear A is an archaic form of Phoenician which is similar to Hebrew.
Two Linear A  inscriptions have been found in Israel, one at Lachish the other at Haror (possibly the Biblical Gerar, a Philistine center).
Later Linear B script was introduced from Mycenean Greece.

The Egyptian Connection.
The Bible linked the forefathers of the Philistines to Egypt (Mitsraim, Genesis 10:13).
The Egyptians were ruled over by the Hyksos who were probably local Egyptians who adopted Canaaanite and Hebraic customs and were later identified with the Hebrews.
The city of the Hyksos was Avaris wherein Cretan artwork has been found.
# Connections between Egypt and Crete are prominent. Minoan ceramics are found in Egyptian cities and the Minoans imported several items from Egypt, especially papyrus, as well as architectural and artistic ideas. The Egyptian hieroglyphs served as a model for the Minoan pictographic writing, from which the famous Linear A and Linear B writing systems later developed.[6] #
The fall of the Hyksos has been associated with the disappearance of early Minoan Civilization after the explosion of Thera.
The island of Thera (also known as Santorini) lies to the north of Crete. It was the scene of one of the great volcanic eruptions known. This took place at an estimated time ranging from ca. 1620 to 1500 BCE. This event is associated with a change in Minoan histopry. Subsequently, Minoa declined.
Minoa had been important in the development of Mycenean civilization in Greece. The rulers of Mycenea were probably of Hyksos origin. Their symbol was a griffon which was also one of the symbols of Dan.
The Myceneans took over Crete in ca. 1420 BCE (conventional dates, probably much too early). A further merging of the Mycenean and Minoan civilizations took place.

As a result of these changes the Philistine population in the Land of Canaan which had been there previously was significantly augmented with new arrivals.
# After the Minoan civilization was decimated by the eruption of Thera, the Cretans took refuge in the Levant where they were known as the Philistines. #

The Philistine city of Gaza was also known as Minoa. According to Stephen of Byzantium ("De Urbibus," s.vv. Gaza, Minoa) the city of Gaza had been a colonized from Crete (cf. Soph., ii, 5).
"Brit-Am Now"-895
#1. Philistines, Crete, Israelites, and Northern Europe
#significant amounts of Minoan-type artefacts have been found in Gaza#

We now have a basic idea as to who the Philistines were.
We shall see that after the Assyrian conquest the Philistines were to be found in Western Europe and that they had been instrumental in settling Israelites there alongside them.
This was indicated by the Bible and confirmed by archaeology.

Amos 1:
6 Thus says the Lord:
'For three transgressions of Gaza, and for four,
I will not turn away its punishment,
Because they took captive the whole captivity
To deliver them up to Edom.

7 But I will send a fire upon the wall of Gaza,
Which shall devour its palaces.

8 I will cut off the inhabitant from Ashdod,
And the one who holds the scepter from Ashkelon;
I will turn My hand against Ekron,
And the remnant of the Philistines shall perish,'
Says the Lord God.


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