Mudcat Café message #940666 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #58897   Message #940666
Posted By: Charley Noble
26-Apr-03 - 11:06 AM
Thread Name: Lyr Add: Jonah and the Whale-2
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Jonah and the Whale-2
As I was quietly enjoying my latest nautical literary acquisition the other day, a book of short articles entitled ANCHOR LANE by C. Fox Smith, I found in a chapter "The Sea and Its Legends", p. 65, another reference to Tarsus/Tarshish:

"..very much after the fashion of the sailors of Tarshish when they cast lots and the lot fell upon Jonah."

The Oxford Companion to Ships and the Sea, p. 434, summarizes the Jonah tale as follows:

"Jonah, one of the minor prophets of the Old testament who, after being instructed by Jehovah to go to Nineveh to preach repentence of sins, attempted to avoid his task by running away by sea to Tarshish..."

I take it that "Nineveh" was the "inner land" in question. At least now I think I have a better idea of where Jonah was told to go. The song above, however, says he LEFT from the Tarshish shore rather than shipping out to it; this is very confusing. At any rate he certainly had one whale of a tale to tell!

Charley Noble