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The Sign and the Seal

The Quest for the Lost Ark of the Covenant
Narrated by: Steven Crossley
Length: 21 hrs and 31 mins
Categories: History, Ancient History
4.8 out of 5 stars (18 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The fate of the Lost Ark of the Covenant is one of the great historical mysteries of all time. To believers, the Ark is the legendary vessel holding the stone tablets of the Ten Commandments. The Bible contains hundreds of references to the Ark's power to level mountains, destroy armies, and lay waste to cities. The Ark itself, however, mysteriously disappears from recorded history sometime after the building of the Temple of Solomon.

After 10 years of searching through the dusty archives of Europe and the Middle East, as well as braving the real-life dangers of a bloody civil war in Ethiopia, Graham Hancock has succeeded where scores of others have failed. This intrepid journalist has tracked down the true story behind the myths and legends - revealing where the Ark is today, how it got there, and why it remains hidden.

Part fascinating scholarship and part entertaining adventure yarn, tying together some of the most intriguing tales of all time - from the Knights Templar and Prester John to Parsival and the Holy Grail - this book will appeal to anyone fascinated by the revelation of hidden truths and the discovery of secret mysteries.

©1992 Graham Hancock (P)2018 Tantor

What listeners say about The Sign and the Seal

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Excelent work

the man found it for sure. thanks for the great effort Graham, love your work mate ;)

1 person found this helpful

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  • Edward Riener
  • 21-08-2019

Hancock is brilliant as always, BUT!

Brilliant book based on years of thorough research, but unfortunately unbearably slaughtered by the narrator!

6 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • D. MacNair
  • 09-11-2019

Ridiculous.

Hated it and was very disappointed. The premise is preposterous. I have heard of the Ethiopians who claim they have the Ark, but I don't for a minute believe it. They claim that Solomon and the Queen of Sheba had a love-child who stole the Ark from the Temple and took it to Ethiopia. The book bases this not on any Biblical text but purely on local claims of the people who claim to be the caretakers of the Ark, and on various hidden architectural clues left in Medieval architecture and Catholic statuary found there. It then goes on to forward an obscure and bizarre idea that the Ark of the Covenant and the Holy Grail are actually one and the same, the former actually not being a box made by Moses, and the latter not actually being the cup used at the Last Supper, and then comparing the two of these to the Virgin Mary, and it all just became some weird gnostic Catholic secret that I do not for a minute believe. On the historical side, I think it is much more plausible to believe the Ark was secreted out of the Temple by priests much later, closer to the time of judgement when the Babylonians carried off the Temple items as plunder, to save it from that fate. It makes no sense at all that the Ark would have been stolen literally RIGHT after the Temple of Solomon was built. For me, this book was a disappointing waste of time. I think Raiders of the Lost Ark has more historically and Biblically accurate detail and makes far more sense than this gnostic mumbo jumbo.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Joseph E. Strickland
  • 11-07-2019

Riveting

This is a great work. Graham Hancock presents a very compelling, well researched personal journey that I found enlightening and interesting the whole way through.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Mark
  • 20-03-2019

20 hours of painstaking listening

20 hours of his travel and interests, and only in the dying moments does he tell the listener that he can neither deny or confirm the arks location it’s maybe in a...,

13 people found this helpful

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  • Amy Solara
  • 10-07-2020

Starting at the beginning

I’ve read almost all of Graham’s books, and this one is definitely a must read for fans of his. He touched on ideas that were later fleshed out in Fingerprints and Magicians, and he goes in depth into some other topics that he brushes over in later books. It’s great to hear his younger self experience some tough lessons and to know how much he will evolve and grow.

1 person found this helpful

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  • chris
  • 07-11-2019

Let Graham read his own book.

The book is awesome, like most of Grahams books. The narrator sounds like an old man reading a bedtime story to his grandkids. Very interesting material and I would still recommend it.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Ira S. Saposnik
  • 19-03-2019

You still won’t know

You still won’t know where it is bub No matter how often you listen bub

6 people found this helpful

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  • Gargamont
  • 03-07-2019

Poor production quality control

While I am a fan of Graham Hancock in general, I found the narrator's mispronunciation of the Egyptian god "Thoth" annoying and distracting. Doesn't anyone proof these audio books before they are published?

3 people found this helpful

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  • D. Corwith
  • 21-03-2019

Difficult to follow on an audio format

Difficult to follow on an audio format. Complicated. I only got about 2 hours into it and had to change books. The author did extensive research however it is difficult to follow in audio.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 20-10-2020

glimpse a deep religious udercurrent of history

Fascinating history of technological, symbolic, and religious life of the hebraic traditions. would reccomend to anyone.

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  • Moneenroe
  • 27-02-2019

Excellent

Amazing research and tenacity. Great story-telling. Very well read. I hope Graham Hancock will be appreciated by the mainstream media for the incredible research and work that go in to all his books. His contribution to our knowledge of the world of antiquity is immeasurable.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Oli
  • 20-05-2019

Sneering narrator

This is an excellent book but is spoiled by the narration. Crossley(?) makes a great deal of the material sound as though it is uttered as a sneer of utmost derision, which lends the narrative an unpleasant flavour which it would not otherwise have.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Adrian J. Smith
  • 28-08-2019

Excellent Debut

With all the research Graham Hancock has invested into his lost civilization thesis, one would be surprised to discover the extent of his research into the lost Ark of the Covenant. The book reads like part travel Memoir, part detective story, with the crime in question being the theft of the greatest religious relic in history, buried in a conspiracy of silence. Credit goes out to the extent of Hancock's research, and how he has weighed and evaluated the credibility of every source, and considered each against the historical chronology. The chapters examining the Holy Grail and Grail literature are something of a digression and seem somewhat unnecessary at times, but it does provide an extra insight into the notion that the Holy Grail legend is an outgrowth of the Ark itself. Hancock's work always carries a touch of the personal, which to the diehard Academic would be a fault, but to the lay reader provides an enjoyable change of pace and an insight into the political and historical situation of Ethiopia at the time of writing. Overall an excellent piece of detective work plus travel memoir, and Hancock's vigorous investigation of every possible angle has left a convincing thesis, at least as far as this reader is concerned. Additionally, Steven Crossley's narration is a pleasure to the ears. Although I was initially disappointed that the narrator was not Graham Hancock, as are most of Hancock's books, Crossley's narration did not disappoint.

3 people found this helpful

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  • DarkSkies
  • 22-06-2019

Amateur Narration

Content is great. But oh boy...is it difficult to listen to this narrator. Odd cadence, strange pronunciation, weird enunciation, almost like the worst sermon you ever heard. Or someone who has never had to speak aloud before. Better off reading rather than listening to this one.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Gordy Mckellar
  • 22-01-2020

Essential reading for those interested in the Ark

Over the years several folk, most recently a documentary on the Discovery Channel, have gone down this rabbit hole; but none have done the subject the justice that Hancock does here. Fantastically informative & entertaining, this deserves recognition as a serious piece of historical investigation; but unfortunately came a good 20 years before Hancock would be taken seriously by scholars in the fields of historical & archaeological research. The only wish here is that Graham had done the narration himself, as the narrator here come across as robotic, flat and patronising.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Keith Gotts
  • 17-07-2019

Great factual story well worth a read

Really interesting book very entertaining well written and educational this is a hard book to put down when she get into it

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 21-10-2020

Dusty

I was really looking forward to listening to this book but oh! the disappointment! The subject matter is something I have personal interest in but the performance was so dull, monotonous and dusty! There was no enthusiasm for the subject matter by the narrator and I really struggled to get through the first chapter but by chapter 4 I gave up completely. Thoroughly disappointed with the entire thing and I would only recommend this as a soporific for those with insomnia!

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  • Mr Adam Gordon-Strong
  • 17-06-2020

An amazing book- killed by the narrator

So sad that such a great book was destroyed by the guy reading it, please get Dennis Kleinman to read, or better yet read it yourself Graham!! Love all your books, I think it will take another 20years though before u r truly recognised for the genius u r Mr Hancock.

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  • Rob Wager
  • 19-05-2019

Read the book

Thankfully, I have read the book and sadly may do again. Why, the narration. It is terrible and sounds like a robotic text reader.

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  • Alex
  • 07-02-2019

Good if your into it.

A detailed tale of Graham Hancock’s first foray into pseudo-archeology as he goes full Indiana Jones. More travel journal than ‘fact’ hunting but still a good listen if you’re already a fan.

1 person found this helpful