where is ophir located in the bible


Port of Pabang is on the mouth of a river that washes the foot of the hill of Malacca, and contains a vast deal of gold. Hamilton reported in 1719 that lumps of five or six ounces weight have been found; these are discovered by divers ten fathoms deep in the river. They follow the Mahometan religion, and use rosaries, or strings of beads, like the papists (58). My article roughly covers two distinct time periods, the sixty years before and after 1850. Smith, The Antichrist: or, Christianity Reformed (1833): The authors of the Bible pass over almost unnoticed, the philosophical character of the son of David, but provide a full account of his buildings, his vessels of gold and silver, etc. I had written this before I had access to Robinsons Theological Dictionary, from which I cite the following corroborative information (72-73). Navigation was in ancient times more difficult etc (265). We may here observe, that if Bruce's account of the direction and period of the monsoons, when the fleet was outward-bound, be compared with the account of their direction and continuance when it was returning homeward, the two statements will be found to be inaccurate; long quotes from Bruce (260) and Robertson (261). The third epocha of the circumnavigation of Africa fell in the time of Solomon, nearly 500 years later (7). Now, if Ophir was in an uncivilized country, what commodities had he to give for its natural productions? Oil and wine of Judea, Tyrian articles, of doubtful value to barbarous people (105). Available in ECCO. Ophir, one of the sons of Joktan, is often mentioned in Scripture as dwelling in a land of gold, to which voyages were made by ships issuing from the Red Sea, and sailing eastward; but Elam and Gush occupied the whole sea-coast of Persia, as far as the Indus. Doig rules out East Africa because Solomons ships went to Tarshish on same journey; instead, Solomons Ophir was on the west coast of Africa (13: 223), which lay within usual course of Phnician navigation (224). Prouder triumphs yet await, must have originally appeared then), with additional comments re cedar (mentioned among imports) which grows in Sumatra (64: 396). Myron: "Single instances decide nothing but a nation which, in its most flourishing period, is obliged to engage artists from foreign kings, and can do nothing by its own ingenuity and dexterity, is surely a poor and helpless race. Reland would seek Ophir in the Peninsula of India Ophir was the golden Chersonese of India, according to Josephus But it would be a laborious task, and unnecessary here, to notice more particularly the various conjectures offered on this subject by Saint Jerome, Saint Augustine, Philo Judaeus, Rabbi Abraham Peritsol, R. David Kimchi, Volaterrannus, Ortelius, Varrerius, Vertomannus, Montanus, Salmasius, Grotius, Prdeaux, D'Anville, Michaelis, Gosselin, and many other learned men, who place Ophir in Arabia, in India, at Sofala in Africa, in the island of Sumatra, and of Socotra, on the European continent in Spain, and even in South America, and the island of Hispaniola! (1: 47). 2 Chronicles 9:10 The servants also of Huram, and the servants of Solomon, who brought gold from Ophir, brought algum trees and precious stones. The generality suppose Ophir to be the East Indies (vol 2). Through waves all foam, Sumatras isle was riven, Some deem the sapient Monarch plowd the seas, Solomons ships sailed from Ezion-Geber, at bottom of Elanitic gulf, down Red Sea into Indian ocean (50); voyage took 3 years, which, when contrasted with the present state of navigation, seems a wonderfully long space, even allowing for the time required to procure the commodities. 1794 (link is to 1797 ed. peopling of Abyssinia) (16: 48) but makes an exception for his discussion of Ophir, which is a more extensive as well as a closer com/bination of ideas (48-49); they commend his ingenuity, although the truth or plausibility of his system is a different question. Runs through his monsoon theory; this is his theory: Because the ships of Tharshish came once in three years, therefore Solomons fleet set out from Eloth to Sofala, and retruned in three years precisely, i.e. Eupolemus was of the opinion that Ophir is an island in the Red Sea (in Eusebius, Praeparatio Evangelica, 9:30, 7).

Bowles, note to where Ophirs gold unburied shines: When I first wrote this part, I was inclined to follow the received opinion, that Sofala, on the coast of Africa, was the ancient Ophir (90); cites Huet, Milton, Montesquieu, DAnville, Vincent, Bruce. In most cases full bibliographical information and context for the quote can be found by clicking the titles, which will take you to a page where the quote begins; or by following up the source in Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO) where Ive noted that. Others think, that this island is the Ophir mentioned in scripture, and that the inhabitants learned the imperfect account they have of the origin of the world, from the servants of Solomon, who came hither for gold and other precious commodities (5: 459). Stackhouse Solomons trade is mentioned in 1 Kings 9:28, 10:11, 22:48 and 2 Chron 26, 8:18, 9:10.

Johann Reinhold Forster, History of the Voyages and Discoveries Made in the North (1786): It is at present proved almost to a demonstration, that the Phni/cians and Egyptians have more than once undertaken and happily accomplished the circumnavigation of this quarter of the globe (6-7). 1 Kings 10:11 The navy also of Hiram, that brought gold from Ophir, brought in from Ophir great plenty of almug trees and precious stones.

The riches brought to Solomon by his Indian fleet plus annual tribute and gifts might shed an artificial glory round him; the solid glory of a Prince however consists in making a whole people happy, by opening the sources and rewarding the exertions of industry. Instead, Jews under Solomon laboured hard at the furnace of slavery and oppression (10). See also Wahner, De Regione Ophir Tychaen, De Commerc.

There is a clear reference also to a tribe Ophir (Genesis 10:30). Thomas Maurice, Indian Antiquities (1800; orig 1793-4), on the golden Sofala which was the Ophir of Scriptures, whence David and Solomon obtained those immense treasures, which animated the former to project, and enabled the latter to complete, the stately Temple of Jerusalem with all the various golden ornaments used in its public worship. 450 talents of gold in one ship alone (7: 451), i.e. DAnville plausibly traces the Arabic Ophir to Sopharah el Zange (Sophala), but I by no means subscribe to the system of Bruce, which he has displayed with so much ingenuity and ostentation; and which he thinks established by the discovery of an anomalous monsoon prevailing from Sofala to Melinda. Cites refutation of this in Gentlemans Magazine (1793), p. 222, via Halley, Parkinson; Halley, in 1686 Phil Trans., says monsoon winds are more southerly on the African side, and more westerly on the Indian, but adds that theres a SSW wind between Africa and Madagascar that gets more westerly as it moves north (266). Back to Timothy Alborn's home page Ann Murry, The Sequel to Mentoria (1799), Lady L. asks Mentor: Where is Ophir, or the Land of Gold? The gold of Sheba (Ps. ; J.A. We are informed of the amount of the precious metals which the fleets brought back to Solomon at the termination of a voyage of three years' duration, but whether it far exceeded the value of what they carried with them appears at least doubtful; and if we may judge from the / circumstance of the trade ceasing with the reign of him who began it, and that long before his death, we shall perhaps conclude that it was not found beneficial, or in so small a degree as not to induce the continuance of it. Gosselin is the best authority on this. They had none but domestic manufactures. Mickle: Sumatra has been by some esteemed the Ophir of the Holy Scriptures; but the superior fineness of the gold of Sofala, and its situation nearer the Red Sea, favour the claim of the latter; cites Bochaert (465). All those generations from Shem, mentioned by Moses, are said by him to / have been peoples of countries in the eastern parts of the world; which, even according to the Jewish and Christian systems, makes the population of those regions extremely ancient, though infinitely short of the fabulous ages supposed by the Hindoos (1: 6-7). Tarshish/ Tyre The breach of this commandment might have imperceptibly led to that of the next. They discovered some traces of cavities, made after the manner of ancient wells. From these hints we infer, that Solomon having had communications by laud, with the East, desired more direct intercourse with it, which he proposed to effect by sea. Charles Thompson, Travels (1744): Ophir has been sought for almost in every part of the world, and yet remains a terra incognita; though one would hardly believe the discovery to be so difficult, considering the various indices by which the scriptures seem to point out (3: 370-371).

Between the predatory life and warfaring vicissitudes of Saul and of David, and the pompous state, and voluptuous repose of him, who legislated from a throne of ivory, overlaid with pure gold, amidst provincial satraps and tributary princeswhat a contrast! (172). Spain? Samuel Wilberforce, Agathos, and other Sunday Stories (1841), The Storm at Sea (story read to children). Also quoted by Thomas Bowditch in his "Account of a Mission to Ashantee," Philosophical Magazine 53 (1819) identifies Issert as a Danish visitor to the Gold Coast, whose travels werent published in English (446). And the navy also of Hiram, that brought gold from Ophir, brought in from Ophir great plenty of almug trees, and precious stones Now the weight of gold which came in to Solomon in one year was 666 talents of gold. Ophir occurs also as the name of a place, country, or region, famous for gold, which Solomons ships visited in company with the Phoenician The difficulty is to ascertain where Ophir was situated. Gujarat, near present-day Karachi; in respect of Ophir, it appears, that that Place must be Sumatra, because this Isle has always been the richest in Gold ; or else the Peninsula of Malacca, believed to be the Golden Chersonese of the Ancients, and where was found the odoriferous Woods, and other Aromatics, which the more remote Nations have always brought there, and even to Achin, the Capital of Sumatra (28). That the Indians brought their merchandizes thither, and that Solomon's navy went thither to bring them home. Ophir (502). Solomons wealth. Though this Ophir was not a maritime country, yet he thinks that the gold it produced might be brought by land to some parts of the Tigris and Euphrates. This geographical critic, like the blind guides in St. Matthew, swallows all Africa rather than not strain at Ava! (655). Lipenius, who has composed a treatise concerning the country of Ophir, places it beyond the Ganges, at Malacca, Java, Sumatra, Siam, Bengal, Pegu, &c. Some have sought for Ophir in America, and have placed it in the island Hispaniola. Another opinion has fixed Ophir on the western coast of Africa; but this is not so likely to become popular, as that which looks eastward. William Fleming, A Gazetteer of the Old and New Testaments (1838), entry Ophir: Dr Prideaux, proceeding on the supposition that the voyage to Tarshish only, and not the voyage to it and Ophir together, occupied three years, concludes that Ophir might have been nearer Judea than the other place, and that the voyage might have been accomplished in a shorter time than three years going and returning, if it had not been necessary to sail to Tarshish for those commodities which Ophir could not supply; and he hence infers that Tarshish might be any place in the Indian Ocean, the distance to and from which required a voyage of three years, yielding gold, silver, ivory, apes, and peacocks; and that any place might be Ophir which produced the other commodities mentioned by the sacred historian. J.E. So King Solomon became greater than all the kings of the earth in riches and in wisdom. To the carriers of this commodity a good profit always accrued; and although the Egyptians perhaps made their full share of it, as certainly did the land caravans of Syria, Solomon and Hiram also found their account in the trade. Vulgate calls Ophir India. Now it is very hard to reckon up the magnitude and the variety of the royal apartments to say all in brief, Solomon made the whole building entirely of white stone, and cedar wood, and gold, and silver. Goropius Becanus and Bivarius say Ezion-geber was in Mediterranean, which Calmet disputes. Cites Prideauxs claim that Ophir was in Ezion Geber; David treasured up three thousand talents of the gold of Ophir but this does not prove the voyage, for the gold of Ophir was a general expression (cites Job 22, Psalms 45 as well as I Chron 29) (265). New to the sun; but perilous the way, The art of writing history largely consists in giving the impression of a wealth of primary evidence without bogging the reader down in too much detail. John Seally, A Complete Geographical Dictionary (1787): Ophir, a country mentioned in scripture, from which Solomon had great quantities of gold brought home in ships which he sent out for that purpose; but where to fix its situation is the great difficulty, authors running into various opinions on that head. Maritime Places, from whence they drew their Gold, their Spices, and the other Joseph Skinner 1805, The Present State of Peru (1805): In the time of Solomon, how many regions did not the earth contain, felicitous in the wisdom of their legislature, in the flourishing condition of their agriculture, or in the pastures which afforded nourishment to their useful and numerous flocks? The circumstance, that Solomon built a navy of ships on the Red Sea, to bring gold and precious stones, &c. &c. from it, points out clearly in what region of the world it must have been situated. A closer identification is sought with Abhira, a people dwelling at the mouths of the Indus. Ophir beyond 1850 (click dates to access pdf files): Goes over similarity of names on journey to Sofala and in biblical account (441-5). William Fleming, A Gazetteer of the Old and New Testaments (1838), entry Ophir: Josephus and others suppose Ophir to have been the ancient Taprobana in the Indian Ocean, which is now understood to be the Island of Ceylon, and this hypothesis is founded on the circumstance that the ships of Solomon sailed from Ezion-geber on the Red Sea. According to Bruce (I, 440), a voyage from Sofala to Ezion-geber would have occupied quite three years owing to the monsoons. Paraphrased in J. Ouiseaus Practical Geography (1794), entry OPHIR. But this expedient will not do; not only because the seats of traffic are frequently changing, and any country may, in time, be exhausted of the commodities it once abounded with; but because it is no easy matter to tell (by the imperfect description we have of them) of what distinct species some of these commodities were. John Robinson, A Theological, Biblical, and Ecclesiastical History (1815; entry OPHIR): a country which is much celebrated in Scripture, and about which critics have proposed a great number of conjectures Josephus says, that the country of Ophir is in the Indies, and is called the Gold Country. Let us now try these mines of Dos Santos by the laws of the monsoons, Northern monsoon in June would take ship from Ezion-gaber to Mocha (436), then summer monsoon to Babelmandeb; then meets contrary southwesterly wind (437): having no sails, being upon a lee-shore, a very bold/ coast, and great swell (437-38). Abbot de Choisy, in his Life of Solomon, says Ophir was in Siam, based on 3 years and other commodities found there We have taken a new course in quest of Ophir. By the above short essay, some perhaps may be induced to conclude that Ava was the true Ophir. Vincent continued: the trade to Ophir has so much divided the opinions of mankind, from the time of Jerom [sic] to the present moment; offers nothing decisive (2: 265) but does add: I neither carry Ophir to Peru with Arius Montanus, or to Malacca with Josephus, or to Ceylon with Bochart, because I consider all these suppositions to be founded upon no better evidence than the mention of gold in those countries; but our choice must lie between the coast of Africa and Saba. Bruce, Montesquieu, dAnville all support Africa. Huetius, in his Dissertation on the navigation of Solomon, says Sofala, via Ezion-geber in Red Sea. Various points concur in corroborating this last assertion; nay, necessarily force us to acknowledge the Persian Gulf as the centre of the commerce of that Ophir, concerning which so many false hypotheses have been framed. The Sea is as easy, or easier, to pass from the Isle of Ceylon to that of Sumatra by the western Monsoon, than it is from Arabia to the Coast of Malabar, or to the Island of Ceylon That which the Learned suppose, along the Eastern Coast of Africa to Sofala, is ten Times more difficult and dangerous, without reckoning that this last Place is two hundred Leagues more distant from Arabia, than the Isle of Sumatra is. Possibly the word is the Malayan name for the pretious metal (30). George Thompson, Travels and Adventures in South Africa (1827): Captain Owen seems to have obtained strong evidence of the commerce of the Phoenicians having extended from the Red Sea, much farther down the eastern coasts of Africa than is generally imagined; and to have pretty clearly ascertained that the celebrated gold mines of ancient Ophir were situated in the vicinity of Inhamban,where it is remarkable, that a place of the name Ophir, still rich in gold and ivory, exists at the present day (2: 320). Van Beck, in: JAOS, 78 (1958), 14152; R.D. William Howitt. All therefore that is recorded in the Bible is abundantly corroborated by the. There is no longer any gold in that country; but that is of no consequence, since Strabo positively asserts that in the time of the Seleucidaa, the inhabitants of Gerrha, on the road to Babylon, obtained considerable quantities from it. The reason also why he fixes upon Sofala for Ophir is not satisfactory / to us. Marsden reports that theres a hill in Sumatra called Mount Ophir, possibly from its having been once rich in gold (31). Also, Ophir in Henrew is pronounced Aupeer; nothing like Ava. Of the various products mentioned, the only one which from the Old Testament notices can be regarded as clearly native to Ophir is the gold, and according to Pliny and Strabo the region of Southeastern Arabia bordering on the Persian Gulf was a famous gold-producing country.