QUESTION:“My kids and I have been reading about ancient history with the Egyptians, Sumerians, etc. and the books we are using claim obviously inflated dates. They say the Chinese civilization dates back to 8,000BC and the pyramids date to 3,500 BC. My guess is that their assumptions are based on Carbon 14 dating and perhaps written records for the Egyptians.At what point do you find Carbon 14 dates begin to match up with reality? I’ve seen artifacts from the time of King Hezekiah that dated to a reasonable age, would this be about where the two chronologies line up?”
Dr. Terry Hurlbut:
Yes, I would probably go no further back than the reign of Hezekiah or maybe the reign of Kings David and Solomon. And that would be a gamble.
Bear in mind that many Pharaohs of Egypt and Emperors of China reigned concurrently, in different parts of their respective territories, long before their eventual unification. This is especially true of Egypt, which has a “rubber chronology,” as even the experts admit.
It (The Book Unwrapping The Pharaohs” By David Down and John Ashton) telescopes Egyptian history quite neatly–even to conflating the First and Second Intermediate Periods. It works nicely with the Long Sojourn in Egypt.
Dr. Jay Wile (Jay Wile Ph.D. Nuclear Chemistry) Most of those dates are based on Egyptian records, which are confusing and we know have errors in them. Here is a good discussion of that: http://creation.com/egypt-
There are some dates based on carbon-14 dating. The problem with carbon-14 dating is that it has to be calibrated, because the amount of carbon-14 in the environment is highly variable. Tree rings provide a very good calibration for carbon-14, but the oldest tree ring that has been taken from a living tree and analyzed for carbon-14 is about 3,500 years old. After that, other, less reliable calibration methods have to be employed. As a result, I find carbon-14 dating very reliable for dates younger than 3,500 years ago, and increasingly unreliable the older they are after that.
Dr. Ronald Stewart, Th.D,. Ph.D. (Archaeologist)
It is likely that because of the global flood that any and all evidence of pre-flood cultures and civilizations, were completely destroyed. “If” there would be anything left it would be so rare, that it would be the exception and not the general rule. Man’s written records usually cannot be traced back any earlier than about 2350-BC at the earliest within 50 or so years after the global deluge. If there there were any pre-flood artifacts found they would likely not date back more than 6000-years. Putting the historical record in line and consistent with creation of man around 4025-4000-B.C.E. at the earliest. C-14 have made some minimal improvements in the last 20 years or so but is still unreliable, because the dates may vary so much.