ArchaeologicalDatingMethods. archaeological dating methods 1.relative dating (aka...
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ArchaeologicalDatingMethodsarchaeological dating methodsrelative dating (aka older/younger dating)chronometric dating(aka absolute dating)2
Relative and Chronometric DatingUnderstanding Humans, 10th Ed., p. 189.3Understanding Humans, 10th Ed., p. 188.
REMEMBER: relativemethodstell you whether something isolder / younger / the same age4methods
Understanding Humans, 10th Ed., p. 188.REMEMBER: chronometricmethodsyield a date often scaled in calendar years+/- a number of years (there is a margin of error in every technique)5Stratigraphythe sequence of geological strata, or layers, formed by materials deposited by water or wind
-Law of association -Law of superposition
Otero, S. (2004) Social and Behavioural Science Lecture Notes (2014). El Camino College, Torrance, California7Main gorge at Olduvai. Note geological beds.
Understanding Humans, 10th Ed., p. 197.8Hoebel, Anthropology: The Study of Man and Archaeology, 4th Ed., p. 153.Olduvai Gorge, Kenya.
Bed INote how stratigraphy is used to date stone tools9archaeological dating methodsrelative datingchronometric dating (aka absolute dating)provides estimates in actual numbers of years (sometimes +/-)10
Relative and Chronometric DatingUnderstanding Humans, 10th Ed., p. 189.11chronometric dating (aka absolute dating)determining the actual age of geological deposits (and the fossils in them) by examining the chemical composition of rock fragments and organic remains containing radioactive substances such as uranium 238, and C 14, which decays at a known rate. It is a destructive method. 12Direct determination of age determined through laboratory analysis
Here are three examples you need to know:C14 dating of organic samplesDendrochronology (tree ring patterns)Molecular clocks (slight genetic markers that change at a known rate)13
Relative and Chronometric DatingUnderstanding Humans, 10th Ed., p. 189.14
Technician in a radiocarbon dating laboratory.Understanding Humans, 10th Ed., p. 194.15
Dont stress out; I will NEVER ask you to explain how it works
Method was developed in the 1940s by Willard Libby and a team of scientists at the University of Chicago.
Very powerful in dating artifacts and geological events up to about 50,000 years ago.
16So, if relative dating techniques do not give you a specific age and chronometric dates give you a date range, how do archaeologists choose which dating technique to use?