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RE: orion 1st BCE generation

We all agree, if I may presume to say so, that more C14 data would be
welcomed. And I add that Greg Doudna's chapter in _The DSS After Fifty
Years_ indeed provides much useful information, as well as some unfounded
speculation. From what I have read, Greg Doudna's current version of a
"hypothesis" is not sufficiently defined to be subject of serious
statistical analysis. This "hypothesis" has by now been described in
various, and contradictory, ways: with a c. 63 BCE end date, with a c. 55
BCE end date, etc. As Russell Gmirkin suggested, in his "defense" of this
as a "hypothesis" while also attacking it, reasonably raising the issue of
other archaeological data (the illustration of the grave was apt; less
relevant was the skins observation, since skins are easily movable)--this
"hypothesis" has been expressed also in strong and weak forms. E.g., page
463 (facing the page with figure 3 which does not indicate one generation),
"most if not all of the radiocarbon dates" seem to him to reflect this
generation; "...almost all scribal copies of Qumran texts come from a
single generation." "Although I call it a hypothesis, in fact I think it is
true" (9 Dec).
	Finally, after repeated requests, GD took a step toward defining
how long he means by "one generation"-- "c. half century or so." (16 Dec)
This still lacks definite numbers, and a start and end date, but it is
closer to a defined "hypothesis." The OED defines a generation as "the
generation between the birth of the parents and that of their children,
usually computed at thirty years, or three generations to a century." In
the Bible, 30 or 40 years and sometimes longer. So GD proposes now a long
	But is "mid first century BCE" an indication of this generation's
end or its mid-point? That now is a circa 25 year difference. If the
latter, this generation goes well into the reign of Herod the Great, even
though GD's skepticism toward "Herodian" hands has played a role in various
presentations of various versions of this "hypothesis." Also, it would
reasonably be called a different generation than the one ending in c.
63--where this movable generation started. It is still an option to define
start and end years. Then the new data can be used to help test a defined
hypothesis. Of course, a strictly defined hypothesis could already be
properly compared to present data. Impressionistic notions cannot.
	Why exclude a possible relative decline of the Essene movement
before c. 68 AD? What political event now is your candidate for first
century BCE deposit?
	Of course another test of 4QpPs would be welcomed (even though a
text with present tense can, of course, be copied). Another of the
pesharim, ideally, might be included. Naturally, we all have texts we wold
like to see tested. Perhaps Russell Gmirkin would welcome tests on War
Scroll copies. I, for one, have not yet understood how his proposed War
Scroll/Maccabee war mix fits the archaeological context of an Essene
settlement where, shall we say, no Hanukkah celebration was likely.

Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas, and good other-calendar wishes too,
Stephen Goranson
fax 919 660 3530