Dating fabric

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As explained below, the radiocarbon date tells us when the organism was alive (not when the material was used).

This fact should always be remembered when using radiocarbon dates.

The dating process is always designed to try to extract the carbon from a sample which is most representative of the original organism.

In general it is always better to date a properly identified single entity (such as a cereal grain or an identified bone) rather than a mixture of unidentified organic remains.

Theme: Oldest quilt in your collection Read Cinda's comments on the May 18, 2004 meeting here.

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Hazel and/or Bunnie present a brief synopsis of the theme at the beginning of each meeting based on reading she has done since the last gathering, and then anyone else who wants to add something jumps in.All animals in the food chain, including carnivores, get their carbon indirectly from plant material, even if it is by eating animals which themselves eat plants.The net effect of this is that all living organisms have the same radiocarbon to stable carbon ratio as the atmosphere.Further complications arise when the carbon in a sample has not taken a straightforward route from the atmosphere to the organism and thence to the measured sample.Coptic textiles had many uses during Egypt's Christian period, including bed sheets and covers, towels, napkins, tablecloths and carrying sacks, while in churches and other public buildings, these decorative fabrics were used for curtains and hangings.

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