Absolute dating of the late bronze to iron age transition and the appearance of philistine culture in Qubur el-Walaydah, southern Levant

Yotam Asscher, Gunnar Lehmann, Steven A. Rosen, Steve Weiner, Elisabetta Boaretto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations

Abstract

The Late Bronze Age to the Iron Age transition involves profound cultural and political changes in the southern Levant. The transition is dated to the 12th century BC, based on archaeological artifacts and historical documents. A more precise absolute date for this transition for the southern Levant based on radiocarbon is diffcult since the14C calibration curve reduces precision signifcantly due to wiggles that form an approximately 200-yr-long plateau. This article analyzes14C samples from the Late Bronze Age to the Iron Age transition at Qubur el-Walaydah. To increase the resolution of14C dates within the plateau,14C samples were collected only from well-defned multilayered contexts.14C dates from 11 contexts were obtained and these were analyzed using a Bayesian model that incorporated the stratigraphic information. Using this integra-tive approach we date the Late Bronze Age III levels at Qubur el-Walydah, containing the initial phase of locally produced Philistine pottery between 1185–1140 BC, and the Late Bronze to Iron Age transition between 1140–1095 BC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-97
Number of pages21
JournalRadiocarbon
Volume57
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2015

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