Dating method using Earth's magnetic field verifies ancient biblical wartext_fields
Archeologists have found a way to reconstruct the presence of Earth's geomagnetic field in order to verify historic events. The new method, geomagnetic dating, has provided evidence that the biblical account of the ancient Egyptian war against Israel truly happened.
The research led by Yoav Vaknin of Tel Aviv University says this dating method has also verified other Old Testament accounts of Aramean, Assyrian, and Babylonian military campaigns against the Kingdoms of Israel and Judah.
The doctoral thesis is aimed at investigating the events mentioned in the Hebrew Bible. The researcher told Newsweek that his study is relevant to the discussions regarding the historicity of the biblical text.
One of the notable findings backs the claim that an Ancient Egyptian military campaign led by Pharaoh Shoshenq around 3,000 years ago truly happened.
Earlier, radiocarbon dating was the method to examine and determine which time period a certain object or event took place. However, it has limitations and does not support high-resolution information. Vaknin's team wanted to introduce another chronological tool to solve the debate around biblical events.
His focus was on events that took place after 800 B.C. When used with radiocarbon dating, geomagnetic dating provides more "precise dating". The data acquired was combined with archaeological data and historical sources including the Bible.
Researchers have now reconstructed ancient geomagnetic fields in the ruins of ancient towns in Israel that were destroyed by fire, supposedly during a military campaign. Mud bricks from these regions were sampled to reconstruct the direction and intensity of the ancient geomagnetic field, reported Newsweek.
The clay objects contain something called ferromagnetic minerals including magnetite. These minerals are like tiny needles of a compass on the atomic level. "As long as the needle of a compass is free to move, it will prefer to align with the magnetic field around it. Similarly, the magnetic signal of ferromagnetic minerals can also sometimes change its direction. But, this ability depends on the temperature," said Vaknin.
When a material is heated, it records the Earth's magnetic field at that particular moment. When they cool down, the magnetic signals are locked. When the samples from ancient ruins are measured for their recorded signals, it allows experts to reconstruct the direction and intensity of the ancient geomagnetic field.
Vaknin's team is using this method to study whether these were burnt during the same military campaign. In most cases, findings suggest these ancient sites were destroyed during certain military campaigns. "This corroborates the assumption that they were destroyed during the same period."