[b-hebrew] Rohl's Chronology Deconstructed

Brian Roberts formoria at carolina.rr.com
Tue Jul 27 07:04:05 EDT 2004


On Monday, July 26, 2004, at 02:38  PM, Dave Washburn wrote:

(snip)

> Please.  We all know that archaeology is based on the accident of
> preservation.  To say that we "ought" to find archaeological material 
> at such
> and such a place for such and such a time, is to bypass the actual 
> sporadic,
> not to say whimsical, flyspecks of preservation that we do encounter and
> suggest that what is essentially a random process - the accident of
> preservation - should follow some kind of rule set that makes what we 
> want
> accessible to us several thousand years later.  It just doesn't work 
> that
> way.  Factors such as erosion, rebuilding, destruction on a massive 
> scale by
> enemies, and what-have-you, combine to make the whole thing a very
> unpredictable process.  That may not be what we want, and we may not 
> like it,
> but those factors tell us, in essence, that if we don't like it, too 
> bad.
>
> This is why arguments from silence will never get anywhere, especially 
> in this
> field.  To say that "there's no positive evidence where we 'ought' to 
> expect
> it," is equally to say "there's no negative evidence where the accident 
> of
> preservation might have wiped something out, either."  It would be nice 
> of
> scholars would get a handle on the fact that absence of evidence does 
> NOT
> equal evidence of absence.  If you're into C programming, it would look 
> like
> this:
> (absence_of_evidence) != (evidence of absence)

(snip)

Brilliant elucidation, David! I couldn't have put it better myself. I've 
been trying to explain the truth of this to Walter for years now it 
seems, but my words seem to have fallen on deaf ears.
Maybe yours will have better effect.

Brian Roberts




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