When was Adam born

October 23, 4004 BC BC - God creates the world

Wednesdays on the Ararat

Ussher was born in Dublin in 1581. Church history has been his hobby from childhood. As a teenager he decided to work for the Anglican Church, he was a pastor at the age of 20, then Archbishop of Armagh in 1602 and five years later professor of theology at the famous Trinity College in Dublin, of which he was also vice-chancellor twice. He formulated unifying beliefs and wrote one of the earliest history books of the Irish Church.

In 1640 Ussher moderated a conflict between the king and parliament. In 1650 his calculations for the exact beginning of creation come out under the title "Annales Veteris Testamenti" ("Annals of the Old Testament, derived from the earliest beginnings of the world").

"According to our chronology, the beginning of time occurred at the beginning of the evening that precedes the 23rd day in October, in the year 4004 before the birth of Christ"It reads. The expulsion from paradise took place on November 10th of the same year. On May 5th, 2348 BC Noah's ark stranded on Mount Ararat. It was a Wednesday.

Nebuchadnezzar as a fixed point

Of course, Ussher's calculations are the result of strictly scientific knowledge. Before that, the clergyman, who is also considered a highly talented linguist, not only studied the Bible, but also all kinds of scriptures of the cultures around the Mediterranean.

One of the sure key dates is the death of the Babylonian king and Jerusalem conqueror Nebuchadnezzar II on March 16, 597 BC. Together with other historical references, the family trees of the biblical generations and the decisive calendars, the year and day result inevitably: a Sunday, of course.

Common sense defends itself

In 1701 the first King James Bible appears with an introductory excerpt from Ussher's annals. October 23, 4004 BC is set as the day of creation for all believers. But common sense defends itself early on. For example in the form of the French lateral thinker Isaac de La Peyrère, who already referred to archaeological excavations during Ussher's lifetime that must be much older. The natural scientist Girolamo Fracastoro also warns that fossils under the foundations of Venice are several millennia more than Ussher's world under their belt.

James Ussher died in Reigate, Surrey, in 1656 and was buried in Westminster Abbey. It will be almost three centuries before science realizes with certainty by means of uranium-lead dating that the world is around 770,000 times older than it was assumed.

Note: In a previous version we had erroneously written that "the world is 77,000 times older than he thought".