Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Lars-Ake
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Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Postby Lars-Ake » 04 Feb 2009, 13:03

Related to my thoughts about the Hollstein data, I found this:

http://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/docs/00 ... CE2005.pdf

Technically and statistically, I do not understand exactly what the authors have done except for putting a lot of measurments together to form proper reference curves.

Though here are a few citations of interest:

"The material comes from 9 laboratories based in France, Belgium, Switzerland and Germany.."

"The oldest ring dates back to 546 BC, the latest ends the system at 1995 AD. The missing years are precisely between 194 AD and 671 AD."

"Finally, thousands of wood chronologies were connected for a 2500 years period except for the late Roman and Merovingian times for which we got some chronologies, still floating though."

Also especially see Figure 5 on page 249 where the authors have plotted a gap approximately between AD170 and AD460 and state that chronologies of that time is "floating"!

There is apparently STILL a severe lack of samples from that time. Otherwise they would not state chronologies of that time as floating but instead indicate them as "correct dated elements but not sufficient global quality for starting extra interpretations".

Of course that could be because of no building activities in the period after the WEST Roman empire had closed down - so too few samples found afterwards.
And no oak trees of that time found in the river valleys because of a long dry period?
Or could it be because Dr. Illig's theory is in some way right? - I am puzzled! :?
/Lars-Ake

terrarius
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Re: Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Postby terrarius » 13 Feb 2009, 16:35

Please let me add a few notes that may be helpful for an understanding of the general confusion within chronology.

Illig:
His Theory mixes two hypotheses
1. There is a discrepancy of some three centuries between our CE (common era) year-count and most dates reported for the Roman Empire (and the reigns with historical links to Rome).
2. Three centuries of the early middle-ages were completely faked.

The first hypothesis may be tested against physical data-sets that can be linked to the reports of history. Of course, these data must not presuppose the validity of the traditional chronology. In addition, they must be free from ad-hoc assumptions. This is not at all trivial (more below) and most attempts to disprove Illig did fail at this point.

The second hypothesis claims 'non-existence'. So there can be no positive evidence for its support. In its consequences, this is a conspiracy-theory.
The analysis of eclipse reports on Babylonian clay tablets and their retrocalculation matching perfectly with todays time base, provides for hard evidence against this idea.
[F. Richard Stephenson: Historical Eclipses and Earth's Rotation, Cambridge University Press, 1997


Thesis versus paradigm:
Even for scientists it is an unusual situation, to deal with a hypothesis questioning a basic belief that always had appeared self-evident.

- Logical circles are inevitable, when the arguments are based on data presupposing the validity of the paradigm. In general the latter will not be stated explicitly within publications. A rare exception can be found in the description of dendrochronological activities at Herculaneum:
Even before measurement began (...), we knew that we would have a tree-ring data set that should show various end dates with A.D. 79 as the latest possible terminus.
P. Kuniholm: Dendrochronological investigations at Herculaneum and Pompeii, 2002 http://dendro.cornell.edu/articles/kuniholm2002

- As the philosopher Imre Lakatos has pointed out, ad-hoc assumptions will be accepted by the science community, to overcome contradictions between observations and a paradigm. Data based on such assumptions, of course, can not be used to test the validity of the paradigm. In fact, most datasets used in chronology show irregularities and need ad-hoc assumptions for understanding.
[more: http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/Anti-thesis.html]

- Communication questioning a paradigma will be inhibited. Disagreement with the established opinion may not promote a professional career. Scientific journals take care, not to loose suscribers.


Hollstein:
The antique section of Hollsteins data had been matched with history data about the Roman culture within the Rhinelands. To reproduce history, Hollstein had to presuppose the traditional view.
M. Baillie has criticized this proceeding, when he discussed the deviations Hollstein's and his own datings of the 'Kirnsulzbach samples'. Of course, Baiilie felt confident that his own dendrochronology, based on uncalibrated 14C measurements, was perfectly accurate and free of further assumptions. [Baillie, M. G. L. (1995): A slice through time. Dendrochronology and precision dating. pp 37ff, 'Kirnsulzbach dispute'.]

In fact, Holstein's data include a duplicated section. This can be seen, when two scans of samples from Trier are superimposed [ http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/img/Hol_TrierMosel5.gif]: For comparison, the data from the Amphitheatre were shifted by 305 years against the data from the Roman bridges. This produces an exceedingly high GL-value of 73% between Bridge II and Amphitheatre, i.e. a match indicating tree growth within a close vicinity (between Bridge I and II the GL is 63%). Another mismatch of -6 years has been found near the year 800. Characteristic are the narrow rings indicating bad growth conditions. Apparently, these rings do match with peaks of volcanic sulphate, recorded within the GISP2 ice core. [ http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/img/Hol_800_offset6.gif].

The conclusion: Hollstein's Roman records (that match with the data of Becker and of the Roman records) date 299 years too early.

Lars-Ake
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Re: Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Postby Lars-Ake » 13 Feb 2009, 18:46

terrarius wrote:......
In fact, Holstein's data include a duplicated section. This can be seen, when two scans of samples from Trier are superimposed [ http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/img/Hol_TrierMosel5.gif]: For comparison, the data from the Amphitheatre were shifted by 305 years against the data from the Roman bridges. This produces an exceedingly high GL-value of 73% between Bridge II and Amphitheatre, i.e. a match indicating tree growth within a close vicinity (between Bridge I and II the GL is 63%). Another mismatch of -6 years has been found near the year 800. Characteristic are the narrow rings indicating bad growth conditions. Apparently, these rings do match with peaks of volcanic sulphate, recorded within the GISP2 ice core. [ http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/img/Hol_800_offset6.gif].

The conclusion: Hollstein's Roman records (that match with the data of Becker and of the Roman records) date 299 years too early.

Hans!
Please, take a sincere look at my analysis of the Hollstein data at http://www.cybis.se/forfun/dendro/hollstein!
I've spent quite a lot of time on that analysis and it is very carefully done. It shows that if - and only if - Hollstein did not make any severe mistakes when he created his mean value curves - especially that of the Kölner Reinbrucke ending at AD336, then there should be 207 years removed from our current chronology. I've found no other shift like that mentioned by you above.

Relying solely on GL values (GLK, Gleichläufigkeit) is not a useful methodology within dendrochronology. At best a very high GLK value may support results of other crossdating methods. Though freestanding GLK values are seldom of any value.

You contacted me in September about your ideas. I then made a special analysis of the relations between the TRMB32 and TRAM members of the Hollstein collection.
I found that you were right on the high GLK values, though you did not handle the full story as seen from a section of my email below:
I have only analysed your crossdating between the Trier Moselbrücke (Römerbrücke), 315-183 (named TRMB32 in my Hollstein collection), towards the Trier Amphitheater Arenakeller, 668-442, TRAM
If I select the TRAM as the reference and then run TRMB32 towards that, I get a crossdating result as shown in the enclosed picture Image

If the "207 years theory" is correct the correct match is at offset 146. Your proposal is at offset 48!
The GLK-value for offset 146 is 0.64, for your offset 48 it is 0.58.

Though if I crop the TRMB32 curve to only that segment shown in your diagram, the GLK value rises to 0.70.
[...the resulting report-table showed corr-coeff=0.30 TTest=2.5 GLK=0.70 ...]
So indeed, the curves you show look as matching! - Though you do not show the full length curves!
Measured along the whole curves the matching does not look that good as you imply!

If I run the 146 offset towards the rest of my "creatively created reference curve" (with the Roman time data shifted
207 years towards late time) the correlation coefficient is 0.53 T-value=7.2 GLK=0.75
So that match is actually very good and indeed significant.


I do not think that this GLK-based discussion is very fruitful, so I would appreciate if it will not continue in this forum!

taxelson
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Re: Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Postby taxelson » 14 Feb 2009, 11:41

Please also note that the uncertain years according to Holstein data detected by Lars-Åke are 207 years before approximately 540 AD (i.e aprox. the years 333-540 AD) which is an other period than Illig's "Phantom time" (7'th to 9'th cent AD). His needs of exactly 297 years after AD 590, according to solar eclipse is not supported either. So the Holstein data problem described on Cybis.se is IMHO unrelated to, and does not support, the Phantom time hypothesis by Illig at all. The Illig's "Phantom time" is indeed covered in a convincing way by available data, connectible to present time.

terrarius
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Re: Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Postby terrarius » 14 Feb 2009, 11:43

Hello Lars-Ake,
I'm sorry to admit, that I never received your email (spam filter? S... happens :mrgreen:).

Of course, a thorough correlation of ring-widt patterns provides better quantitative data than GLK. The only advantage of the latter is that it may be verified by everybody without more or less intransparent tools. I'd be happy if I had a better data base to analyse the Hollstein data and I feel, your software can do this job.

Another approach to match Hollstein are the ultra-narrow rings, indicating extremely poor growth conditions. H's mean values show an absolute minimum for the year 173. With an offset of 299 years, we find an outburst of volcanic sulphate within the GISP2 ice-core (ref. to figs 3 and 4 in http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/Texte_H-E ... Natwi.html).

Fig. 1 of said article shows a graph of the IntCal04 dataset, running fairly linear for millennia but with an offset against the 14C of living oaks. Interesting to note: Some 2000 dendro-years back, wood shows an age of 2000 'radiocarbon-years'. On the long run, the length of the RC-yr appears to deviate by some 15% from the solar year.
Presuming that H's data comprise 3 surplus centuries and that the length of the RC-yr has remainded faily constant, we should expect the deviation of some 70 yrs for the Kirnsulzbach samples that were actually found by Baillie.

It's so trivial: Dendrochronology and Radiocarbon are extremely valuable tools, when they are not subjected to a sacrosanct paradigm.

Ice core dating can provide independent synchronisation. Annual deposits of ice-cores are fairly save from misinterpretation (however, when the drill breaks the core, the ice of some years will be crushed. The skipped years must then be estimated). Fig 9. of above article shows the surprising match between the ring-width of the 'Tatarli tables' and the volcanic sulphate within GISP2.

Kind regards
Hans

terrarius
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Re: Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Postby terrarius » 14 Feb 2009, 11:59

taxelson wrote:Please also note that the uncertain years according to Holstein data detected by Lars-Åke are 207 years before approximately 540 AD (i.e aprox. the years 333-540 AD) which is an other period than Illig's "Phantom time" (7'th to 9'th cent AD). His needs of exactly 297 years after AD 590, according to solar eclipse is not supported either. So the Holstein data problem described on Cybis.se is IMHO unrelated to, and does not support, the Phantom time hypothesis by Illig at all. The Illig's "Phantom time" is indeed covered in a convincing way by available data, connectible to present time.


What is the reference for these 207 years? When we take into account Baillie's 70 years Kirnsulzbach deviation, we are close to some 300.

In my posting yesterday, I have shown how the idea of fictive times can be disproved. Illig's merit: He discovered the fundamental mismatch within chronology. Unfortunately, he found the wrong explanation.

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Re: Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Postby Lars-Ake » 14 Feb 2009, 12:59

taxelson wrote:Please also note that the uncertain years according to Holstein data detected by Lars-Åke are 207 years before approximately 540 AD (i.e aprox. the years 333-540 AD) which is an other period than Illig's "Phantom time" (7'th to 9'th cent AD). His needs of exactly 297 years after AD 590, according to solar eclipse is not supported either. So the Holstein data problem described on Cybis.se is IMHO unrelated to, and does not support, the Phantom time hypothesis by Illig at all. The Illig's "Phantom time" is indeed covered in a convincing way by available data, connectible to present time.


I am sorry, but I think that might be based on some common misinterpretations of Illig's theories!

From the point of the phantom time theory:
If we used the dated wood of Hollstein and inserted 207 invented years immediately after the fall of the West Roman empire (as the conventional chronology is then said to do), then those 207 years may very well pop up in mythical history attributed to the period 700-1000. So the crossdating issue of Hollstein's data (the 207 years), does not refute Dr. Illig's idea that a period of invented years is inserted into the history of the Early Middle Ages.


I do not think this is the place to discuss whether Illig's theories might be right or wrong based on other things than pure dendrochronology! Please!

terrarius
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Re: Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Postby terrarius » 15 Feb 2009, 10:52

Hello Lars-Ake,
as you found a mismatch of 207 years in Hollsteins data while I found 299, let's assume we are both right and try to find out the cause of this deviation.

Following the 9th century H's data match with history and leave not much room for doubts. The Roman relics were dated by H. from historical records.
What reference are you using for the Roman portion of H's dendro data?

If I remember correctly, H. has combined the width data of several logs to produce the width-pattern for a location. When the data of the Trier Amphitheatre and Bridge II match perfectly over 60 years, what can be the cause for the poor match in the following decades? It may just be due to a mixup with other logs.

http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/img/Dendro536_LTRR.gif shows a photo of treerings around the climate breakdown in 536 (as dated by Baillie and Keys). Visible are more rings with extremely poor growth. If there were a global cause, this pattern should be visible within european oak data.
http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/img/Hol190_174ad.gif shows H's data near the 1000 year minimum.
http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/img/Hol194_472ad.gif a similar set some 300 years later.
Do you see a chance to generate quantitative correlation data from this with your program?

Regards

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Re: Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Postby Lars-Ake » 16 Feb 2009, 17:35

terrarius wrote: .......
http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/img/Hol190_174ad.gif shows H's data near the 1000 year minimum.
http://www.jahr1000wen.de/jtw/img/Hol194_472ad.gif a similar set some 300 years later.
Do you see a chance to generate quantitative correlation data from this with your program? ...


For the comparison you request, you could use my two crossdated collections from the Hollstein data:
HollsteinBestLateToYear410 (AD1974-410) and HollsteinBestRoman (AD336-BC340)

According to conventional chronology they should be place with the late chronology placed 1974-336 years offset = i.e. an offset of -1638 when the Roman collection is selected as the reference. That means there is a gap between them of 410-336=74 years.

Now you ask me to position the year 478 over the year 173, i.e. at relative offset -1333
Image
That year indicates in both curves a sudden low growth.
Though the surrounding curve patterns do not match at all, the correlation coefficient is only 0.05, T-value=0.8, GLK=0.52
/Lars-Ake

terrarius
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Re: Questions raised by the Hollstein data

Postby terrarius » 17 Feb 2009, 10:02

Thanks for the excellent visiualisation of the neutral correlation between the two excerpts from Hollstein's data.

However, to avoid premature conclusions, it should be noted that the samples from the 5th century were the outcome of a rigid preselection process. It took Hollstein many years to find just two (!) logs showing a reasonable correlation to the adjoining sections - grown some 300 km south of the Rhinelands. Within another decade of search, the total of logs bridging the apparent gap could eventually be increased to about ten.


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