Thursday, November 13, 2008

Index to my "Bogus: Shroud of Turin?" posts

I am preparing a response to a comment under one of my posts, "Bogus: Shroud of Turin? #10: The Shroud's blood and pollen closely matches the Sudarium of Oviedo's," and am about respond

[Above: Giuseppe Enrie's 1931 photographic negative of the face on the Shroud of Turin, which was a positive image, meaning that the image on the Shroud was the equivalent of a photographic negative: Vignon, P., 1939, "Le Saint Suaire de Turin: Devant La Science, L'archéologie, L'histoire, L'iconographie, La Logique," Masson et Cie. Éditeurs: Paris, Second edition, plate I]

to another, when I remembered that the first 9 parts of that series of responses to a no-doubt well-meaning (but ignorant) article, "Bogus: Shroud of Turin," The Conservative Voice, April 08, 2007, Grant Swank (which I can now only find in Google's cache), was to my CreationEvolutionDesign blog (CED), because at the time it was the only one I had.

So here on this my TheShroudofTurin blog (TSoT) is an index of my "Bogus: Shroud of Turin" posts on CED:

And here is my as yet one and only post in that series on TSoT:

I have also just remembered that I had planned to continue that series with:

  • Bogus: Shroud of Turin? #11: Coin images minted by Pontius Pilate between AD 29 and 32 cover the eyes of the man on Shroud.

So I hope to do that in the near future. When I do, I will add future posts in that series here on this index, for completeness.

[Right: Roman lepton coin minted by Pontius Pilate 29-32 AD.]

As it happens, only today I was reading in an articles that I had recently received from the USA (Borkan, M., "Ecce Homo?: Science and the Authenticity of the Turin Shroud," Vertices, Duke University, Winter 1995, Vol. X, No. 2, pp.18-51), about the coins in the eyes of the man in the Shroud (see `tagline' quotes).

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

"As unexpected as the generation of a 3D image by the VP-8 analysis of the Shroud ... was, another observation made at the time proved equally surprising. 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 and Whanger 1991:3, Whanger and Whanger 1985:767, Stevenson and 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." (Borkan, M., "Ecce Homo?: Science and the Authenticity of the Turin Shroud," Vertices, Duke University, Winter 1995, Vol. X, No. 2, pp.18-51, p.28).

"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 and 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]" (Borkan, 1995, p.28).

"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 and Whanger 1985:767, Whanger and Whanger 1991:4]" (Borkan, 1995, pp.28-29).

"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, 1995, p.29).

Updated: 17 July 2015.


Susan Barringer Wells (Vaughan) said...

Do you happen to have a copy of Duke Univ.'s Vertices scientific article on the Shroud, and/or do you know where I can get a copy?

Stephen E. Jones said...


>Do you happen to have a copy of Duke Univ.'s Vertices scientific article on the Shroud,

I have a photocopy of the above, but it is 34 pages.

>and/or do you know where I can get a copy?

I can't remember how I got mine but I presume it was from Duke University library.

I don't have the time to photocopy 34 pages, and then post them overseas (where I assume you are).

I suggest you try to get it from Duke University or another library.

If after your best efforts you cannot get it from anywhere, let me know and I will convert it to a PDF and email it to you.

Stephen E. Jones