The theory of placing ancient Israel and all things Biblical in the Southern parts of Africa, is not a new one. Theories of Biblical places like Arabia, actually being in the eastern parts of Africa, has been put forth by extinguished scholars like linguist Augustus Henry Keane (1833-1912), archeologist and explorer Theodore J. Bent (1852-97), British army officer Sir John Christopher Willoughby (1859-1918), but also academical outcasts such as explorer Karl Gottlieb Mauch (1837-75). Many others also had opinions and theories when it comes to placing a Biblical region in Southeastern Africa. You see, some these guys wanted to find answers, or so it seems some of them where actually looking for the `Gold of Havilah` (as mentioned in Genesis). And they found gold alright, but not the kind they were looking for I suspect, but for us that come after them, seek pieces of evidence and proofs - they found something far better..
Now, before we start lets get one thing straight, Genesis 12,10:
"10 Now there was a famine in the land, and Abram went down to Egypt to live there for a while because the famine was severe. 11 As he was about to enter Egypt, he said to his wife Sarai, “I know what a beautiful woman you are. 12 When the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife.’ Then they will kill me but will let you live. 13 Say you are my sister, so that I will be treated well for your sake and my life will be spared because of you.”
Now, where did Abraham go according to the Bible? Yes, thats right, he went down, not sideways, a little to the left or right - upwards or backwards, but he down to Egypt from Canaan to live there for a while. Keeping this in mind, will save many from misunderstanding ancient geography/topography.
That being said, in this article we will examine the odd`n old map, but mostly we shall have a closer look at some of the writings of the academics mentioned above. We are going to get further acquainted with their thoughts on the matter. Now, as already discussed in a pervious post - Jerusalem can be found on numerous maps, along with Bethany, Gideon, Beersheba and also Bethlehem. Most of these maps put Jerusalem in the northwestern parts of Southern Africa more precisely Namibia, in a region that now is utter desert lands. Others claim it would be situated closer to the mountains, still deserted but rather closer to the southeastern side of South Africa (Mthatha and closer to the Drakensbergs). Either way, thes locations play nicely into Scripture, as Jerusalem was to be utterly left desolate and trodden down by the gentiles.... (Luke 21,24).
Biblical names in various maps, have a look at these references:
such as the earliest one from in amp from 1854 by Black, Adam & Charles, Richard Kiepert (1846-1915) and Paul Sprigade (1873-1928) from 1893, George Bacons Map of Transvaal and Orange Free State (1900), Sprigade & Max Moisel (1869-1920) from 1912, F. A. Brockhaus from (1894), Francesco Constantino Marmocchi (1805-58) from 1858 (which also includes a river called Nero and Pella, possible reference to Josephus War of the Jews), Alvin Jewett Johnson (1827-84) from 1886 and John G. Bartholomew (1860-1920) from 1907.