From the book: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith
by Michael R. Ash
And they did also carry with them deseret, which, by interpretation, is a honey bee; and thus they did carry with them swarms of bees, and all manner of that which was upon the face of the land, seeds of every kind – Ether 2:3 in the Book of Mormon
In the Book of Mormon we find that the Jaredite word deseret means “honeybee”. Years ago, Dr. Hugh Nibley observed that the word deseret “or something very close to it, enjoyed a position of ritual prominence” among the early Egyptians and they associated the word with a symbol of the bee. He explained, “We know that the bee sign was not always written down, but in its place the picture of the Red Crown… If we do not know the original name of the bee, we do know the name of this Red Crown –the name it bore when it was substituted for the bee. The name was dsrt (the vowels are not known, but we can be sure they were all short”).
Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.
Julianne Dehlin Hatton is a broadcast journalist living in Louisville, Kentucky. She has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, Radio and Television Host, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.
Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.