Late yesterday America Unearthed host Scott Wolter reversed course after months of teasing a “major” fringe history discovery and published the results of his examination of the so-called Jesus Ossuary on his blog, where almost no one will see them. The Jesus Ossuary is a small first-century burial box found in the Talpiot Tomb in 2003 and claimed to be the burial box of Jesus Christ on the strength of an inscription said to read Yeshua bar Yehosef (Jesus, the son of Joseph) found on it, though critics have strongly disputed that the inscription is original. Indeed, some have been unable to find the name Yeshua at all. Wolter viewed the ossuary when it was on display in Los Angeles earlier this year. The vast conspiracy placed it on public display in one of the world’s most populous and media-saturated cities in order to hide it from the public, I’m sure.
The box and the tomb have been championed by fringe filmmaker Simha Jacobovici, who worked with Israeli geologist Arye Shimron earlier this year to link dirt found on the so-called James Ossuary (another suspected forgery) to the Talpiot tomb (though technically only to the region of eastern Jerusalem) to strengthen the suggestion that the burial boxes found in the Talpiot tomb are those of Jesus and his family. The James Ossuary was known before the Talpiot tomb was opened, and therefore is not likely to have come from it.
Wolter has looked at the Jesus Ossuary through Plexiglas and saw on it an eight-pointed asterisk that he claims is a “Hooked X®” superimposed over the Greek letter tau, symbolizing Jesus and the cross, Masonic symbolism, and a Greco-Hebrew hybrid alpha-omega symbol. (He sees the X as a stylized aleph and the tau as substituting for the last Hebrew letter, tav, since both vocalize as t.) One of the legs of the asterisk is carved slightly askew and can be read as a stave emerging from one of the other seven legs, thus producing the “Hooked X®.” He further claims that an acute angle found nearby is a “chevron,” aligned with Wolter’s mythology of symbols of the sacred feminine. “To find what appears to be the Hooked X carved on the lid of the Yeshua ossuary,” Wolter writes, “could be a major historical discovery that is consistent with much of the speculative research the author has already published.”
Scholars have identified these marks as alignment markers meant to correctly align the lid, similar to those found on 40% or more of known ossuaries. Wolter dismisses this claim and suggest that the symbol is a Jesus family royal monogram. He concedes that he has no idea when it was carved, and further admits that the symbol was not carved by the same hand that inscribed the box with the disputed name of Yeshua bar Yehosef. His interpretation of the symbol rests entirely on his own pre-existing mythology of the Hooked X®, in turn resting on the assumption of a vast conspiracy stretching from ancient Egypt to modern Freemasonry.
On America Unearthed (episode S01E11), Wolter had previously identified the swooping X shape at the end of the Yeshua inscription as a Hooked X®, a claim that is apparently now inoperative since he discovered an inscription that better aligns with his conspiracy.
Wolter has modified his Hooked X® beliefs somewhat and his now playing down claims that the symbol represents the penis of Jesus penetrating the vagina of Mary Magdalene to implant a royal embryo. Now he suggests that the symbol originates in the Egyptian crook and flail, symbols of royal authority sometimes seen crossed on the chests of Egyptian pharaohs or the god Osiris and only vaguely similar to the variant-A Scandinavian rune that started the Hooked X® mythology. (The flail’s most important part, the strips used for whipping, do not appear in the Hooked X® symbol in this interpretation.) The crook and flail, symbols of Osiris, were originally used separately in the Predynastic period and are known to have been paired only in the Second Dynasty; however, since the symbols appear with orthodox pharaohs from c. 2800 BCE onward, they cannot be taken as symbolic of “monotheistic dualism” or unique to the family of the heretical pharaoh Akhenaten as Wolter claims.
In order for Wolter’s claims to make sense, one must accept that the Jesus Ossuary’s “Yeshua” inscription was present in the first century CE, that it referred to Jesus Christ and no other Yeshua, that this Jesus was educated in Egypt and privy to the secrets of a pharaoh 1500 years dead, that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene and had children with her, and that he and his followers encoded hidden truths kept hermetically sealed for millennia in symbols that they promiscuously scattered everywhere they could place their chisels, symbols that were so easily decoded that a Minnesota geologist could intuit all of the foregoing from them with absolutely no knowledge or understanding of the languages and texts in which they were supposedly grounded.
I am an author and researcher focusing on pop culture, science, and history. Bylines: New Republic, Slate, etc. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
Enter your email below to subscribe to my newsletter, The Skeptical Xenoarchaeologist, for updates on my latest projects, blog posts, and activities, and subscribe to Culture & Curiosities, my Substack newsletter.
Terms & Conditions
Please read all applicable terms and conditions before posting a comment on this blog. Posting a comment constitutes your agreement to abide by the terms and conditions linked herein.