Original: http://www.lhup.edu/~dsimanek/ussher.htm

     James Ussher (1581-1656), Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of 
     All Ireland, was highly regarded in his day as a churchman and 
     as a scholar. Of his many works, his treatise on chronology 
     has proved the most durable. Based on an intricate correlation 
     of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean histories and Holy writ, 
     it was incorporated into an authorized version of the Bible 
     printed in 1701, and thus came to be regarded with almost as 
     much unquestioning reverence as the Bible itself. Having 
     established the first day of creation as Sunday 23 October 
     4004 BC, by the arguments set forth in the passage below, 
     Ussher calculated the dates of other biblical events, 
     concluding, for example, that Adam and Eve were driven from 
     Paradise on Monday 10 November 4004 BC, and that the ark 
     touched down on Mt Ararat on 5 May 1491 BC `on a Wednesday'.* 

     [Ussher's spellings have been faithfully kept. AE is a ligature.]
For as much as our Christian epoch falls many ages after the 
beginning of the world, and the number of years before that 
backward is not only more troublesome, but (unless greater care be 
taken) more lyable to errour; also it hath pleased our modern 
chronologers, to adde to that generally received hypothesis (which 
asserted the Julian years, with their three cycles by a certain 
mathematical prolepsis, to have run down to the very beginning of 
the world) an artificial epoch, framed out of three cycles 
multiplied in themselves; for the Solar Cicle being multiplied by 
the Lunar, or the number of 28 by 19, produces the great Paschal 
Cycle of 532 years, and that again multiplied by fifteen, the 
number of the indiction, there arises the period of 7980 years, 
which was first (if I mistake not) observed by Robert Lotharing, 
Bishop of Hereford, in our island of Britain, and 500 years after 
by Joseph Scaliger fitted for chronological uses, and called by the 
name of the Julian Period, because it conteined a cycle of so many 
Julian years. Now if the series of the three minor cicles be from 
this present year extended backward unto precedent times, the 4713 
years before the beginning of our Christian account will be found 
to be that year into which the first year of the indiction, the 
first of the Lunar Cicle, and the first of the Solar will fall. 
Having placed there fore the heads of this period in the kalends 
of January in that proleptick year, the first of our Christian 
vulgar account must be reckoned the 4714 of the Julian Period, 
which, being divided by 15. 19. 28. will present us with the 4 
Roman indiction, the 2 Lunar Cycle, and the 10 Solar, which are the 
principal characters of that year.  
We find moreover that the year of our fore-fathers, and the years 
of the ancient Egyptians and Hebrews were of the same quantity with 
the Julian, consisting of twelve equal moneths, every of them 
conteining 30 days, (for it cannot be proved that the Hebrews did 
use lunary moneths before the Babylonian Captivity) adjoying to 
the end of the twelfth moneth, the addition of five dayes, and 
every four year six. And I have observed by the continued 
succession of these years, as they are delivered in holy writ, that 
the end of the great Nebuchadnezars and the beginning of 
Evilmerodachs (his sons) reign, fell out in the 3442 year of the 
world, but by collation of Chaldean history and the astronomical 
cannon, it fell out in the 186 year c Nabonasar, and, as by certain 
connexion, it must follow in the 562 year before the Christian 
account, and of the Julian Period, the 4152. and from thence I 
gathered the creation of the world did fall out upon the 710 year of 
the Julian Period, by placing its beginning in autumn: but for as 
much as the first day of the world began with the evening of the 
first day of the week, I have observed that the Sunday, which in 
the year 710 aforesaid came nearest the Autumnal AEquinox, by 
astronomical tables (notwithstanding the stay of the sun in the 
dayes of Joshua, and the going back of it in the dayes c Ezekiah) 
happened upon the 23 day of the Julian October; from thence 
concluded that from the evening preceding that first day of the 
Julian year, both the first day of the creation and the first 
motion of time are to be deduced. 
J. Ussher, _The Annals of the World_ iv (1658) 
* The material above is from: Craig, G. Y. and E. J. Jones. _A Geological
Miscellany_. Princeton University Press, 1982. 


	The above excerpt makes no mention of the time of day at which 
	creation occurred. In popular references one often finds it given 
	as 9 A.M., and this is wrongly attributed to Ussher. The 
	following excerpt from Andrew D. White's book _A History of 
	the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom_ 
	(D. Appleton and Co., 1897, p. 9) correctly identifies the 
	culprit as Sir John Lightfoot:

...the general conclusion arrived at by an overwhelming majority of 
the most competent students of the biblical accounts was that 
the date of creation was, in round numbers, four thousand years 
before our era; and in the seventeenth century, in his great work, 
Dr. John Lightfoot, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge, 
and one of the most eminent Hebrew scholars of his time, declared, 
as the result of his most profound and exhaustive study of the 
Scriptures, that "heaven and earth, centre and circumference, 
were created all together, in the same instant, and clouds full 
of water," and that "this work took place and man was created by 
the Trinity on October 23, 4004 B.C., at nine o'clock in the morning."