Carbon-14 wiggle-match dating of peat deposits: advantages and limitations

M. Blaauw, B. Van Geel, Dmitri Mauquoy, J. van Der Plicht

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40 Citations (Scopus)


Carbon-14 wiggle-match dating (WMD) of peat deposits uses the non-linear relationship between C-14 age and calendar age to match the shape of a series of closely spaced peat C-14 dates with the C-14 calibration curve. The method of WMD is discussed, and its advantages and limitations are compared with calibration of individual dates. A numerical approach to WMD is introduced that makes it possible to assess the precision of WMD chronologies. During several intervals of the Holocene, the C-14 calibration curve shows less pronounced fluctuations. We assess whether wiggle-matching is also a feasible strategy for these parts of the C-14 calibration curve. High-precision chronologies, Such as obtainable with WMD, are needed for studies of rapid climate changes and their possible causes during the Holocene. Copyright (C) 2004 John Wiley Sons, Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-181
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Quaternary Science
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2004


  • C-14 chronologies
  • C-14 calibration
  • C-14 wiggle-match dating
  • AMS
  • age
  • macrofossils
  • bogs


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