© Stephen E. Jones
[Above: Geoffroy I de Charny's (see below) coat of arms on pilgrim badge from the exposition of the Shroud at Lirey, France, in c.1355 (left). The de Charny coat of arms, "gules (red) three silver shields" (right).]
Garza-Valdes, Leoncio. Dr. Leoncio Antonio Garza-Valdes (1939-2010) was a Mexican-born pediatrician living in San Antonio, Texas, whose hobby was microbiology. To reconcile his belief in the Shroud's authenticity and the 1260-1390 radiocarbon date of the Shroud, Garza-Valdes proposed a theory that the Shroud had an "accretion... of microbiological organisms" which formed a "bioplastic coating" of younger carbon, which gave the 1st century Shroud an apparent 13th-14th century radiocarbon date. In 1993 Garza-Valdes proposed his theory in Turin to physicist Professor Luigi Gonella (1930–2007), who had been the Roman Catholic Church's coordinator of the Shroud's radiocarbon dating. Gonella rejected Garza-Valdes' proposal because to shift the Shroud's radiocarbon date ~12-13 centuries, "the coating would be the weight of the Shroud, and this was not the case". But Garza-Valdes simply ignored this obvious refutation of his theory and obtained some threads of the Shroud from Giovanni Riggi (1935-2008), which was part of the sample that was cut by him in 1988 but not given to the three laboratories. Back in San Antonio Garza-Valdes claimed to have photographed the bioplastic coating under a microscope. Garza-Valdes gave a bloodstained thread from the Shroud to San Antonia Professor of Microbiology, Stephen J. Mattingly, who gave Assistant Professor in Microbiology, Victor V. Tryon, the task of extracting DNA from the thread. Tryon did extract fragments of three different human male genes from the Shroud blood sample. In 1998 Garza-Valdes published an account of all this in his book, "The DNA of God?" However, as the late blood chemist Prof. Alan D. Adler (1932-2000) pointed out in 1999, the DNA could have been from anyone who had handled the Shroud over the centuries. Adler also listed problems with Garza-Valdes' "bioplastic coating" theory: 1) for a bioplastic coating to have shifted the Shroud's 1st century carbon date to the 13-14th century would require "about a 50% increase in the C14," which would be "a prodigious amount of bacterial metabolism"; 2) but "where does all this energy for growth come from?"; 3) "Where does the mass come from?"; 4) "Does this microorganism fix the nitrogen from air as required for its growth and metabolism?," and 5) "Where does it get its sulfur, phosphorus, and minerals from and to where have they disappeared?" Adler further pointed out that the Shroud's shiny appearance that Garza-Valdes thought was a bioplastic coating was in fact what "all linen looks like ... It is called luster," and Garza-Valdes' photomicrographs "of what appear to be entubulated fibers" are "simply out of focus." Note that the same problem of the "prodigious amount" of contamination required to convert a 1st century chronological date of the Shroud to a 13th-14th radiocarbon date, means that conventional explanations of the discrepancy all fail, leaving my theory that the radiocarbon dating laboratories were duped by a computer hacker as the only viable explanation how the first century Shroud had a 13th-14th century radiocarbon date.
Genoa, Holy Face of (see "Holy Face of Genoa").
Geoffroy de Charny (c. 1240-1314) [the spelling "Geoffroi" and "de Charney," "de Charnay," etc, are optional but see future "Geoffroy II de Charny"] was a Preceptor of Normandy for the Knights Templar. Together with Jacques de Molay (c. 1243–1314), Grand Master of the Knights Templar, de Charny was burnt at the stake on the orders of King Philip IV of France (1268–1314), for recanting his confessions of the trumped up charges of heresy, sodomy and blasphemy against the Templars, extracted under torture. Genealogist Noel Currer-Briggs (1919-2004), wrote:
"Jean de Charny had two brothers, the Templar Preceptor of Normandy, and Dreux de Charny, Seigneur de Savoisy, and a sister, Jeanne de Charny ..."and
"Geoffroi I de Charny founded the collegiate [self-governing] church of Lirey ... the Preceptor of Normandy, Geoffroi de Charny ... was almost certainly the uncle of the Geoffroi de Charny mentioned above".However, according to most online genealogies, "Jean de Charny" (c.1263–1323) was the son, not the brother, of "Dreux de Charny" (1235-1285), as their age spans indicate. And since Jean de Charny was the father of Geoffroy I de Charny (see next), that would make Geoffroy the Templar the great-uncle of Geoffroy I de Charny. Moreover, since there are no earlier Geoffroys in the de Charny and de Mont-Saint-Jean family trees, it is likely that Geoffroy I de Charny was named after Geoffroy de Charny the Templar. Indeed, since Geoffroy I was born about 1300 and Geoffroy the Templar was not arrested until 1307, they may have known each other.
Geoffroy I de Charny (c.1300–1356) [see also Lirey (1)] was a French knight, author of works on chivalry, and the first undisputed owner of the Shroud. He was the third son of Jean I de Charny de Mont St Jean (c.1263-1323) and Jeanne de Berzé et Villurbain (c.1260-1310). In c. 1336 Geoffroy married Jeanne de Toucy (c. 1301-48). In 1337, the year the Hundred Years' War (1337-1453) between England and France began, Geoffroy fought at Languedoc and Guyenne in southern France. In the west he defended Tournai (1340) and Angers (1341). In that latter battle, Geoffroy fought alongside the ~22 year-old son of King Philip VI (1293–1350), the future King John II (1319–64). In 1342, during the battle of north coastal Morlaix in Brittany, Geoffroy was captured and taken prisoner to England. However, he was allowed to return to England to raise the money for his ransom, which was paid and in 1342 he resumed fighting the English on the west coast near Vannes. In 1345, during a brief truce with the English, Geoffroy and Edward de Beaujeu (1316-1351) captured the Turkish-held harbour fortress of Smyrna in a surprise attack. The next year, 1346, Geoffroy resumed fighting the English at the siege of Aiguillon, in south-west France. After that battle, Geoffroy was promoted to the rank of chevalier (knight), appointed a member of the King's Council, and made Governor of Saint-Omer, near Calais, on France's far north coast. In 1348 Geoffroy's wife Jeanne de Toucy died childless, probably of the Black Death. In 1349, while attempting to recapture Calais, Geoffroy was again captured and taken prisoner to England, but this time a huge ransom was posted for his return. While in captivity Geoffroy wrote his Book of Chivalry, setting out his views on the ideal knight. In 1351 his ransom was paid by the new King John II and Geoffroy returned to France, where the king appointed him the bearer of the Oriflamme of St. Denis, whose role was to personally defend the king in battle. The next year, 1352, King John II made Geoffroy a knight of the new Order of the Star. In that same year Geoffroy married his second wife, Jeanne de Vergy (c. 1332-1428) and in that year their son, Geoffroy II de Charny (1352–1398), was born.
Geoffroy I owned (or knew he was going to own) the Shroud by 1343. In 1343 Geoffroy I applied to Philip VI for funds to build and operate a chapel in Lirey with five chaplains. Geoffroy himself would contribute his inheritance from an great-aunt Alix de Joinville (1256-1336), the mother of Bishop Pierre d'Arcis (c.1300-95), which further explains Bishop d'Arcis later hostility to the exhibition of the Shroud at that same Lirey church (see future). In June that same year, 1343, King Philip donated land with an annual rental value for financing the chapel. In 1349, in a petition to the French Pope at Avignon, Clement VI (1291–1352), Geoffroy advised that he had constructed a chapel at Lirey with five canons (priests), and requested that it be raised to collegiate church. For a tiny village of 50 houses, this is evidence that Geoffroy already had the Shroud in 1343 (or knew he was going to get it), and was planning to exhibit it at that Lirey church. However, due to Geoffroy I's second imprisonment in England 1349-51, the collegiate status of the church was not proceeded with. Nevertheless, by 1353 the church had six canons, one of whom was Dean, as well as three other clerics. Moreover in that same year, 1353, King John II agreed to a further annual revenue increase. In 1354, Geoffroy renewed his petition to the new Avignon Pope Innocent IV (c. 1195-1254), renewing his request that the Lirey church be raised to collegiate status, which was granted. So from a simple rural chapel in a village of 50 fifty houses, Geoffroy was preparing his Lirey church from 1343, to be a centre of pilgrimage! Clearly the pilgrimages would be to see the Shroud (as happened in c. 1355. So Geoffroy must have owned the Shroud from no later than 1343 (or knew he was going to). And King Phillip VI must have known that Geoffroy had (or was going to get) the Shroud from at least 1343, for him to agree to fund a church with such a disproportionately large number of clergy for such a tiny village. So too must his son King John II to agree to increase funding of the Lirey church in 1353, as well as the French Avignon Popes Clement VI and Innocent IV. This places a 1343 time constraint on theories of when and how Geoffroy I de Charny obtained the Shroud (see next).
King Philip VI gave the Shroud to Geoffroy I. The explanation that best fits the facts of Geoffroy I de Charny owning (or knowing that he was going to own) the Shroud by 1343 and King Philip VI readily agreeing in 1343 to fund the yet future Lirey church's disproportionate number of 5 canons (priests) for a tiny village of only 50 houses, is that King Philip VI gave (or was intending to give) the Shroud to Geoffroy I. This is actually stated in a 1525 document which was posted at the entrance of the rebuilt Lirey church:
"King Philip of Valois ... informed that the count of Charny had got out of prison [in 1342] ... sent for him ... and so that the church of Lirey would be more revered and honored, he gave him the holy shroud of Our Lord, Savior and Redeemer Jesus Christ ... to be put ... in the church that he hoped and proposed to build .... And ... gave him leave and permission to give the church, for an endowment, up to the sum of two hundred sixty livres tournois; and afterwards the king John, son of Philip of Valois, also gave the count of Charny power and permission to give and increase the foundation of the church, up to the sum of a hundred livres tournois besides the gift of his father; all in amortized rent without paying any tax, from which he released him by a special grace on account of the great and agreeable services that the count of Charny had done for them" (my emphasis).This was accepted as reliable by arch-Shroud critic Canon Ulysse Chevalier (1841–1923), and by earlier Shroud pro-authenticists Beecher (1928), Barnes (1934) and Currer-Briggs (1987). But it was rejected on inadequate grounds by both Wilson (1979 & 1998) and Crispino (1988). A sufficient reason for Philip to give Geoffroy the Shroud would be if in the 1341 battle of Angers, Geoffroy saved the life of Philip's son, the future King John II. That would fit Geoffroy II's explanation that the Shroud was "freely given" to his father and Geoffroy II's daughter Marguerite's explanation that it was "conquis par feu" ("conquered by fire"), i.e. obtained by conquest in battle, by her grandfather Geoffroy I. But there are other plausible explanations of how King Philip VI obtained the Shroud and then gave it to Geoffroy I de Charny [see future "Besançon," "Jeanne de Vergy," and "Philip VI"].
Geoffroy I held the first undisputed exposition of the Shroud at Lirey in c. 1355. In c.1389 the Bishop of Troyes, Pierre d'Arcis (c. 1300-95), claimed in an unsigned, undated, draft, memorandum to the French Avignon Pope Clement VII (1342–1394), that one of his predecessors, Bishop Henri de Poitiers (c.1327-1370), in about 1355 became aware of a cloth "upon which ... was depicted the twofold image of one man ... back and front... upon which the whole likeness of the Saviour ... [was] impressed together with the wounds which He bore," which was being displayed at the "collegiate church ... Lirey" and was being declared by its Dean to be "the actual shroud in which our Saviour Jesus Christ was enfolded in the tomb". [see future "Pierre d'Arcis"]. That Geoffroy I and his second wife Jeanne de Vergy (c. 1332-1428) held that c. 1355 exposition is evident from a pilgrim's lead badge found in in the Seine river in 1855 which depicts two clerics holding the Shroud at an exhibition displaying the de Charny and de Vergy coats of arms. [see future "Lirey"].
Death of Geoffroy I de Charny in 1356. Geoffroy I de Charny was killed at the Battle of Poitiers on 19 September 1356, holding the Oriflamme aloft and shielding King John II with his body. Fourteen years later, in 1370, with his now remarried widow Jeanne de Vergy and his ~18 year old son Geoffroy II proudly looking on, Geoffroy I was given a hero's state funeral and reburial in Paris by King Charles V (1338–80):
"A more revealing gesture of the esteem in which Geoffroy de Charny had been held by Philip VI and John II is shown, in 1370, when King Charles V with honor, gratitude, and affection for the `perfect knight', transferred his remains from a hasty burial in a Franciscan monastery near Poitiers to the recently-founded, richly-endowed Abbey of the Celestins in Paris, there to rest beside the heart of King John II."who as an ~18 year old was with his father King John II and Geoffroy I at the Battle of Poitiers but escaped.
Geoffroy I and the Shroud's "1350 AD" first carbon-date. Note the further evidence that Arizona's first "1350 AD" radiocarbon date of the Shroud was a fraud, perpetrated by a computer hacker, allegedly Timothy W. Linick [see future "hacking" and "Linick"], because in 1350 the Shroud was owned (and had been since ~1341) by the "perfect knight," Geoffroy I de Charny, author of three works on chivalry, who would rather die (and did die) than go back on his word. The implicit claim by the 1988 radiocarbon dating of the Shroud, made explicit by Oxford's Prof. Edward Hall (1924–2001):
"`There was a multi-million-pound business in making forgeries during the 14th century," he bluntly told a British Museum press conference. `Someone just got a bit of linen, faked it up and flogged it.'"that Geoffroy de Charny, was a party to a fraud in either having "faked" the Shroud (while he was almost fully occupied in fighting battles or as a prisoner of war), or paying (despite the fact that he was poor) a forger who "flogged" it to him, is manifestly absurd!
Geoffroy II de Charny (c.1352-98) was the only son of Geoffroy I de Charny (c.1300-56) and Jeanne de Vergy (1332–1428). They also had a daughter, Charlotte de Charny (c.1356–98). In c. 1392 Geoffroy II married Marguerite de Poitiers-Valentinois (c.1362-1418), a niece of Bishop Henri de Poitiers (c. 1327-1370), who according to Bishop Pierre d'Arcis (c.1300-95), had denounced the Shroud at its c.1355 exhibition by Geoffroy I as a "cunningly painted" fraud. Which is just another reason why Bishop d'Arcis was wrong [see future "Pierre d'Arcis" and "Henri de Poitiers."]. Geoffroy II and Marguerite de Poitiers had three daughters: Marguerite (c. 1392–1460), Henriette (1395–1460) and Jeanne (c.1397–1406). Geoffroy II and his mother Jeanne de Vergy, recently widowed again by the death of her second husband Aymon IV of Geneva (c. 1324-88), exhibited the Shroud again from c.1389 until at least 1390 [see future "Lirey"]. Geoffrey II died in 1398 from wounds sustained in Hungary at the Battle of Nicopolis and was buried in Froidmont Abbey, Picardy, France. His tombstone had a carved brass effigy of him as a knight in armor, which was destroyed in World War I. Fortunately a drawing had been made of it, which is preserved in the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris. On it his name is clearly spelled, "Geoffroy de Charny" so I have standardised on that spelling for the other Geoffroy de Charnys (see above). Having no son, Geoffrey II's eldest daughter, Marguerite de Charny (c. 1392–1460) inherited his titles, lands and the Shroud [see future "Marguerite de Charny"].
Gervase of Tilbury (c.1150–c.1228) was a widely travelled 13th century canon lawyer, statesman and writer. In c.1211 he referred in his Otia Imperialia to the story of the cloth upon which Jesus had impressed an image of His face and sent it to King Abgar V of Edessa. But he added new information:
"... it is handed down from archives of ancient authority that the Lord prostrated himself full length on most white linen, and so by divine power the most beautiful likeness not only of the face, but also of the whole body of the Lord was impressed upon the cloth" (my emphasis).This can only be the Shroud, nearly a half-century before the earliest radiocarbon date of 1260, and mentioned in archives which were "ancient" even then.
1. This page, and each page in my Turin Shroud Dictionary, is copyright. However, permission is granted to quote from one entry at a time within a page (e.g. "Geoffroy I de Charny," not the whole page "Ga-Gm"), provided a link and/or reference is provided back to the page in this dictionary it came from. [return]
2. Latendresse, M., 2012, "A Souvenir from Lirey," Sindonology. [return]
3. "220px-Blason_famille_fr_Charny_svg," jamielavigne35, Lavigne Family Tree, Ancestry.com (members only). [return]
4. Wilson, Ian, 2010, "The Shroud: The 2000-Year-Old Mystery Solved," Bantam Press: London, p.210. [return]
5. Garza-Valdes, L.A., 1998, "The DNA of God?," Hodder & Stoughton: London, p.23. [return]
6. Adler, A.D., 1999, "The Nature of the Body Images on the Shroud of Turin," in Adler, A.D. & Crispino, D., ed., 2002, "The Orphaned Manuscript: A Gathering of Publications on the Shroud of Turin," Effatà Editrice: Cantalupa, Italy, pp.103-112. [return]
7. Currer-Briggs, N., 1988, "The Shroud and the Grail: A Modern Quest for the True Grail," St. Martin's Press: New York NY, p.105. [return]
8. Currer-Briggs, N., 1995, "Shroud Mafia: The Creation of a Relic?," Book Guild: Sussex UK, p.115. [return]
9. According to most online genealogies. Not Marguerite de Joinville (c.1246-1306) as stated by Currer Briggs (1988), Crispino (1990), Wilson (1988 & 2010) and Wikipedia (2015), but as corrected by Currer-Briggs (1995). As their age spans indicate, Marguerite de Joinville, who was ~54 when Geoffroy I was born, was not his mother but his paternal grandmother. [return]
10. Crispino, D.C., 1988, "To Know the Truth: A Sixteenth Century Document with Excursus," Shroud Spectrum International, #28/29, September/December, pp.25-40, p.28. [return]
11. Ibid. [return]
12. "Obituaries: Professor Edward Hall," The Independent, 16 August 2001. [return]
13. Wilson, I., 1998, "The Blood and the Shroud: New Evidence that the World's Most Sacred Relic is Real," Simon & Schuster: New York NY, p.144, 255n20. [return]
Posted: 24 May, 2015. Updated: 25 July, 2015.