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Re: orion AMS dating

Stephen Goranson wrote:

>         My *point* remains the same with either presentation of the
> data--or,
> more importantly, with the scientific journals' reports of the data
> (which anyone can read in Radiocarbon and 'Atiqot articles; and anyone
> can make a chart combining the results).
>          Whether the precise numbers for the median and the mean are
> 65 or 63
> or so is a small difference. The *point* of my post was: what does
> this
> mean mean? Or, more precisely, what does the range of date
> probabilities
> mean? It means or shows--contrary to what posts by you and others have
> declared--that the Qumran scrolls cannot have been all deposited
> before
> 63 BCE or so. Or to be more precise: the data indicate that the
> chances
> of such a date of deposit are vanishingly small.

    I agree with Stephen on this issue.  The 'Atiqot articles,
particularly `Atiqot
20, 1991 (Bonani, etal), with particular attention to 1QH with a
range of 21 BCE-61 CE, is convincing.  I am still unclear, however, on
archaeological evidence that all the texts were deposited at one time.
It is
conceivable to me that some texts may have been deposited during the
strife of 63 BCE and others deposited at the time of the Jewish War.

    I also seem to recall having read an archaeological report...I wish
I could
remember where...of indications in at least one of the caves that there
may have
been a "shelf" on which scrolls were stored making me wonder whether the

cave of closest proximity to Qumran was the "library" itself rather than
hastily chosen "hiding place."

    Is there any data on the practical period of utility for a
scroll, its useful lifetime?  4Q542 is a puzzle with a calibrated range
in the
4th century BCE but palaeographically dated to the 1st century BCE.  Is
palaeographic data firm?  Could Kohath have been written in the 1st c.
on leather already 250-300 years old?  If, however, the palaeography is
uncertain, would a text written between 388 and 353 BCE still be in use
in the 1st century CE?

Jack Kilmon