May 2014: Sheffield Phoenix Press published the study by Marjo Korpel and Johannes de Moor on the Ugaritic Myth of Adam, entitled Adam, Eve, and the Devil: A New Beginning. Price for scholars 35 Euro. On the 75th anniversary of the OTW the book was presented by an extensive paper with texts and pictures. Korpel and De Moor claim to have discovered the Myth of Adam on Ugaritic clay tablets dating from the 13th Century BCE.
An evil god Horon wanted to take over El's position as head of the pantheon. El punished him by throwing him down from the mountain of the gods. Out of revenge Horon transformed himself into a giant serpent that poisoned the Tree of Life so that it became a Tree of Death. As a result, all life on earth was endangered. Korpel and De Moor regard Horon as the predecessor of the devil. Some of Horon's epithets are identical to those of the devil in other religions. Fearing the loss of their immortality, the deities give one among them, Adam, total control over the earth, apparently to eliminate Horon.
However, Adam fails miserably because the serpent sinks his poisonous fangs in his flesh. He thus becomes a mortal. However, at the initiative of the sun goddess humankind gets a consolation prize: through procreation they will live on as a species. To this end the sun goddess gives Adam a "good-natured woman" and mobilizes all deities to force Horon to uproot the Tree of Death. Immortality was lost, but life could go on. The authors also think they have found the earliest pictures of these events ever identified. It is definitely remarkable that in this Adamic Myth the first sin against the highest deity was not committed by a human being, but by a god. The theory presented in the new book elucidates many passages in the Bible, the Apocrypha and the pseudepigraphic literature, including the Dead Sea Scrolls. See further the press release.
Articles on the book appeared in several Dutch and European newspapers. See PThU-news.