Dating the volcanic eruption at thera
Dating the volcanic eruption at thera - writing on line dating
They noted a high acidity signal at 1644BC and suggested a 1645BC eruption with an estimated error limit of 20 years. Baillie published results from a study of Northern Irish bog oak rings where samples were examined from a long established chronology.Dendrochronology has also produced interesting results. In Irish bogs volcanic activity results in extremely narrow bands of rings which can continue for some years after the event.
(Manning, 2002, p.569, 742) The revised dates for the eruption have major consequences for relations between Egypt and the Aegean civilisation of the Late Bronze Age. Rutter of Dartmouth College said, "The issue of which direction artistic and other cultural influences was travelling may change significantly".Radiocarbon dating of material from the volcanic destruction layer itself can provide some evidence for the date of the eruption, but because of the shape of the calibration curve for the relevant period, the value of such dates relies on there being no biases in the data sets.However, by dating the material from phases earlier and later than the eruption, some of the problems of the calibration data set can be circumvented and the chronology for the region can be resolved with more certainty.The eruption of the volcano at Thera (Santorini) in the Aegean Sea undoubtedly had a profound influence on the civilizations of the surrounding region.The date of the eruption has been a subject of much controversy because it must be linked into the established and intricate archaeological phasings of both the prehistoric Aegean and the wider east Mediterranean.The eruption caused ash and pumice to spread across the eastern Mediterranean, created frosts around the globe and tsunamis which hit the shores of the island of Crete, some 100 kilometres to the south, and completely buried the Theran town of Akrotiri.
The dating of the Theran eruption has far reaching archaeological implications and has produced much debate since Professor Marinatos’s paper of 1939 titled "The volcanic destruction of Minoan Crete".Here the start of the cultural phases of Crete termed Late Minoan IA and IB (LMIA, LMIB) are put at c. These procedures produce dates which place the eruption from between 100 and 150 years earlier.(Balter, p.508) The first serious attempt to apply radiocarbon dating to dating the eruption took place in the 1970s.This suggests either a defect in the conventional links to Egyptian chronologies in the mid-second millennium BC or a problem with the chronology itself.The Egyptian chronology is considered relatively strong for the 14 Century.With this in mind relative chronologies have been able to be constructed despite the controversy over absolute dates.