Judah's son in England
Bigbury and Burgh Island and its associations to the Biblical Zerah,the Tinners of Dartmoor and onward down through the Ages.
Bigbury, aptly named, is a small village situated one and a half miles from Bigbury on Sea, the small seaside hamlet that derives its name from that which is buried on the island opposite, across the sand causeway. For years, the wagons related by Pytheas would have passed through Bigbury, having come along the tidal road from Aveton Gifford, conveying their tin ingots down to the fabled island of Ictis. The small village just along the road called St Anne's Chapel, named after Jesus's grandmother, most probably commemorating the arrival with the Magdalene while Kingston, the next village was named after the arrival of Jesus himself or one of Joseph’s descendants such as Arthur. Loddiswell (the Lords well) is on the route that the Tin was carried down to Ictis from Southern Dartmoor. Challaborough opposite the Island would seem to derive its name from after the Templar visit when the Grail was deemed to be a Chalice.
Aveton Gifford situated at the tidal limit of the River Avon, received its name from being situated on the River Avon, Aune or Aven on the oldest maps, and also from Walter Giffard, Lord of Longueville, who was appointed a commissioner by William the Conqueror to compile the Domesday Book. Strangely enough it was a descendant of his, a Walter Giffard that built the St.Michael church at Brent Tor around 1155, before many of the Templar churches.
Kingsbridge the largest market town in the South Hams at the Head of the Salcombe Estuary, most probably derived its name from the northern most limit of the Southern promontory kingdom described by Pytheas as Belerion which defined the southernmost limit of the Saxon named county of Wessex at a later date. Bolt head and Bolt tail received their name from the God Bel from Zerah’s arrival. It is very probable that since early times Devon and Cornwall survived as a small kingdom since the arrival of Zerah, financed by the tin trade through to the time of King Arthur. Geoffrey of Monmouth’s account bestowed on Arthur a Welsh backdrop but as explained earlier, that tradition is most likely derived from Celtic association rather than from purely Welsh historical fact. It is more likely that Arthur defended the South West, not going further than Dorset yet his fame became national when he defeated the encroaching Saxons.
The earliest writer to describe the Battle of Mons Badonicus, King Arthur's greatest victory, is in the ‘De Excidio et Conquestu Britanniae, written by the monk, Gildas in the mid-6th century. In these writings, Gildas states that the battle was a major victory for the Britons after a period of continual encroachment by the Saxon invaders. Gildas went onto relate that this halted the Saxon advancement and brought a short period of peace. Gildas related that this siege took place 44 years before the writing of his book. Although not named by Gildas (but nor is anyone else), it seems that Arthur is accredited with this victory. So this puts King Arthur in the right location at the right time in history, as the siege is supposed to have taken place at Badbury hillfort in Dorset.
Figure 59 Showing the tidal road up to Aveton Gifford with the Serpentine river flowing down to Burgh Island as it is depicted in Leonardo’s ‘Yarnwinder’ painting.
Aveton Gifford's history and connection with the tin trade since the earliest times, is now completely forgotten due to the secrecy maintained around the island that it once served as a probable provender of the gatekeeper community that existed on Folly hill. Domesday much later, records Jewish roots in the area, a certain ‘Judhael holds Loddiswell’that includes a fishery that pays 30 salmon. The island of Ictis would have been decommissioned, just prior to Jesus having been buried there, during the gradual southern advancement after the Roman invasion. It is incredible that Pliny the Elder referred to this island of Ictis long after the island had been made redundant and Jesus had found his rest within. The southern British tin trade would have experienced decreases in demand as the Romans captured the tin deposits in northern Spain and Portugal after the defeat of the Carthaginians in 206 BC. Due to the overall increase in demand worldwide at that time, the lull would have been shortlived. The Veneti, cousins of the Devonians made up a large tribe which inhabited western Gaul and who were in the business of conveying the tin over to France as Diodorous related for its 30 day journey south to Marseille. It is probably at this point in 56 BC after Julius Caesar had destroyed all the ships of the Veniti that Ictis’s prominence started to dwindle.
The ancestry of the Dumnonni, the ‘Devon People,’who in part were derived from Zerah, constituted the main part of a legendry kingdom with such progeny as Utherpendragon, King Arthur and Galahad, which evaded as long as possible the Roman encroachment and kept secret, the contents of the Island of Avalon. After the Roman conquest, came the running down of stock and eventual closure of Ictis, as it would have acted as a focal point for pillage and until the time of King Arthur there was a move westwards of the tin trade into Cornwall with the advancements of mining methods. With the arrival of the Saxons, there was a migration across the channel of some of the Dumnonian population, into western France to Amorica, where many of the Celtic race of Dumnonni had close ties to the Veniti, which eventually became known as Little Britain or Brittany. However, the Devon and Cornwall kingdom that once existed before the Roman invasion, got squeezed further west into Cornwall as the Romans occupied Exeter and Plymouth. Hence, for the first four or five centuries after the Roman invasion, the illustrious line of Kings descended from Judah and Joseph stayed south probably moving west of the Tamar toward Tintagel and eventually, after Rome's demise, re-emerged further north to keep the Saxons at bay. The Location of Avalon was still known as it is here that Arthur was transported in the hope that a miracle might be wrought upon his wounded body.
In ancient times, from the melting of the last ice age 10,000 years ago, there was a gradual separation of the landmass between France and Britain as rivers poured across the lowland plain of Lyonesse. Eventually this gave rise to a coastline that extended out as far as Eddystone rock around 6000 years ago as the English channel flooded. As all these rivers ran off the Moors, cutting through the granite, the cassiterite was separated for the early ‘Tinners’to gather and this marked the beginning of the Bronze Age in Britain.
Not only is this Bronze Age activity, evident throughout Dartmoor, but we can see its early beginnings less than 8 miles distant from Ictis, on the escarpment between the Erm and the Avon Rivers, and in the valleys on either side. Here, an early establishment fanned out, towards Plymouth and northward, centred around the obvious advantage offered by Ictis as a tin depot, which eventually came to serve the whole of Dartmoor.
Figure 60 Showing the remains of three round ’Tinners’huts in the foreground which have nearly been submerged by the Avon dam. The picture is taken from the dam wall looking up the valley toward the river’s source on Dartmoor where a Bronze age burial Cairn is visible.
Evidence of scars upon the landscape, with deep gullies and large indentations into the hillsides, contours scoured into the land by the Tinners industry, are a record of the immense mining activity carried out from the discovery of tin until the beginning of the Roman era. The longest stone row anywhere in Britain and the abundance of standing stones and cairns above Ivybridge and South Brent, all bear witness to a hive of industry by the late Neolithic and early Bronze Age Tinners. In fact this area gives the largest density of these stone works anywhere in Britain. The early days of the Tinners after gravitating from the riverbed's themselves, evolved to the process of tin streaming, much as one would look for gold, which in turn evolved into later processes of ‘costeaning and shamelling’,leaving scars of shallow pits which followed the veins or lodes.
This evolution eventually gravitated westward toward Plymouth, as aboveground sources dwindled and then to mining further north on the moors at a later date. The smelting process from the early Tinners was fairly basic and consisted of heating the black tin and converting it into white tin at source, by simply lighting a fire in a hole in the ground or rock pool and retrieving the smelted ore from the ashes in the ground. This process was obviously very inefficient and over a period of 1,500 years accompanied by the later evolution of bellows and furnaces, ‘blowing houses’ evolved which came to be known as ‘Jews houses’.
In an area called Shipley Bridge, just below the Avon dam there is early evidence of wooden pegs been used along fault lines within the granite outcrops, which upon expansion would separate the granite along the lode line exposing the tin ore, which could then be scraped away from the granite block. There is also another strange feature at Shipley Bridge the like, of which is not evident elsewhere around the moors; and that is the abundance of Lebanese Barouk cedars, of the same variety as those found in Lebanon today from the Chouf Region. It is possible that these have self-perpetuated since the days of the arrival of Zerah, as it was not uncommon practice to carry the seeds of useful trees from one's own homeland, especially as these trees were ideal for construction with the minimum amount of cuts.
It is clear from archaeological evidence, that these straight poles, were used abundantly in the settlements surrounding the reservoir, such as ‘Riders Rings’ and those on Hickaton Hill, where findings showed that conical roofs of the huts were supported by a central pole and then again by an interior ring of posts a meter inside the external wall.
Figure 60a Showing ‘Riders Rings’ a Bronze age hut enclosure with the remains of several huts and the tin producing Valley in the background.
Archaeological evidence is prolific, with signs of small communities living and herding on the edge of southern Dartmoor, until the boom arrived and the tin export bonanza was born. These Tinners were in the business of supplying the Mediterranean cultures in exchange for their sophisticated wares and delicacies such as wines, pottery and jewellery. Diodorous commenting on the Celtic thirst, related that the Mediterranean traders got a good price for each amphora of wine, being exchanged for a slave by the Dumnonian.
Geologically the vertical nature of what used to be a horizontally formed sedimentary slate found throughout the rock at Burgh Island, gives a perfect environment in which to construct a storage cave. Just as a hump back bridge maintains its structure, so too this island will have not moved and the keystones comprising the vault ceiling will have been locked in place since the cave was hewed.
Copyright The Francis Frith Collection
Figure 61 Showing a photograph of Burgh Island in 1904 taken from Bantham showing the same view as depicted in Leonardo’s painting with only the Pilchard Inn visible.
Burgh Island, ‘where the Aven's waters with the sea are mixed; Saint Michael firmly on a rock is fixed’, so aptly described by Camden, is one of the most beautiful sights to behold as one descends down the old tin route from Bigbury. Today, there stands a large Art Deco hotel where the chapel dedicated to St. Michael once stood. The island was referred to in 1411 as St. Michael de la burgh or the island of St. Milburga later and as an iceberg translates as an island or rock of ice, so a ‘burgh’ meant rock or island, giving the appellation in this book, ‘St. Michael’s Rock’. Early maps show that the chapel stood on the top of the island where the ‘Huers hut’ now stands. It is even rumoured that there once stood a monastery on this island, but this will be covered in a later chapter as it appears the rumour of this Island caused much confusion for the early community of Mont-saint-Michel. There are records of Monks from Buckfastleigh maintaining a Light house on the Island which does seem a little odd given the Islands remoteness and Lack of prominence within the bay of Bigbury. The reason for their interest in keeping a light might just have been a cover, taking over guardianship from a now disbanded monastic presence. It would appear however that the Norman Benedictines of Mont-saint-Michel had heard of an Island called ‘St. Michael by the sea’ and that Island at Burgh Island was worth faking a charter to get ownership, but they occupied St.Michael’s mount in Cornwall by mistake thinking they were in fact taking ownership of a rumoured island that was a tomb of great importance.
If we are correct about the directions given by Melkin in his riddle refering to a place of Prayer ‘ad orandam’ at the verge, there must have been something that resembled a religious building in the six or seven hundreds before Melkin left for Mont-saint-Michel. One must not forget that Melkin was not aware of what would transpire in the interim concerning any community at Burgh Island. The ’duo fassula’ has been taken from the vault and possibly an older place of prayer has been destroyed since the time he wrote, until the replacement St. Michael church was built. One translation of Melkin’s directions could be rendered, Ora tor cratibus preparatis super potentem adorandam uirginem supradictis sperulatis locum habitantibus tredecim:
At a coastal tor, prepared there above a crater, (the mermaid pool) toward (or after) where one prays, at the verge high up in Ictis is where they dwell in the Sepulchre at thirteen degrees. As we have learned earlier, this could also be seen as ‘at the brim of the verge’.
It seems that local lore places the original Chapel where the hotel stands now. For any prospector wishing to find the entrance to the Sepulchre, it is made very clear how to find it within these pages, because the St. Michael Chapel was surely built on a different site than the original building that is referred to by Melkin.
Figure 62 Showing the Huer’s hut on the top of Burgh Island. When the first hotel was built, the hut had been a tea room so that walkers could rest there.
The ‘Huer’s hut’ so named, apparently because of the fact that lookouts from this vantage point, used to give a ‘hue and cry’to the Pilchard fleets situated out in the Bay, to direct them to the shoals. It is very unlikely that there was ever a job or activity that involved a ‘hue and cry’ as the Bigbury Bay is vast and more often than not the wind would be in a contrary direction to carry voices. It's more probable that the name echoes from the past and has its roots from those who ‘hewed’ out the vault. It seems highly unlikely that this is where the St. Michael chapel once stood, but it is quite remarkable that from approximately 100 yards to the right of dead centre in the middle of the Avebury stone circle, is 104 nautical miles to the ‘Huer’s Hut’, the precise number of miles given by Melkin in his riddle, directing us to where Joseph and Jesus lay. The map shown in figure 49 marks the ‘Huer’s hut’ as the site of the old St. Michael tower and this seems to concur with what Camden had remarked as ‘firmly on a rock is fixed’ which does tend to indicate its dominant position. The island also lies in a ‘Southern Angle’ on a line that is precisely 13 degrees from the St. Michael Ley line which it bifurcates inside the Avebury circle, exactly as Melkin had told us.
Figure 63 Shows the protected landfall at Ictis for visiting foreign trading vessels to beach in safety, on the eastern side of the causeway.
As one crosses the sand causeway, the Pilchard Inn built in 1336, (around the same time as the Templar chapel to St. Michael), sits just below the present Art Deco hotel and is rich in history. It is said to be patrolled by its own friendly ghost Tom Crocker a master smuggler, who was shot to death by a customs officer but this seems unlikely with the remains of such illustrious personages taking their rest close by. Outwardly, the island in no way reveals its inner contents or its past history, and much has happened since the two hotels have been built upon the site of the old chapel, possibly prompting us to think that it could be the site of the entrance to the underground chamber. The building of the second hotel was completed in 1929 and there had been no use of any original stonework from the chapel. The original hotel built by George Chirgwin the musical entertainer, was constructed entirely of wood while Archie Nettlefold, the builder of the ‘Great White Palace’ had brought all his building materials across the sand causeway. On 31 May 1942 the hotel was bombed and lost the top two floors of the of the Art Deco structure. Seven months later the church in Aveton Gifford from which Leonardo had painted his Lansdowne perspective, was also destroyed by a Focke-Wulf 190 thinking it was Loddiswell church.
There had of course been rumours, since the discovery in 1991 of the tin ingots at the mouth of the River Erm, that Burgh Island could have been the Island of Ictis, but tradition and modern research had placed it in St. Michael’s Mount, Marazion.
Figure 64 showing the impracticality of arriving to pick up tin on a rocky foreshore on the tidal causeway of St. Michael’s Mount. The picture is taken looking toward Marazion in the fog.
High up on Bolt tail the old iron age encampment on the headland from Inner Hope Cove looks down across Bigbury Bay and would have been a perfect look out and signalling station for alerting the tin Agency of approaching Roman ships trying to interfere with the trade; a local trade that had existed for more than a thousand years before their arrival. The entrance to the Hillfort is oddly aligned to look directly over Ictis as seen in figure 65 and probably worked in conjunction with the hill enclosure of Folly Hill just above Bigbury on Sea as look out stations for approaching vessels.
Figure 65 Showing the entrance to the Iron age hill fort on Bolt tail with the Island of Ictis in the foreground. The Burgh Island hotel is to the right of the Island and the distant hill on the right of the picture is the tin producing area of Southern Dartmoor.
The Folly Hill site which is being archeologically excavated shows evidence of a large community living along the hillside from the present Bigbury Golf course to the other side of what used to be the cart route down from the tin deposits on the moors. Bronze Age pits were uncovered underneath the Iron Age surfaces and have been dated by ceramics. Only a small area along this ridge at Folly hill has been archeologically surveyed but there is evidence through high resolution magnetic gradiometry and from surface evidence that a large community lived along the ridge. This was probably the gate community that controlled Ictis and through which the cart traffic carrying tin had to pass.
Presently the archaeological excavation carried out by Dr Eileen Wilkes has dated the site to around 300BC through to approximately 300 AD and shows evidence of extensive trade with the continent. Around 800 shards have been found, dated to this era including examples of ‘South West Decorative Ware’ usually found in Cornwall, local ‘Coarse Ware’, ‘Black Burnished Ware’from the Poole area and Exeter ‘Fortress Ware’. Amongst these shards were red ‘Samian Roman pottery’, Romano British Ware and pieces of pottery from Brittany and Germany. This does show early evidence of trade but what is most interesting is the find of some locally made granite clays and these are surely evidence of the earlier culture that initially set up Ictis as the Agency and are probably commensurate with the earlier dwellings. Other Iron Age sites are all within sight of each other , one just east of the mouth of the Erm, were obviously strategically placed as communities engaged in commerce and the support of Ictis.
Figure 66 Showing a view from the Folly hill community down over Bantham harbour. Also showing the ‘Long Stone’ to the right.
In the great storm of 1703, apart from destroying the Eddystone lighthouse, it uncovered a Roman camp on the beach at Bantham ham. At the time of the Roman invasion of Britain, Ictis had ceased to exist as the tin agency, but the Romans had obviously eventually made use of the little port of Bantham. With the recent building of the lifeguard hut on Bantham beach, archaeologists have noticed signs of settlement from a very early time through the iron age with the discovery of later artefacts confirming trade with the Mediterranean and Phoenicians.
The translation of the word Emporium is now more plainly understood as Ictis acts as a trading post with a safe haven harbour that serves both coastal traffic bringing tin to market and tin transported by cart on an ancient trackway from the southern edge of Dartmoor.
In 2003 a component of an Iron-age ‘Linch-pin’ was found south west of the iron-age hill fort of ‘Blackdown Rings’. No other iron-age finds have been found in the area, which indicates that the cart pin was lost ‘en route’ down from Shipley Bridge to Ictis. The Pin is of the Kirkburn type and dated to around 300BC. Where this pin was found is right next to the oldest road down from the alluvial tin deposits on Southern Dartmoor which leads to the tidal road in Aveton Gifford, the same track that the wagons took to get to Ictis. Just as Pytheas had said, carts brought the tin to the beach. The use of carts is rare in the hilly terrain of Devon, compared with the rest of the country and for the most part, pack horses were used. So this really is a singular link to the usage of carts in a prehistoric period because the tin ingots would have been too cumbersome for the back of a pack horse. The Devon Archaeological Society goes on to say in their report:
‘The Loddiswell find is the only example known so far in Devon of a piece of equipment which can with reasonable confidence be attributed to the prehistoric chariot or cart. It therefore provides the earliest evidence in the county for the use of a wheeled vehicle. Such vehicles seem not to have been common in many parts of rural Devon even in the 17th and 18th centuries, when pack horses were preferred’.
The most amazing evidence which confirms this as the old trackway where the linch pin was found, is the trackway’s continued use into Roman times where Mr Terence Hockin has found many Roman artifacts such as coin dated to Claudius and a small Roman statue. It should not be forgotten that the tinners of old in Pytheas’ day would have only comparatively light trade goods in effect to take back up to the southern hills of Dartmoor by cart. It seems probable that the transport facility would have been organised by the Ictis Agency and may well have gone along the shoreline of the river when the carts were too full to go uphill Folly Hill from the end of the tidal road. These heavy loads not stored at Ictis would have been transferred onto boats having come further upstream. The main route that Pytheas would have witnessed being carted down through Bigbury having come along the tidal road portrayed by Leonardo.
Figure 66a Showing the view from the spot where the Linch Pin was found leading down to Hatch Bridge and the Aveton Gifford tidal road that leads out to Ictis.
There have been other finds beneath the shifting dunes of Bantham Ham, but it is the remarkable find of some 40 tin ingots by divers of the South West Maritime Archaeological Group that really goes a long way to concur with the story related by Strabo over 2000 years ago that a sea captain deliberately ran his boat on the rocks to keep Ictis secret.
Figure 67 Shows the perfect landfall of Ictis for any foreign trading vessel at all states of the tide by comparison with the rocky foreshore of St. Michael’s Mount.
The entrance to the Erme mouth is partly obstructed by West Mary's Rock and East Mary's Rock and the chain of small rocks lurking beneath the water that join them. There is evidence of a small harbour at Oldaport but this with a hazardous entrance was probably not as well used by foreign vessels as Bantham was. East and West Mary's rocks are uncovered only slightly at low tide and on a floodtide the entrance looks navigable and the reef is unseen. This is obviously what fooled the Roman ship following our brave Phoenician captain that we related earlier.
Most of the ingots found just to the north of West Mary’s Rock, were spread out and worn by the tidal flow while also being encrusted with marine life and the ingots had eroded and become oxidised. Most were plano–convex (bun shaped), all of them different shapes and sizes having been probably cast in many different locations upon Dartmoor. The shaped ingots described by Diodorous as ‘astragali’(some commentators Astralagi Astragalus) seems obtuse as a reference to shape as most examples found were once bun shaped before oxidation due to rock moulds caused by eddies at the sides of the rivers where the cassiterite was collected. The most probable explanation of the etymology of this term in reference to an ingot is some reference to its metallic brightness and provenance as it could have been termed a Gallic star or Astro-Gallus.
It seems Pytheas, if indeed this word is his was originally commenting on the uniformity of shape, caused by similar rock pool indentations, but size differs greatly amongst all the existing examples, as the Tinners used different moulds along the river edges. From the earliest time, a collection of cassiterite would have been placed in an indent in the rock and a fire lit above it, as tin melts at the low temperature of about 230°C.
However, the heaviest example found at the mouth of the Erm was rectangular and flat with a slightly thickened rim, indicating that it was cast in a fabricated mould of stone and could be of a more modern date. It could be the case that Ictis was releasing a stockpile of ancient tin ingots along with more later and larger moulded ones in the Roman era which is the era Strabo relates. The reason for change of shape could be the result of stronger vessel design from wood and fastenings. Certainly at this late period in Ictis’ history the Ingots shape would not have been wholly dependent upon fitting them within a vessel fabricated from animal skin nor would the tin have only been collected next to water. After all, just before the invasion, the ingots would have been sold by weight with no regard to inventory date. The most famous tin ingot found in 1812 just off the sand at St. Mawes Falmouth (another account makes it Carrick or 1823), weighed 72 kg and is obviously of a much later date and could as some say be a hoax of 18th century fabrication to support the Ictis theory in Cornwall. The variation in the Tinners ingot sizes and shapes indicates that Ictis was in business over a long period of time and would not have been concerened with how long it kept its stock. Strabo was writing around 40 BC and this is the precise time that Ictis would have been under a lot of Roman pressure causing the operators to liquidate their stock. This could be the reason found for the differing sises and shapes found at the Erm site. One would assume that it was during this 70 to 80 year period before Jesus was entombed in Ictis around 36AD, that the Island went through its decline and closure.
Figure 67a Showing the entrance to the Erm estuary looking west at mid tide in a southerly wind, where the Phonecian captain’s cargo of tin ingots were found just north of West Mary’s rocks just inshore of the breaking reef.
The fact that if indeed these are the very ingots of our brave Phonecian captain at the mouth of the Erm, it would indicate by the vast array of ingots from old ‘Astragali’to the more recent moulding, that Ictis was running down its long held stock. The fact that these Ingots are found so close to Ictis and there is a story to account for what otherwise would have been nigh on impossible to account for (given that a trader would hardly exit a port full of cargo which he had successfully navigated into it), the tin in this place can only be explained reasonably by two explanations. The fact that the most part of the Ingots were found to the north and west of West Mary’s reef definitely indicates the boat was on its way entering rather than exiting when it hit the rock’s. The location further adds credibility to the find being the product of the same account that Strabo had related. We must consider this in the context of a boat with Devonian tin cargo should be exiting a port.... not entering and the fact that our location of Ictis is only a stone’s throw away. The only other alternative explanation is that a local boat was trying to exit with cargo from the tinners based on the Erm for a delivery to Ictis, but he would hardly founder inshore of a reef he was perfectly aware of.
Figure 67b Showing the entrance to the Erm estuary at Low tide where the tin ingots were found from the Phoenician trading ship, just inshore from where the swell is seen, caused by the two rocks.
As one can see in figure 67b with the sand showing, the Phonecian trader must have worked out to lure his Roman pursuer at half or full tide when the estuary appears navigable with a favourable entrance in fair weather. In these conditions there is little to warn any navigator of the reef that lurks beneath.
Just to the east of the Avon dam above Shipley Bridge where there are several settlements, recent excavations have found in the hut encampments, tin slag and a pebble of cassiterite confirming that these were, in fact, the living quarters of the Bronze Age tinners. By the time Pytheas wrote of his exploits in the fourth century BC, the small craft which were once used, were being changed to more solidly built craft from wood, and the reason for Astragali shaped ingots became redundant. It does logical that the local traders that worked down stream on the other rivers apart from the Avon brought their ingots to Ictis by sea in their coracles as Pytheas relates just for small coastal distances ranging each side of Ictis from the Dart to Plymouth. The Tinners up on the moors however used the route down through Loddiswell as Pytheas had witnessed.
One wonders if it was Joseph who, through his exploits as a tin merchant, discovered that the people of the kingdom of Belerion were the descendants of Zerah. How did he first establish that these people were related to Calcol? It seems sure that Joseph is bringing Jesus’s body to Sarras to where Jacob’s Prophecy on Judah was to be fulfilled. What was it that established this common ancestry from Judah when Joseph of Arimathea and Zerah’s offspring on the Belerion promontory first spoke, or was it known for a long time previously? Melkin is certainly the derivative for the Grail writers reference to Zerah as having a descendant king of Sarras but this connection must have been made by Joseph and it must have been him who purchased the island in which to Lay Jesus’ body.
Professor Rhys thinks, tracing the etymological roots that the Celts who spoke the language of the Celtic Epitaphs in the 5th and 6th centuries were "in part the ancestors of the Welsh and Cornish people," He thinks that they subsequently changed their language from a Gaelic or "Goidelic" form to a Gallo-British or "Brythonic" form. Certainly there are no evident signs of a Hebraic heritage except that witnessed by the population of the South’s preponderance to adherence to the Law and the evidence of an understanding since Neolithic times of a ley and circle system, the use and knowledge of which has now become lost.
Diodorus, when commenting on British dress says that the British had learned the art of using alternate colours for their weave so as to bring out a pattern of stripes and squares ‘the cloth was woven of divers colours, and making a gaudy show. It was covered with an infinite number of little squares and lines, as if it had been sprinkled with flowers. They seem to have been fond of every kind of ornament and they wore collars and "torques" of gold, necklaces and bracelets, and strings of brightly-coloured beads, made of glass or of a material like the Egyptian porcelain.’ Archeologists have thought that the glass was brought by traders from Alexandrian factories. But glass-making is often the by product and manufactured by smelting metal and often the residue from bronze-furnaces produces a kind of glass, a silicate of soda, coloured blue or green by the silicate of copper mixing with melted sand particles and this will have been the reason why beads are recorded long before the art of glass making. It is possibly the reason that Pytheas initially set out to look for ‘Amber’ confusing this with British glass, that he might have seen coming from the Phoenician traders as they passed by Marseilles on their way to the Eastern Mediterranean.
Why does the Genesis account of Solomon’s precedence over Zerah’s offspring even occur, if there was no threat of one of Zerah’s descendants being the inheritor of Jacob’s blessing? Did the offspring of Zerah have some object as proof that they were of Judah’s line and will this object or proof be found in the tomb along with all the other artefacts establishing the Kings of Sarras? Was Blake being prophetical and is ‘Jerusalem builded here’ in England, fulfilling the prophecy of Jacob upon Judah?
Figure 68 Showing the mouth of the river Avon flowing out toward Avalon as seen from Folly hill.