The Sign and the Seal: Quest for the Lost Ark of the Covenant

The Sign and the Seal: Quest for the Lost Ark of the Covenant

Paperback

By (author) Graham Hancock

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  • Publisher: ARROW BOOKS LTD
  • Format: Paperback | 640 pages
  • Dimensions: 110mm x 174mm x 38mm | 340g
  • Publication date: 15 January 2001
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0099416352
  • ISBN 13: 9780099416357
  • Illustrations note: 32 b&w photos
  • Sales rank: 63,163

Product description

After nine years investigating the exact location of the ultimate religious icon, the Ark of the Covenant, British researcher and investigative journalist Graham Hancock reveals his status-quo shattering discoveries. Part mystery thriller, part true adventure and part travel book, this gripping piece of historical research challenges society's principal religious preconceptions and takes the reader on a rollercoaster ride through ancient history.

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Author information

Graham Hancock is the author of the major international bestsellers The Sign and the Seal, Fingerprints of the Gods and Heaven's Mirror. His books have sold more than five million copies worldwide and have been translated into 27 languages. He is an extremely successful investigative journalist, having been Editor of Conde Nast's Traveller magazine and East Africa Correspondent for the Economist. His public lectures and TV appearances, including the three-hour series Quest for the Lost Civilization, have put his religious and historical theories before audiences of tens of millions. He has become recognized as an unconventional thinker who raises legitimate questions about humanity's history, religion and prehistory and offers an increasingly popular challenge to the entrenched views of orthodox scholars.

Review quote

"Highly readable" Times "Hancock's book will probably be as popular as the Raider's film. Added to the Holy Grail excitement of his quest, he has invented a new genre: an intellectual whodunnit by a do-it-yourself sleuth" Guardian "It should cause widespread discussion and it deserves to" Daily Telegraph

Editorial reviews

English journalist Hancock retells the circumstances and thoughts that led to his discovery that the Lost Ark of the Covenant really exists. (Note that the subtitle is not How Indy and I Raided the Lost Ark.) Hancock was in Ethiopia in 1983, having been hired by the Ethiopian government to write and produce a coffee-table book extolling that country. He was greatly surprised when told that Ethiopia's Falasha Jews did not exist, and that many people could land in jail, or worse, if he went around photographing such nonexistents. Even so, off he went to Axum, deep in the desert, to see the temples and statuary of the Black Jews of Ethiopia. What he found was a sect that claimed to have the original Ark of the Covenant. Refused entrance to the sanctuary of the jealously guarded Ark, Hancock went home - and saw Steven Spielberg's Raiders of the Lost Ark, which inspired him to investigate the history of the Ark. Built at the foot of Mount Sinai, Hancock tells us, it "was deposited [around 955 B.C.] by Solomon in the Holy of Holies of the First Temple." Later, Hancock says, it was stolen by Solomon's outcast son and carried south to Ethiopia and kept there for 800 years by a Judaic cult. Then it apparently was seized by the Knights Templar, who thought that it was the Holy Grail. The Knights converted the Jews, who kept the Ark in a great church. And to protect the Ark, all of the churches in the cult have their own replicas of the Ark: The original is never seen, even on the holiest days of the year. In 1991, during the Gulf War, Hancock returned to Axum to see the Ark - and was refused. Not as much fun as might be hoped as Hancock digs through literary and biblical texts while convincing himself that the Ark exists. (Kirkus Reviews)