But no. In a major scientific event in 2003 that even most educated Westerners don’t know about, the species was brought back to life by a team of Spanish and French scientists. A skin scraping from the last surviving mountain goat’s ear was stored in liquid nitrogen. The nucleus of one of the cells was transferred into an egg of a domestic goat and implanted into a domestic goat surrogate mother. A Pyrenean ibex mountain goat—previously extinct—was brought back to life and born five months later. Although the baby goat did not live long, it was the first animal in history to be resurrected from extinction.

Cloning, in a sense, brings an organism back from the dead. Dolly the sheep is well known, but less well known is that more than twenty types of animals have been successfully cloned at this point, including cat, dog, horse, pig, rabbit, water buffalo, and monkey.

The Ten Plagues

Smallpox. Diphtheria. Rheumatic fever. Bubonic plague. Polio. Measles. Scurvy. Tuberculosis. Death from childbirth. Infant mortality.

I recommend that the recitation of the Ten Plagues during Passover seders be changed to this new list, as a truer modern example of natural horrors and what we can be thankful to scientific human progress for eliminating or abating.