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How i built a dating empire

The number of dates from the two projects was only large enough to allow for statistical comparisons for the pyramids of Djoser, Khufu, Khafre, and Menkaure. First, there are significant discrepancies between the 19 dates for Khufu and Khafre, but not for Djoser and Menkaure.

It is likely that, by the pyramid age, the Egyptians had been intensively exploiting wood for fuel for a long time.

Because of the scarcity and expense of wood, the Egyptians would reuse pieces of wood as much as possible.

We thought that it was unlikely that the pyramid builders consistently used centuries-old wood as fuel in preparing mortar.

Eight calibrated dates on straw from the pyramid of Senwosret II (1897-1878 BC) ranged from 103 years older to 78 years younger than the historical dates for his reign.

Some of this recycled wood was burned, for example, in mortar preparation.

If a piece of wood was already centuries old when it was burned, radiocarbon dates of the resulting charcoal would be centuries older than the mortar for which it was burned.

Four of the Senwosret II dates were only off by 30, 24, 14, and three years.