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Dating Techniques
Dating techniques

Situating things in time and space is critical for archaeology and paleoanthropology. Knowing when something happened helps us to understand how humans and cultures evolved. From John Lightfoot and Bishop James Ussher, who calculated the age of the earth using genealogies in the Bible, to Willard Libby, who developed radiocarbon dating and beyond, researchers have been working to establish a chronology of the past.

Absolute, or chronometric, dating techniques provide us with measurable dates-day, year, millennia, for example. Relative techniques provide a basic order to material recovered from a site; they give us an idea of its age-how old something is in comparison to something else. This chapter will cover a few of the techniques from each category. It is not meant to ...

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