Date: October 04, 2011 05:50PM
I was playing around with the new Google Ngram Viewer. I decided to search for the term "Tribes of Israel" and got some interesting results.
The phrase "Tribes of Israel" started an upward trend in 1795 and peaked in 1810 (when Joseph Smith was 5 years old). It then started another upwards trend around 1830, no doubt because of Joseph Smith. Obviously, this term was the subject of quite a bit of writing around the beginning of the 19th century by people other than Joseph Smith. If a book about the lost tribes of Israel was an original idea then you would expect little or no activity before that idea. The fact that it was written about before Joseph Smith, and especially as a child, shows that he's a fraud. If it was his original idea then I would expect the graph to look more like the one for "Calculator".http://ngrams.googlelabs.com/ngrams/graph?content=Tribes+of+Israel&year_start=1790&year_end=1850&corpus=0&smoothing=3
Another interesting search term is "Moroni":http://ngrams.googlelabs.com/ngrams/graph?content=Moroni&year_start=1790&year_end=1850&corpus=0&smoothing=3