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Len Parker





Joined: 15 Apr 2011

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PostPosted: Sun 13 Nov, 2011 9:57 am    Post subject: Dark-Ages a myth?         Reply with quote

Wacky but interesting. http://www.forteantimes.com/features/articles..._time.html Has anyone heard of this "phantom years" theory by Heribert Illig, that the 7th-9th centuries never happened, that they were inserted into history by Otto III so that his reign would be during the millennial 1000 AD?
Under Sources vs Sources, Illig does raise some good questions about the Aachen construction. http://www.bearfabrique.org/Catastrophism/illig_paper.htm
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Christopher VaughnStrever




Location: San Antonio, TX
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PostPosted: Sun 13 Nov, 2011 11:16 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

WOW! that was quite an interesting read. What I personally take from that is more research needs to be made. If challenging 300 years authenticity (of which the lack of credible evidence certainly warrants the questioning) I don't think more "guesses" need be made until evidence is found.

None the less I do like the way the entire article was laid out and some interesting hypothesis indeed

Experience and learning from such defines maturity, not a number of age
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Johan S. Moen




Location: Kristiansand, Norway
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PostPosted: Sun 13 Nov, 2011 11:34 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Oh, please. Pseudoscience, conspiracy and worse; the fact that that "research"(and I use the term quite wrongly) still rears its head is quite saddening.

Take a look here for an overview of the matter:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phantom_time_hypothesis
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Chronology_(Fomenko)

Johan Schubert Moen
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Ken Speed





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PostPosted: Sun 13 Nov, 2011 11:59 am    Post subject: Re: Dark-Ages a myth?         Reply with quote

Len Parker writes, "Wacky but interesting. ......... Has anyone heard of this "phantom years" theory by Heribert Illig, that the 7th-9th centuries never happened, that they were inserted into history by Otto III so that his reign would be during the millennial 1000 AD?"

OKAAAAY Len, Does this mean we're all three hundred years younger than we think we are?Laughing out loud doesn't do this "theory" justice! As I write this I come up with gag line after gag line, Is this what people are talking about when they wonder, " where has the time gone?" Does the Russian who came up with this idea think he's something like negative 240 or so years old? I guess we all have a long time to wait before we can drink alcohol legally or vote!


Help, someone stop me!


Listen Len, I'm not ridiculing you but I can't stop myself from ridiculing the theory.
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JE Sarge
Industry Professional



PostPosted: Sun 13 Nov, 2011 12:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This is interesting to a point, but only to the point at which one realizes that there were numerous other cultures that documented history quite well. Comparing their timelines with the European ones - especially when looking at key cross-cultural events, it's easy to see that this conspiracy theory is a bit on the outlandish side. Happy
J.E. Sarge
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"But lack of documentation, especially for such early times, is not to be considered as evidence of non-existance." - Ewart Oakeshott
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Sun 13 Nov, 2011 12:41 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Contrary to the above wackjob theory there is a far more credible case for removing the Bronze Age Dark Ages. The best argument was presented by James et al in Centuries of Darkness. There is more than enough evidence to suggest that the current chronology is wrong. The only real argument is over how much that period needs to be revised.
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Christopher VaughnStrever




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PostPosted: Sun 13 Nov, 2011 4:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Very interesting that you point that out Dan, Is there more you could elaborate on especially on the point of period of Charles Martel and/or Charlemagne.

I am interested primarily because I am giving a discourse where Charles and Charlemagne gave some of the major contributions of knights coming about . (Yes I do mention the cataphract in that course) Though if there are any questionable areas of Charles Martel and Charlemagne rulings I would like to interject those questionable areas so that my audience is fully aware of the realities of what we know of currently.

Thanks for any help provided Dan

Best regards,
chris

Experience and learning from such defines maturity, not a number of age
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Sun 13 Nov, 2011 7:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The Bronze Age Dark Ages falls between 1200 and 950 B.C. It is proposed that everything currently dated to 1200 B.C. or earlier should be revised up a couple of centuries. i.e. 1200 B.C. becomes 1000 B.C. The chronology from that point till today is fairly solidly fixed.
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Sun 13 Nov, 2011 8:19 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

As bizarre and outlandish as this theory may sound, I found one part to be particularly interesting:

"Another example of missing finds. One might assume that at Aachen, the central palace of the Frankish empire, there ought to be numerous finds from that period in the museum. Yet there is not even an early medieval museum. In 1999, Prof. Matthias Untermann explained why this is so:


'Amazingly, there has not been an archeological dig or review of a building site within and outside the old city of Aachen that produced clear settlement remains of the Carolingian era, though the historical tradition points to the presence of merchants and numerous inhabitants as well as the existence of high-ranking noblemen and their courts, of whose buildings and physical remains there ought to be quite a lot in the ground. Everything that has so far been said about the road system, the structure of the settlement and its extent rests exclusively on written sources and theoretical considerations.'"

Assuming this is true, it does raise interesting questions about the Carolingian empire: its extent, the "sophistication" of its development as implied by historical texts, and so forth.
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Johan S. Moen




Location: Kristiansand, Norway
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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 12:30 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan Howard wrote:
Contrary to the above wackjob theory there is a far more credible case for removing the Bronze Age Dark Ages. The best argument was presented by James et al in Centuries of Darkness. There is more than enough evidence to suggest that the current chronology is wrong. The only real argument is over how much that period needs to be revised.


You do realise that James' theories are not exactly universally accepted in the academic world(to put it mildly)? And, for that matter, that he is heavily inspired by Velikovsky's "Revised Chronology" which suffers from much the same standards as Illigs work... Not to say that he's flat out wrong of course, but extraordinary claims do require extraordinary evidence.

Johan Schubert Moen
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 3:00 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Every year there are more and more papers supporting the revised chronology. James suggested shortening the Egyptian timneline by around 250 years by overlapping the twenty-first Dynasty with the twentieth and twenty-second Dynasties. In 2007 Pierce Furlong finished his PhD on the Assyrian chronology and independently concluded that around 200 years need to be removed to synchronise the Assyrian and Egyptian chronologies. He suggests removing 85 years from the Assyrian chronology between the reigns of Shalmaneser II and Ashur-dan II, and revising the Egyptian Memphite dates, relative to the Assyrian chronology, down by a further 115 years. Two years ago Nikos Kokkinos finished recalculating the date of the Trojan War using the earliest Greek chronographers and came to c. 940 BC, not 1200 BC. Just last year Robert Porter re-examined the chronology of the Egyptian 22-26th Dynasties and concluded that the 22nd Dynasty needs to be significantly shortened.

There is absolutely no doubt that the current chronology is wrong. The only contention is how much of the Dark Ages needs to be revised - there have been proposals ranging from 100 to 250 years. Personally I think that Furlong has the right idea. The Egyptian chronology is so messed up that the Assyrian chronology should be used as the baseline.
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Randall Moffett




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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 6:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The problem with this specific argument is that we do have a fair amount of written evidence between the 7th-9th centuries, especially in surrounding regions that have 0 ties or reason to support Otto. Just too much evidence to simply do what he proposes to do. I'd place this in the conspiracy/pseudo-history category myself. The Byzantines kept excellent records which even after their fall continued which present more than enough of a frame work, though perhaps with a dark bias to their northern allies/enemies.

Now as for the ancient Dark Ages, yeah much more complicated. I think it likely from the little I have researched dates this early on are anything but firm.

RPM
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Matthew Amt




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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 7:30 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Johan S. Moen wrote:
Dan Howard wrote:
Contrary to the above wackjob theory there is a far more credible case for removing the Bronze Age Dark Ages. The best argument was presented by James et al in Centuries of Darkness. There is more than enough evidence to suggest that the current chronology is wrong. The only real argument is over how much that period needs to be revised.


You do realise that James' theories are not exactly universally accepted in the academic world(to put it mildly)? And, for that matter, that he is heavily inspired by Velikovsky's "Revised Chronology" which suffers from much the same standards as Illigs work... Not to say that he's flat out wrong of course, but extraordinary claims do require extraordinary evidence.

Johan Schubert Moen


Velikovsky gets dragged into this discussion every time in an effort to equate "Centuries of Darkness" with little green men. Seems like the tactic of someone who is losing the argument, doesn't it? In this case, saying that James was "heavily inspired" by Velikovsky is baloney--they noted many of the same problems (i.e., they both quote numerous respected historians and archeologists!) but have completely different approaches and methods. If Velikovsky bothers you, fine, ignore him! What James does is to point out a number of instances of problems with the chronology or dating system, using evidence presented by the established, respectable investigators and their successors, showing where there are errors, lapses, deletions, or shaky interpretations. He shows very clearly how broader and grander conclusions have grown from no solid foundation whatsoever, to become accepted as "fact" over the generations. Bottom line, if even a fraction of the instances in his book are at all true, the chronology problem is HUGE. All that stands in the way of fixing it are the egos of a few big names who have built their careers on a flawed system, and have decided to attack the messenger rather than say, "Goodness, what an opportunity for some fascinating scholarly research!" That's really puzzling, to me.

If the low chronology is just a whacked-out conspiracy theory, there wouldn't be more articles coming out in support of it. And if the basic scenarios required by the high chronology made sense, I'd be able to convince a 7-year-old with them--but when I tried, I was told, "That's ridiculous!" From the mouths of babes, eh?

Matthew
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Sean Manning




Location: Austria
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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 7:40 am    Post subject: Re: Dark-Ages a myth?         Reply with quote

Len Parker wrote:
Wacky but interesting. http://www.forteantimes.com/features/articles..._time.html Has anyone heard of this "phantom years" theory by Heribert Illig, that the 7th-9th centuries never happened, that they were inserted into history by Otto III so that his reign would be during the millennial 1000 AD?
Under Sources vs Sources, Illig does raise some good questions about the Aachen construction. http://www.bearfabrique.org/Catastrophism/illig_paper.htm

Such a theory would require that masses of fake consistent documents were created in hundreds of religious houses all over Christendom. It also requires that the (eastern) Empire and several Moslem dynasties cooperated. Nor does it show awareness that many 'fake' early medieval documents are copies of earlier ones or attempts to put in writing what had been granted by speech (or at least, what the people creating the document wished or hoped had been granted by speech). Early medieval people didn't always have our idea that only the original copy of a document is official, and that writing is more authoritative than speech.
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Randall Moffett




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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 10:04 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Some of the reviews out there on this theory blow it so completely out of the water I am astounded there are so many people who really believe this. I did a Google search and there were hundreds of hits on it. That said I have seen almost no academics of any field supporting it and some of the better critiquing of it by scholars of dozens of fields and disciplines have tore apart so many of the basic supports of the framework Illig created.

I think for me the issue is there is evidence and it fits together fairly well composed with surrounding evidence. We have records in two areas one just south and one south east of where Otto reigned and they more or less account for every year with little movement. Coupled with certain sciences such as astronomy and known occurrences that were written down the exact time they were supposed and millions of other indirect evidences makes this theory even more unlikely/impossible. And that is just in Europe. Once we leave this small region we have historic evidence that further supports the current chronology.

Of course the biggest issue, unlike the earlier issue to which Dan relates, is that we have evidence everywhere that Illig by and large simply states is forgery on no better reason than he simply wants to. hundreds of people have evaluated the same documents with much higher qualifications and authenticated them.... and believe me people make academic careers off such issues so they would have if they could have.

One argument on a site says the issue is simply close minded people cannot accept this theory. Reminds me of something my Uncle once said to me, One has to be care your mind is not too open or it will spill out and left empty.

If his theory had any proof to it I have yet to find it. it is based on circumstantial evidence at best at best. That said I could not find a full version online to peruse but the few score of pages I have read and further related work makes it look even more shaky.

I'd place this one well below Bigfoot and the Lock Ness Monster, which at least might be real.

RPM
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Johan S. Moen




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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 10:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Matthew Amt wrote:


Velikovsky gets dragged into this discussion every time in an effort to equate "Centuries of Darkness" with little green men. Seems like the tactic of someone who is losing the argument, doesn't it?


Hi Matthew. I'm a bit confused, are you suggesting I have some sort of shadowy agenda here?

If James is garnering support in the scientific community, that's great! If his theories make a positive contribution to the relevant fields of study, that's even better. I haven't followed the matter closely the last few years, but the fact remains that his theories are disputed. If thats down to jealous colleagues, that is of course not a good thing, but for the non-expert listening to the majority remains the safest option - I'm sure you have the grasp of why that is. What I wrote in my previous post is the recollection of what I learned the last time I read the book, reviews of it, and so on - if that is incorrect(as it seems to be) I apologise.

(Just please refrain from using arguments such as "If the low chronology is just a whacked-out conspiracy theory, there wouldn't be more articles coming out in support of it." - because that is simply not true. I've done enough work on conspiracy theories to have painfully long lists of supporting "evidence" for, well, whacked-out conspiracy theories. Quantity on its own is not a sign of quality.)

Johan Schubert Moen
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Ken Speed





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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 11:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Oh, I get it! Of course! The Dark Ages were dark because they weren't there at all! Simple really, when you think about it!

Frankly, I can't believe we're talking about this at all.
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Matthew Amt




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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 12:43 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Johan S. Moen wrote:
Matthew Amt wrote:


Velikovsky gets dragged into this discussion every time in an effort to equate "Centuries of Darkness" with little green men. Seems like the tactic of someone who is losing the argument, doesn't it?


Hi Matthew. I'm a bit confused, are you suggesting I have some sort of shadowy agenda here?


My apologies for giving that impression! It was a wry comment on a trend that I've seen.

Quote:
If James is garnering support in the scientific community, that's great! If his theories make a positive contribution to the relevant fields of study, that's even better. I haven't followed the matter closely the last few years, but the fact remains that his theories are disputed.


Agreed!

Quote:
If thats down to jealous colleagues, that is of course not a good thing, but for the non-expert listening to the majority remains the safest option - I'm sure you have the grasp of why that is.


Oh, yes, agreed again! I actually tend to use the high dates even in my own head, just because they are so well-entrenched. Then I have to do the math each time, and that's hard for me, ha!

Quote:
What I wrote in my previous post is the recollection of what I learned the last time I read the book, reviews of it, and so on - if that is incorrect(as it seems to be) I apologise.


Nah, no problem. It's actually been quite a while since I read it myself--I should re-read it before getting any deeper into discussions like this!

Quote:
(Just please refrain from using arguments such as "If the low chronology is just a whacked-out conspiracy theory, there wouldn't be more articles coming out in support of it." - because that is simply not true. I've done enough work on conspiracy theories to have painfully long lists of supporting "evidence" for, well, whacked-out conspiracy theories. Quantity on its own is not a sign of quality.)


Point taken, at least to a point! But seriously, do you get many peer-reviewed publications in support of whacked-out conspiracy theories? (I guess I'd expect a *few*!)

Thanks for the nice response!

Matthew
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 1:06 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Reminds me of the theory that Julius Caesar deliberately engineered his own assassination because he wanted to commit suicide.
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Mon 14 Nov, 2011 1:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ken Speed wrote:
Oh, I get it! Of course! The Dark Ages were dark because they weren't there at all! Simple really, when you think about it!.

In the Bronze Age this is exactly the case. It was an artificial mechanism to help reconcile the dodgy Egyptian chronology.
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