Certainly close enough for the three pieces of vellum to have come from the same decade.Incidentally, “BP” (‘Before Present’) is the technical term for “number of years before 1950”; which means that the 500BP notches 3/4 of the way across the horizontal scale correspond to 1450.The new radiocarbon dates push back by 2 centuries the accepted IA chronology of Edom.
The problem with accepting nothing beyond the raw radiocarbon date range (as Richard Santa Coloma is wont to argue people should do, which is somewhat ironic given that it’s the specific piece of information which his various it’s-a-hoax-but-using-unused-old-vellum theories then immediately deem irrelevant) is that it leaves you vulnerable to calculational and procedural errors.
If you genuinely want to date the Voynich Manuscript, then I think you have no honest choice but to engage with ceramics, parallel hatching, cryptographic alphabets or whatever fields you choose to build up multiple sets of independent dating evidence.
Back in 2012, I tried to give an accessible summary of the most difficult bits of all this, but the tricky historical reasoning that necessarily has to be wrapped around radiocarbon dating remains a fiendishly technical business that few Voynich researchers can genuinely make proper sense of .
One thing is fairly solid, though: of the four data points we have, three are extremely – and I do genuinely mean extremely – close.
Archaeologists such as Glueck metaphorically carried the trowel in 1 hand and the Bible in the other, searching the archaeological landscape of the southern Levant for confirmation of the biblical narrative from the Patriarchs to the United Monarchy under David and Solomon to other personages, places, and events mentioned in the sacred text.
Beginning in the 1980s, this paradigm came under severe attack, primarily by so-called biblical minimalist scholars who argued that as the HB was edited in its final form during the 5th century (c.) BC (3), any reference in the text to events earlier than 500 BC were false (4).
For example, if we can determine by other means that the manuscript came from a polluted urban area, then we should (as I understand it) eliminate much of the earlier (leftmost) years’ components that make up the curve to effectively produce a new, much narrower curve biased more strongly towards the later (rightmost) years.
The second counterintuitive thing is that if you try to statistically combine just the top three samples together (by approximating their distributions as Gaussian probability distributions and then using a neat bit of stats maths), you get…
Sorry, but even if you’ve paid your money to the University of Arizona to get a radiocarbon dating number in your eager hand, you still have a large number of issues to deal with.
For example, the historical curves are all twisted about thanks to human history (global pollution etc), which means that you have to go from uncalibrated raw data to calibrated historical data; another problem is that locale-specific human effects (e.g.
Hence for me, Averlino was simply an illustrative cherry on what was already to me a well-baked Art History cake: my identification of him as the author of the Voynich might be right or wrong (and I still don’t know either way), but all my other dating still stands.