Note [original edition] :
This mountain is one of those which divide Armenia, on the south,
from Mesopotamia, and that part of Assyria which is inhabited by the Curds,
from whom the mountains took the name of Cardu, or Gardu, by the Greeks
into Gordyæi, and other names1
Mount al Jûdi (which name seems to be a
corruption, though it be constantly so written by the Arabs,
for Jordi, or
Giordi) is also called Thamanin2
probably from a town at the foot of it3
named from the number of persons saved in the ark, the word thamanin
, and overlooks the country of Diyâr Rabîah, near the cities
of Mawsel, Forda, and Jazîrat Ebn Omar,
which last place one affirms to be but
four miles from the place of the ark, and says that a Mohammedan
built there with the remains of that vessel, by the Khalif
whom he by mistake calls Omar Ebn al Khattâb
The tradition which affirms the ark to have rested on these mountains,
must have been very ancient, since it is the tradition of the Chaldeans
the Chaldee paraphrasts consent to their opinion6
very much formerly, especially among the eastern Christians
. To confirm it,
we are told that the remainders of the ark were to be seen on the Gordyæan
mountains: Berosus and Abydenus both declare there was such a report in their
the first observing that several of the inhabitants thereabouts scraped
the pitch off the planks as a rarity, and carried it about them for an amulet:
and the latter saying that they used the wood of the vessel against many
diseases with wonderful success. The relics of the ark were also to be seen
here in the time of Epiphanius, if we may believe him9
and we are told the
emperor Heraclius went from the town of Thamanin up to the mountain al Jûdi,
and saw the place of the ark10
There was also formerly a famous monastery,
called the monastery of the ark, upon some of these mountains, where the
Nestorians used to celebrate a feast day on the spot where they supposed the
ark rested; but in the year of Christ
776, that monastery was destroyed by
lightning, with the church, and a numerous congregation in it11
time it seems the credit of this tradition hath declined, and given place to
another, which obtains at present, and according to which the ark rested on
, in Armenia, called by the Turks Aghir dagh
, or the heavy or great
mountain, and situate about twelve leagues south-east of Erivan12
See Bochart. Phaleg. l. I, c. 3.
Geogr. Nub. p. 202.
V. D’Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 404 & 676, & Agathiam, l. 14, p. 135.
Benjamin. Itiner. p. 61.
Berosus, apud Joseph. Antiq. l. 1, c. 4.
Onkelos & Jonathan, in Gen. viii. 4.
V. Eutych. Annal. p. 41.
Berosus, apud Joseph. ubi sup. Abydenus, apud Euseb. Præp. Ev. l. 9, c. 4.
Epiph. Hæres. 18.
Elmacin. l. 1, c. 1.
V. Chronic. Dionysii Patriarch.
Jacobitar. apud Asseman. Bibl. Orient. T. 2, p. 113.