Remarkable Book of Mormon Evidences Hidden in Plain Sight: More Hebraic Patterns in The Book of Mormon

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Remarkable Book of Mormon Evidences Hidden in Plain Sight:

More Hebraic Patterns in The Book of Mormon

By Shirley R Heater


      Book of Mormon writers, who were Hebrews, explain that they wrote in Reformed Egyptian because it took less room; otherwise, they would have used the Hebrew. However, their thought and writing patterns, which were in Hebrew, are preserved in the text translated into the English language by Joseph Smith.

      Following the publication of The Book of Mormon in 1830, the awkward phrasing and repetitions in the text were (and still are) a constant criticism. In fact, in the 1837 edition, many of the repeated phrases, such as “and it came to pass” (43 times), were removed by the editor and typesetter, as well as awkward phrases smoothed out by rewording. After nearly 140 years that point of view was about to change! Who would have thought that this subject of criticism would turn out to be one of the strongest witnesses to the true origins of this record? And it is “hidden in plain sight” on every page!

Chiasmus Discovery and Its Impact

      A new era of Hebrew studies of The Book of Mormon began with the discovery of chiastic patterns more than forty years ago. John [Jack] Welch as a young LDS man went to Austria to study during his junior year at BYU. (Welch 2008:76). He attended a lecture off campus that introduced him to a book in German entitled The Literary Art in the Gospel of Matthew, which he purchased having “no idea what it was all about.” As he read, he could not put it down. The author, Paul Gaecher, “introduced the idea of parallelism and argued that it was especially important to the Hebrews because in their culture oral transmission was important and parallelism helped people memorize.” Gaecher further argued that Jesus had spoken in what he called “‘closed forms’ or defined units, many of which were symmetrically constructed with an a-b-a arrangement. This symmetry, he wrote, ‘progresses to chiasmus,’ an a-b-c.d.c-b-a pattern” and that “Matthew in fact used chiasmus and that it was more Hebrew than Greek in nature.” It was this book that introduced young Welch to “chiastic schemas” (Welch 2007:78; see figure 1).


  Several days after reading this book, Welch explains, “I was awakened by what seemed to me to be a voice, whose words were these: ‘If it is evidence of Hebrew style in the Bible, it must be evidence of Hebrew style in the Book of Mormon’” (Welch 2007:79). He immediately got out of bed, picked up his Book of Mormon and opened it where he had left off reading in King Benjamin’s speech with its classic chiastic passage in Mosiah 5:10-12 LDS [Mosiah 3:13-16 RLDS]. He states that he doesn’t think he would ever have found this through his own intellectual efforts. Jack Welch went on to analyze and later published his first article in BYU Studies in 1969, followed by his Master’s Thesis in 1970. His publication of Chiasmus in Antiquity (1981) has been circulated far and wide in scholarly circles, unique in that it presents chiasmus not only in Sumero-Akkadian, Ugaritic, Biblical Hebrew, Aramaic, the New Testament and Ancient Greek, but also in The Book of Mormon! It became the leading book on chiasmus throughout linguistic scholarship (see also Treat 1982).

      Could Joseph Smith have known about chiasmus? This question has been raised, primarily by critics of The Book of Mormon. John Welch conducted diligent research to learn what scholarly publications were available, particularly in the Unites States, in the 1820s. His results show that “there is no direct evidence, as far as I am aware, that Joseph had any actual knowledge of chiasmus” and that “the likelihood that Joseph Smith could have discovered this principle for himself or ever actually knew anything about chiasmus in 1829 remains very small” (Welch 2003:47, 80).

      When Chiasmus in Antiquity was published in 1981, additional lines of study were already underway—surely the Lord’s timing! I first met Angela Crowell in 1980. She felt strongly impressed to begin her studies of Hebrew while working at the University of Wisconsin. She applied her studies to The Book of Mormon and the results were published in The Zarahemla Record. Her Book of Mormon Hebrew studies have identified a profusion of various forms of Hebrew patterns. (See Table 1 for a summary of the various types of Hebrew patterns documented by Angela.)



       Needless to say, the impact of this groundbreaking discovery in 1967 still resonates in Book of Mormon and archaeology studies today. In Assessing the Broad Impact of Jack Welch’s Discovery of Chiasmus in the Book of Mormon, Robert Smith concludes: “There is little doubt that a true ‘blossoming’ of such studies has taken place in recent decades” (R Smith, 2007:69). In brief, Table 2 lists only a few other numerous chiastic studies, as well as a range of Hebraic styles.

      Also, beginning in 1981, Ed Faunce noticed a variety of writing styles and began to put the text in shorter clauses and phrases. His work revealed the poetic-style structure throughout, which ultimately formed the basis for the new poetic alignment in the Restored Covenant Edition1 (Faunce 1985).



Chiastic Clue

      A key chiasm at the beginning of First Nephi is as follows:

A   Therefore, I make a record of my proceedings in my days;

      B    Yea, I make a record in the language of my father,

            C    which consists of the learning of the Jews

      B    and the language of the Egyptians;

A   And I know that the record which I make to be true, . . .

                                                1 Nephi 1:1-2 RLDS [1 Nephi 1:1-3 LDS]


      The center point C “learning of the Jews” reveals the most important chiasm in The Book of Mormon! We know, for example, that this actually means more than just writing patterns that can lead to insights, as in this chiasm. It also tells us that topics such as culture, religion and both Old Testament and New Testament figures and events should be considered.


More Patterns

      While I was working on the RCE text alignment, I began to recognize many patterns listed in Table 1 that were repeated throughout. Recognizing these patterns helped guide me in formatting the poetic-style text alignment that is now in the RCE. It also contributed to more readable punctuation, which highlighted some of these patterns.

         In addition to the noted patterns, there were places in the text that appeared to be a pattern of some sort, but did not fit any of the patterns listed above. I have to admit, though, that I did not have any training to identify some of these patterns that did not fit those reported on in Table 1. However, the text of the Book of Mormon is so rich in style that it was easy to follow the natural phrasing that in my experience “cried out” to be put in the poetic-style form!

      I recognized these were “new” patterns (to me) and I quickly realized that they were not readily available in Book of Mormon research at that time. In order to identify these new types and verify their validity, extensive research was required since they didn’t appear to be well-known. A few types with examples from both the Bible and The Book of Mormon are offered here for the first time:


Poetry: Parenthetical, Epanalepsis, Extended Poem with Refrains, Synthetic Parallelism

Sentence Structure: Long Range Interrogator



      According to EW Bullinger, parenthetical construction is “a figure of speech which is used when a word or sentence is inserted which is necessary to explain the context” (1898; Heater 1996:17-18). The sentence should read as a complete thought without the parenthetical statement, which is the perfect test whether something is truly parenthetical.


Old Testament

Hannah arose after the eating and drinking at Shiloh

—Now Eli the priest was sitting on his chair

by the door post of the temple of the Lord;

as for her, she was bitter in spirit—

and prayed to the Lord, weeping hard, . . .

                                                Tsumura (2007:115-116)

      Setting apart the parenthetical interruption helps in reading and comprehension:


Book of Mormon

I have charity for the Jew—I say Jew because

      I mean them from whence I came;

I also have charity for the Gentiles;

                                                2 Nephi 15:9 RLDS [2 Nephi 33:8-9 LDS]

And it came to pass that he said unto them:

“Behold, here are the Waters of Mormon”

      —for thus were they called—

“And now as ye are desirous . . .”

                                                Mosiah 9:38 RLDS [Mosiah 18:8 LDS]

Therefore, he took Ammon and Aaron and Omner

      —and Himni he did leave in the church in Zarahemla,

      but the former three he took with him—and also

      Amulek and Zeezrom which were at Melek,

And he also took two of his sons;

Now the eldest of his sons he took not with him

      —and his name was Helaman—but the names of

      those which he took with him were Shiblon and


                                                Alma 16:83-84 RLDS [Alma 31:6-7 LDS]



      I first learned about epanalepsis from a small eleven-page “preliminary” report published by F.A.R.M.S. (Childs 1986; Trimble 1987). As I was working on the text alignment in the mid-90s, I remembered this paper because of the distinct pattern it described. Only a few Book of Mormon examples were given, but no Bibical examples or Hebrew studies. However, I was able to verify the pattern in EW Bullinger’s Figures of Speech Used in the Bible that presented some Biblical examples. Satisfied with this identification of a real pattern, I then applied it to my work on the alignment and punctuation.

      Epanalepsis is a Hebrew writing device loosely defined as “resumptive repetition.” The writer interrupts a thought with a digression, then the original sentence resumes by repeating the main thought or word. The digression usually contains material that is parenthetical and may be information which is background or supplemental to the principle thought. Some passages are complicated by several digressions before the original thought is finally completed (Heater 1996:20; Bullinger 1898; Childs 1986; Demetrius 1902).

Old Testament

And when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell

      upon Abram;

And, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him.

And he said unto Abram,

      [vv. 13-16 parenthetical references to seed, nation,

      fathers, 400 years, fourth generation]

And it came to pass that when the sun went down,

      and it was dark, . . .

In the same day the LORD made a covenant with

      Abram, saying,

                                                Genesis 15:12, 17

New Testament

For this cause I, Paul, the prisoner of Jesus

      Christ for you Gentiles,

      [vv. 2-13 parenthetical]

For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father

      of our Lord Jesus Christ, . . .

                                                Ephesians 3:1-14


Book of Mormon

And now do ye suppose that the children

      of this land—which were in the Land of

      Promise, which were driven out by our

      fathers—do ye suppose that they were


                                                1 Nephi 5:118 RLDS [1 Nephi 17:33 LDS]

      The following unique example reveals synonymous phrases:

      Book of Mormon

But behold, when the time cometh that they shall dwindle

      in unbelief—

After that they have received so great blessings from the

      hand of the Lord,

Having a knowledge of the creation of the earth and all men,

      knowing the great and marvelous works of the Lord from

      the creation of the world,

Having power given them to do all things by faith,

Having all the commandments from the beginning,

And having been brought by His infinite goodness into this

      precious Land of Promise—

Behold I say, if the day shall come that they will reject the

      Holy One of Israel, the true Messiah, their Redeemer and

      their God. . . ”

                                          2 Nephi 1:22-23 RLDS [2 Nephi 1:10 LDS]

      The introductory phrase “when the time cometh” is referred to in the parallel resumption “if the day shall come” which pattern highlights the parallel thoughts that follow as synonymous. Therefore, “dwindle in unbelief” means “reject the Holy One of Israel”!


Extended Epanalepsis

      In the book of Mosiah, I had recognized a passage that seemed to lose the initial direction of the thought. After diagramming the distinct parts, it became obvious that this fit the description of epanalepsis. My conclusion is that Mosiah 12:15-13:6 RLDS [Mosiah 28:11-29:4 LDS] is perhaps the longest and most complex extended epanalepsis. It is complicated by the fact that it extends from the end of one chapter into the beginning of the next before the thought is completed. With five “digressions,” there is no comparable example in the rest of The Book of Mormon, nor any in the Bible. It was this example I was most excited about because the structure of this passage is so complex it is easy to get lost.

      The actual final layout of this passage taken from RCE Book of Mormon with poetic-style alignment is shown below. The opening and closing AB and B’A’ summarize the main thought, that King Mosiah had no one to confer the kingdom upon (Mosiah 12:14 RLDS) [Mosiah 28:10 LDS], therefore he took the records and “all things he had kept” (Mosiah 12:15 RLDS) [Mosiah 28:11 LDS] and conferred them on Alma and gave him commandments concerning them (Mosiah 13:1-2RLDS) [Mosiah 28:20 LDS].

      The passage centered between AB and A’B’ contains five epanalepsis (numbered below), set apart by dashes for each segment. Notice that the end of chapter 12 RLDS [chapter 28 LDS] does not complete the thought, but it is completed in 13:6 RLDS [29:4 LDS]. The fifth and final small epanalepsis occurs in 13:1-2 RLDS[28:20 LDS] where “conferred them upon Alma” is interrupted briefly and resumed again to complete the main thought.

      Only the poetic-style alignment with appropriately placed dashes helps the reader to finally reach the conclusion of this important passage, which then concludes by repeating that Mosiah had no one on whom to confer the kingdom (Mosiah 13:5-6 RLDS) [Mosiah 29:3 LDS] (Heater 1996:21-22).

      Book of Mormon

A   Now King Mosiah had no one to confer the kingdom upon, for there was not any of his sons which would accept of the kingdom;

B    Therefore, he took the records which were engraven upon the plates of brass, and also the plates of Nephi and all the things which he had kept and preserved according to the commandments of God,

      And after having translated and caused to be written the records which were on the plates of gold which had been found by the people of Limhi, which were delivered to him by the hand of Limhi—

1    And this he did because of the great anxiety of his people, for they were desirous beyond measure to know concerning those people which had been destroyed

2    And now he translated them by the means of those two stones which were fastened into the two rims of a bow;

      Now these things were prepared from the beginning and were handed down from generation to generation for the purpose of interpreting languages;

      And they have been kept and preserved by the hand of the Lord, that He should discover to every creature which should possess the land the iniquities and abominations of His people;

      And whosoever has these things is called seer after the manner of old times—

3    Now after Mosiah had finished translating these records,

      Behold, it gave an account of the people which were destroyed,

      From the time that they were destroyed back to the building of the Great Tower,

      At the time the Lord confounded the language of the people, and they were scattered abroad upon the face of all the earth,

      Yea, and even from that time until the creation of Adam

4    Now this account did cause the people of Mosiah to mourn exceedingly,

      Yea, they were filled with sorrow;

      Nevertheless, it gave them much knowledge in the which they did rejoice;

      And this account shall be written hereafter;

      For behold, it is expedient that all people should know the things which are written in this account—

Mosiah 12:14-26 RLDS [Mosiah 28:10-19 LDS]

B’1 And now, as I said unto you that after King Mosiah had done these things, he took the plates of brass and all the things which he had kept and conferred them upon Alma which was the son of Alma—

5    Yea, all the records, and also the interpreters—

B’2 And conferred them upon him and commanding him that he should keep and preserve them, and also keep a record of the people,

      Handing them down from one generation to another, even as they had been handed down from the time that Lehi left Jerusalem.

      Now when Mosiah had done this, he sent out through all the land, among all the people, desiring to know their will concerning who should be their king.

      And it came to pass that the voice of the people came, saying:

      “We are desirous that Aaron, thy son, should be our king and our ruler.”

A’  Now Aaron had gone up to the Land of Nephi, therefore, the king could not confer the kingdom upon him,

      Neither would Aaron take upon him the kingdom;

      Neither were any of the sons of Mosiah willing to take upon them the kingdom;

      Therefore, King Mosiah sent again among the people, yea, even a written word sent he among the people.

Mosiah 13:1-6 RLDS [Mosiah 28:20-29:3 LDS]

Extended Poem with Refrains

      This category is actually a combination of two types of Hebrew poetry. The first is an alternating parallelism that “occurs when the first and third lines and the second and fourth lines, etc. ‘correspond or balance’ each other with an A/B/A/B pattern.” It can also extend to more than two lines (A/B/C/A/B/C) (Crowell 1986a revised in 1992:14).

      The second type is a refrain in which “a word or line of verse is repeated more than once within a poem.” The strict refrain repeats the phrase(s) unchanged throughout the verses. However, more common is the variant refrain, which shows minor variations throughout (Crowell 1986a:9).

      The following diagram from 3 Nephi 4:28-39 RLDS [3 Nephi 9:4-11 LDS] is an example of a grouping of five segments that consist of multiple parallel phrases, with the variant refrain in D and E highlighted in each segment:


28  A1 Behold, that great City Zarahemla

            B1  have I burned with fire,

                  C1  and the inhabitants thereof.

29  A2  And behold that great City Moroni

            B2  have I caused to be sunk in the depths of the sea,

                  C2  and the inhabitants thereof to be drowned.

30  A3  And behold that great City Moronihah

            B3  have I covered with earth,

                  C3  and the inhabitants thereof

                        D   to hide their iniquities and their abominations

                              from before My face,

                              E    that the blood of the prophets and of the saints

                                    should not come up anymore unto Me against them.

31  A1  And behold, that great City Gilgal

            B1  have I caused to be sunk,

                  C1  and the inhabitants thereof to be buried up in the

                        depths of the earth;

32  A2  Yea, and the City of Onihah,         

                  C2  and the inhabitants thereof,

      A3  And the City of Mocum,

                  C3  and the inhabitants thereof,

      A4  And the City of Jerusalem,

                  C4  and the inhabitants thereof—

            B2  and waters have I caused to come up in the stead thereof,

33                     D   to hide their wickedness and their abominations

                              from before My face,

                              E    that the blood of the prophets and the saints

                                    should not come up any more unto Me against them.

34   A1  And behold, the City of Gadiandi,

      A2  and the City of Gadiomnah,

      A3  and the City of Jacob,

      A4  and the City of Gimgimno—

            B    All these have I caused to be sunk and made hills and

                  valleys on the places thereof,

35              C    And the inhabitants thereof have I buried up in the

                        depths of the earth

                        D   to hide their wickedness and abomination

                              from before my face,

                              E    that the blood of the prophets and the saints

                                    should not come up anymore unto Me against them.

36  A   And behold, that great City Jacob-Ugath,

                  C    which was inhabited by the people of King Jacob

            B3 (a) have I caused to be burned with fire

                        (b) because of their sins and their wickedness,

                              (c) which was above all the wickedness of the

                              whole earth

                        (b) because of their secret murders and combinations

                        for it was to destroy the peace of My people and

                        the government of the land;

                  (a) Therefore, I did cause them to be burned

                        D   to destroy them from before My face,

                              E    that the blood of the prophets and the saints

                                    should not come up anymore unto Me against them.

38  A1  And behold, the City of Laman,

      A2  and the City of Josh,

      A3  and the City of Gid,

      A4  and the City of Kishcumen—

            B    have I caused to be burned with fire,

                  C    and the inhabitants thereof, . . .

39                    D   I did send down fire and destroy them, that their

                              wickedness and abominations might be hid from

                              before My face,

                              E    that the blood of the prophets and the saints which I

                                    sent among them might not cry unto Me against them.


Synthetic Parallelism

      “In synthetic parallelism, elements of the poetic line build on one another (a synthesis), but are not related as synonymous or antithetical; for example, the first line states an event, and the second states a conclusion. Two parts together are connected in a form that may convey cause and effect, or where the second part gives explanation or adds something new to the first part” (Bullinger 1898).

Old Testament

Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a

      fountain of tears,

that I might weep day and night for the slain

      of the daughter of my people!

                                          Jeremiah 9:1

The eyes of the Lord are in every place,

watching the evil and the good.

                                                Proverbs 15:3

Book of Mormon

Therefore, get thee out of this land,

And I will stop the Lamanites in this valley,

      that they come no further in pursuit of this people.

                                                Mosiah 11:74 RLDS [Mosiah 24:23 LDS]

Extended Synthetic

This pattern covers several lines. The following are clear examples that I recognized as a repeating pattern but didn’t know what to call it. Note the direct relationship of the parts of each line, illustrating cause and effect.

Old Testament

Oh that thou wouldest rend the heavens,

that thou wouldest come down,

that the mountains might flow down at thy presence,

                                          Isaiah 64:1


The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul;

The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.

The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart;

The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.

The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever;

The judgments of the Lord are true, and righteous altogether.

                                          Psalms 19:7-9


Book of Mormon

And they did withhold food from them,

      that they might hunger,

And water, that they might thirst;

And they also did take from them their clothes,

      that they were naked;

And thus they were bound with strong cords

      and confined in prison.

                                                Alma 10:71-72 RLDS [Alma 14:22 LDS]

      Adam fell, that men might be;

      And men are, that they might have joy,

      And the Messiah cometh in the fulness of time,

            that He might redeem the children of men from the fall;

                                                2 Nephi 1:115-116 RLDS [2 Nephi 2:25-26 LDS]

      And I saw the earth, that it rent,

      And the rocks, that they rent;

      And I saw mountains tumbling into pieces;

      And I saw the plains of the earth, that they were broken up;

      And I saw many cities, that they were sunk;

      And I saw many, that they were burnt with fire;

      And I saw many, that they did tumble to the earth

            because of the quaking thereof.

                                                1 Nephi 3:104-109 RLDS [1 Nephi 12:4 LDS]

      And wo unto the deaf that will not hear!

            for they shall perish;

      Wo unto the blind that will not see!

            for they shall perish also;

      Wo unto the uncircumcised of heart!

            for a knowledge of their iniquities will smite

            them at the last day;

      Wo unto the liar!

            for he shall be thrust down to hell;

      Wo unto the murderer who deliberately killeth!

            for he shall die;

      Wo unto them who commit whoredoms!

            for they shall be thrust down to hell;

      Yea, wo unto they that worship idols!

            for the devil of all devils delighteth in them;

      And in fine, wo unto all they that die in their sins!

            for they shall return to God and behold His face

             and remain in their sins.

                                                2 Nephi 6:65-72 RLDS [2 Nephi 11:23-27 LDS]


      Interrogative sentences ask questions such as Who? What? Where? Why? When? How? etc. In Hebrew, the interrogative sentence may be expressed in different forms. One form repeats the interrogative particle, each followed by a question mark (Crowell 1988:55-56; Andersen 1974:114; Heater 1996:25-28).

Repeated Interrogator

      Old Testament

Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, . . .

Will a child be born to a man one hundred years old?

And will Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?”

                                                            Genesis 17:17

Book of Mormon

Will ye bring forth evil fruit, …?

Behold, will ye reject these words?

And will ye reject all the words which have been

      spoken concerning Christ . . . ?

                                                            Jacob 4:11-13 RLDS [Jacob 6:7-8 LDS]

Long-Range Interrogator [“long-range influence of opening interrogator”]

      An opening interrogator in a series of questions is not always repeated, but its influence may be implicit in what follows. Each question, implicit as well as explicit, is followed by a question mark. The implicit (or implied) interrogator is shown in parentheses in the following examples.


Old Testament [two explicit—six implicit]

Why did you do it?

And (why) did you rob my mind?

And (why) did you drag away my daughters like prisoners of

      the sword?

Why did you sneak away?

And (why) did you deceive me?

And (why) didn’t you tell me,

So that I could send you off with joy and song,

And (why) didn’t you let me kiss my grandsons and


Now (why) did you act so stupidly?

                                                                                Genesis 31:26-28

                                          (Crowell 1988:58; Andersen 1974:114-115)

Book of Mormon [five explicitthree implicit]

Why have ye polluted the holy church of God?

Why are ye ashamed to take upon you the name of Christ?

Why do you not think that greater is the value of an endless

      happiness, than that misery which never dies because of

      the praise of the world?

Why do ye adorn yourselves with that which hath no life. . .?

Yea, why do ye build up your secret abominations to get


And (why) cause that widows should mourn before the


And (why) also orphans to mourn before the Lord?

And (why) also the blood of their fathers and their husbands

            to cry unto the Lord from the ground, for vengeance

            upon their heads?

                                    Mormon 4:51-55 RLDS [Mormon 8:38-40 LDS]

                                                         (Crowell 1988:59)

[one explicitthree implicit]

Have ye any that are lame or blind or halt

      or maimed or leprous?

Or (have ye any) that are withered?

Or (have ye any) that are deaf?

Or (have ye any) that are afflicted in any manner?”

                                                3 Nephi 8:7 RLDS [3 Nephi 17:7 LDS]

[three explicitfour implicit]

Know ye not that there are more nations than one?

Know ye not that I, the Lord your God, have created all


And (know ye not) that I remember they which are upon

      the isles of the sea?

And (know ye not) that I rule in the heavens above and

      in the earth beneath?

And (know ye not) I bring forth My word unto the

      children of men . . . ?

Know ye not that the testimony of two nations is a

      witness unto you that I Am God?

(Know ye not) That I remember one nation like unto


                                                2 Nephi 12:55-59 RLDS [2 Nephi 29:7-8 LDS]


The Future of Book of Mormon Studies is in the Past!

      Since the explosive discovery of chiasmus in The Book of Mormon, we have seen a parallel explosion of discovery in the fields archaeology and linguistics—chiastic hieroglyphs, parallelisms, poetry, etc., as well as the decipherment of the glyph for “and it came to pass”—the most frequent phrase found in the Book of Mormon!

         Nicholas Hopkins and his late wife Kathryn Josserand credit the discovery of chiasmus in the inscriptions to Dr Richard DeLong who learned of it from Book of Mormon research. Josserand stated “The formal structure of this last sentence [from the Tablet of the 96 Glyphs, Table 9] is chiasmic, producing a ‘mirror image” of parallel constructions, of the A-B-B’-A’ pattern (De Long 1986)”4 (Josserand 1986:27). De Long presented a paper in June 1986 at the Sixth Palenque Round Table of things he saw in the glyphs. This was a case where a Book of Mormon discovery influenced archaeologists in making their own discovery, although they didn’t know the source of this information ((DeLong 1986; R Smith 2007:70). See also figure 3 above for a chiastic diagram of Quirigua Monument 3 glyphs.

         Finally, I have a new perspective that came as a surprise. I was recently reading Traditional Techniques in Classical Hebrew Verse, by Wilfred GE Watson, published in 1994. Much to my surprise he made some intriguing statements.

From the Hebrew perspective, the relationship is recognized between Near Eastern parallelism and Quiché5 ritual language. There is a renewed understanding of Biblical Hebrew and Native American verse. Watson (1994:31)

We can now look to Meso-America for comparative material in our attempts to understand Hebrew (and Ugaritic) verse traditions (ibid:27).

      We eagerly anticipate more evidences “hidden in plain sight”!

1.  RCE is an abbreviation for The Book of Mormon: Restored Covenant Edition, published in 1999 by Zarahemla Research Foundation, Independence, Missouri. The text alignment and punctuation of clauses and phrases of this edition reflect many of the poetic patterns of the natural flow of the text. Writing on both the Original and Printer’s manuscripts is continuous with no paragraph divisions. Punctuation was first added by the 1830 typesetter and varies throughout all editions as versification changed. Book of Mormon passages which follow are shown in poetic formatting following the RCE alignment.

2.  F.A.R.M.S stands for Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies.

3.  B is a a-b-c-b-a chiasm.

4.  Note that De Long’s paper is referenced by Josserand.

5.  Interestingly, Christenson’s translation (2003) of the Popol Vu is from the original K'iche'-Maya text rather than the Spanish versions.


Heater, Shirley R.