Using the power of the Web, I took a few minutes to examine this claim. I focused on the state of Virginia and border towns in North Carolina (approximately 42,000 square miles). In a matter of minutes I found 30 fascinating parallel names. The strongest include Alma/Alma, Boaz/Boaz, Calno/Calno, Edom/Edom, Siddon/Sidon. Other possibilities include Nahor/Nehor, Achash/Akish, Joshua Falls/Land of Joshua, Mt. Herman/Hermounts, Moran/Moron and more.
When I expanded the area of coverage I found even more parallels. Linguistic coincidence, or homophony, can, and does occur all the time. Even the Malaysian Book of Mormon map lists nine parallels to Book of Mormon cities.
When we compare Holley’s parallels to something like the Book of Mormon NHM/Nahom parallel as discussed in a previous issue, the difference becomes striking. NHM is more than just a name; it’s the name of an actual seventh-sixth century B.C. location where outsiders were buried along the frankincense trail from which an eastward departure led to the only fertile area on the Southern Arabian coast.
Such interlocking complex parallels are wholly unlike the homophonic coincidences we find in Holley’s map.
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