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Day one, year zero: October 23, 4004 BC

The following excerpt is from an article that originally appeared on Christian Today

How old is the universe? Scientists say it’s around 14 billion years; young-earth creationists, perhaps around 10,000 years.

For Archbishop Ussher, however, today’s the day: because according to him, the world was created on October 23, 4004 BC.

The Gulf of Mexico seen from the International Space Station.Reuters

Ussher was the Archbishop of Armagh in Ireland during the most turbulent period of modern British history, the terrible Civil War. He was a fervent anti-Catholic Protestant, though a Royalist who supported King Charles; he watched his execution, but fainted before the axe fell.

Ussher believed the creation began on Sunday, October 23. And far from the popular belief that he arrived at his conclusion just by adding up the numbers given for different generations in the Bible, it was actually a considerable intellectual feat. Not only did he have to deal with the Bible’s chronology, but he had to work out

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