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The Thera olive branch, Akrotiri (Thera) and Palaikastro (Crete): comparing radiocarbon results of the Santorini eruption

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 January 2015

Hendrik J. Bruins
Affiliation:
Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Sede Boqer Campus, 84990, Israel (Email: hjbruins@bgu.ac.il)
Johannes van der Plicht
Affiliation:
Centre for Isotope Research, University of Groningen, Nijenborgh 4, 9747 AG, Groningen, The Netherlands Faculty of Archaeology, Leiden University, Reuvensplaats 3, 2311 BE, Leiden, The Netherlands

Abstract

An olive branch is traditionally a symbol of peace, but not necessarily in the context of chronological problems in the Eastern Mediterranean region and the Near East during the second millennium BC. Cherubini et al. (above) strongly attack the radiocarbon dating by Friedrich et al. (2006) of an ancient olive branch, buried by volcanic tephra during the Minoan Santorini eruption. The criticism stems from their investigation of growth rings in modern olive trees on Santorini. The authors attempt with additional arguments, beyond their botanical investigation, to defend the traditional low chronology of the Santorini eruption of around 1500 BC. However, they ignore other crucial publications with radiocarbon dates concerning the Santorini eruption. In this response, we evaluate and negate their main arguments, and present our own conclusions.

Type
Debate
Copyright
Copyright © Antiquity Publications Ltd. 2014

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References

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The Thera olive branch, Akrotiri (Thera) and Palaikastro (Crete): comparing radiocarbon results of the Santorini eruption
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