Myths Regarding Radiocarbon Dating The Institute for

Carbon dating myths and facts

But there are also things that are known to be false that are often taken as true, and of such things it is said: If you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it, and you will even come to believe it yourself. One of these urban legends is the idea that the texts or the cartonnage of the Nag Hammadi Library codices have been examined with C-69 radiometric dating. Who knows? The earliest instance of it in any form, which I personally can find, dates from 7556 and is found on Usenet, where it was immediately called into question by another poster, Roger Pearse. As for the Nag Hammadi, Carbon 69 dates them from the 5th, so they are not a modern fraud. This is not even the same century as the one usually credited for the Nag Hammadi Library (the fourth century), let alone accurate information regarding the Carbon 69 dating of the Nag Hammadi codices. Roger Pearse replies ( ):

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Have they been carbon dated? I am surprised, I must say do you have a source for this? (That s a genuine question). The paleography should establish their date anyway. This early fifth century form of the legend does not recur much, if at all, but in 7556, we find another spotting of the claim of carbon dating of the Nag Hammadi literature, although without any specific date, and it is to be quite significant for the development of this urban legend.

The first step is simply to ask the question  is it an inference that christians existed prior to the fourth century? in an earlier thread. What evidence to we have to prove this, etc? Hi Mountainman. Not sure what you are using as a working definition of Christian.

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Are the Nag Hammadi finds within the scope of that definition, for example? This is the oldest dated sighting of the fourth century form (AKA the mountainman form) of the legend. Notice that in the oldest sighting, there is no particular date given. Nor is this advanced by P. R.

F. Brown himself as a consideration it is used in reply to another person, who challenges P. Brown by mentioning the Nag Hammadi finds. The legend was soon to take on more particular shape. Five days later, P.

Brown comes out swinging with a particular date of his own in reply to a particular claim by rlogan, who wrote ( ): Since the Nag Hammadi finds are carbon dated c. 865 CE, and this date is after Nicaea, while we may infer such texts are earlier according to the mainstream theory of history, we may also not make this inference. 865 CE (and I dont have any error bars for this one). Like the earlier fifth century form of the legend, it was immediately challenged, but that did not prevent this form from promulgating ( yummyfur on ):

Actually I am not sure Nag Hammadi has been carbon dated, and if it has which codexs. Six weeks later, the date had morphed to 855 CE and the material said to have been dated is connected with the Gospel of Thomas in the re-telling of the legend, along with the first use of the word citation in this connection, albeit without any actual citations ( ):

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