Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.574572
Title: The identities of the beast from the sea and the beast from the land in Revelation 13
Author: Man-Kit Poon, Joseph
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2012
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Abstract:
This thesis aims to identify the beast from the sea and the beast from the land in Rev 13. Unlike most modem scholarly approaches, the present thesis engages the topic by investigating the underlying structure of the relationship that links the dragon and the two beasts in Rev 12 and 13. The two beasts allude to Leviathan and Behemoth, and their characteristics allude to those of the four beasts in Dan 7. These allusions, however, can not explain the structure of the relationship that links the dragon and the two beasts. A careful look into Rev 12 and 13 notes that there is a hierarchical structure in the relationship connecting the three figures, in which the dragon is superior to the sea beast, which in turn is superior to the land beast. This hierarchical structure is not found in the biblical and extra- biblical writings but is found exclusively in Revelation. This thesis argues that this unique structure in the relationship reflects the influence of the tripartite ideology that Georges Dumezil discerns in many Indo-European mythological traditions, including the Indic, Scandinavian, Iranian and Roman. According to Dumezil, in this tripartite structure each figure carries a specific role and function corresponding to its hierarchical level. The relationship between the dragon and the two beasts in Rev 12 and 13 fits well with this tripartite ideology not only in terms of the underlying structure of the relationship but also in terms of the function of each figure on its corresponding hierarchical level. Thus, it is plausible that the relationship between the dragon and the two beasts reflects the influence of this tripartite ideology. In the tripartite system, the figure on the second level is a warlike figure found in a war context, and the figure on the third level relates to economics and productivity. In Rev 13, the sea beast and land beast are found, respectively, as a warlike figure in a war context and as a figure relating to the economic theme. Therefore, on the one hand, the tripartite ideology can explain the hierarchical relationship of the dragon and the two beasts. On the other hand, the characteristics of the second and third figures in the tripartite system can hint at the identification of the sea beast and the land beast. Based on this clue, the present thesis argues that the sea beast represents one of the Roman emperors and the land beast represents a figure relating to the imperial cult. Using this new approach, this thesis studies the topic from a perspective scholars rarely explore.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.574572  DOI: Not available
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