Cultures throughout history have believed the world formed or was formed at some time in the past, so methods of dating Creation have involved analysing scriptures and some physical data.

Creation datesEdit

Different historical cultures put the creation of the world at different dates. Many historical calendars were based on these dates.

Date of Creation according to the Mayan calendarEdit

The Mayan calendar dates the creation of the Earth to August 11 or August 13, 3114 BCE (establishing that date as the zero day of the Long Count

Date of Creation according to the Christian Pentateuch / Jewish Torah Edit

The Bible begins with the Book of Genesis, in which God creates the world, including the first human, a man named Adam, in six days. Genesis goes on to list many of Adam's descendants, in many cases giving the ages at which they had children and died. If these events and ages are interpreted literally throughout, it is possible to build up a chronology in which many of the events of the Old Testament are dated to an estimated number of years after the Creation.

Some scholars have gone further, and have attempted to tie in this Biblical chronology with that of recorded history, thus establishing a date for the Creation in a modern calendar. Since there are periods in the Biblical story where dates are not given, the chronology has been subject to interpretation in many different ways, resulting in a variety of estimates of the date of Creation.

Two dominant dates for Biblical Creation using such models exist, about 5500 BCE and about 4000 BCE. These were calculated from the genealogies in two versions of the Bible, with most of the difference arising from two versions of Genesis. The older dates are based on the Septuagint. This translation was used by some Jews until about 100, then by Christians until 405, then by the Byzantines until 1453, and is still used by the various Orthodox churches. The later dates are based on the Hebrew text of the Torah (the precursor of the Masoretic text), which is still used by Jews. Jerome translated it into Latin as the first book of the Vulgate in 405, then it was used by Western Christians, within both Roman Catholicism and later Protestantism, beginning in 1517. The patriarchs from Adam to Terach, the father of Abraham, were often 100 years older when they begat their named son in the Septuagint than they were in the Hebrew or the Vulgate (Genesis 5, 11). The net difference between the two genealogies of Genesis was 1466 years (ignoring the "second year after the flood" ambiguity), which is virtually all of the 1500-year difference between 5500 BCE and 4000 BCE.

Traditional Catholics use the year 5199 BCE, which is taken from Catholic Martyrologies, and referred to as the true date of Creation in the "Mystical City of God," a 17th-century mystical work written by Ven. Mary of Agreda concerning creation and the life of the Virgin Mary.


The Ussher date for creation, 4004 BC, printed in the center margin of a KJV Bible

Jewish scholars subscribing to similar interpretations (mainly as given in a pre-Talmudic work, the Seder Olam) give two dates for Creation according to the Talmud. They state that the first day of Creation week was either Elul 25, AM 1 or Adar 25, AM 1, almost twelve or six months, respectively, after the modern epoch of the Hebrew calendar. Most prefer Elul 25 whereas a few prefer Adar 25. When these dates were chosen, both were the first day of the week (Sunday), but in the modern calendar, developed later, they are not. The sixth day of Creation week, when Adam was created, was the first day of the following month, either Tishri or Nisan, the first month of either the civil or biblical year, respectively. In both cases, the epoch of the modern calendar was called the molad tohu or mean new moon of chaos, because it occurred before Creation. This epoch was Tishri 1, AM 1 or October 7, 3761 BCE, the latter being the corresponding tabular date (same daylight period) in the proleptic Julian calendar.[3]

One of the most well known estimates in modern times is that of Archbishop James Ussher (15811656), who proposed a date of Sunday, October 23, 4004 BCE, in the Julian calendar. He placed the beginning of this first day of Creation, and hence the exact time of Creation, at the previous nightfall. See the Ussher-Lightfoot Calendar.[2]

Date of Creation according to Hindu scripture Edit

According to Hindu scripture, the universe undergoes endless cycles of creation. Each iteration of the universe lasts 1 lifespan of Brahma, which amounts to 311 trillion years. The age of the current iteration of the universe is about 155 trillion years (or 51 years of Brahma). Its important to note that its believed that the Universe experiences numerous cycles of expansion and subsequent contraction in one iteration itself.

Notes Edit

  1. These are Julian calendar dates equivalent to Elul 25, AM 1 and Adar 25, AM 1 in the modern calculated Hebrew calendar even though these Jewish dates were originally given in the old observational calendar several centuries before the modern calendar was developed.
  2. 2.0 2.1 J. Ussher, The Annals of the World iv (1658)
  3. Edgar Frank, Talmudic and Rabbinical Chronology (New York, 1956)

See alsoEdit

External links Edit

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