On Ralph Ellis

I recently had a comment posted to my blog’s About Me page that I think merits a bit of attention. The comment was posted by a Mr. Ralph Ellis, and it reads as follows:

I note you extensively quote from Tom Verenna.
I would not believe a word Verenna says. Verenna makes reviews without reading the book, and writes with an agenda rather than with balance. And then when he is caught out with errors and lies, he hides behind censorship like a little child, and will not debate his mistakes.

Tom Verenna biography:

I very rarely delete comments, and I don’t plan to delete this one, but I’d like to briefly respond to Mr. Ellis’ concerns. First, this is a direct personal attack on Tom that I don’t find particularly informed or accurate. In my dealings with Tom I’ve found him to be a quite balanced and self-aware student of the ancient world. I’m broadly aware of his academic and non-academic background, and I see no reason to judge his contemporary contributions to the academy by a past zealous tendentiousness that he has directly addressed and moved beyond (here).

Second, I am generally well enough informed about the issues on which I comment on this blog to know when someone’s contribution is valid. I don’t need to be told that my endorsements are misguided.

Next, the link in the comment takes one to a website entitled “Thomas Verenna Is A Lying Idiot.” Obviously such an insulting and unprofessional attempt to undermine Tom’s credibility does more to expose Mr. Ellis’ own lack of scruples, but it gets worse. Ellis’ accusations of dishonesty are incredibly ironic in light of his rather transparent habit of posting multiple anonymous and/or sock-puppet comments on his and others’ blogs in an attempt to make it seem like his claims have broad support. This kind of childish and petulant behavior flatly undermines any and all claims on his part to objectivity or scholarly erudition. Mr. Ellis is apparently submitting comments like these all over the internet, and as the link above shows, he’s starting blogs to personally attack Tom.

Finally, in trying to find some kind of academic expression on the part Ellis I came across a series of self-published texts that assert simply impossible connections between Jesus and other historical figures (see a Google Books preview of his most recent one here). Ellis’ flagrant lack academic training and discipline is put on display in his tendentious syntheses of astrology, folk etymology, reductive symbology, and parallelomania. I began to put together a brief response to some of his linguistic claims about Izates and his family, but it appears that’s already been taken care of for me, so I will just defer to other analyses here and here. In sum, the etymological connections he makes are utter nonsense, and he stumbles naively over every inch of the linguistic and historical contexts he tries to navigate. He’s basically squinting at transliterated names until they are similar enough in English for him to just nakedly assert that one is just a poor pronunciation of the other. He has absolutely no evidence whatsoever for these connections beyond his mere assumptions. These wildly speculative links are then used as a foundation for manipulating and altering other historical data until they fit his theoretical presuppositions. Everything is then couched in academic-sounding vernacular, giving it a stale air of erudition and sincerity that would only fool those uncritical enough to ignore the atrocious cover artwork, the shameless self aggrandizing, and the conspiracy-theorist framework (“this book really does overturn all our preconceived ideas about the New Testament and the history it was trying to tell [or sell]”). This qualifies as scholarship only when that word carries the prefix “pseudo.”

As a result, I must condemn Mr. Ellis’ personal attack against Tom Verenna. Not only are such attacks unwarranted by anyone presuming to assert academic respectability, but his criticisms ignore the significant personal paradigm shift to which Tom has attested, and fail to even acknowledge (much less engage) real concerns with the academic value of Ellis’ work.

32 responses to “On Ralph Ellis

  • I’m Being Harassed and Threatened by Ralph Ellis | The Musings of Thomas Verenna

    […] McClellan has also offered some helpful thoughts on this whole matter; here is a […]

  • Aaron Adair (Gilgamesh)

    Thanks for linking to me. Good to know someone thought it did etymological justice. However, it’s not my area of expertise, so if you see something wrong I’ll gladly correct it (unlike some folks).

  • theologyarchaeology

    I will agree that the website is an attack on Verenna but that blurb quoted above is accurate in the regard that Verrena does practice censorship and deletes posts that disagree with him and prove him wrong. Verrena is a lot like West and others, they only want to hear certain viewpoints and not the truth.

    • Daniel O. McClellan

      Practicing censorship doesn’t really bother me. Sometimes people get belligerent, spout nonsense, or just clog up the comments, keeping other people away. An academic blogger has the right to filter out what she or he thinks isn’t making a contribution. If legitimate points are being made, they certainly merit consideration, but I have seen nothing of that sort from Mr. Ellis. Feel free to prove me wrong, however.

  • ralfellis


    Many thanks for the opportunity to put my side of the case before the court. I think some people here have forgotten the pitfalls of totalitarianism, and have likewise forgotten the basic tenets of Magna Carta. This great charter of the people rightfully enshrined the principle that:

    “No Freeman shall be taken or imprisoned … outlawed, or exiled, or any other wise destroyed. Nor will we … condemn him, but by lawful judgment of his Peers.”

    Censorship should have no place in the laws of the land, and certainly no place within scientific or historical endeavor.

    ……… If I am wrong, then let my own words condemn me. ……….

    I shall continue in another posting,
    Ralph Ellis

  • ralfellis


    You indicate that I left a derogatory post on Amazon about Thomas Verenna. This is true, and perhaps one should not, but the said individual had previously left a scathing review of my work and a highly barbed personal attack against myself on his site. And then managed to get his site as the first 24 hits on Google, so that this was all that potential readers saw (not sure how he did this).

    Now as an author one does not mind criticism where criticism is due, as discussing these topics can be highly illuminating. But this particular reviewer had not even bothered to read my book ! He then later claimed he had not been reviewing the book at all, but reviewing various postings he found on blogs ! Now come on, chaps, which one of you would like a ‘review’ of your work to be derived from blog comments?

    The upshot of this unprofessional technique, was that Verenna’s so-called review can only be described as a complete fabrication.

    His first complaint was that I had conflated four kings (Izates bar Monobaz, Abgar V the Black, Abgar Ma’nu VI, and Abgar bar Manu VIII the Great). But this is completely untrue. I never mention Abgar VIII, and the two pairs of kings I conflate are:

    a. King Abgarus V of Edessa is King Monobazus of Adiabene.
    b. King Manu VI of Edessa is King Izas of Adiabene.

    Why have I done so? Because King Abgarus and King Monobazus shared a common wife – Queen Helena of Adiabene/Edessa (and thus King Manu and King Izas shared a common mother). So Thomas Verenna has fabricated a complaint about my work, and then failed to explain why I did conflate two pairs of kings.

    As an aside, it is the Syriac historians who sort out the perennial problem of who these kings really were, by informing us that King Abgar V’s wife was Queen Helena. This actually clarifies a great swathe of Josephus’ history of Judaea. I ask you – why do you think that Josephus Flavius never mentions King Abgarus, King Manu, the city of Edessa or the Osrhoene, even though they were very influential characters and kingdoms in 1st century Judaean politics? How did that happen?

    The answer is not only fundamental to understanding 1st century history, but also fundamental to understanding 1st century biblical history. Josephus DID have to mention the Edessan monarchy, of course, as they were too influential not to, its just that he called them King Monobazus, King Izates (Izas) and Adiabene instead. Thus the ephemeral Adiabene, that has no archaeological history whatsoever, is now a real location – it is Edessa.


    However, we must get back to Verenna’s review…

    Verenna also said that I mistakenly used the wrong coin image on the jacket of my book (a grave error, obviously). Again this is completely untrue. The reason for this image is given on the inside cover of the book. In reality, the 1st century coin of King Jesus (King Manu) is too rough to show the Edessan Plaited Crown of Thorns clearly.** But since the crown and the facial profile are the same on all of the Edessan coins, the use of a later coin is perfectly valid – as is explained in the book. Thus Verenna devoted a huge amount of time and space in his ‘review’ to condemn me for something I did not do. I know exactly what this coin image is, because this is my coin!

    ** Jesus wore a Plaited Crown of Thorns – see Math 27:29

    Verenna then said I could not spell a Greek word correctly. Again this is untrue, as it was a limitation in eBook technology. I have been challenged on this by Steve Caruso, but whatever he says I did have a technical limitation. My books have been epubbed by Innodata, who are one of Apple’s preferred suppliers (they are linked on the Apple Author webpages). And it was Innodata who said we could not have Greek fonts – and so all Greek and Hebrew fonts were made as jpeg images. It was myself who discovered hidden bits of Greek font in Times Roman, which allowed most of the Greek to be in a font set. And you should have seen the errors made by the Innodata team (I think it is made in India). I think they thought that all Hebrew and Greek letters were the same! The fact that only one error was noticed, is something of a miracle.

    As an aside, I have read several other historical ebooks, and their dealings with Greek and Hebrew fonts are absolutely woeful, in comparison with mine. Thus this single, lonely Greek letter that was in error should be a token of praise, not criticism.


    Verenna also seems confused by the terms ‘Abgar’ and ‘Abgarus’. He says: “Also the father of Abgar V was not ‘Abgarus’.” Since I never say this, I am at a loss to decipher this additional conundrum. Is Verenna unaware that Edessa spoke both Aramaic and Greek, and thus both forms of the name are used?


    And then we have the curious spectacle of Verenna mentioning King Abgar VI, VII and VIII many times in his review. Yet these kings do not appear in my book at all! (Except for the king-lists.) Was Verenna reviewing a different book entirely? Or does he just invent his reviews from nothing?


    In addition, it would appear that Verenna did not understand several core concepts that I rely on. He did not seem to know that many Persians were Jews – the Babylonian Jews. He did not realise that Syriac history says that Queen Helena was married to King Abgar V. He was unaware that Queen Helena could be considered a queen of Judaea, from the comments in the Talmud or Toledoth Yeshu. And he also does not know that Josephus DOES mention that King Abgar fought alongside King Aretas – if a little cryptically.


    Finally, Verenna also seems to be completely confused about the life of Josephus Flavius, saying he was not in Jerusalem in AD 70. His review says:

    Abgar Ma’nu VI could not be the individual you claim when you state
    that “The historical Izas was crucified…[and] taken down [from the cross]
    by Josephus Flavius” since Josephus was living in Rome, as a court historian,
    probably on the Palatine Hill–far, far away from Edessa (and Palestine,
    for that matter).

    One hardly know what to make of this assertion. Here is a reviewer of Judaean history, and he does not appear to know that Josephus Flavius was in Judaea in AD 70 – 71. In fact, Josephus says of this very crucifixion event that I mention:

    as I came back (from Tekoa), I saw many captives crucified, and
    remembered three of them as my former acquaintance. I was very sorry at
    this in my mind, and went with tears in my eyes to Titus, and told him
    of them; so he immediately commanded them to be taken down, and to have
    the greatest care taken of them, in order to their recovery; yet two of
    them died under the physician’s hands, while the third recovered. Life 75

    So not only was Josephus in Jerusalem at this time, he did indeed come across three of the leaders of the Jewish Revolt being crucified. Since King Izas was one of those leaders, it is axiomatic that King Izas was one of those being crucified. You might also note a similarity with the biblical crucifixion here.

    Josephus describes three leaders of the Revolt being crucified, including King Izas, but a man called Josephus petitions for their being taken down from the cross. Two of these revolutionaries die, but one survives. Thus the similitudes of these historical characters in the biblical record are:

    King Izas-Manu …. is King Jesus-EmManuel.
    Josephus Flavius …. is Joseph(us) of Arimathaea.

    Now you may not agree with this speculation, but the comparison is legitimate (especially since the rest of the story matches too).

    And this is the central problem with Verenna’s so-called review. He has cherry-picked items out of context, and not read nor understood the background material. For instance, does he realise that I have set the entire biblical story into the AD 60s? (Something I did 16 years ago.) Without understanding that you cannot understand biblical history, and nor can you review a book which is centrally based upon that chronological concept.


    I ask you – after such a catalogue of errors in one review, any normal person would be embarrassed and withdraw the review completely. At the very least they would allow a right of reply by the author – as Verenna himself likes to do with reviews of his own book (well one small chapter in a book). But no, instead Verenna chose to hide behind a wall of censorship, while casting juvenile invective from behind his www-shield. Honestly, I have never seen anything quite so unprofessional in 20 years of authorship.


  • ralfellis

    >>Ellis’ accusations of dishonesty are incredibly ironic in light
    >>of his rather transparent habit of posting multiple anonymous
    >>and/or sock-puppet comments on his and others’ blogs in an
    >>attempt to make it seem like his claims have broad support.

    I do not use sock-pupets for authorship. In what way is Ralpy a sock-puppet of Ralph? I do have an alternate name for my profession, but then my profession is nothing to do with history, and never do the twain meet (to the best of my ability).


    If you are looking for sock-puppets, the person you need to investigate is Thomas Verenna. He says of my postings:

    “Ralph Ellis has been … sending out … emails to colleagues and friends (also to me, because he doesn’t realize the sites that he is emailing are run by me)”

    Yes indeed – other website that Thomas Verenna runs under pseudonyms. There appear to be several of those pseudonyms on the Amazon thread too.



  • ralfellis

    >>I began to put together a brief response to some of his
    >>linguistic claims about Izates and his family, but it appears
    >>that’s already been taken care of for me, so I will just defer
    >>to other analyses here and here.

    Unfortunately, the person challenging my linguistic claims lost the argument, and had to delete the entire thread (more censorship):


    What I shall do, it put the entire thread up on my website, so you can all see who won the argument, and who had to hide behind censorship. I will post a link to this later.


    The other link is to a site discussing my translation of the Egyptian sega (star). I will leave my comments on that blog separately. So please do take a look when I get around to a reply:



  • ralfellis

    Regards the discussion between myself and Steve Caruso, I have uploaded it here:

    As you can see, Mr Caruso knows his Aramaic very well, but that does not mean he knows what Josephus Flavius (or the gospel authors) were trying to achieve.

    Josephus was writing propaganda rather than history, and he could cover up the true history by bowdlerising events and creating a few witty pseudonyms, that was perfectly acceptable. Thus Mr Caruso’s linguistic analysis is flawed – you cannot apply the rules of grammar and syntax on sentences that were written as ‘in jokes’ for a privileged few.

    Again, I point you towards the complete lack of any mention of King Abgarus, King Manu or the city of Edessa. How this that happen? Clearly there are hidden characters and locations in Josephus’ history, and I would put it to you that those characters and locations have now been fully identified.

    The bottom line here is that Adiabene is Edessa, and the history Josephus was writing makes much more sense when you understand this. Why do you think that he pointedly says that this monarchy was from “Beyond the Euphrates”? This was an ‘in joke’ for ‘Those Who Had Ears to Hear’ (Math 11:15), that these monarchs came from Edessa.


  • Tom Verenna

    One correction on your reading comprehension:

    “Finally, Verenna also seems to be completely confused about the life of Josephus Flavius, saying he was not in Jerusalem in AD 70. His review says:”

    I never said he wasn’t in Jerusalem in 70; Please read more carefully. I was talking about the time when he composed his works. He didn’t write his works in Jerusalem, he wrote them in Rome, decades later.

    • Tom Verenna

      Direct quote from my blog here (http://tomverenna.wordpress.com/2013/03/06/ralph-ellis-jesus-and-his-myth-of-the-king-jesus-of-edessa/):

      “In 70-71, when Abgar Ma’nu VI became king, Josephus was on his way to Rome. And in 90-91 when Abgar VI’s rule ended, Josephus was sitting comfortably (probably–chairs back then and all) in his house, paid for by the empire, in Rome, writing his histories and autobiography. He died ten years later. So, no, Abgar VI could not have been crucified and taken down by Josephus–by the way, ‘Flavian’ is the name Josephus adopted after the Jewish War in 70, after he had been granted full citizenship by Titus. Abgar had not yet started his reign when this occurred.”

      Notice I said in 70-71 he was *on his way to Rome*; and then I said from 90-91 *Josephus was sitting comfortably (probably–chairs back then and all) in his house, paid for by the empire, in Rome, writing his histories and autobiography.* I never said he wasn’t in Palestine during the final year of the war, but he left Palestine since he had been adopted by the Flavians.

  • Tom Verenna

    years* of the war.

  • ralfellis

    >>I never said he wasn’t in Jerusalem in 70;
    >>Please read more carefully.

    Ok, ok, I am reading carefully – and now I am even more confused than before.

    You end this paragraph with the following:

    So, no, Abgar VI could not have been crucified and taken down by Josephus–by the way, ‘Flavian’ is the name Josephus adopted after the Jewish War in 70, after he had been granted full citizenship by Titus. Abgar had not yet started his reign when this occurred.

    But this is utter nonsense – I never said that Abgar VI was crucified.** In fact, I NEVER MENTION KING ABGAR VI AT ALL (except in the king-list). So what are you blathering on about? How are you making a critique of something I have never said – be that in my book or in any blog posting.

    So now will you admit your errors?
    Will you also admit that your review is a complete fabrication from beginning to end?
    Will you also openly declare that you have never read my book?
    Will you also admit that have misunderstood my entire thesis, through a lack of due care and diligence?
    WIll you also apologise for the strident and unjustified condemnation of my work, that you have posted in your blog?
    And finally:
    Will you now let me have the right of reply, on your blog, to the unjustified criticisms you have made of my work?


    ** It was King Manu VI who was crucified. Josephus says that King Izas was crucified. But since the Syriac historians say that King Manu VI and King Izas had the same mother (Queen Helena), it is clear that the leader of the Jewish Revolt was actually a conflated King Izas Manu of Adiabene Edessa (i.e.: the biblical King Jesus EmManuel).

    And both of these kings wore a Plaited Crown of Thorns.


  • Tom Verenna

    I figured out the problem here, Mr. Ellis. You see I’ve been mistaken. Here I thought you were just moving the date back on Jesus’ crucifixion–which is bad enough. But now I see more clearly that I was just reading your online content too generously. I am just as confused as you here. Are you *actually* saying that Jesus (or whoever you claim him to be) was taken down from the cross in 70, survived, and…became king of Edessa in 71, a year later? And then after his reign in 91, he was exiled to Britain by Rome? Is this your argument? Can you clarify?

  • When Did Josephus Leave Judea? Does it even matter? | The Musings of Thomas Verenna

    […] has seemed to have misread my argument about Josephus and Abgar bar Ma’nu VI.  He writes, mistakenly, […]

  • ralfellis


    Come now Thomas, you don’t think we believe any of that nonsense do you? “It was not Verenna who was confused, it was Ellis” – honest – “I was just mentioning something that was not in his book just because I thought it was interesting,” (and totally irrelevant).


    I quote from your website:

    >>Notice that my point is in fact that Josephus
    >>would not have been around during Abgar VI’s
    >>reign; this is precisely my argument.

    But this something I never mentioned. Not once. Nada.
    So Verenna is critiquing another book entirely. Perhaps this was one of Robert Eisenman’s? Who knows?


    And then the clincher, where Verenna says..

    >>I was under the impression that Mr. Ellis had
    >>merely moved the crucifixion of Jesus to the
    >>period of the first Jewish war.
    >>How foolish of me to think that Mr. Ellis just made
    >>a mistake; instead, it seems, he meant to argue
    >>that Jesus had a history beyond a crucifixion–and
    >>that he would be king, no less–twice!

    Err, I HAVE moved the crucifixion to the era of the Jewish Revolt. And I think you will discover that the Edessan king during the Jewish Revolt was actually King Manu VI, and not King Abgar VI. So what was all that guff about King Abgar VI for?

    And King Manu VI of Edessa (the leader of the Revolt) was King Izas of Adiabene, as I have explained. (They had the same mother. See also the point below).

    And just what is this ‘be king twice’ business? I should really just send you off to read the book, so that you have some idea of what you are talking about, because this is simply nonsensical. How can you critique something you do not understand?

    Ok, so, just for you, lets do this slowly.

    The conflated King Izas-Manu VI of Edessa-Adiabene, was the biblical King Jesus-EmManuel of Judaea.
    (He was trying to take over Judaea.)
    He reigned from AD 57 to AD 71, as per the Edessan king-list.
    He led the Jewish Revolt, as Josephus says.
    He was captured at the end of the Revolt (See War 6:6:4 )
    This was AD 70.
    In my opinion King Izas-Manu VI was then exiled from Judaea.
    Whatever the case, Edessa was left without a monarch.
    So King Abgarus VI became king of Edessa in AD 71.

    Is that not clear? What is your difficulty with this simple chronology?


    >>He claims Paul was born in 37 but ignores the
    >>fact that Paul claims to have run from Aretas IV
    >>(even though he died around 40CE).

    How typical. You saw this detail on Aaron’s blog. Pity you did not see my reply too.
    In reality, this detail is the most glaring and obvious of all the interpolations in the N.T. Read it again, and see.


    >>Still, he is somewhat proud of this fact; as if
    >>conflating two historical individuals from different
    >>times (ruled 13-50, and 57-71 respectively),
    >>separated by another king (Manu V who ruled
    >>for seven years between these two), is somehow
    >>acceptable methodology.

    Woa there, just hold on a minute. I don’t think you understand any of this chronology at all, which is not surprising since you have not read the book.

    King Abgarus V is the father (AD 13 – 50)
    (King Monobazus the elder)
    King Manu VI is one of his sons (AD 57 – 71)
    (King Izas-Monobazus the younger – or Jesus-EmManuel)

    Just where is the ‘conflation of individuals from different times’? This was father and son, and so it is axiomatic that they lived in different eras.

    If you have not read the book, and do not have a clue what you are on about, why do you keep digging your hole ever deeper? Who are you going to say was confused this time? Perhaps it was Mr Daniel McClellan this time?


    >>And what is this about Abgar and Manu having
    >>the same wife? This is simply false..

    No, this is just another example of Verenna not knowing anything about this subject – a subject he is trying and badly failing to critique. In reality, Moses of Chorene says:

    The chief of King Abgar’s wives, who was named Helena … Spending all her treasures she bought an immense amount of grain in Egypt, which she distributed to the poor, to which Josephus bears witness. Her famous mausoleum stands before the gate at Jerusalem to this very day. (Moses of Chorene, History of the Armenians 2:35.)

    In other words, the wife of King Abgarus of Edessa was Queen Helena of Adiabene. Thus it is axiomatic that King Monobazus of Adiabene was King Abgarus V of Edessa. And this makes a great deal more sense than the current ideas about the location of Adiabene, and a great deal more sense about Josephus’s glaring silence about Edessa and its famous royal family.


    And finally, Mr Verenna, I did not see your apology. You have bowlderised and misrepresented my book in everything you have written, you have cast aspersions on my intelligence and character, and yet we see not one ounce of contrition. Your whole blog is Verenna, Verenna, Verenna. Well how about Verenna making an apology for his mistakes?


  • ralfellis


    Verenna says:

    >>And what is this about his fictional Izas character
    >>being crucified at Thecoa? Really? He believes
    >>this? I guess so.

    Again you are digging holes and displaying your lack of knowledge.

    Ok, lets do this again, slowly.

    Josephus quote:
    On the same day it was that the sons and brethren
    of King Izates … besought Caesar to give them his
    right hand for their security … He kept them all in
    custody, but still bound the king’s sons and kinsmen,
    and led them with him to Rome, in order to make them
    hostages for their country’s fidelity to the Romans.
    (War 6:6:4)

    King Izates is King Izas, as Josephus calls him, and here he is surrendering to the Romans after the siege of Jerusalem. But then a few days later, Josephus says:

    Josephus quote:
    And when I was sent … to a certain village
    called Thecoa … I saw many captives crucified, and
    remembered three of them as my former acquaintance.
    I was very sorry at this in my mind, and went with
    tears in my eyes to Titus, and told him of them; so
    he immediately commanded them to be taken down,
    and to have the greatest care taken of them, in order
    to their recovery; yet two of them died under the
    physician’s hands, while the third recovered.
    Life 75

    Thecoa is now called Tekoa (Herodium). On his return from Tekoa Josephus saw the leaders of the Jewish Revolt (his former acquaintances before he changed sides), being crucified. Only one of them survived the crucifixion.

    This is, of course, the biblical crucifixion scene. The biblical account is of three leaders of the Revolt, who had committed murder in the Revolt, being crucified just outside Jerusalem (in the Kidron Valley, in this case). But Joseph(us) of Arimathaea petitions the governor for them to be taken down, and while two die, one survived (or was so-called “resurrected”).

    Thus King Jesus-EmManuel ….. is King Izas-Manu of Edessa.
    Thus Joseph(us) of Arimathaea ….. is Josephus Flavius.

    This is not a terribly difficult concept to follow.


  • ralfellis


    And you all might like to know that I have also replied to Aaron Adair’s criticisms on his blog.


    I hope my replies are not deleted, otherwise I will have to post them here.

    And I have to say that I was pretty disappointed with this critique. I mean, I don’t mind answering complicated points of detail, but this was all pretty basic errors and simplistic misunderstandings.

    Like saying the Egyptian for ‘star’ did not have an ‘aleph’ on the end.
    And not knowing that Isis and Venus were linked.

    Honestly, I thought I might get a few tough questions, to test my mettle and understanding (and to test my theory, of course), but this is all a bit of a disappointment.

    Ralph Ellis


  • ralfellis


    Since there is a pause here in the postings, perhaps I should illustrate the reason why I was not greatly impressed by the form of ‘review process’ that academia now stoops to. The following is an author critique from one of Verenna’s colleagues, and it demonstrates the level that some elements in academia have descended to:

    Is this how academia operates now? Having seen so many of the cabalistic ‘me too’ postings on various blogs, I would estimate that Joel’s comments are by no means an academic exception.


  • More on Ralph Ellis and his Jesus as King of Edessa | Fleeing Nergal, Seeking Stars

    […] elsewhere across the Internet, including in Amazon review pages (of a book he did not read) and other people’s blogs. So when it comes to critical responses, he is asking for it. And why not give it to […]

  • Rosamund Gale

    Tom Verenna sounds a very insecure man to me. I simply cannot imagine deleting someone’s response to my criticisms. Also writing blogs in different names? How utterly childish.

    • Tom Verenna

      There is a difference between being insecure and not allowing someone else to use your blog and website as an advertisement for their own crappy product.

  • ralfellis

    Dear Mr McClellan,

    >> I began to put together a brief response to some of his
    >> linguistic claims about Izates and his family, … In sum,
    >> the etymological connections he makes are utter nonsense,
    >> and he stumbles naively over every inch of the linguistic and
    >> historical contexts he tries to navigate.

    Since the other refutations of my work have been thoroughly deflected and discredited, perhaps you might like to tell us what you disliked in my book. We have had a lot of general criticisms, from those who have not read the book and misunderstood its arguments, and many particular criticisms that turned out to be false, but nothing of any substance.

    So what is it about the various character associations I have made, that you don’t like?

    Many thanks,


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    […] with more things wrong with it than should be wrong in any article that even passes peer review. Daniel McClellan also chimes in, agreeing with me and Steve about the oddity of Ellis’ etymologies, and he […]

  • John

    Keep up the good work

  • ralfellis

    >>Ralph Ellis misses again.
    >>Fleeing Nergal, Seeking Stars.

    But since Aaron Adair has banned myself from his site, so that his objections can conveniently go unanswered, I have uploaded my answers onto my website. Here, Aaron Adair’s objections are batted out of the ball-court:


    Ralph Ellis.

  • Ralph Ellis is absolutely* right* about Tom Verenna | Unsettled Christianity

    […] on Tom because of Tom’s excellent work destroyed his pre-school premise that he is following him everywhere to try to get his […]

  • Christian Warwick

    I hope These two Academics realize their basic mistakes, I am reading this with a stinking hangover, I have a very basic education indeed, His work is solid. Ralph’s Thesis has always made perfect literal sense to me. Its good and comprehensive historical analysis ,Logical and extremely controversial but Don’t all large scale revisions of history begin like this? Come on guys, Admit you made a few blunders here. We will respect you far more for that than if you merely slunk around ignoring your blunders. Thankyou.

  • Le Chatton

    It’s amazing how much, after listening to Ralph’s work on YouTube, this criticism fits with my conclusions. I am not an historian neither a theologist, but it was clear to me that links Ralf builds between isolated events, symbols and linguistics create fake narratives, and counter intuitive messages.

  • Alex Smith

    I actually came across Tom’s comments first and he clearly wrote a review without reading the book. I like to think I’m an expert on the works of Josephus and you lot clearly lie. Iv read some of these statements and surprised that people who pay to learn ain’t flagged them up either. It’s because they paid to play (gamers term) and think they’re the best. People like Ralph, do more for the truth than these fake academics. Trust me, one conversation with me and it would expose all the lies they’ve been telling people all through there career. Difference between people like me and you, mines a hobby, yours a job and you a cowboy

  • Boris

    Found this thread just now. Thanks Ralph. I spent two years of learning history of early religions and found Ralph’s works just now. Ralph’s theory makes sense to me. I will now read his books.

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