Imam Ali Mosque - Shrine of: 1st Shia Imam - Ali ibn abi Talib; Prophet Adam; and Prophet Nuh (Noah).

Is this the Final Resting Place of Noah? It is Certainly One of the Contenders

(Read the article on one page)

The tale about a huge ship (of Biblical proportions) that enabled the survival of all of the species of animals around the world sounds impressive, but also quite unbelievable. Nonetheless, its builder, Noah, is one of the most popular biblical figures. Furthermore, he is an important prophet in Islam. Although his story, perhaps inspired by the Epic of Gilgamesh, has existed for thousands of years and is known by billions of people, the place of Noah’s burial remains unknown. 

Around the world, people in their first years of life learn the story of a man who saved many people and animal species from death under the waters that came with a horrible flood. The ‘Ark’ story, known since ancient times, became so popular that it is a world-famous myth known in most of the cultures long before its iteration as part of the Bible. However, most of the stories related to Noah are nothing more than oral history.

Noah's ark on the Mount Ararat, Simon de Myle, 1570.

Noah's ark on the Mount Ararat, Simon de Myle, 1570. ( Public Domain )

A Sailor Named Noah

Apart from the biblical notes and the information that comes from other descriptions of a similar flood (like the Epic of Gilgamesh), no information can provide identifying personal data about Noah. Religious people believe that Noah lived for about 950 years. This number appears among the believers of modern religions. Moreover, it is confirmed by the Bible. According to the Book of Genesis:

''20 And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard:
21 And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.
22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brethren without.
23 And Shem and Japheth took a garment, and laid it upon both their shoulders, and went backward, and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were backward, and they saw not their father's nakedness.
24 And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him.
25 And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.
26 And he said, Blessed be the Lord God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.
27 God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.
28 And Noah lived after the flood three hundred and fifty years.
29 And all the days of Noah were nine hundred and fifty years: and he died.''

Sadly, there is no historical source, apart from the religious texts, which confirms this data from the biography of Noah. Moreover, through the ages dozens of researchers (some more, some less professional) have tried to prove their own ideas about the possible biography of this legendary man.  One of the most credible pieces of research was accomplished by the team led by Robert D. Ballard. His goal was to explain the biblical flood in a scientific way.

From Shipwreck to Tomb: The Rival Claims

The most famous story says that the famous Ark ended its voyage on the slopes of Mount Ararat, now in eastern Turkey (but for a very long time in Armenia). The importance of this claim is based on a religious issue, as Islam dominates Turkey and Armenia has always been related to Christianity. Furthermore, one of the possible tombs of Noah is located in territory contested by Armenia and Azerbaijan.

Noah's Tomb or Mausoleum in Nakhchivan, Postcard, circa 1917.

Noah's Tomb or Mausoleum in Nakhchivan, Postcard, circa 1917. ( Public Domain )

The mausoleum located in Nakhchivan is located on the land known as Kohna-gala, meaning ''Old fortress''. Many Armenians believe that this is traditionally their territory, but currently, it officially belongs to Azerbaijan. The construction was built around the 8th century AD, but could possibly be a little younger.

It was rebuilt many times and now the main building contains the remnants of the former one. Inside the burial chamber there is a column and according to the explanations presented by guides, this is the place where the relic of Noah was buried. Thus, it seems that even the locals don't see the mausoleum as the original burial place of Noah, just a temple for a relic deposit.

17th century Noah Mausoleum, Nakhchivan, Azerbaijan.

17th century Noah Mausoleum, Nakhchivan, Azerbaijan. ( Public Domain )

The Imam Ali Mosque in Najaf, Iraq, is a destination for the pilgrimage of millions of people every year. The average number of pilgrims is about 8 million people. It is a holy site for Muslims who follow the Shia belief (the ones who accept that Muhammad had an ancestor – Ali ibn Abi Talib). The followers of this faith believe that Ali was buried next to the legendary Adam and Noah.

Comments

Don't bother looking here, you won't find the tomb of Noah in this place or any other. Funny how Islam believes in so much from the Jewish Tanakh.

bjcorbin's picture

According to the Book of Jublilees… “And Noah slept with his fathers, and was buried on Mount Lubar in the land of Ararat.”

This implies Noah did not venture far from the mountain the Ark landed, so if you can identify the correct tomb, you likely identify the correct mountain of the Ark’s landfall. My research still points to Alvand mountain in Iran, but open to other research and opinions. www.bjcorbin.com

BJ

The bible can not confirm the age of the character 'Noah.' As a work of fiction and legend, it can only reiterate the supposed age of him.

Register to become part of our active community, get updates, receive a monthly newsletter, and enjoy the benefits and rewards of our member point system OR just post your comment below as a Guest.

Top New Stories

(1) Knotted tanned hide bundle before extraction of contents; (2) & (4) gold dinars; (3) signet ring with intaglio; (5) contents of knotted tanned hide bundle.
In mid-September, a large treasure was unearthed during a dig at the Abbey of Cluny, in the French department of Saône-et-Loire: 2,200 silver deniers and oboles, 21 Islamic gold dinars, a signet ring, and other objects made of gold. Never before has such a large cache of silver deniers been discovered. Nor have gold coins from Arab lands, silver deniers, and a signet ring ever been found hoarded together within a single, enclosed complex.

Human Origins

Deriv; Ancient Celtic dolmen from Poulnabrone, Ireland and carved Egyptian deity Thoth
When ancient Egypt and Ireland are spoken about in the same breath it usually results in the rolling of eyes, polite exits and the sound of murmurs citing pseudo-history and new age babble. At least...

Ancient Technology

Grinding stone, Dendera Temple, Egypt.
Most people know of the great construction achievements of the dynastic Egyptians such as the pyramids and temples of the Giza Plateau area as well as the Sphinx. Many books and videos show depictions of vast work forces hewing blocks of stone in the hot desert sun and carefully setting them into place.

Ancient Places

El Caracol Observatory at Chichen Itza (Wright Reading/CC BY-NC 2.0) and Composite 3D laser scan image of El Caracol from above
In 1526, the Spanish conquistador Francisco de Montejo arrived on the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico and found most of the great Maya cities deeply eroded and unoccupied. Many generations removed from the master builders, engineers, and scientists who conceived and built the cities, the remaining Maya they encountered had degenerated into waring groups who practiced blood rituals and human sacrifice.

Our Mission

At Ancient Origins, we believe that one of the most important fields of knowledge we can pursue as human beings is our beginnings. And while some people may seem content with the story as it stands, our view is that there exists countless mysteries, scientific anomalies and surprising artifacts that have yet to be discovered and explained.

The goal of Ancient Origins is to highlight recent archaeological discoveries, peer-reviewed academic research and evidence, as well as offering alternative viewpoints and explanations of science, archaeology, mythology, religion and history around the globe.

We’re the only Pop Archaeology site combining scientific research with out-of-the-box perspectives.

By bringing together top experts and authors, this archaeology website explores lost civilizations, examines sacred writings, tours ancient places, investigates ancient discoveries and questions mysterious happenings. Our open community is dedicated to digging into the origins of our species on planet earth, and question wherever the discoveries might take us. We seek to retell the story of our beginnings. 

Ancient Image Galleries

View from the Castle Gate (Burgtor). (Public Domain)
Door surrounded by roots of Tetrameles nudiflora in the Khmer temple of Ta Phrom, Angkor temple complex, located today in Cambodia. (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Cable car in the Xihai (West Sea) Grand Canyon (CC BY-SA 4.0)
Next article