Right i got my reply from the British Museum
Firstly i sent only ONE e-mail saying...
Hello my name is XXXXX
My mum is a Jehovah's Witness and her faith teaches her that Jerusalem was finally destroyed in 607 BCE when i know the date to be 586/7 BCE. I have found things using Compass on the British Museum Website that are helpful to my search for facts, already i've established 586/7 off your site.
There are some things i need to prove to my mum, here they are...
Firstly the Cuneiform tablet with part of the Babylonian Chronicle (605-594). Before i discuss this with mum i need to know that this is accepted FACT and nothing will change what it says or affect its content. For example the Jehovah's Witnesses have a book called 'Insight into the Scriptures' and there is a picture of the same tablet with different dating which of course is cause for concern. Lets say i wanted to come down to the Museum with my mum and show her this tablet what will it say to disprove her date 607 BCE for Jerusalem's destruction?
I know Nebuchadnezzar first came to Jerusalem to put a different king on the throne and led some from Jerusalem as captive, if this dates that then it will put the Destruction as later thus disproving 607 BCE.
Then the two Lachish Letters. These prove the date to NOT be 607 BCE?
The reason i am asking for more details is because i intend to come down to the M useum at some point. Are there any other things at the Museum that will prove the date of Jerusalem's destruction by the Babylonians in 586/7 BCE?
Also i would like to bring to your attention the fact that YEARLY Jehovah's Witnesses are shown around your Museum on a private tour which is used to prove the date 607 BCE, which is vital to their chronology for Christ's Invisible return to Heaven.
They replied with TWO e-mails, here they are... Dear Karl As you rightly say the Lachish letters prove the date to be 587 B.C.E., from the Red text: Lachish Letter II
Israelite, 586 BC
From Lachish (modern Tell ed-Duweir), Israel
A letter written on a piece of pottery
This is one of a group of letters written on ostraka (pot sherds) found near the main gate of ancient Lachish in a burnt layer which archaeologists have associated with the destruction of the city by the Babylonians in 586 BC. It is written in ink in alphabetic Hebrew. The letters are a poignant record of the city's last days.
In 598 BC Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon, invaded Judah after it had rebelled against him. He captured Jerusalem and took the royal family captive. He installed Zedekiah, the former king's uncle, as his choice of ruler. However, rebellion broke out again. Nebuchadnezzar showed no mercy this time and in 587 BC he beseiged and then destroyed Jerusalem.
This was the period at which this letter was written. It came from an officer named Hosha'yahu who was in charge of a military outpost. He was writing to Ya'osh, military commander at Lachish, as the situation worsened.
'To my lord Ya'osh. May Yahweh cause my lord to hear the news of peace, even now, even now. Who is your servant but a dog that my lord should remember his servant?'
Peace was not to be. Nebuchadnezzar moved on to Lachish and nearby Azekah, the last two major cities of Judah to be subdued by the Babylonians. There followed a large-scale deportation of a part of Judah's population. Thus began the exile, a period of great significance for the Jews spiritually, and one which would profoundly influence later religious ideology and teaching.
Height: 9 cm
Width: 10 cm
Excavated by J. L. Starkey, Wellcome-Marston Research Expedition.
Room 57 , The Ancient Levant
J.N. Tubb, Canaanites (London, The British Museum Press, 1998), p. 121, fig. 81
T.C. Mitchell, The Bible in the British Museum: interpreting the evidence (London, The British Museum Press, 1988), p. 78-79, no. 41
I would recommend the books above both are available in the Reading Room.
Reading Room Supervisor
Learning and Information Department