Towers of Babel
May 15, 2008 12:31 AM   Subscribe

Wow. So thorough and so interesting. The link for the Lego Tower of Babel leads to The Brick Testament, which is amazing in a kitschy, I-can't-believe-anyone-took-the-time-to-do-this, way. I'm saving this for a more thorough look. Great post, dhruva!
posted by amyms at 12:43 AM on May 15, 2008 [2 favorites]

"However, in other sources such as the Book of Jubilees, Cornelius Alexander (frag. 10), Abydenus (frags. 5 and 6), Josephus (Antiquities 1.4.3), and the Sibylline Oracles (iii. 117-129), God overturns the tower with a great wind."

Mighty Crepitus!
posted by nthdegx at 1:51 AM on May 15, 2008

Super cool.

And to think, it took almost one thousand years of hard-earned human development to progress from the elegant drawing in the C├Ždmon Manuscript (ca. 1000) to the lego model (1973).
posted by three blind mice at 1:53 AM on May 15, 2008

Very interesting, thanks dhruva; I particularly like seeing all the versions of the Tower by those painters (van Cleve, the van Valkenborchs, Grimmer) who tackled the subject many times. The Dutch site that's the source of many of those images is cool too.
posted by misteraitch at 1:56 AM on May 15, 2008

There is something deliciously apropos about an exhibit showing the diversity of views inspired by the Tower of Babel.
posted by AdamCSnider at 2:57 AM on May 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

Related, I guess.
posted by Citizen Premier at 3:40 AM on May 15, 2008

Thanks, they're wonderful.

But...all the little images. People out there rip and share rock'n'roll and recent movies until everyone hollers mercy. So when will we have the technology (and the interest! among rippers and file-sharers) to liberate BIG images of great graphic art--long since in the public domain--from the state-owned, tax-supported museums that are sitting on them for the republishing income stream?

By BIG I mean big enough to see the brushwork and tell how the artists achieved the effects they did. Half-assed would-be painters want to know!
posted by jfuller at 3:51 AM on May 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

Etemenanki! Excellent post.
posted by tellurian at 4:39 AM on May 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

Ted Chiang wrote a fantastic speculative fiction short story about the Tower of Babel called Tower of Babylon.
posted by hjo3 at 4:50 AM on May 15, 2008

What are you doing posting Kattullus's posts?

I kid, great post.
posted by everichon at 7:32 AM on May 15, 2008


I always thought the Babel myth was interesting in all of its forms. The fact that later Christian writers felt it was necessary to include tales of their god destroying the tower is also interesting, in that it seems to contradict the point of the myth.

I wonder if there are any Christian sects that prohibit learning foreign languages because it works against "God's will"?
posted by sotonohito at 7:49 AM on May 15, 2008

Truly the best of the web. dhruva deserves a pat on the back!
posted by boubelium at 7:53 AM on May 15, 2008

You can get 72 more if you turn your monitor upside-down.
posted by Faint of Butt at 7:58 AM on May 15, 2008

Or, if you have an iPhone, simply stand on your head!
posted by iamkimiam at 8:12 AM on May 15, 2008

Great find. I liked how, when you hover over this picture, it says: "Photo of Building the Tower of Babel."
posted by Kattullus at 10:31 AM on May 15, 2008

Awesome post. Thanks!
posted by mediareport at 6:59 AM on May 16, 2008

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