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The team also undertook research on environmental samples from Oxford University Herbaria and found minor differences in radiocarbon levels in the region - important information for future dating studies.
Professor Christopher Ramsey said: ‘For the first time, radiocarbon dating has become precise enough to constrain the history of ancient Egypt to very specific dates.
An international research team has mapped out an accurate chronology of the kings of ancient Egypt using a radiocarbon analysis of short-lived plant remains from the region.
The research sheds light on one of the most important periods of Egyptian history documenting the various rulers of Egypt’s Old, Middle and New Kingdoms.
The study also suggests that the start of the New Kingdom might be pushed back slightly to between 15 BC.
The study has implications for the whole region as the Egyptian chronology anchors the timing of historical events in neighbouring areas tied to the reign of particular Egyptian kings.
Oxford student Michael Dee combined the dates for the seeds, baskets, textiles, plant stems and fruit, which were all directly associated with the reigns of particular ancient Egyptian kings, with historical information about the order and length of each ruler to create the full chronology.Previously assigned dates were used to narrow the focus of each radiocarbon test, for even if all the assumptions underlying interpretation of radiocarbon tests were verifiably accurate, results are not exact.9 The Royal Tombs at Abydos are associated with Egypt’s First Dynasty.Many bits of organic material carbon-dated in the latest study of Egypt’s First Dynasty originally came from these tombs.The investigators did radiocarbon testing on a few freshly excavated seeds from the Gaza Strip but primarily tested museum samples.“A lot of the stuff is not is [sic] particularly beautiful,” Dee said.