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Re: 4Q provenance

> Dear Greg, I do not know the answer to your questions about the Allegro
> microfiche photos labeled forgery or your question concerning the 4Q
> texts listed as Herodian period contracts. I can note that Jonas
> Greenfield also (orally) expressed doubts that everything labeled now
> as 4Q should be so labeled. Sadly, I don't know what he based that on.
>     I also am interested in the question whether anyone can cite
> a case where Kando sold manuscripts or other items identified as being
> from Qumran which turned out not to be.
> Best wishes,
> Stephen Goranson   Durham and Wilmington, NC

Well . . . in the 1995 Tucson radiocarbon tests there was a medieval
date on an item which Kando had sold as from Qumran Cave 2.  
This was not a text but an embroidered linen item (not a scroll-
wrapping linen) that looked like medieval linen from Wadi Muraba'at.
The radiocarbon date on this linen was c. 1200-1350 CE.  I 
recall seeing items in the Brill microfiche edition from a Cave 2 
from one of the Bar Kochva caves which looked like the linen item in 
question, and wondered if someone had 
gotten "Cave 2" right but mistaken which Cave 2.  But if there was
no mistake (in the representation that this linen was from
Qumran cave 2) this would raise as possibilities either that
there was a medieval intrusion into Qumran Cave 2 or 
that this is an instance of including
a non-Qumran item into the Qumran materials, i.e. padding
the inventory as long as someone was buying.   

There is one more possibility and that is that
Kando and the Bedouin were both innocent but that a mistake
happened after materials arrived at the Rockefeller Museum.
Strugnell comments on the precautions taken on this point:

    "It should be observed _en passant_ that we were very
    careful not to confuse material identified to us as
    coming from different sites in the Judean Desert.  
    From the time of arrival of the fragments in the
    museum we kept the various groups separate, never
    working on them in the same room.   In those
    unbureaucratic days the fragments from Murabba'at
    or from the minor caves at Qumran could be carried
    without objection off to the Ecole Biblique where
    their editors worked on them each in his room.  The
    negatives usually, the plates and the photographer's
    register always, preserve the necessary indications
    of provenance correctly.
        Did the Ta'amireh or their middlemen ever mix
    material from two caves, before it reached us?  I 
    have no clear example of this happening, and among
    such a vast number of fragments I can point to no
    clear example or even plausible cases of joins
    to be made between fragments said by the excavators
    to have come from different caves.  In sum, the
    ascriptions of fragments to caves should be treated
    as very reliable.  At the most one might still have
    doubts on the provenance of two or so "4Q" fragments,
    so ascribed by the excavators, but which one might,
    on palaeographical grounds, want to date just beyond
    the very end of the Qumran sequence of hands...."
    (J. Strugnell, in "On the History of the Photographing
    of the Discoveries", pp. 123-134 at 124, _The Dead Sea
    Scrolls on Microfiche Companion Volume_, 1993)
Greg Doudna