Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Repeating 480 Years

Hopefully this will lead somewhere interesting

מלכים א ו:א - ויהי בשמונים שנה וארבע מאות שנה לצאת בני ישראל מארץ מצרים בשנה הרביעית בחדש זו הוא החדש השני למלך שלמה על ישראל, ויבן הבית לה'.
Melachim Alef 6:1 - And it was in the 480th year to B'nei Yisrael's leaving the land of Mitzraim, in the 4th year in the month of Ziv, which is the 2nd month, to the 4th year of Shlomo's reign on Yisrael, he built a house to Hashem.
Allow me to digress and post a translation of the GR"A here.

This calculation of 480 years is like this:

  • 40 years in the desert.
  • 14 years at Gilgal, which are the 1st 14 years of Yehoshua, 7 years for capturing, 7 for division.
  • 369 years at Shilo, and this is there breakdown: The 14 last years of Yehoshua, because he led the nation 28 years. Otniel for 40 years, 80 for Ehud, 40 for Devorah, 40 for Gid'on, which includes 7 of Midyan (which is different then Seder Olam), 3 of Avimelech, 23 of Tola', 22 of Ya'ir, 18 years under B'nei Amon, 6 of Yiftach, 7 of Actsan, 10 of Ayalon, 8 of Avdon, 20 of Shimshon, 39 of Eli. And even though it says in Shmuel Alef that he judged for 40 years, it is possible that he died in the 40th year and therefore it doesn't count. And therefore 380 years. And the extra year, Rashi already wrote that between Tola and Ya'ir there is a shared year. Behold, 369 years for Shilo.
  • Nov - 13 years, being 10 for Shmuel, 1 of Shmuel and Shaul, and 2 for Shaul by himself.
  • Giv'on - 44 years. That is 40 years of David, and 4 of Shlomo.
Back to the topic at hand. Here's the Malbim on that verse (because I don't have access to what he references):
Behold from the time of the building of the Mishkan in the days of Moshe until the building of the Beit HaMikdash was 480 years, and thus it was between the building of the Beit HaMikdash in the time of Shlomo until it was built again in the time of Ezra, it was also 480 years. And the מהרי"א wrote that it was a time set by Hashem, that it was proper that it go up from time to time.
(All years that I will mention are according to Shnat Tohu, adding 1 to Seder Olam Rabba's count)

  • Yetziat Mitzraim - Nissan 2449
  • Hakamat HaMishkan - Nissan 2450
  • Binyan Bayit Rishon - Iyyar (Ziv) 2929
  • Binyan Bayit Sheini - 3409
It is 480 years from Yetziat Mitzraim to Binyan Bayit Rishon, not from Hakamat HaMishkan. What is interesting, though, is another phrase I found:

והנה ביובל יצאו ישראל ממצרים וכן הוא אומר וחמשים עלו בני ישראל מארץ מצרים

And behold, in the Yovel Year Yisrael left Mitzraim, and thus it says "and B'nei Yisrael left the land of Mitzraim armed" (armed can also be read as 50).

If we count straight Yovel's of 50 year cycles from year 1, we get that a Yovel would be in the year 2450 (0 + 50n, where n goes from 1 to 50)

The 1st Yom Kippur that took place in the Midbar was when Moshe brought the 2nd Luchot, as well as the commandment to build to Mishkan. So the 480 years began with Yetziat Mitzraim and the Mishkan, but it was another 6 months before the commandment filtered down to Am Yisrael.

I mentioned before, Yehezkel's vision was about the new Upper Yerushalayim, which changed its form when the Beit HaMikdash was destroyed, in 3339. But I also mentioned last week that Yehezkel received his vision of the 3rd Beit HaMikdash only on the following Yovel, in 3353, a 14 year gap.

That's all I have for now. Please comment if you have any ideas on how to develop this further.


  1. 400 years is 8 times Yovel

  2. 2449 was the 49th year of the 49th cycle of Yovel.

    400 is 8 times Yovel, you are referring backwards to Yitzchak?

  3. I would not know from what else to count Yovel. I assume there was a year count to 400 at the time because of Brit Bein HaBetarim, at least B'Diavad.

  4. At the same time, I like the parallel between the Mishkan and Bayit Shlishi. Initially the change is made above, and then on Yovel it filters down to us. If 2449 is the Yovel, I can't think of any other hints at it, only Rosh Hashanah, 1st of Tishrei, is mentioned regarding the end of the slavery.

  5. We are now I believe 3321 years from the exodus from egypt


    I'll let you figure it out.

  6. if i were to take a first guess, i would say you are implying pivoting history around 2449 + 3.5 * 480.