They were no doubt expelled or absorbed by the Hittites, but we have the proof of their existence and of the fallacy of the statement that the Semite never crossed the Taurus, in the cuneiform tablets written in their language which have been found near Kaisariyeh and are now being published by various scholars.
While the common Semite wore a short skirt, often with tassels and sometimes with an upper tunic, the more important had an elaborate scarf (extending from waist to knee) wound over the long tunic, or a longer and close-fitting variety coloured blue and red and generally adorned with rich embroidery.
Sumerian in its turn borrowed from Semitic Babylonian, and traces of Semitic influence in some of the earliest Sumerian texts indicate that the Semite was already on the Babylonian border.
At times too a doubt may exist in regard to a name whose bearer was a Semite, whether the signs composing his name represent a phonetic reading or an ideographic compound.
The Semite or savage who sets up a sacred stone or Bethel believes indeed that a divine power or influence enters the stone and dwells in it, and he treats the stone as if it were the god, kisses it, anoints it with oil, feeds the god in it by pouring out over it the blood of victims slain.
Pilgrims visiting Paphos, the original home and temple of Astarte, could of course be in no doubt about which of the heavenly powers inhabited the cone of stone in which she was there held to be immanent; nor was any Semite ever ignorant as to which Baal he stood before.
It is their analogue, and to understand it we must understand them, not forgetting that Paul, as a Semite, and his hearers, as converted pagans, were imbued with the sacrificial ideas of the old world.
During the years 1879 to 1881 the anti-Semite agitation gained considerable importance in Berlin, Breslau and other Prussian cities, and it culminated in the elections of that year, leading in some cases to riots and acts of violence.
The impetus to the purification of the old Semite religion to which the Hebrews for a long time clung in common with their fellows - the various branches of nomadic Arabs - was largely furnished by the remarkable civilization unfolded in the Euphrates valley and in many of the traditions, myths and legends embodied in the Old Testament; traces of direct borrowing from Babylonia may be discerned, while the indirect influences in the domain of the prophetical books, as also in the Psalms and in the so-called "Wisdom Literature," are even more noteworthy.
The sudden rise of the later Babylonian empire under Nebuchadrezzar, the son of Nabopolassar, must have tended to produce so thorough an amalgamation of the Chaldaeans and Babylonians, who had theretofore been considered as two kindred branches of the same original Semite stock, that in the course of time no perceptible differences existed between them.
To the primitive nomadic Semite the presence of the divinity was indicated by springs, shady trees, remarkable rocks and other landmarks; and from this earliest conception grew the theory that a numen might be induced to take up an abode in an artificial heap of stones, or a pillar set upright for the purpose.