Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Re: There is compelling evidence it is the burial cloth of Christ, or a man crucified during that time #3

Kris

Continuing from my Re: There is compelling evidence it is the burial cloth of Christ, or a man crucified during that time #2,

[Above (click to enlarge): Shroud coins identified as Pontius Pilate leptons: T.V. Oommen]

"The following picture collage is based on images extracted from the Shroud eye area image by Jean-Philippe Fontanille in Montreal, Canada and sent to the author. In his book, `The Coins of Pontius Pilate' (Shangri La Publications, July 2001), Jean-Philippe has identified the right eye coin as in the collage, but the left eye coin was not clearly identified, though an attempt was made to identify the AD 29 Pilate coin known as Julia lepton with three barleys and a simpulum as claimed by Dr.Alan Whanger who had used his polarized overlay technique ... His later identification of the left eye coin as shown in the collage, not in his book, indicates that it is a Pilate lepton with a lituus similar to the one on the right eye."(Oommen, T.V., "The Coinage Evidence," The Mysterious Holy Shroud of Christ, 14 February 2007).]

----- Original Message -----
From: Anonymous
To: Stephen E. Jones
Sent: Wednesday, November 12, 2008 6:00 PM
Subject: [The Shroud of Turin] New comment on Bogus: Shroud of Turin? #10: The Shroud's blood an....

which is part #3 of my multi-part response to your comment to my post: Bogus: Shroud of Turin? #10: The Shroud's blood and pollen closely matches the Sudarium of Oviedo's.

This part #3 is only about one of the last two of the at least twenty-three (23) separate and independent features on the Shroud of Turin that match the gospel's description of the crucifixion of Jesus, the coins in the eyes of the man in the Shroud. My conservative estimate of the proportion of Roman crucifixion victims that had that particular feature is in square brackets. My emphasis is bold.

22. The eyes have images of two coins minted by Pontius Pilate in AD 29 [1 in 1,000].

[Above: Image of lepton (Gk. lepton "mite" - Mark 12:42-44) on left eye of man of the Shroud: "Pilate's Coins and Turin Shroud," Jean-Philippe Fontanille. As a coin expert Fontanille writes:

"For my part, I must admit that I have failed to detect any trace of the year 29 coin on the right eye. On the other hand, the similarity of the centre left eye image to a coin bearing the lituus motif is actually more disturbing. The round form gives an impression suggestive of the lituus cross, (albeit a little less curved than in usual) surrounded by traces of letters which could be a vestige of the centre of the inscription `TIBEPIOY KAICAPOC [Tiberius Caesar (42BC-AD37)]'."(Fontanille, J.-P., 2007, "Pilate's Coins and Turin Shroud," Numismalink, 5 April).]

In 1977 STURP members, physicists John Jackson, Eric Jumper and Bill Mottern, after viewing high-quality photographs of the Shroud, reported, "over each eye appeared objects resembling small buttons" which "may be some kind of coins" in which case they could be "a Lepton of Pontius Pilate coined in A.D. 30-31":

"Another photograph of the Shroud which we subjected to relief enhancement ... was a close up of the face ... revealed something unexpected - over each eye appeared objects resembling small buttons ... we were left with but one conclusion - that the buttonlike features are what they seem to be, namely solid objects resting upon the eyelids. This identification agrees with ancient Jewish burial custom where objects ... were apparently sometimes placed over the eyes ... we propose that they may be some kind of coins since.: ... they are both nearly circular and approximately the same size ... " (Jackson., 1977, "The Three Dimensional Image On Jesus' Burial Cloth," pp.90-91).

Medical examiner the late Dr Robert Bucklin confirmed that "rounded foreign objects can be noted ... in the area of the right and left eyes'":

"... medical examiner Robert Bucklin noted `rounded foreign objects can be noted ... in the area of the right and left eyes' ... Jackson and his colleagues also noticed `buttonlike objects' over each eye in their VP-8 relief.' ... Giulio Ricci ... examined five possible explanations for these objects ... there was but one conclusion possible ...`... the button-like features are ... solid objects resting upon the eyelids' ... Jackson believed [they] ...were ... coins ... to keep his eyes closed after death ... " (Ruffin, 1999, "The Shroud of Turin," p.105).

Jackson et al. also pointed out that if "these images" are "solid objects over the eyes" then "the image forming process" would have "acted uniformly through space over the body, front and back, and ... independently of the type of surface, organic and inorganic, from which the image was generated" (which would only be true of radiation)" :

"If the identification of these images as solid objects over the eyes is correct, then ... the image forming process, acted uniformly through space over the body, front and back, and even seemed to act independently of the type of surface, organic and inorganic, from which the image was generated." (Jackson, 1977, p.91).

It was subsequently discovered by a Fr. Francis L. Filas that there were tiny "letters arranged circle-wise" which means these were indeed "coins ... placed in the eye ... areas of the Shroud" and what's more, from their "irregular diameter, with a maximum axis of 16mm" and "the imprint of a staff in the shape of `a question mark' reversed" lead to "the ... conclusion that on the Shroud .. a coin really was imprinted ... minted by Pontius Pilate in ... 29-30 AD":

"The two roundish bodies in relief, pointed out by J. Jackson and G. Tamburelli, and a few alphabetical letters arranged circle-wise, detected by Father Filas, are the premises for considering that coins were placed in the eye-socket areas of the Shroud ... The coin, we have found out ... having an irregular diameter, with a maximum axis of 16mm, in addition to the imprint of a staff in the shape of `a question mark' reversed ... By radiographic experiments carried out on a skull and by using coins of that period, we also confirm that only a certain kind of small coins laid on the eyes can reach the medialis hollow of the skull .... Also the ... discovery of two skulls - both with two small coins of Christ's time - at ... Jericho, lead us to the irrefutable conclusion that on the Shroud cloth a decal of a coin really was imprinted which portrayed a `staff' or LITUUS, the symbol existing uniquely on very rare coins minted by Pontius Pilate in ... 29-30 AD. " (Moroni, 1991, "Pontius Pilate's Coin on the Right Eye of the Man in the Holy Shroud," pp.295-297).

Specifically, Filas identified "the letters UCAI and a design resembling a shepherd's crook, or lituus, in the coin area over the right ... eye" which "match those of a lepton of Pontius Pilate [AD26-36] struck in Israel during the time of Jesus":

"In a VP-8 relief made from a photograph of the Shroud face, researchers noted flat button-like objects over each eye ... Jackson theorized that these objects were coins placed on the eyes to keep them closed in death. In 1979, the late Francis L. Filas reported identifying the letters UCAI and a design resembling a shepherd's crook, or lituus, in the coin area over the right anatomic eye ... These patterns match those of a lepton of Pontius Pilate, struck in Israel during the time of Jesus ..." (Borkan, 1995, "Ecce Homo?: Science and the Authenticity of the Turin Shroud," p.28).

"Filas found the letters UCAI on the right eye, arranged in a coin-like curve. He thought that these might be the central letters of the coin inscription TIBERIOU CAISEROS - Greek for Tiberius Caesar, who was Roman Emperor during the time of Christ's ministry. He also found over the eye a tiny design that looked like a shepherd's crook. He was able to locate authentic Roman coins, minted between A.D. 29 and A.D. 32 (which was the time of Jesus' ministry) that contained a shepherd's staff as well as the Greek inscription TIBERIOU CAISEROS ... " (Ruffin, 1999, p.106).

As Antonacci points out the, "matching of four consecutive letters strongly suggests that this is not an optical illusion or coincidence" and together with "an astrologer's staff, or lituus" .were a "motif on coins minted by Pontius Pilate after A.D. 29" but "Following the rule of Pilate" (in AD36) it "was not used again ... anywhere in the Roman world":

"More evidence of the presence of a coin was found ... several features ... were uniquely characteristic of a Pontius Pilate coin, or lepton, issued between A.D 29 and 32 ... The first of the features noted ... were the letters UCAI ... on the coin over the right eye ... part of the inscription TIOUKAICAPOC ... Greek for `Of Tiberius Caesar' ... Both inscriptions have been identified on Pilate coins ... the size of the letters on the Pilate coin and the Shroud eye matched ... The matching of four consecutive letters strongly suggests that this is not an optical illusion or coincidence ... the letters UCAI on the Shroud face are located around the curve of an astrologer's staff, or lituus ... it was used as a constant motif on coins minted by Pontius Pilate after A.D. 29. Following the rule of Pilate, this lituus was not used again by a ruler in Palestine, nor anywhere in the Roman world ..." (Antonacci, 2000, "Resurrection of the Shroud," pp.102-104).

Filas' discovery was confirmed by Dr. Alan and Mary Whanger who "found a very close match, noting at least 74 points of congruence" between the coin image over the man of the Shroud's right eye and that particular "Pontius Pilate lepton"which "was struck: the 16th year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, or 29 C.E." They also found "three additional letters in their proper positions":

"... the Whangers compared a photograph of Filas' coin with a computer-enhanced photo of the area over the right eye on the Shroud. .... They found a very close match, noting at least 74 points of congruence ... Image analysis revealed not only the letters UCAI but also three additional letters in their proper positions ... The ... coin image over the right eye `is so similar to [Filas' lepton] that the two coins must have been struck from the same die.' The pattern on the back of Filas' coin identifies the year in which it was struck: the 16th year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, or 29 C.E. This is also the only year in which another Pontius Pilate lepton, the Julia lepton, was struck; though the image over the left eye on the Shroud is less distinct than that over the right, the Whangers have reported 73 points of congruence between the image over the left eye and a Julia lepton. ... the images over the eyes on the Shroud are not anomalies in the cloth weave. ... this provides supportive evidence for the presence of coins on the eyes of the man in the Shroud ..." (Borkan, 1995, p.28).

"Whanger ... Comparing a photograph of the Tiberius Caesar coin, known as a lepton ... with a computer-enhanced photograph of the area over the right eye of the Shroud image ... found `a very close match,' noting at least seventy-four `areas of congruence.' In other words, the Whangers found seventy-four features on the coin that closely corresponded to features on the Shroud image ... ..." (Ruffin, 1999, pp.106-107).

The Whangers later found over the left eye a less distinct image of

[Above (click to enlarge): Julia lepton with three barley sheaves on one side and a simpulum (Roman vessel) and letters meaning "Tiberius Caesar" on the other, of which the catalogue says, "JUDAEA, PONTIUS PILATE, 26-36 AD. Lepton ... Excellent example of this coin struck under the authority of the Roman Procurator who condemned Jesus to the cross.]

another coin which has "73 points of congruence" with "another Pontius Pilate lepton, the Julia lepton" which was only minted in "... the 16th year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, or 29 C.E.":

"... the 16th year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, or 29 C.E. ... is also the only year in which another Pontius Pilate lepton, the Julia lepton, was struck; though the image over the left eye on the Shroud is less distinct than that over the right, the Whangers have reported 73 points of congruence between the image over the left eye and a Julia lepton...." (Borkan, 1995, p.28).

"The image of the object over the left eye on the Shroud is fainter ... but the Whangers found seventy-three points of congruence between that image and a Roman coin, contemporary to the time of Christ, known as a `Julia lepton.' ..." (Ruffin, 1999, p.107).

Dr. Robert Haralick then at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University's Spatial Data Analysis Laboratory in an analysis commissioned by Filas concluded: "...in the enlargement of the right eye image we find supporting evidence for a ... shepherd's staff pattern ... and ... the letters OUCAIC." Dr Haralick added that this "is definitely supporting evidence because there is some degree of match between what one would expect to find if the Shroud did indeed contain a faint image of the Pilate coin and what we can in fact observe in the original and in the digitally produced images":

"The Haralick Report ... Fr. Filas subsequently submitted the coin and Shroud image for comparative analysis at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University's Spatial Data Analysis Laboratory. Dr. Robert Haralick, then at the Institute, offered cautious support to Filas' hypothesis ... Dr. Haralick advises that: `A number of digital enhancements were performed on imagery digitized from the 1931 Enrie photographs of the Shroud ... The enhancements provide supporting evidence that the right eye area of the Shroud image contains remnants of patterns similar to those of a known Pontius Pilate coin dating from 29 A.D ... Dr. Haralick concludes: `Thus, in the enlargement of the right eye image we find supporting evidence for a bright oval area: a shepherd's staff pattern as the main feature in the bright area; and bright segment patterns just to the side and top of the staff pattern, which in varying degrees match to the letters OUCAIC. [p.34] ... the evidence is definitely supporting evidence because there is some degree of match between what one would expect to find if the Shroud did indeed contain a faint image of the Pilate coin and what we can in fact observe in the original and in the digitally produced images. [p.34]" (Iannone, 1998, "The Mystery of the Shroud of Turin, pp.39-40. Italics original).

"... Haralick gave `cautious support' to the Whangers and to Filas ... He offered, `The evidence is definitely supporting evidence because there is some degree of match between what one would expect to find if the Shroud did indeed contain a faint image of the Pilate coin ... Archaeologists working in Israel have, in fact, found coins in the eye orbits of three skulls from the approximate time of Jesus ..." (Ruffin, 1999, p.107).

As originally pointed out by Jackson, the identification of "objects" (let alone coins minted just before the time of Jesus' crucifixion which was AD30 or 33), strengthens the authenticity of the Shroud, because "what ... forger in the Fourteenth Century would have thought to place objects on the eyes of Jesus?":

"In addition, this identification of the `objects' seems to strengthen the authenticity of the Shroud. For what artist or forger in the Fourteenth Century would have thought to place objects on the eyes of Jesus? " (Jackson, 1977, p.91).

considering that they are of "a coin" indeed coins "then unknown and that could not be discerned for at least another five hundred years ... in photographic negative ... reflecting letters 1/32 inches high with a rare misspelling, including an astrologer's staff existing practically nowhere else in numismatic history ":

"A Medieval or Renaissance Artist? ... since this unique coin, struck in 29 A.D., was not found until 1977, it is hardly plausible to claim that a medieval artist (or forger) would have included this tiny detail of a coin then unknown and that could not be discerned for at least another five hundred years when optical, photographic and computer imaging techniques would first be able to demonstrate such fine points ... The conclusion points in one inescapable direction: forgery of the Shroud is utterly impossible. No forger in the Middle Ages or even earlier would have been able to fabricate tiny imprints over both eyes on the Shroud cloth in photographic negative - with no pigment - reflecting letters 1/32 inches high with a rare misspelling, including an astrologer's staff existing practically nowhere else in numismatic history ... " (Iannone, 1998, pp.43-44).

Not only does this overwhelming evidence of images of coins dated to "the seven-year period from A.D. 29 ... to A.D. 36" on the eyes of the man on the Shroud, "completely eliminate the possibility of forgery of the Shroud" it also invalidates the 1988 radiocarbon dating of the Shroud linen to the 14th century because this gives "a verified date for the Shroud image that is far more precise than carbon-dating can ever be":

"Even more impressive is the coin-on-the-eye work of Professor Francis L. Filas ... which seems to give us a verified date for the Shroud image that is far more precise than carbon-dating can ever be ... Filas was enlarging his slides of the Shroud image to fill a twelve foot, closed-circuit television screen. He was startled to see what appeared to be Greek letters on the right eye of the Shroud Face. With ... assistance of coin expert Michael Marx, he discovered a 15mm (5/8 inch) disc inscribed with four recognizable Greek letters and an astrologer's staff, a lituus. ... the size of the coin, the size and shape and position of the inscriptions, and the sequence of the four letters, were all found to be exactly correct for a small bronze coin known as the Pontius Pilate coin, minted in Palestine from 29 to 32 ... The astrologer's staff was used as an independent symbol on no other coin in the Roman world at any time ... The odds in favor of the identification of the coin and its date are in the range of millions to one against any other interpretation ... Professor Alan Whanger ... finds the actual coin to be almost a perfect match for the markings on the Shroud face, so that the only reasonable conclusion he can come to is that they were coins struck from the same die ... Whanger's technique identifies the coin on the left eye as another Pontius Pilate lepton, known as the Julia coin, struck only in the year 29 ... Sheaves of grain and parts of eleven ... letters that appear on the coin are identified by Whanger ... the Filas/Whanger coin identification work would seem to completely eliminate the possibility of forgery of the Shroud ... Haralick's use of computer-enhanced digital image analysis now gives strong evidence for nine Greek letters in sequence on the perimeter of the coin appearing over the right eye ... This work would seem to historically pinpoint ... the seven-year period from A.D. 29, when these coins were first minted in Judea, to A.D. 36, when Pilate left office ...." (Tribbe, 2006, "Portrait of Jesus," pp.114-120).

To be continued in part #4 of this series with: 23. The Shroud's head bloodstains match those of the Sudarium of Oviedo.

Quotes below are hyperlinked to inline references above. I have left them in full for further reading.

Stephen E. Jones, BSc. (Biology).
My other blogs: CreationEvolutionDesign & Jesus is Jehovah!


"One indication of an even more specific date for the crucifixion of this particular victim may be available in the Turin Shroud image. It comes from the uncorroborated evidence of coin images found over the eyes of the man in the Shroud. The presence of coins was first suggested by the three-dimensional images of the Shroud face made with the VP-8 Image Analyzer in 1976. [Jackson, J.P., et al., "The Three-Dimensional Image on Jesus' Burial Cloth," in Stevenson, K.E., ed., "Proceedings of The 1977 United States Conference of Research on The Shroud of Turin," Holy Shroud Guild: Bronx NY, 1977, pp.74-94, pp.90-91] In these experiments, scientists were surprised to discover two small objects, both nearly circular and approximately the same size, over the eyes ... More evidence of the presence of a coin was found later when photographs were taken of an enlargement of the Shroud face made from a sepia print based on the original 1931 photographic plates of Giuseppe Enrie. These photographs suggested several features that were uniquely characteristic of a Pontius Pilate coin, or lepton, issued between A.D 29 and 32. These studies were conducted by the late Francis L. Filas, S.J., of Loyola University in Chicago, and several numismatists who assisted him. The first of the features noted by the Loyola team were the letters UCAI appearing at the 9:30 to 11:30 clock positions on the coin over the right eye. These letters seem to be part of the inscription TIOUKAICAPOC ... an abbreviation of TIBEPIOUKAICAPOC ('Tiberiou Kaisaros,' Greek for `Of Tiberius Caesar'). Both inscriptions have been identified on Pilate coins. Pontius Pilate coins that bear this first inscription have the same corresponding letters, UCAI or UKAI, appearing at the same 9:30 to 11:30 clock positions as those found on the coin over the right eye of the man in the Shroud. When a Pilate coin with this same inscription was enlarged on a screen to match the size of the enlarged right-eye area of the man in the Shroud, the size of the letters on the Pilate coin and the Shroud eye matched, with both measuring approximately 1½ mm. [Filas, F.L., "The Dating of the Shroud of Turin from Coins of Pontius Pilate," Cogan Productions: Youngstown AZ, Second edition, 1982] The matching of four consecutive letters strongly suggests that this is not an optical illusion or coincidence. According to Father Filas, for these letters to have appeared by accident, or as a result of a chance pattern in the weave of the cloth, is almost impossible; the odds of all four letters appearing in consecutive order are extremely remote. [Filas, Ibid.] An even more convincing point of authenticity to support the existence of a Pontius Pilate coin over the right eye of the Shroud image can be found in the letters UCAI. Prior to the identification of these letters on the Shroud, an interesting point concerning these Pilate coins had never been known to numismatists. The UCAI is actually misspelled and should read UKAI. The misspelling probably occurred because the pronunciations of `Caesar' in Latin and `Kaisaros' in Greek were identical, with both having the hard `K' sound (though the Greek C sounded like the Latin S). After finding this spelling over the right eye of the man in the Shroud, Pilate coins were checked for their spelling. It was discovered that at least four Pilate coins with this same misspelling exist today. [Otterbein, A.J., personal communication, September 23, 1986] Furthermore, the letters UCAI on the Shroud face are located around the curve of an astrologer's staff, or lituus. This lituus is another very important point of identification, for it was used as a constant motif on coins minted by Pontius Pilate after A.D. 29. Following the rule of Pilate, this lituus was not used again by a ruler in Palestine, nor anywhere in the Roman world, as a central independent symbol. [Filas, F.L., "The Dating of the Shroud of Turin from Coins of Pontius Pilate," Cogan Productions: Youngstown AZ, Second edition, 1982] Occasionally, it has been found as a small side decoration, but never more than that. On the Shroud image, the lituus is not as clear as the inscription, but the image on the coin is completely consistent with a lituus turned to the right, or clockwise, as was the lituus on the coin with the inscription TIOUKAICAPOC. When a photo of the Pilate coin was enlarged to match the size of the enlarged coin over the right eye of the man in the Shroud, the lituus measured 11 to 12 mm from its base to the top of its curve; this is the same measurement as the lituus on the coin found on the Shroud. [Filas, Ibid.] In addition, unlike the graceful curves of the lituus stem on most Pilate coins, the coin mentioned above with the abbreviated inscription has a cruder-appearing lituus that lacks graceful curves on its stem. Again, this design matches the lituus found on the coin over the right eye of the man in the Shroud. [Ibid.] ... Further comparison of the enlarged area over the right eye of the man in the Shroud with the enlarged Pontius Pilate lepton reveals even more similarities. The sizes and outlines of both are quite similar. [Filas, F.L., "The Dating of the Shroud of Turin from Coins of Pontius Pilate," Cogan Productions: Youngstown AZ, Second edition, 1982, pp. 11-12] Further, the right side of the rim of each has been clipped at the 1:30 to 3:30 o'clock position ... Father Filas summarized the many points of comparison: `To sum up, there exists a combination of size, position, angular rotation, relative mutual proportion, accuracy of duplication ... and parity [i.e., turned in the proper direction]. This combination concerns at least six motifs: a lituus or astrologer's staff, four letters, `UCAI,' and a clipped coin margin.' [Ibid., p.5] While these features are seen in varying degrees on numerous photographic negatives taken by different photographers, [Ibid., p.7] They are most clearly visible on an enlargement of the entire two thirds life-size photograph. The Enrie photographs were taken with film that emphasized contrast, whereas subsequent photographers used improved film that tended to downplay contrasts [Ibid.] . Also, subsequent photographers secured the Shroud to its frame with magnets, which produced tiny folds or draping effects rather than the stretched tautness of the Shroud cloth that was obtained by Enrie, who is thought to have used metal tacks.[Ibid., p.7] Unfortunately this means that STURP's many photos do little to prove or disprove the existence of these coins. Further imaging of the Shroud should take Ernie's method into account so we may learn more about this theory. The photographic negative from which all of the above-discussed features were found has been processed in a Log E Interpretation System, which is very similar to a VP-8 Image Analyzer. Pictures of the enlarged areas over the eyes were also processed with this system. The letters UCAI, the lituus, and the clipped edge at the 1:30 to 3:30 clock position are all apparent ... Furthermore, for the first time the clarity of the boundary of a coin over the left eye also became visible. These nondistorted features appear on the Log E Interpretation image in the same manner as found on the photographic negative; this only points further toward a coin with the same inscription, motifs, and designs." (Antonacci, M., 2000, "Resurrection of the Shroud: New Scientific, Medical, and Archeological Evidence," M. Evans & Co: New York NY, pp.102-105).

"In a VP-8 relief made from a photograph of the Shroud face, researchers noted flat button-like objects over each eye. The characteristics of these images led the investigators to conclude that they were solid objects on top of the eyes of the man in the Shroud. In light of readings he made about Jewish burial customs, Jackson theorized that these objects were coins placed on the eyes to keep them closed in death. In 1979, the late Francis Filas reported identifying the letters UCAI and a design resembling a shepherd's crook, or lituus, in the coin area over the right anatomic eye. [Whanger & Whanger 1991:3, Whanger & Whanger 1985:767, Stevenson & Habermas 1990:66] These patterns match those of a lepton of Pontius Pilate, struck in Israel during the time of Jesus, with the exception that the Latin C is apparently a misspelling of what should have been the (identically pronounced) Greek K in KAICAROC (Caesar). Filas, however, managed to obtain a Pontius Pilate lepton with exactly this misspelling, and at least six others have been found, [Whanger in Meacham 1983 Comments, p.304] thus rendering academic any debate over the likelihood of a coin with such a misspelling being struck. Using their overlay technique, the Whangers compared a photograph of Filas' coin with a computer-enhanced photo of the area over the right eye on the Shroud. .... They found a very close match, noting at least 74 points of congruence. In order to demonstrate that it is not the case, as one critic of the Shroud has put it, that `the alleged coin-images are artifacts of observers' hopes and beyond the limits of photo enlargements and the coarseness of the Shroud weave,' [John R. Cole in Meacham 1983 Comments, p. 296] a number of confirmatory studies have been carried out. The Whangers twice repeated their polarized overlay comparison, first with a right-left reversal of the coin, and then with a top-bottom reversal. In the first case, they observed only ten points of congruence; in the latter, they observed six. They also performed a comparison with a lepton of the Procurator Coponius (C.E. 6-9) in place of the Pontius Pilate lepton (the two coins are nearly the same size and shape,) but were able to tabulate only 11 points of congruence. [Whanger & Whanger 1985:770] A series of computer-aided studies of the Shroud image carried out by Robert Haralick of the Spatial Data Analysis Laboratory at Virginia Polytechnic and State University also supports Filas' initial observations. Image analysis revealed not only the letters UCAI but also three additional letters in their proper positions. [Haralick 1983:34] The Whangers further noted that the coin image over the right eye `is so similar to [Filas' lepton] that the two coins must have been struck from the same die.' The pattern on the back of F'ilas' coin identifies the year in which it was struck: the 16th year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, or 29 C.E. This is also the only year in which another Pontius Pilate lepton, the Julia lepton, was struck; though the image over the left eye on the Shroud is less distinct than that over the right, the Whangers have reported 73 points of congruence between the image over the left eye and a Julia lepton. [Whanger & Whanger 1985:767, Whanger & Whanger 1991:4] Extensive debate has surrounded the discovery of coins on the eyes of the man in the Shroud. Critics have questioned both the reliability of the identification and the archaeological evidence for the practice of placing coins on the eyes of a corpse. The work of Haralick and the Whangers demonstrates that the images over the eyes on the Shroud are not anomalies in the cloth weave. In conjunction with the VP-8 analysis, this provides supportive evidence for the presence of coins on the eyes of the man in the Shroud. For several years after the initial identification of these images, the issue of archaeological justification for this discovery was hotly debated. It has become apparent in recent years that there is little archaeological support for a first-century Jewish practice of placing coins on the eyes of the deceased. [Hachlili and Killebrew 1983] However, there is neither a complete lack of support nor a strong theoretical argument against such an occasional practice." (Borkan, M., 1995, "Ecce Homo?: Science and the Authenticity of the Turin Shroud," Vertices, Duke University, Winter, Vol. X, No. 2, pp.18-51, pp.28-29).

"One might well say that the Turin shroud guards its mystery to this day. Could it be possible that new developments may come from so unexpected a field as numismatics ? Strange as it may seem, the possibility cannot be excluded. It all began at NASA in 1978. At this time researchers Jackson, Jumper and Stephenson wanted to test the capacities of their VP8 new computer, specially for three dimensional extrapolation, so they submitted the face on the shroud for analysis. The image obtained, now famous, distinctly revealed two circular protrusions on the eyelids. The experts immediately made a connection with an ancient custom which advocated the placing of coins on the eyes of the dead to keep them closed. Archaeological excavations have confirmed this tradition. Skeletons from the first and second century C.E. have been found with a coin in each eye-socket at Jericho and at En Boqeq. Everything then happened very quickly. The following year Professor Francis Filas, a teacher at Loyola University of Chicago, made an enlargement of the image of the left eye and noticed a strange curved shape with traces of letters above it. Intrigued, he went to an ancient coins expert from Chicago, Michael Marx, who concluded that it was probably the image of Pilate's lituus coin. I have reproduced the relevant illustration so that anyone may form their own opinion on the matter. In 1980, an electronic analysis performed in the Overland Park Laboratory in Texas confirmed not only the soundness of Professor Filas' findings, but also allowed the admission of evidence of another coin on the right eye, without however being able to identify why precise details were absent. Other researchers, Alan and Mary Whanger, took up the investigation in 1985, applying the technique of polarised light superimposition; they thought they detected on the left eye coin the three ears of barley encircled with faint traces of letters: this indicated that it could be the coin minted in year 29. What credibility may be given to these `discoveries' ? Like everything else touching on the Turin Shroud, each discovery, whether in favour of its authenticity or against, is immediately contested by supporters holding the opposite view. The thesis of Pilate's coins on the eyes is neither more or less argued about than any other discovery or supposition concerning this shroud. For my part, I must admit that I have failed to detect any trace of the year 29 coin on the right eye. On the other hand, the similarity of the centre left eye image to a coin bearing the lituus motif is actually more disturbing. The round form gives an impression suggestive of the lituus cross, (albeit a little less curved than in usual) surrounded by traces of letters which could be a vestige of the centre of the inscription `TIBEPIOY KAICAPOC'."(Fontanille, J.-P., 2007, "Pilate's Coins and Turin Shroud," Numismalink, 5 April).

"" The Haralick Report It became apparent that computer enhancement or some such sophisticated technique might be an important avenue to allow identification. Fr. Filas subsequently submitted the coin and Shroud image for comparative analysis at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University's Spatial Data Analysis Laboratory. Dr. Robert Haralick, then at the Institute, offered cautious support to Filas' hypothesis while stressing the fundamental problem that science has no way of determining whether what appears as a coin inscription is anything but a random quirk of the Shroud's weave. In the abstract introducing his report, Dr. Haralick advises that: `A number of digital enhancements were performed on imagery digitized from the 1931 Enrie photographs of the Shroud and a 1978 S.T.U.R.P. photograph taken by Vernon Miller. The enhancements provide supporting evidence that the right eye area of the Shroud image contains remnants of patterns similar to those of a known Pontius Pilate coin dating from 29 A.D. [Haralick, R.M., "Analysis of Digital Images of the Shroud of Turin," Spacial Data Analysis Laboratory, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University: Blacksburg VA, December 1983, p.2] After extensive study, Dr. Haralick concludes: `Thus, in the enlargement of the right eye image we find supporting evidence for a bright oval area: a shepherd's staff pattern as the main feature in the bright area; and bright segment patterns just to the side and top of the staff pattern, which in varying degrees match to the letters OUCAIC. [p.34] Haralick goes on to caution the reader that: This evidence cannot be said to be conclusive evidence that an image of the Pontius Pilate coin appears in the right eye of the Enrie Shroud Image... however, the evidence is definitely supporting evidence because there is some degree of match between what one would expect to find if the Shroud did indeed contain a faint image of the Pilate coin and what we can in fact observe in the original and in the digitally produced images. [p.34]" (Iannone, J.C., 1998, "The Mystery of the Shroud of Turin: New Scientific Evidence," St Pauls: Staten Island NY, pp.39-40. Emphasis original).

"A Medieval or Renaissance Artist? Dr. Whanger observes that, since this unique coin, struck in 29 A.D., was not found until 1977, it is hardly plausible to claim that a medieval artist (or forger) would have included this tiny detail of a coin then unknown and that could not be discerned for at least another five hundred years when optical, photographic and computer imaging techniques would first be able to demonstrate such fine points. [Whanger, A. & M., "Polarized Image Overlay Technique," Applied Optics, March 15, 1985, p.767] Fr. Filas supports the authenticity also by saying that: `The conclusion points in one inescapable direction: forgery of the Shroud is utterly impossible. No forger in the Middle Ages or even earlier would have been able to fabricate tiny imprints over both eyes on the Shroud cloth in photographic negative - with no pigment - reflecting letters 1/32 inches high with a rare misspelling, including an astrologer's staff existing practically nowhere else in numismatic history in full size of 1/2 inch, from one Roman coin (Pilate lepton) issued certainly in Palestine in 29 A.D. - and a second Roman coin (Julia lepton) whose traces point again to Palestine and 29 A.D.' [Filas, F., "The Dating of the Shroud of Turin from Coins of Pontius Pilate," Cogan Productions, 1984, p.20] (Iannone, 1998, pp.43-44. Emphasis original).

"Another photograph of the Shroud which we subjected to relief enhancement with the relief purposefully somewhat suppressed was a close up of the face. .... The suppression revealed something unexpected - over each eye appeared objects resembling small buttons. Though it seemed natural on the basis of the computer generated picture to interpret these features as objects resting atop closed eyelids, we felt compelled to consider several alternative explanations: ... we were left with but one conclusion - that the buttonlike features are what they seem to be, namely solid objects resting upon the eyelids. This identification agrees with ancient Jewish burial custom where objects (potsherd fragments or coins) were apparently sometimes placed over the eyes. Detailed identification is not possible without further investigation, but we propose that they may be some kind of coins since: (1) they are both nearly circular and approximately the same size, and (2) scriptural accounts indicate that Joseph of Arimathaea, a wealthy man, was responsible for burying Jesus. He obviously had money on his person at the time of Jesus' burial for he was able to purchase a linen burial cloth. Thus, if Joseph followed Jewish burial custom to cover the eyes, then it is not unreasonable that the most natural and convenient thing for him to use would have been coins rather than pottery fragments. If our conjecture is true that these images are of coins, then we may have a truly unique method of dating the image. Computer enhancement of high quality closeup photographs of the eye region followed by a statistical correlation with known coinage of a given era and locality may be able to: (1) identify the objects as coins and (2) date and locate the probable time and place the image and not just the cloth was formed. Indeed, we have some computer enhancements which, though lacking sufficient resolution for positive identification, indicate a possible structure on the surface of the objects. In addition, Ian Wilson has suggested several Judean Bronze Lepton coins which are about the correct size as the buttonlike images. In particular, a Lepton of Pontius Pilate coined in A.D. 30-31 seems to agree especially well. .... According to Wilson, a Lepton would probably be a likely candidate for Joseph of Arimathaea, an orthodox Jew, to use since it was acceptable as a Temple offering. .... If the identification of these images as solid objects over the eyes is correct, then another significant aspect of the image forming process comes to light: whatever process formed the image had to have acted the same way not only over the body and hair, but also over presumably organically inert fragments situated atop the eyes. This conclusion, we believe, is of significance, for it places great restrictions on the possible image formation processes. In short, three dimensionality implies that the image forming process, acted uniformly through space over the body, front and back, and even seemed to act independently of the type of surface, organic and inorganic, from which the image was generated. In addition, this identification of the `objects' seems to strengthen the authenticity of the Shroud. For what artist or forger in the Fourteenth Century would have thought to place objects on the eyes of Jesus?" (Jackson, J.P., et al., 1977, "The Three Dimensional Image On Jesus' Burial Cloth," in Stevenson, K.E., ed., "Proceedings of the 1977 United States Conference of Research on The Shroud of Turin," Holy Shroud Guild: Bronx NY, pp.74-94, pp.89-91).

"As we have seen, medical examiner Robert Bucklin noted `rounded foreign objects can be noted on the imprint in the area of the right and left eyes.' [Bucklin, R., "Autopsy on the Man of the Shroud," Third International Scientific Symposium on the Shroud of Turin, Nice, France, 12 May 1997, p.3] Jackson and his colleagues also noticed `buttonlike objects' over each eye in their VP-8 relief.' [Borkan, M., "Ecce Homo? Science and the Authenticity of the Turin Shroud," Vertices, Duke University Magazine of Science, Technology, and Medicine, Winter 1995, Vol. X, No. 2, p.28] ... Giulio Ricci ... examined five possible explanations for these objects ... Ricci insisted that there was but one conclusion possible, and that was `that the button-like features are ... solid objects resting upon the eyelids.' [Ricci, G., "Historical, Medical, and Physical Study of the Holy Shroud," in Stevenson, K.E., ed., "Proceedings of the 1977 United States Conference of Research on The Shroud of Turin," Holy Shroud Guild: Bronx NY, 1977, pp.89-90] Jackson believed that the button-like objects were in fact coins placed by Jesus' family and friends to keep his eyes closed after death. Research by Francis L. Filas, a professor of theology at Loyola University in Chicago, tended to support this hypothesis. Using high-magnification photography, Filas found the letters UCAI on the right eye, arranged in a coin-like curve. He thought that these might be the central letters of the coin inscription TIBERIOU CAISEROS - Greek for Tiberius Caesar, who was Roman Emperor during the time of Christ's ministry. He also found over the eye a tiny design that looked like a shepherd's crook. He was able to locate authentic Roman coins, minted between A.D. 29 and A.D. 32 (which was the time of Jesus' ministry) that contained a shepherd's staff as well as the Greek inscription TIBERIOU CAISEROS ... Alan and Mary Whanger ... Comparing a photograph of the Tiberius Caesar coin, known as a lepton, or `widow's mite,' with a computer-enhanced photograph of the area over the right eye of the Shroud image .. found `a very close match,' noting at least seventy-four `areas of congruence.' In other words, the Whangers found seventy-four features on the coin that closely corresponded to features on the Shroud image. ... [Borkan, M., "Ecce Homo? Science and the Authenticity of the Turin Shroud," Vertices, Duke University Magazine of Science, Technology, and Medicine, Winter 1995, Vol. X, No. 2, p.28] The image of the object over the left eye on the Shroud is fainter than that over the right, but the Whangers found seventy-three points of congruence between that image and a Roman coin, contemporary to the time of Christ, known as a `Julia lepton.' [Borkan, pp.28-29] The Whangers sent their findings to be checked by Robert Haralick of the Spatial Data Analysis Laboratory of the Virginia Polytechnic and State University (Virginia Tech). Haralick gave `cautious support' to the Whangers and to Filas ... He offered, `The evidence is definitely supporting evidence because there is some degree of match between what one would expect to find if the Shroud did indeed contain a faint image of the Pilate coin and what we can in fact observe in the original and in the digitally processed images.' [Whanger, A.D., "A Reply to Doubts Concerning the Coins Over the Eyes," The Holy Shroud Guild Newsletter, Vol. 3, No. 56, December, 1997, p.7] ... it seems to have been a Jewish custom to close the eyes of the deceased, and the placement of coins was a practical way of keeping the eyelids shut. Archaeologists working in Israel have, in fact, found coins in the eye orbits of three skulls from the approximate time of Jesus. [Moroni, M., "Pontius Pilate's Coin on the Right Eye of the Man in the Holy Shroud in the Light of New Archaeological Findings," Berard, A., ed., "Symposium Proceedings: History, Science, Theology, and the Shroud, St. Louis, MO, USA, June 22-23, 1991," The Man in the Shroud Committee of Amarillo: Amarillo TX, 1991, p.278]." (Ruffin, C.B., 1999, "The Shroud of Turin: The Most Up-To-Date Analysis of All the Facts Regarding the Church's Controversial Relic," Our Sunday Visitor: Huntington IN, pp.105-108).

"SUMMARY The two roundish bodies in relief, pointed out by J. Jackson and G. Tamburelli, and a few alphabetical letters arranged circle-wise, detected by Father Filas, are the premises for considering that coins were placed in the eye-socket areas of the Shroud. Now this hypothesis is beginning to consolidate: the shape of the `K' letter, a small `pastoral' or `shepherd's' staff with a crooked end, and two faint parallel segments just under the vertical line, are imprinted on the right eye: it is missing the rim of the coin, but there is the presence of a roundish halo reveals its rim. The coin, we have found out, never known before by numismatists, having an irregular diameter, with a maximum axis of 16mm, in addition to the imprint of a staff in the shape of `a question mark' reversed, has also the imprint of two segments, only a few millimeters long, which certainly do not belong to the `shepherd's staff' outline, but are part of the stamp. Furthermore, the discovery of an ancient stone, used to found coins of the first century, explains the possible rare presence of the two segments: these segments be imprinted on any point on the rim of the coin, caused by tongs which are used during the final step of coinage. By radiographic experiments carried out on a skull and by using coins of that period, we also confirm that only a certain kind of small coins laid on the eyes can reach the medialis hollow of the skull when these coins come out of the `superior orbitalis fissure.' Moreover, it will be explained that the coins placed in the mouth fall, in the contrary, outside the skull due to decay. Also the well-known discovery of two skulls - both with two small coins of Christ's time - at the Jewish Community Cemetery of Jericho, lead us to the irrefutable conclusion that on the Shroud cloth a decal of a coin really was imprinted which portrayed a `staff' or LITUUS, the symbol existing uniquely on very rare coins minted by Pontius Pilate in the XVIth year of the Tiberius Kingdom, 29-30 AD." (Moroni, M., 1991, "Pontius Pilate's Coin on the Right Eye of the Man in the Holy Shroud, in the Light of the New Archaeological Findings," in Berard, A., ed., "History, Science, Theology and the Shroud," Symposium Proceedings, St. Louis Missouri, June 22-23, 1991, The Man in the Shroud Committee of Amarillo, Texas: Amarillo TX, pp.295-297. Emphasis original).

"Even more impressive is the coin-on-the-eye work of Professor Francis L. Filas of Loyola University, Chicago, which seems to give us a verified date for the Shroud image that is far more precise than carbon-dating can ever be. [Filas, F.L., "The Dating of the Shroud of Turin from Coins of Pontius Pilate," 1982] Three-dimensional enlargements of the Face of the Shroud are like relief maps, and there are some objects on the eyelids that stand up like thick buttons. During their early 3-D work, Drs. Jackson and Jumper noted these definite protuberances and tentatively concluded that they might be coins placed on each eyelid to keep them closed, as was a common burial practice in the first half of the first century in Judea. [Marino, J., "First Century Jewish Burial Customs," Saint Louis Priory, St. Louis, MO, n.d.] Thereafter, tentative validation came by happenstance in August 1979 when Professor Filas was enlarging his slides of the Shroud image to fill a twelve foot, closed-circuit television screen. He was startled to see what appeared to be Greek letters on the right eye of the Shroud Face. With better enlargements and the technical assistance of coin expert Michael Marx, he discovered a 15mm (5/8 inch) disc inscribed with four recognizable Greek letters and an astrologer's staff, a lituus . After research on historic coins, the size of the coin, the size and shape and position of the inscriptions, and the sequence of the four letters, were all found to be exactly correct for a small bronze coin known as the Pontius Pilate coin, minted in Palestine from 29 to 32. (Pilate was procurator of Judea from A.D. 26 to 36). The astrologer's staff was used as an independent symbol on no other coin in the Roman world at any time (it occasionally appeared as a small side decoration). The odds in favor of the identification of the coin and its date are in the range of millions to one against any other interpretation. Although the coin is very rare, copies of it are available and have been compared with the Shroud by Filas. However, the coin of the Shroud has a misspelling: magnification shows the Greek letters `Y CAI' but should read, `TIBEPIOY KAICAPOC' (meaning, `Of Tiberius Caesar'). Some variations of the coin show only IOY instead of the full name of Tiberius (language specialists use different letters for transliteration of the Greek characters; IOY, end of first word, is rendered IOU by some). All coin experts know that coins of that period and coinage did sometimes contain spelling errors, and now, even more spectacularly, Filas has found three actual Pontius Pilate coins that do have that error, a C instead of K ... The very strong evidence presented by Filas in dating the Shroud was supported in spring 1982 by the independent research of Professor Alan Whanger of Duke University. Whanger developed a photographic technique ... using polarized light and computer enhancement. Using one of Filas's actual Pontius Pilate coins to superimpose over a right-eye enlargement of the Shroud face, he states that he has found seventy-four points of congruence between the two. He finds the actual coin to be almost a perfect match for the markings on the Shroud face, so that the only reasonable conclusion he can come to is that they were coins struck from the same die. Whanger was able to extend the findings of Filas by identifying six Greek letters (IOY CAI) on the Shroud, whereas Filas had been able to discern only four. Whanger's technique identifies the coin on the left eye as another Pontius Pilate lepton, known as the Julia coin, struck only in the year 29, in honor of Caesar's mother, who died that year. Sheaves of grain and parts of eleven (out of a total of fourteen) letters that appear on the coin are identified by Whanger. This is not as certain an identification as the coin on the right eye, but no other coin of the period will fit at all. Filas now owns two Pontius Pilate coins with the C for K misspelling ... Even the critics do not say the 3-D protuberances over the Shroud eyes are not coins; the disagreement is whether a particular coin is proven. ... In any event, the Filas/Whanger coin identification work would seem to completely eliminate the possibility of forgery of the Shroud. Such a forger/artist would have had to execute, without pigment and in photographic negativity, tiny coin imprints on each eye containing letters one-thirty-second of an inch (one millimeter) high. The three scientific techniques ... identifying the Pontius Pilate coins of A.D. 29-31 on the eyes of the Man in the Shroud, have been further validated and extended by Dr. Robert M. Haralick of the Spatial Data Analysis Laboratory at Virginia Polytechnic Institute (four different techniques). Haralick's use of computer-enhanced digital image analysis now gives strong evidence for nine Greek letters in sequence on the perimeter of the coin appearing over the right eye, expanding the four-letter sequence found initially by Filas, who died February 15, 1985. This work would seem to historically pinpoint the death of Jesus to the seven-year period from A.D. 29, when these coins were first minted in Judea, to A.D. 36, when Pilate left office (since his coins then would no longer be legal tender) ... Subsequently, in 1985, Italian numismatist Mario Maroni announced confirmation of these findings." (Tribbe, F.C., 2006, "Portrait of Jesus: The Illustrated Story of the Shroud of Turin," [1983], Paragon House Publishers: St. Paul MN, Second edition, pp.114-120).

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