Sunday, January 14, 2018

12th-11th centuries: Shroud's 1260-1390 radiocarbon date is against the preponderance of the evidence (3): Steps in the development of my radiocarbon dating of the Turin Shroud hacker theory #11

Copyright © Stephen E. Jones[1]

This is part #11, "12th-11th centuries: Shroud's 1260-1390 radiocarbon date is against the preponderance of the evidence (3)," in my "Steps in the development of my radiocarbon dating of the Turin Shroud hacker theory," series. For more information about this series see part #1, "Hacking an explanation & Index." References "[A]", etc., will be to that part of my original post. Emphases are mine unless otherwise indicated.

[Index] [Previous: "Vignon markings: Shroud's 1260-1390 radiocarbon date is against the preponderance of the evidence (2) #10" [Next: "11th-10th century: Shroud's 1260-1390 radiocarbon date is against the preponderance of the evidence (4)" #12]

[Above (enlarge): "Scenes from the Passion of Christ ...The Lamentation"[2]: Part of a larger carved ivory panel (see below) in the Victoria & Albert Museum, London. Note that Jesus' arms cross awkwardly at the wrists, right over left, exactly as they are on the Shroud[3], in this late eleventh/early twelfth century Byzantine icon. This alone is proof beyond reasonable doubt that the Shroud existed at least a century before the earliest 1260 radiocarbon date of the Shroud!]

Continuing with tracing the steps in the development of my radiocarbon dating of the Shroud hacker theory in my early 2014 posts (last three): "Were the radiocarbon dating laboratories duped by a computer hacker?: Further to my replies to Dr. Timothy Jull and Prof. Christopher Ramsey"; "Were the radiocarbon dating laboratories duped by a computer hacker?: Revised #1"; "Were the radiocarbon dating laboratories duped by a computer hacker?: Revised #2 (Vignon markings)" and now "Were the radiocarbon dating laboratories duped by a computer hacker?: Revised #3."

This post continues from my previous "... against the preponderance of the evidence (2), and before that "... against the preponderance of the evidence (1), which presented historical evidence for the Shroud's existence in the 13th and 12th centuries [see also "Chronology ... 12th century"]. As I had previously explained, my purpose of documenting all this historical evidence of the Shroud's existence from the 13th to the 11th century is to prove, beyond any reasonable doubt, that the 1988 radiocarbon date of the Shroud as "mediaeval ... AD 1260-1390"[4] must be wrong. And then [since the evidence is overwhelming that the Shroud is authentic] the key questions would be (and are): 1. "How could a 1st century cloth (absent fraud) carbon-date to the 13th-14th century?"; and 2. "How could the midpoint of that date range, 1325 ±65[5], `just happen' (absent fraud) to be a mere ~30 years before the Shroud's first appearance in undisputed history at Lirey, France, in c.1355"? Especially given that the leader of the Shroud carbon-dating project, Prof. Harry Gove (1922-2009), pointed out that the improbability of the Shroud being first century (which it is), yet its radiocarbon date was "between 1260 and 1390," is "about one in a thousand trillion"[6]). [A]

c. 1100 Late eleventh century portable mosaic, "Christ the Merciful"[7], in the former Ehemals Staatliche Museum[8], now Bodemuseum, Berlin.

[Left (enlarge): "Christ the Merciful" mosaic icon (1100-1150) in the Bodemuseum, Berlin[9].]

By my count this icon has 12 of the 15 Vignon markings [see "c.1100"], including a wisp of hair where the reversed `3' bloodflow is on the Shroud, a topless square, wide open staring eyes, a forked beard and a line across the throat, but they are more stylized[10]. [B]

1092 A letter purporting to be from Byzantine Emperor Alexios I Komnenos (r. 1081-1118) to Count Robert II of Flanders (r.1093- 1111)[11], appealed for

[Right: "Portrait of Emperor Alexios I, from a Greek manuscript"[12].]

help to prevent Constantinople falling into the hands of the pagans[13]. The letter listed the relics in Constantinople including, "the linen cloths found in the sepulchre after his Resurrection"[14]. Although the letter may (or may not [see "1092"]) be a forgery, this need not invalidate its description of the relics then in the imperial collection[15]. [C]

c. 1090 Late eleventh/early twelfth century Byzantine ivory of the threnos, or lamentation scene of Jesus being mourned as he is laid out in death, in the Victoria & Albert Museum, London[16]. As already

[Left (original): Full carved ivory panel in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London[17], showing scenes of: crucifixion (top), deposition (middle) and burial threnos (bottom).]

mentioned above Jesus' hands are crossed awkwardly at the wrists, right arm over the left, exactly as on the Shroud! This late eleventh century artistic style of depicting Jesus laid out in death on a shroud coincides with the first references to the burial sheet (sindon) in Constantinople's relics[18]. [D]

c. 1080 Eleventh-century Christ Pantocrator mosaic in the dome of the monastery church of Daphni near Athens, Greece[19]. It has 13

[Right (enlarge): Christ Pantocrator mosaic from Daphni, Greece, ca. 1080-1100[20].]

of the 15 Vignon markings[21] (see #10). In this and other icons, some of these Vignon markings, for example the `topless square,' are more stylized than on the Shroud, having been rendered more naturalistic by very competent artists[22] copying these features second hand from the master-original[23], the Shroud face[24]. [E]

1058 The Christian Arab writer Abu Nasr Yahya recorded that he saw the cloth of Edessa in Hagia Sophia, Constantinople [25]. But it was not then publicly exhibited full length[26] as it was still regarded as too holy for ordinary gaze[27]. [F]

c. 1050 Eleventh-century mosaic bust of Christ Pantocrator in the narthex of the catholicon church (c. 1010) within the Hosios Loukas monastery[28] near the town of Distomo, Greece[29].

[Left (enlarge): Christ Pantocrator, c. 1050, Hosios Loukas monastery, Greece[30].]

The late art historian, Professor Kurt Weitzmann (1904-1993), who specialised in Byzantine and medieval art[31], noted that this icon had facial "subtleties" similar to the sixth-century Christ Pantocrator icon portrait in St. Catherine monastery, Sinai[32] [See "c. 550"] . In particular Prof. Weitzmann noted:

"...the pupils of the eyes are not at the same level; the eyebrow over Christ's left eye is arched higher than over his right ... one side of the mustache droops at a slightly different angle from the other, while the beard is combed in the opposite direction ... Many of these subtleties remain attached to this particular type of Christ image and can be seen in later copies, e.g. the mosaic bust in the narthex of Hosios Lukas over the entrance to the catholicon ... Here too the difference in the raising of the eyebrows is most noticeable ..." [33].

Those facial "subtleties" that Prof. Weitzmann noted were "attached to this particular type of Christ image and can be seen in later copies" are Vignon markings which are all found on the Shroud! [G]

c. 1050 The mid-eleventh-century Old French "Life of Saint Alexis"[34], the first masterpiece of French literature, contains the passage[35]:

"Then he [Alexis] went off to the city of Edessa Because of an image he had heard tell of, Which the angels made at God's commandment..."

[Right (enlarge): Miniature and text of the "Chanson de St Alexis" or "Vie de St Alexis," in the St. Albans Psalter (c. 1120-1145)[36].]

As philologist Linda Cooper has shown in a scholarly paper[37], the "image" referred to is the Image of Edessa, and from the various versions of St. Alexis's life it is clear that this was the Shroud[38]. Over two centuries before the earliest 1260 radiocarbon date of the Shroud! [H]

Continued in the next part #12 of this series.

1. This post is copyright. I grant permission to quote from any part of it (but not the whole post), provided it includes a reference citing my name, its subject heading, its date, and a hyperlink back to this page. [return]
2. "Scenes from the Passion of Christ; The Crucifixion, the Deposition from the Cross, The Entombment and the Lamentation," Victoria & Albert Museum, London. [return]
3. Wilson, I., 1979, "The Shroud of Turin: The Burial Cloth of Jesus?," [1978], Image Books: New York NY, Revised edition, p.160; 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.270; Wilson, I., 2010, "The Shroud: The 2000-Year-Old Mystery Solved," Bantam Press: London, pp.182-183. [return]
4. Damon, P.E., et al., 1989, "Radiocarbon Dating of the Shroud of Turin," Nature, Vol. 337, 16 February, pp.611-615, 611. [return]
5. McCrone, W.C., 1999, "Judgment Day for the Shroud of Turin," Prometheus Books: Amherst NY, pp.1,141,178,246; Wilson, 1998, p.7; Tribbe, F.C., 2006, "Portrait of Jesus: The Illustrated Story of the Shroud of Turin," Paragon House Publishers: St. Paul MN, Second edition, p.169; de Wesselow, T., 2012, "The Sign: The Shroud of Turin and the Secret of the Resurrection," Viking: London, p.170; Oxley, M., 2010, "The Challenge of the Shroud: History, Science and the Shroud of Turin," AuthorHouse: Milton Keynes UK, p.87. [return]
6. Gove, H.E., 1996, "Relic, Icon or Hoax?: Carbon Dating the Turin Shroud," Institute of Physics Publishing: Bristol UK, p.303. [return]
7. Wilson, 1979, p.160h. [return]
8. Ibid. [return]
9. Mosaic icon, "Christ the Merciful (1100-1150), in Museum of Byzantine Art, Bode Museum, Berlin, Germany: Wikipedia (translated by Google). [return]
12. "Alexios I Komnenos," Wikipedia, 13 January 2018. [return]
10. Wilson, 1979, p.104. [return]
11. Wilson, 1979, pp.166-167. [return]
13. Ricci, G., 1981, "The Holy Shroud," Center for the Study of the Passion of Christ and the Holy Shroud: Milwaukee WI, p.xxxv. [return]
14. de Wesselow, 2012, p.177. [return]
15. Wilson, 1979, p.314 n31. [return]
16. Wilson, I., 1991, "Holy Faces, Secret Places: The Quest for Jesus' True Likeness," Doubleday: London, p.151. [return]
17. "Scenes from the Passion of Christ," Victoria and Albert Museum, London. [return]
18. Scavone, D.C., 1989, "The Shroud of Turin: Opposing Viewpoints," Greenhaven Press: San Diego CA, p.88. [return]
19. Maher, R.W., 1986, "Science, History, and the Shroud of Turin," Vantage Press: New York NY, p.77. [return]
20. "Daphni Monastery," Wikipedia, 28 December 2017. [return]
21. Maher, 1986, p.77. [return]
22. Wilson, 1979, p.104. [return]
23. Wilson, 1991, p.168. [return]
24. Wilson, 1979, p.104. [return]
25. Wilson, 1998, p.270. [return]
26. Currer-Briggs, N., 1987, "The Shroud and the Grail: A Modern Quest for the True Grail," St. Martin's Press: New York NY, p.63. [return]
27. Wilson, 1979, p.257. [return]
28. "Hosios Loucas (Stiris)," Pausanias Project, 29 August 2013. [return]
29. "Hosios Loukas," Wikipedia, 28 December 2017. [return]
30. Ibid. [return]
31. "Kurt Weitzmann," Wikipedia, 6 January 2018. [return]
32. Wilson, I., 1986, "The Evidence of the Shroud," Guild Publishing: London, p.107. [return]
33. Weitzmann, K., 1976, "The Monastery of St. Catherine at Mount Sinai: The Icons," Princeton University Press: Princeton NJ, p.15, in Wilson, 1986, p.107. [return]
34. Bauer, B.L.M. & Slocum, J., 2013, "Old French Online: Lesson 3," Linguistics Research Center in The College of Liberal Arts, University of Texas at Austin, 11 December. [return]
35. Wilson, I., 1987, "Recent Publications," British Society for the Turin Shroud Newsletter 16, May, p.14. [return]
36. "St. Albans Psalter," Wikipedia, 1 July 2017. [return]
37. Cooper, L., 1986, "The Old French Life of Saint Alexis and the Shroud of Turin," Modern Philology, Vol. 84, No. 1, August, pp.1-17. [return]
38. Wilson, 1987, p.14. [return]

Posted: 14 January 2018. Updated: 18 March 2018.

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