History of the Peoples
Additional information for
IM NIN'ALU's Book of Origins
The origin of peoples according to the Table of Nations is often misinterpreted in a shallow manner, usually as a consequence of the obsolete definition of "human races" which was held by centuries as the key for ethnic classification and still influences some poorly educated social or religious environments. The traditional interpretation was to consider the three Noachic forefathers, Shem, Cham and Japheth, as the ancestors of the Semites, the Black people and the Indo-Europeans respectively. Such classification is not only utterly erroneous but also leaves aside any people which does not fit into these three groups. That is why we have divided them into "Semites", "Peoples of the South" and "Peoples of the North", according to their original geographic distribution and not by alleged skin colour or other physical description, which would be incorrect and misleading. Actually, being Mesopotamia the Semites' homeland and taking this land as reference, we can trace a line from East to West and would find that in ancient times all the Hamitic peoples dwelled in the south and the Japhetic peoples in the north of such imaginary line.
Therefore, to consider that Hamitic is equivalent to Black people is a great misconception, in the same way as identifying Japhetic with Indo-European (mainly because Indo-European is a disputable linguistic definition and not an ethnic one). As a matter of fact, of all Hamitic peoples only most of the Kushites not all of them may fit the general description of "Black" people. Egyptians were certainly dark skinned, but they would not be considered Black, as well as Hamitic Canaanites, Hamitic Arabs, North Africans, etc. Concerning the Japhetic group, we have preferred the general definition of Eurasian peoples.
On the other side, there is still the tendency to associate ethnicity and language, an equation that is not accurate as many peoples, even in ancient times, adopted the language of other ethnically unrelated peoples, either by assimilation, resettlement, domination or other reasons. We have many well-known examples of peoples replaced or assimilated by others of completely different origin and language: Sumerians by Akkadians, Hattians by Hittites, Hurrians by Mitanni, then Hittites and Mitanni by Assyrians, etc. Compounds of mixed background peoples sharing a relative small geographical area shared a common language, as it was the case of Canaanites (a general designation that included peoples of different origins) and Philistines, which used a Semitic language even before both groups were overthrown by the Israelites. Usually non-written languages died with the peoples that spoke them, and in many cases the only information we have of such peoples comes from external sources.
Table of Contents
The Mysterious "Habiru" and the Hebrews
The Mysterious "Hyksos" and the Hebrews
The Unknown Hebrews
The Eurasian Peoples
Other Eurasian Peoples
Maps of the Ancient World