Book of Mormon/Archaeology

Table of Contents

Archaeology and the Book of Mormon

Summary: It is a common claim by critics that there is "absolutely no archaeological evidence" to support the Book of Mormon. When they say "directly" support, they typically mean that they are looking for a direct corroboration, such as the presence of the name "Nephi" or "Zarahemla" in association with ancient American archaeological data. There is plenty of supporting evidence that anthropologically ties the Book of Mormon to ancient America.

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Biblical archaeology compared to the Book of Mormon

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Archaeology and the Hill Cumorah

Summary: If Mormon chapter 6 is a literal description of the destruction of the Nephites by the Lamanites — approximately 100 thousand were killed by swords and axes — why hasn't any evidence of the battle been found at the site that was traditionally identified as the hill Cumorah in western New York state?

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Thomas Stuart Ferguson and "Mormon archaeology"

Summary: Thomas Stuart Ferguson went to search for Book of Mormon lands. When he could not confirm their existence, it is said that he lost his belief. Ferguson and the New World Archaeological foundation are often used by critics to demonstrate that there is no "Book of Mormon archaeology."

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Smithsonian statement about the Book of Mormon

Summary: The Smithsonian Institution sends a form letter to those who inquire about their use of the Book of Mormon for archaeological purposes. The National Geographic Society has a similar letter. Critics trot out this letter as proof that the Book of Mormon has no archaeological support and is therefore false. One critic even claims that "generations of youth" in the Church have been taught that the Smithsonian uses the Book of Mormon to guide their research.

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Interpretations of Izapa Stella 5 as a possible representation of Lehi's vision of the Tree of Life

Summary: Advances in our understanding of Mesoamerican art and iconography have led most LDS researchers with knowledge of the relevant disciplines to be very skeptical about a direct link between the stela and the Book of Mormon.

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Video

Part(s) of this issue are addressed in a FairMormon video segment. Click here to see video clips on other topics.