Start Dating the volcanic eruption at thera

Dating the volcanic eruption at thera

For most of the twentieth century, archaeologists placed it at approximately 1500 BC, but this date appeared to be too young as radiocarbon dating analysis of an olive tree buried beneath a lava flow from the volcano indicate that the eruption occurred between 1627 BC and 1600 BC with a 95% degree of probability.

One very strong piece of evidence is an olive tree that was buried alive at Akrotiri. So, it appears, Thera erupted far too soon to account for either the Exodus or the death of Minoan culture.

However, after more thorough field examinations, this theory has lost credibility, as it has been determined that no more than 5 mm (0.20 in) of ash fell anywhere on Crete.

Other theories have been proposed based on archaeological evidence found on Crete indicating that a tsunami, likely associated with the eruption, impacted the coastal areas of Crete and may have severely devastated the Minoan coastal settlements.

There are no clear ancient records of the eruption; the eruption seems to have inspired certain Greek myths, may have caused turmoil in Egypt, and may be alluded to in a Chinese chronicle.