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Tim O'Neill


Tim O'Neill is an atheist blogger who specializes in reviews of books on ancient and medieval history as well as atheism and historiography. He holds a Master of Arts in Medieval Literature from the University of Tasmania and is a subscribing member of the Australian Atheist Foundation and the Australian Skeptics. He is also the author of the History versus The Da Vinci Code website and is currently working on a book with the working title History for Atheists: How Not to Use History in Debates About Religion. He finds the fact that he irritates many theists and atheists in equal measure a sign that he's probably doing some good. Follow his blog at Armarium Magnum.


An Atheist Historian Examines the Evidence for Jesus (Part 2 of 2)

NOTE: This it the second of a two part series. Before reading this be sure to check out Part 1.     Many Christians accept that a historical Jesus existed because they never thought to question the idea in the first place, or because they are convinced that the gospels can be read as (more or less) historical accounts and so don't need to be seriously doubted on this point.  But why do the overwhelming majority of non-Christian scholars also accept that Jesus existed? The Total Lack... Read More

An Atheist Historian Examines the Evidence for Jesus (Part 1 of 2)

Scholars who specialize in the origins of Christianity agree on very little, but they do generally agree that it is most likely that a historical preacher, on whom the Christian figure "Jesus Christ" is based, did exist.  The numbers of professional scholars, out of the many thousands in this and related fields, who don't accept this consensus, can be counted on the fingers of one hand.  Many may be more cautious about using the term "historical fact" about this idea, since as with many things... Read More

Why History isn’t Scientific (And Why it Can Still Tell Us About the Past)

Filed under History

In April last year, Grundy, the author of the Deity Shmeity blog, wrote a post titled "History Isn't My Area". He commented on the release of Bart Ehrman's critique of Mythicism, Did Jesus Exist?: The Historical Argument for Jesus of Nazareth.  Unlike the majority of actual historians, many prominent atheists find Jesus Mythicism convincing and many of them are unhappy with the generally sceptical and highly renowned Ehrman for criticizing this idea.  Grundy, for his part, stated frankly "I... Read More

The Dark Age Myth: An Atheist Reviews “God’s Philosophers”

My interest in Medieval science was substantially sparked by one book. Way back in 1991, when I was an impoverished and often starving post-graduate student at the University of Tasmania, I found a copy of Robert T. Gunther's Astrolabes of the World - 598 folio pages of meticulously catalogued Islamic, Medieval and Renaissance astrolabes with photos, diagrams, star lists and a wealth of other information. I found it, appropriately and not coincidentally, in Michael Sprod's Astrolabe Books - up... Read More