Christianity before Christ
In his book The World’s Sixteen Crucified Saviors, American writer Kersey Graves shows that many demigods all over the world, share similar stories, traits or quotes with Jesus. The similarity between the story of Christ and his many predecessors gave rise to what is now called the Christ myth theory. This theory holds the view that the story of Jesus is either a piece of mythology, or, if Christ really existed, he had probably nothing to do with the founding of Christianity.
Historical Christ researcher David Strauss and Godfrey Higgins with his Anacalypsis (1836), arguing that the Hindus, Jews and Greeks in essence had the same myths, which were corrupted by Christians, were its pioneers. After Higgins, the Christ myth theory culminates in Kersey Graves, and in 1875 he publishes this book, destined to become the most influential and controversial work in this line of thought, up to this day. Many have been inspired (and annoyed) by his flaming argumentation and exhaustive detection of biblical flaws and errors. Among the authors he influenced was bestseller author Dan Brown, who apparently used The World’s Sixteen Crucified Saviors as a source, investing Mithra, while writing The Da Vinci Code. While one must critically put Kersey Graves in the historical context of his own time, as well as the validity of his claims, The World’s Sixteen Crucified Saviors remains an explosive work.