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One of the earliest carbon dating tests was carried out on November 14, 1950. This was on two dating site piece of linen from Qumran Cave 1, the resulting date range being 167 BC — 233 AD. Libby had first started using the dating method in 1946 and the early testing required relatively large samples, so testing on scrolls themselves only became feasible when methods used in the dating process were improved upon. In 1991, Robert Eisenman and Philip R.

Davies made a request to date a number of scrolls, which led to a series of tests carried out in Zurich on samples from fourteen scrolls. Among these were samples from other sites around the Dead Sea, which contained date indications within the text to supply a control for the carbon dating results. The column headed «14C Age» provides a raw age before 1950 for each sample tested. This represents the ideal date for the amount of 14C measured for the sample. However, as the quantity of 14 absorbed by all life fluctuates from year to year, the figure must be calibrated based on known fluctuation. The section of the calibration curve for the 14C age of the Habakkuk Commentary is complex, so that the 14C age of 2054 cuts through a few spikes on the curve, providing two date ranges. The Great Isaiah Scroll 1QIsaa has been tested three times, once by Libby, once at Zurich and once at Tucson.