How is it possible that both Genesis and the Sumerian King list describe extremely longevous life spans before the flood? “…Then Enosh lived eight hundred and fifteen years…”, “…Alulim became king; he ruled for 28800 years. Alaljar ruled for 36000 years. 2 kings; they ruled for 64800 years.”
Have you ever wondered whether or not there are any similarities present in ancient texts such as Genesis and even older writings such as the Sumerian King List? Well, the truth is there are numerous similarities among these ancient texts which make us think that stories present there could have originated from the same source.
In fact, scholars have speculated for years about the similarities between the Sumerian King List and accounts present in Genesis.
The Sumerian King List is one of the most important and misunderstood ancient texts ever discovered on Earth. Written in Ancient Sumerian, it lists numerous generations of Kings that ruled over Ancient Sumer, detailing their supposed length and location of kingships.
Researchers have not been able to explain why the unique list blends mythical pre-dynastic rulers with historical rulers who are known to have existed.
One of the most interesting details about the Sumerian King List is the fact that the earliest list, describes eight kings who ruled over Earth for a total of 241,200 years, since the original kingship had ‘descended from heaven’ all the way to the time of the ‘Great Flood’, which swept over the land and once more “the kingship was lowered from heaven” after the Flood.
Interestingly, descriptions of similar longevous reigns are found in accounts written down in Genesis, and even in the Quran 29:14.
The Sumerian king list offers a list of eight rulers who lived on Earth and reigned for long periods of the great flood, ranging from 18,600 to 43,200 years, a time period eerily similar to that found in Genesis V, where generations from Creation all the way to the Flood are recorded.
What is even more interesting is the fact that between Adam and Noah there are eight generations just as there are eight kings between the beginning of Ancient Sumerian Kingship and the flood in the Sumerian King List.
There are several mythological stories which often speak of immortal gods. In the eyes of human beings, an extremely long longevity could easily be interpreted as a sign of immortality.
Adam, the first man is said to have lived 930 years, Seth, the second patriarch lived for around 912 years, Enosh lived 905 years.
“Then Enosh lived eight hundred and fifteen years after he became the father of Kenan, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Enosh were nine hundred and five years, and he died.” – Genesis 5:11
Kenan lived 910 years: “Then Kenan lived eight hundred and forty years after he became the father of Mahalalel, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Kenan were nine hundred and ten years, and he died.” – Genesis 5:14
Mahalaleel lived for 895 years: “Then Mahalalel lived eight hundred and thirty years after he became the father of Jared, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Mahalalel were eight hundred and ninety-five years, and he died.” – Genesis 5:17
Enoch lived 365 years: “Then Enoch walked with God three hundred years after he became the father of Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.” – Genesis 5:23
Lamech lived for 777 years: Then Lamech lived five hundred and ninety-five years after he became the father of Noah, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Lamech were seven hundred and seventy-seven years, and he died. Noah was five hundred years old, and Noah became the father of Shem, Ham, and Japheth.” – Genesis 5:31
Interestingly after Noah, the maximum human lifespan as depicted in the accounts written down in Genesis, diminishes rapidly thereafter, from almost 1,000 years to the 120 years of Moses. (Genesis 6:3; Deuteronomy 31:22; 34:37)
When the flood past, the Sumerian King List records rulers who reigned for much shorter periods of time, meaning that the Sumerian King List documents not only the great flood ( As many other ancient cultures), but it also displays the same pattern of decreasing longevity which is found in the Bible, suggesting that those who lived prior to the flood had longer lifespans than those who lived and ruled after the great flood.
There are many questions mainstream scholars have not been able to answer in regards to the Sumerian King List, Genesis, and other ancient texts which display incredible similarities among them. Why did the ancient Sumerians decide to combine historical rulers with ‘mythical’ rulers in one single document? And how is it possible that before the flood, kings lived for hundreds and even thousands of years?