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Brit-Am Now no. 1444
The Lost Ten Tribes of Israel Movement
14 January 2010, 28 Tevet 5770
1. Question Concerning What Languages the Scythians and Cimmerians Spoke
2. Alistair Williams:
Coat of Many Colors both a blessing and a curse!
3. Jew from Iran has Tradition of Descent from Ephraim


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1. Question Concerning What Languages the Scythians and Cimmerians Spoke
Richard Johnson wrote:
Re Brit-Am Now no. 1442
# 2. Answers to Historical Criticism of Brit-Am: Cimmerians and Scythians
In the message below, the Brit-Am critics state that the language of the Cimmerians and Scythians was "Asian".  What was the language of the Cimmerians and Scythians?  I thought I read in one of your books that their language was possibly Aramaic or another language similar to Northern Hebrew.  Thank you for your time and everything you do for us.  We love you and God bless.
Richard Johnson Jr 

Brit-Am Reply:
The language of the Cimmerians and Scythians is unknown.
Based on names and a few words that have come down to us it is often assumed that the Scythians spoke an Iranian-Persian type dialect
and the Cimmerians either something similar or a dialect of the Thracians in southeast Europe.
No-one knows for sure.
The Cambridge Ancient History points out the names may have been influenced by the intermediaries through which they became available
i.e. those from near the Iranians sound Iranian and those from the neighborhood of Thracians sound Thracian.

Some of the names of the Scythians and of Scythian groups have meanings in Hebrew as shown in our work "The Tribes".
Steven Collins also gives some examples.
The Scythians are identified with the Sakae. One of the centers of the Sakae was the region east of the Caspian Sea.
From this area Russian archaeologists have discovered inscriptions in Aramaic.
This is the strongest proof we have.

Aramaic was one of the official languages of the Assyrian Empire.
Aramaic was probably spoken by a portion of the Israelite Tribes even before their Exile.
A long inscription (The Bilaam Text) in a mixed Hebrew-Aramaic dialect dating from the Israelite period has been found in the region of Gad east of the Jordan.
This has been described and analyzed in our book "Ephraim"

2. Alistair Williams:
Coat of Many Colors both a blessing and a curse!

Re: Brit-Am Now no. 1437

I am relatively new to this but have been reading with interest your commentary on Josephs coat of many colours.
After some prayer and contemplation regarding the significance of his coat being of many colours I believe there is much significance in it today..
I fully accept that Joseph today consists of America and Britain through Manasseh and Ephraim.
These two nations have enjoyed the 'blessing' all of the material wealth and technology the world has to offer.  One wouldn't regard these many varied 'riches' as righteous, quite the opposite, because all are material in origin, they are 'coloured'.
Josephs coat was both blessing and a curse.  Josephs descendants biggest error was that they did not look to Almighty God for guidance and wisdom in handling the many blessings they inherited through the clothing of the coat of many colours. 
I do believe in the significance of the spiritual aspect of this story and understand that we are today reaping the reward for the misuse of our inheritance.

3. Jew from Iran has Tradition of Descent from Ephraim
Eliyahu wrote:
Shalom Sir,
        I am an Iranian jewish man, My ancestors were forced to convert to Islam around 150 years ago but I'm trying to revive my jewish heritage and refind my Jewish identity. I came originally from Shiraz, capital of ancient Persia. I would like to know which Israelite tribe I may belong to?
I heard from my Shiraz Jewish friend that Persian Jews are from the Ephraim Tribe. How much of this may be correct? Can you give me a brief history of Jewish history in Iran, specially in Shiraz?

Brit-Am Reply:
Shiraz is in the southern center of Iran.
Our organization Brit-Am, the Lost Ten Tribes Movement, is not usually involved with Jewish issues.
We are occupied more with the Lost Ten Tribes of Israel who we understand to now be mainly located amongst Western Nations.
I cannot tell you very much more than you probably already know, probably much less.
There must be Persian Jewish e-mail discussion lists who can help you. They are often intelligent, well-educated, and successful people.
They should be happy to discuss matters with you.

As for the tradition that the Jews from Shiraz descend from Ephraim this is the first we have heard of it but such traditions were to be found in the Iranian area and in the neighboring regions of Central Asia. We refer to some of them in our work "The Tribes".
Such traditions to our understanding may have any one of three possible sources or a combination of them.
They may be:

a. Complete inventions or mistaken interpretations of sundry information.

b. Genuine Traditions from Jews of Known Israelite Tribal Ancestry.
After the Lost Ten Tribes were exiled a minority from amongst them joined or found their way to Judah. Groups from the Ten Tribes amongst Judah may have retained some degree of cohesion. When later the Jews were exiled groups of such families have converged in specific areas. 
In Tunisia of North Africa for instance about 20% of the Jewish families had a tradition that they descend from Zebulon.
Unlike most North African Jews these families were often blond and blue-eyes and looked like Dutchmen with whom we identify most of the Tribe of Zebulon.
We believe that this tradition may have been true but that they represent a small group from Zebulon that had remained with Judah whereas most of Zebulon went into Exile.

c. Traditions Concerning the Lost Ten Tribes Adopted by Jews who Came Later.
People adopt the traditions of the area they come to. In the USA for instance a minuscule minority may actually be descended from pioneers who belonged to the Plymouth Plantation in Massachusetts of 1621 but very many celebrate Thanksgiving Day.
In many cases Israelites from the ten Tribes after being exiled reached areas in Iran and Central Asia and moved on. The tradition that they had been there however remained. This tradition may have been adopted by Jews who came there later or applied to such Jews by their Gentiles neighbors in memory of other Israelites who had been there beforehand. Something like this happened in Afghanistan and in Bukhara. It stands to reason that something similar could have happened in Shiraz of Central Iran which belongs to the same cultural milieu.
God bless you


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