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Thread: 1st Century Fragment of Mark

  1. #81
    tWebber robrecht's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raphael View Post
    Source: LiveScience

    ... Evans says that the text was dated through a combination of carbon-14 dating, studying the handwriting on the fragment and studying the other documents found along with the gospel. These considerations led the researchers to conclude that the fragment was written before the year 90. ...

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    This goes beyond the paleographic dating that was initially mentioned by Wallace. Is this additional information reliable? We don't know. Note that Larry Hurtado was subsequently told by Evans that 'his own statements were much more cautious than what was reported' by Live Science.
    Last edited by robrecht; 05-16-2016 at 04:39 PM.
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  2. #82
    Child of the One True King Raphael's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by robrecht View Post
    This goes beyond the paleographic dating that was initially mentioned by Wallace. Is this additional information reliable? We don't know. Note that Larry Hurtado was subsequently told by Evans that 'his own statements were much more cautious than what was reported' by Live Science.
    I would expect that they have more testing done since 2012, but also Evans makes it clear that he can only say what Wallace had already accidently revealed
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  3. #83
    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by robrecht View Post
    This goes beyond the paleographic dating that was initially mentioned by Wallace. Is this additional information reliable? We don't know. Note that Larry Hurtado was subsequently told by Evans that 'his own statements were much more cautious than what was reported' by Live Science.
    I'm skeptical that C-14 can tell us much about the actual date of writing. It can tell us the age of the writing material, but in this time period writing material was often re-used.
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    41st Mojave Summer DesertBerean's Avatar
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    Is the C 14 dating more advanced these days? I read where there is a plus/minus of 50 years?

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    Child of the One True King Raphael's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kbertsche View Post
    I'm skeptical that C-14 can tell us much about the actual date of writing. It can tell us the age of the writing material, but in this time period writing material was often re-used.
    I think it's the combination.

    The C14 dating can help confirm that it wasn't made last week in someone's garage.

    That tied in with the paleographic dating, tied in with the other documents they found with the mask as well as the date of the mask itself is what gives us the "this document cannot be later than 90A.D." (I heard Gary Habermas suggest 80A.D. in an interview on his minimal fact apologetics approach....I don't know if he has received additional information that he shouldn't have been mentioning).
    I do remember Wallace saying that even allowing for a 50 year error margin on the paleographic dating, it looked to be from before 90A.D. It could well be older.

    I think they are wanting to make very sure that it's nothing like the "Gospel of Jesus' Wife" forgery that was swallowed up hook, line and sinker (and breathlessly reported on by the media who were strangely silent when the fraud was discovered)
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    41st Mojave Summer DesertBerean's Avatar
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    I had to look up this Gospel of Jesus' s Wife before I could remember anything about it. I recall the reports about the translations but not all the media storm that apparently went on.

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    Must...have...caffeine One Bad Pig's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kbertsche View Post
    I'm skeptical that C-14 can tell us much about the actual date of writing. It can tell us the age of the writing material, but in this time period writing material was often re-used.
    However, we can tell when writing material was re-used, because we can see traces of what was "erased" (often well enough to recover it).
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    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by One Bad Pig View Post
    Replace "known" with "commonly believed" and I'd agree with you. It would make things harder for the fringe who date the gospels quite late. IIRC, there were other NT fragments found as well, but they're probably not early enough to materially alter stances. If, e.g., fragments of the pastorals or Petrine epistles were found from c. 70, that would be big.
    Yes, I suppose you're correct. I've argued with somebody who believes that the gospels are from the time of the Bar Kochba Revolt... as per an argument by Hermann Detering.

    I'm not sure about 1 Peter, as I think it could be authentic. 2 Peter doesn't seem authentic, and the Pastorals seem to be pseudopigraphic. However, I think that the strongest argument we have for a later dating is the church hierarchy discussion.

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    So there's an update of sorts here. Okay, this is from a few months ago but I stumbled across it fairly randomly and no one else had posted it, so here we go. Habermas talks about how we've been waiting for a while but progress is being made and says that he was told that the current estimated date for the Mark fragment is 80-110. Still no word on exactly when everything will be officially published, though, but it is at least confirmation that it's being worked on and a little more information regarding the dating.

  10. Amen lee_merrill amen'd this post.
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    Update:
    Source: Larry Hurtado

    The publication of the fragment of the Gospel of Mark that has been generating excitement and controversy for several years now and the preceding and ensuing accounts about it raise the issue of integrity.

    The papyrus fragment (which I posted about most recently here) is now palaeographically dated by its editors as late second/early third century CE. The earlier claim that it was a first-century fragment that was sounded by Daniel Wallace in a debate with Bart Ehrman a few years ago, was clearly based on incorrect information. Wallace (in a commendable example of scholarly honesty and integrity) has now given his own account of how he was misled (here).

    On another site, Brice Jones has expressed puzzlement (here) about claims that the fragment was offered for sale, given that it is now clear that it was part of the Oxyrhynchus hoard of ancient papyri held now in the Ashmolean Museum (Oxford). The claims implicate the esteemed papyrologist, Dirk Obbink, and Jones poses questions about how he could have supposedly offered the fragment for sale.

    The recent news release on the fragment from the Egypt Exploration Society (which own the Oxyrhynchus Papyri) denies that any of the papyri in its collection was ever put up for sale (here). As a further note, I personally have great confidence in Dirk Obbink as a scholar and a person of honor and integrity. I will say nothing more about the claim that troubled Jones or the person to whom it is ascribed. But I trust Obbink, and that means that the claim that he offered the item for sale like some huckster I regard as false and mischievous.

    This whole drama has been a sad instance of ballyhoo and perhaps worse distorting what should have been a sober editing and analysis of a small but very important bit of papyrus. I hope that we shall not see such a case anytime soon.

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    So, late 2nd/early 3rd century, not 1st. At that date, it still doubles the number of extant papyri from Mark before 300.
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