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View of the Hebrews: Substitute for Inspiration?

TitleView of the Hebrews: Substitute for Inspiration?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1964
AuthorsPalmer, Spencer J., and William L. Knecht
JournalBYU Studies Quarterly
KeywordsPlagiarism; Smith, Ethan; View of the Hebrews

Recent imputations against Joseph Smith contain the charge that the Isaiah chapters of the Book of Mormon were purloined by the Prophet from a popular book first published in 1823 by a Protestant clergyman named Ethan Smith, under the title View of the Hebrews: Exhibiting the Destruction of Jerusalem; the Certain Restoration of Judah and Israel, the Present State of Judah and Israel; and an Address of the Prophet Isaiah Relative to Their Restoration. Joseph Smith’s detractors look upon this alleged act of plagiarism as a betrayal of his claim of a sacrosanct origin of the Book of Mormon. Fortunately this allegation can be tested empirically.