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date: 17 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter discusses the principles of radiocarbon dating; sample selection; contamination; calibration; Bayesian mathematics; wiggle-match dating (WMD); and dating wetland archaeology using WMD. Radiocarbon is the most frequently applied tool for dating the prehistoric past. Much research has been undertaken in understanding and removing the effects of contamination in the samples used in the dating process. For wetland sites, there is great potential for obtaining high-resolution dates where dendrochronological dating is problematic for various reasons. Using Bayesian statistical approaches, WMD on suitable samples can utilize the wiggles in the calibration curve to great advantage and determine ages that can be highly precise.

Keywords: dating methods, wetland archaeology, Bayesian mathematics, wiggle-match dating

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