Carbon 14 dating dead sea scrolls
At this stage Eisenman commented to me how few texts had been radiocarbon dated when, as he told me then, the Israel Antiquities Authority officials should have decided to radiocarbon date all of the Qumran texts.
When I returned to Ithaca, New York, with radiocarbon dating on my mind I composed a letter to Biblical Archaeology Review, not criticizing the Zurich datings but urging more datings and, thinking to help things along, offering to pay for a radiocarbon dating of a text myself.
Robert Eisenman and Philip Davies had written the director of the Israel Antiquities Authority, Amir Drori, urging the new method, AMS radiocarbon dating, be used to date the Dead Sea Scrolls.
In this way, at Eisenman’s invitation, I became the first student in the world to view photographs of the previously unpublished Dead Sea Scrolls now made public. Of all the disappointments I have experienced in Qumran Studies—and there have been many—and mistakes I made in the struggle to free the Scrolls, this turned out perhaps to be one of the most painful and ill-considered . .” -- Robert Eisenman (The New Testament Code , p.During a dark time at Cornell Eisenman was there for me, making phone calls to colleagues at the University of Chicago helping to facilitate a transfer there.The Zurich radiocarbon datings involved the use of AMS (“Accelerator Mass Spectrometry”), a method of radiocarbon dating which required only small sample sizes.Before the advent of AMS the amount of material that was necessary to obtain an adequate amount of carbon made radiocarbon dating of texts impracticable.