Dealing with outliers and offsets in radiocarbon dating
Wheat is regarded as one of the most important West Asian domesticates that were introduced into Late Neolithic/Early Bronze Age China. Despite a growing body of archaeological data, the timing and routes of its dispersal remain controversial. These results neither support long-standing hypotheses of a progressive spread of wheat agriculture from Xinjiang or Gansu to eastern China nor suggest a nearly synchronous appearance in this vast zone, but corroborate transmission to lower Yellow River elites as an exotic good through cultural interactions with the Eurasian steppe along north–south routes. 1: Topographical maps showing the archaeological sites from China with directly dated wheat remains contained in the compiled data set and potential dispersal routes of wheat into and within China. C data set and designed the Bayesian chronological model. C) dates are the most important means for determining the age of Holocene archaeological deposits.
The accuracy and robustness of this approach is confirmed by wiggle-matching known-calendar age sequences of the Southern Hemisphere calibration curve SHCal04 against the Northern Hemisphere curve Int Cal04.
We also show that 5 of 9 Holocene Southern Hemisphere data sets are capable of yielding reliable offset information.