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orion-list 63 BCE response (Pt 2)
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S. Goranson wrote:
> Paleography, though hardly flawless, seems to me against the
See my article in Kapera. It will not do to say Cross was in
principle correct except he overstated the precision sometimes.
In principle there are problems with the conventional
sequencing system of Qumran hands.
> Doudna's critique of F.M. Cross offers an alternative--one
> generation production--which appears to me less probable,
> and text-critically.
I do propose the largest number of text copies were copied at
the late end generation, but I have always made clear that a
"tail" of older-dated texts stretches back in one direction from
that late end to an unknown extent, perhaps a century or more.
Furthermore, the critique of Cross's system as a valid basis for
knowing the existence of post-63 BCE text activity is not
dependent on offering a more accurate pinpoint set of datings as
an alternative. That is a misunderstanding of the issues, although
it is a persistent type of logical fallacy. Finally, the alternatives are
not exactly comparable, for I do not claim the "single generation"
texts are so dated on palaeographic grounds, whereas Cross does
claim his three-century spread of pinpoint-precision datings are
dated exclusively on palaoegraphic criteria. These distinctions are
essential for clear thinking on these issues.
> Also, that critique wrongly characterized the
> archaeological publication on Gezer, which a casual reader might suppose
> the essay's clearest dispute with Cross.
I speculate that Goranson means I failed to make clear that Dever's
late dating of the Gezer Boundary Stones, which was itself derived
by Dever from Cross's palaeographic assessment, has been cited in
recent reference works and articles and perhaps my be statistically
the most "common" date now (by that criteria). I've changed the
wording on this point for the Kapera article, but apart from that I
stand by my analysis. Also I request in the future that specifics be
given rather than unspecified generalities such as above when making
charges of this nature. A person such as me should not have to
speculate or go through 2-3 exchanges asking Goranson what he
means when he makes statements like this. Also, as a minor factual
item the Gezer Boundary Stones do not play more than a minor role
in my palaeographic discussion. A casual reader who thinks my
analysis stands or falls on the Gezer Boundary Stones would be missing
most of the point of my discussion. See the article in Kapera.
[I see after writing this another post from Goranson confirming
that my speculation as to what he meant was correct.
Request next time that goes in with the original post or else
wait on making the charge at all.]
> Archaeology, to my knowledge, does not indicate a 63 BCE end of
> habitation at Qumran.
An article by Magness all but made the point clear, even though
Magness drew the opposite conclusion and no one picked
up on the significance of Magness's underlying data. See my
discussion in Kapera.
> A long abandonment of Qumran in late first century
> BCE is quite improbable, to the best of my knowledge.
The data in the article by Magness discussed in my Kapera article
makes habitation at Qumran in the second half of the 1st
century BCE very questionable, and indeed a lengthy abandonment
> Also, J. Magness, on
> orion, noted that the jar type associated with scrolls is not attested
> earlier than Herod the Great.
See my discussion in Kapera.
> Greg, I have found many of your posts to orion quite helpful, and
> the result of good research. But the 63 BCE proposal, as far as I can see,
> is gone. There are, in my opinion, more constructive matters for us to
> focus on.
My lengthy paper is due to appear in Kapera in the next several
weeks and has much that has not been mentioned on orion.
You are free to consider it "gone", sight unseen, but I am not
through focusing on 63 BCE, and therefore decline your indicated
direction for the inclusive "us".
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