Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Return of Noah's Ark

For centuries explorers have search the area around Mount Ararat in Turkey looking for signs of Noah's Ark, which according to the Bible came to rest on the mountain after the waters receded from the great flood. In recent times various odd artifacts have been found in the region that might have once been part of a ship, but the vast majority of them have turned out to be either hoaxes or not nearly old enough to have come from the Ark. Now Johan Huibers has decided he will wait no longer. Prompted by dreams of a flood, he has spent the last three years building a seaworthy replica of the massive boat.

A doomsday dream about massive flooding prompted Dutch man Johan Huibers to build a huge Noah's Ark, which he plans to float down London's River Thames ahead of the 2012 Olympics.

Johan, the head of a construction company in the town of Dordrecht in the western Netherlands, started work on the 100-yard long, four-storey tall ship three years ago after a night-time vision that came to him some 20 years ago.

'I dreamed that a part of Holland was flooded,' the 60-year-old explained to NBC's Today Show in the US. 'The next day, I get the idea to build an ark.'

True to the Book of Genesis' tale of Noah, 'Johan's Ark' features life-size replicas of animals - including pairs of faux giraffes, zebras, cows and donkeys, and an elephant that cost $11,000. There are also live chickens on board.

Currently sitting in a shipyard, the vessel - which Johan insists is seaworthy - is 300 cubits in length, 30 cubits high and 50 cubits wide. Cubits are the ancient measure denoting an arm’s length, elbow to fingertip - or approximately 18 inches.

Pictures of the new Ark, shown above, look quite impressive and demonstrate that not only has Huibers done a great job in following the instructions from the Book of Genesis, but also that those Biblical instructions appear to produce a real ship. My only question for Huibers concerns the dream from more than twenty years ago that led to his interest in building the Ark. Holland is below sea level. Isn't some part of the country always flooding?

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2 comments:

Pallas Renatus said...

I'm glad that in the event of a world-ending flood, the world is ready to be repopulated with chickens and plastic elephants.

Ananael Qaa said...

Maybe that's how the Autons from Doctor Who came to be - for those who haven't seen the show, they're basically aliens made out of living plastic.

You see, long ago their world faced a terrible flood, prompting a lone visionary to build an Ark populated with plastic animals. After the disaster the plastic animals realized that it was their responsibility to breed and repopulate their world, since nobody was going to date the kind of guy who would spend all his time building an Ark and populating it with plastic animals. The rest is history.