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Sarah the Priestess: The First Matriarch of Genesis
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Sarah the Priestess: The First Matriarch of Genesis

3.84  ·  Rating Details ·  32 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
The only source in which Sarah is mentioned is the Book of Genesis, which contains very few highly selective and rather enigmatic stories dealing with her. On the surface, these stories tell us very little about Sarah, and what they do tell is complicated and confused by the probability that it represents residue surviving from two different written sources based on two ...more
Paperback, 216 pages
Published July 15th 1984 by Swallow Press (first published 1984)
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Apr 11, 2010 Terence rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Historians of the Bible, ancient Middle East
Recommended to Terence by: R. Crumb's Genesis
Part of the reason I so enjoy reading authors like Zecharia Sitchin or listening to Coast to Coast AM with George Noury ( is that I can then turn to authors like Steven Mithen, Clive Finlayson or Colin Tudge or even Gregory Cochran, whose The 10 000 Year Explosion How Civilization Accelerated Human Evolution was disappointing in several respects, and learn about the mind-boggling complexity of the human story, and revel in the fact that we can’t know for certain so ...more
Kilian Metcalf
Sep 18, 2016 Kilian Metcalf rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016-non-fiction
I found this book hard going. I finished it unconvinced of the premise, that Sarah was a priestess of a matriarchal religion.

The author tried to build her argument on strands of similarity between Biblical source and relics of Mesopotamia. There simply isn't enough evidence to make a convincing argument either way.

That being said, I found her argument fascinating. Her theory elevates Sarah from a wife to a near-goddess, a feminist icon. It definitely put her status above that of Abraham. This s
Itala T.
Feb 13, 2013 Itala T. rated it it was amazing
Shelves: friends
The pioneering work for studying the status of middle-eastern women in the ancient world. Rigorously researched, it scrupulously assembled and analysed the evidence from archeology, anthropology, the plastic arts, religious-sacred and secular texts. This book provided a break-through in the study of women preceding the origins of Judaism. Not a mythologizing, apocryphal, wish-fulfilling jaunt, like many of enthusiastic productions of 70s feminism, the work offers fascinating insights into ...more
Feb 21, 2008 Vicki rated it liked it
Postulates that Sarah, wife of Abraham, was a priestess of a cult which predated the founding of Judaism, and that she wielded substantial power in a matriarchal society, which did not survive more than a couple of generations once the family moved to Canaan. Stands much of what I thought I knew about the OT patriarchs on its head. Worth reading if only for the challenge to one's thinking. While I'm not sure I buy into the concept fully, the author has done her research and presents it clearly ...more
Jun 07, 2015 Allison rated it really liked it
I never know how to review scholarly texts on here, but talking about Sarah the Priestess is easier than most. This book seems to be doing three things- attempting to explain odd, currently difficult to understand references in the story of Sarah and Abraham, providing background on pre-Christian religions that played a role in defining the events of early Biblical history, and correcting patriarchal revisionism that was performed on Biblical texts as the stories became culturally solidified. Th ...more
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Shelves: 2015-books
Dense, specific, and speculatory + micro-focused.
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