Thursday, March 28, 2019

Acts of Thaddeus: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia

Turin Shroud Encyclopedia
Copyright © Stephen E. Jones

Acts of Thaddeus #6

This is "Acts of Thaddeus," part #6 of my new Turin Shroud Encyclopedia. For information about this series, see part #1 and part #2. Emphases are mine unless otherwise indicated.

[Index #1] [Previous: acheiropoietos #5] [Next: Adler, A #7]

The Acts of Thaddeus (hereafter "the Acts) is written in Greek, probably in the 7th century. According to

[Right (enlarge)[2]: Mid-tenth century encaustic (hot wax) painting at Saint Catherine's Monastery, Mount Sinai, being part of an original triptych, depicting Thaddeus handing the Image of Edessa [see future "Image of Edessa"] to Edessa's King Abgar V (r. 4 BC-AD 50)[see "Abgar V".]

the Acts' title, Thaddaeus was "One of the Twelve"[3], i.e. one of the twelve Apostles chosen by Jesus (Mt 10:2-3; Mk 3:14-19; Lk 6:13-16). A comparison of those three Gospels' lists of the twelve apostles reveals that "Thaddaeus" in Mt 10:3 and Mk 3:18 is evidently "Judas the son of James" in Lk 6:16 & Acts 1:13 and "Judas (not Iscariot)" in Jn 14:22.

The Acts claims to have been written by a Hebrew named Lebbaeus, who was from Edessa, came to Jerusalem in the time of John the Baptist and was baptized by him and renamed Thaddaeus (or Thaddeus):

"Lebbaeus, who also is Thaddaeus, was of the city of Edessa— and it is the metropolis of Osroene, in the interior of the Armenosyrians — an Hebrew by race, accomplished and most learned in the divine writings. He came to Jerusalem to worship in the days of John the Baptist; and having heard his preaching and seen his angelic life, he was baptized, and his name was called Thaddaeus.
If the story was made up, why have Lebbaeus being first a disciple of John the Baptist and then later becoming a disciple of Jesus? Why not make Lebbaeus/Thaddeus a disciple of Jesus only?
"And having seen the appearing of Christ, and His teaching, and His wonderful works, he followed Him, and became His disciple; and He chose him as one of the twelve, the tenth apostle according to the Evangelists Matthew and Mark."
This has a `ring of truth' in that Jn 1:35-42 records that John the Baptist encouraged his disciples to follow Jesus instead of him. And that the Apostle Andrew, who was the Apostle Peter's brother, and an unnamed disciple who was presumably the Apostle John[4], were former disciples of John the Baptist who became Apostles of Jesus.

The alternative is that given by the early church historian Eusebius (263-339), that Thaddeus was one of the the "seventy disciples of Christ" (presumably one of the seventy-two (aka seventy), in Lk 10:1,17):

"Thomas, one of the twelve apostles, under divine impulse sent Thaddeus, who was also numbered among the seventy disciples of Christ, to Edessa, as a preacher and evangelist of the teaching of Christ."
In the fifth-century Doctrine of Addai [see future "Doctrine of Addai"], Thaddeus was also one of the seventy, but there are anachronistic problems with that.

There is no way of reconciling the two accounts of who Thaddeus was. If he was one of the twelve Apostles, then he was not one of the Seventy.

What the Acts of Thaddeus itself claims, that Thaddeus was a Hebrew from Edessa, with a Hebrew name, seems plausible, because a 7th century Greek author would be unlikely to make it up that Thaddeus was a Hebrew with a Hebrew name.

Many Greek manuscripts of Mt 10:3 and Mk 3:18 have "Lebbaios" instead of "Thaddaios," including D (Codex Bezae).[5] But manuscripts ℵ (Codex Sinaiticus) and B (Codex Vaticanus) have "Thaddaios"[6] and therefore modern English translations read "Thaddaeus." However, on the main principle of textual criticism, Lectio difficilior potior "the more difficult reading is the stronger," it may well be that Matthew and Mark originally wrote "Lebbaios who was called Thaddeus" in Mt 10:3 and Mk 3:18, respectively, but subsequent copyists of manuscripts () and (B), simplified it to "Thaddeus" only[7].

That Thaddeus was originally from Edessa would explain why he was sent by Jesus to heal Edessa's King Abgar V and to preach the Gospel in Edessa.

The Acts recounts the story of Abgar V ("Abgarus"):

"In those times there was a governor of the city of Edessa, Abgarus by name. And there having gone abroad the fame of Christ, of the wonders which He did, and of His teaching, Abgarus having heard of it, was astonished, and desired to see Christ, and could not leave his city and government."
This may be historically accurate in that Abgar V in the time of Jesus' public ministry (AD 26-30) was a Protectorate of the Parthian Empire, and so Abgar V was not then truly a king but only a governor (or ruler). However, see below that Abgar was also "governor of the country of the Edessenes," i.e. of Osroene as well.

The Acts then anachronistically refers to "the days of the Passion" of Jesus, that is, His suffering and death by crucifixion, which had not yet happened.

"And about the days of the Passion and the plots of the Jews, Abgarus, being seized by an incurable disease, sent a letter to Christ by Ananias the courier, to the following effect:—
It also seems unlikely that Abgar, in Edessa, would have known about "the plots of the Jews" against Jesus (Mt 26:3-4; Mk 14:1; Jn 11:45-48,53) (but see below).

Abgar's "incurable disease" was, according to tradition, leprosy. Mt 4:23-25 records that Jesus' "fame spread throughout all Syria" because of His "healing every disease and every affliction among the people." The Roman province of Syria shared a border with Osroene, so Abgar V would surely have heard of Jesus' healings and having been "seized by an incurable disease" (leprosy), would have sought to be healed by Jesus. And it is not unlikely that a king or governor would write an official letter to Jesus to give weight to his request.

Abgar's letter to Jesus (according to the Acts) began:

"To Jesus called Christ, Abgarus the governor of the country of the Edessenes, an unworthy slave. The multitude of the wonders done by you has been heard of by me, that you heal the blind, the lame, and the paralytic, and cure all the demoniacs; and on this account I entreat your goodness to come even to us, and escape from the plottings of the wicked Jews, which through envy they set in motion against you. My city is small, but large enough for both."
It is difficult to believe that Abgar would have called himself "an unworthy slave" of Jesus. But then he was desperate to receive healing from Jesus. It is also possible (contrary to above) that Abgar did know of reports of the Jewish religious leaders plotting against Jesus, and added this as an inducement for Jesus to come to him.

The Acts clarified above that Abgar was the governor of the "country of the Edessenes," not just of the city of Edessa. But then Abgar wrote, "My city is small, but large enough for both," as though all that Abgar was governor of was the city of Edessa, and a "small" city at that. This

[Above (enlarge)[8]: The ruins of Edessa's citadel, within ancient Edessa, which itself is within the modern city of Sanliurfa.]

appears to be another anachronism in that in 201 Edessa was devastated by a major flood and in 205 King Abgar VIII (r. 177–212) [see "Abgar VIII"] rebuilt Edessa as a smaller fortress or citadel (above) within the walls of the former city of Edessa.

Abgar's letter to Jesus continued:

"And Ananias, having gone and given the letter, was carefully looking at Christ, but was unable to fix Him in his mind. And He knew as knowing the heart, and asked to wash Himself; and a towel [tetradiplon = "four doubled"] was given Him; and when He had washed Himself, He wiped His face with it. And His image having been imprinted upon the linen [sindon = "shroud"], ..."
As inserted within square brackets above, the word translated "towel" is Greek [tetradiplon = tetra "four" + diplon "doubled" = "four doubled"; and the word translated "linen" is the Greek word sindon = "shroud"[9]. This can only be the Shroud, doubled four times such that the face is uppermost, visible in landscape aspect (see below) [see also

[Above (enlarge): Tetradiplon and the Shroud of Turin illustrated: The full-length Shroud of Turin (1), is doubled four times (2 through 5), resulting in Jesus' face within a rectangle, in landscape aspect (5), exactly as depicted in the earliest copies of the Image of Edessa, the 11th century Sakli church, Turkey (6) and the 10th century icon of King Abgar V of Edessa holding the Image of Edessa, St. Catherine's monastery, Sinai (7).]

28Mar12, 23Aug12, 11Sep12, 15Sep12, 18May14, 19Jan17, 20Jan17, 24Jan17 & 04Oct18].

In the seventh century the Shroud (as the Image of Edessa four-doubled so only the face was visible in landscape aspect) was in Edessa fastened to a board and embellished with gold, having been brought to Edessa from Ravenna in 540 [See "540a"], according to my Ravenna theory. So no one in Edessa evidently knew that behind the face image was the full-length Shroud. But as classics professor Robert Drews (1936-) pointed out, it would have been possible to see from the side [Left (enlarge)[10].] that behind the face was a long cloth doubled four times.

The Acts continues with Jesus' verbal reply to Abgar through his courier, Ananias:

"He gave it to Ananias, saying: Give this, and take back this message, to him that sent you: Peace to you and your city! For because of this I have come, to suffer for the world, and to rise again, and to raise up the forefathers. And after I have been taken up into the heavens I shall send you my disciple Thaddaeus, who shall enlighten you, and guide you into all the truth, both you and your city."
It goes without saying that this is false that the Shroud image was imprinted on a cloth while Jesus was alive and then Jesus gave the Image of Edessa/Shroud to Abgar's courier Ananias to take it back to Abgar!

The original Abgar V story recorded by Eusebius in the fourth century was that Abgar V wrote to Jesus asking for Him to come and heal Abgar and Jesus wrote a letter back to Abgar promising to send one of His disciples after His Ascension to heal Abgar and bring Christianity to him and his people. It is part of the "substratum of fact" that Abgar V did write a letter to Jesus to come to Edessa and heal him and that after Jesus' death a disciple of Jesus, Thaddeus (Syriac Addai), did heal Abgar and help establish Christianity in Edessa. The Acts builds on that Abgar V story and updates it with new information about the Image of Edessa/Shroud which had arrived in Edessa recently before it was instrumental in repelling the Persian siege of 544. And more believably the Acts does not record that Jesus wrote a letter of reply to Abgar's letter, but gave Ananias a verbal message to take back to Abgar.

Most surprisingly, the Acts then has a terse `one-liner' of what is the most important part of the Abgar story, the actual healing of Abgar, through Jesus "likeness" imprinted on the "towel" (tetradiplon):

"And having received Ananias, and fallen down and adored the likeness, Abgarus was cured of his disease before Thaddaeus came."
So according to the Acts of Thaddeus, it should really have been titled the "Acts of Ananias" because he, not Thaddeus, did the really important work of receiving from Jesus His "likeness" imprinted on a "towel" and taking it from Jerusalem to Abgar in Edessa, who was then healed through it "before Thaddaeus came"! This sounds like an interpolation into an existing Abgar story.

As pointed out above, it is false that Jesus imprinted His face image on the Image of Edessa/Shroud while He was alive and therefore it is also false that Abgar was healed through the Image/Shroud, at least without Thaddeus being present and after Jesus had died.

I make that distinction because, as mentioned in a previous post, Eusebius' 4th century Abgar story does not mention that Jesus imprinted the image of His face on a cloth, nor that Abgar was healed by him seeing the Image of Edessa/Shroud. But Eusebius does mention that Abgar was healed upon seeing "a great vision" when Thaddeus appeared before him. It may be that this "great vision" was the Image of Edessa/Shroud carried by Thaddeus into Abgar V's presence and through which Abgar was healed.

No less than the great St. Athanasius (c. 328-373), "affirmed that a sacred Christ-icon, traceable to Jerusalem and the year 68, was then present in Syria" and Eusebius was under pressure by the Emperor Constantine I (r. 306-312)'s half-sister, Flavia Julia Constantia (c.293–c.330) to reveal the whereabouts of that image so she could add it to Constantine I's relic collection in Constantinople. Eusebius' evasive reply suggests that he knew of that "Christ-image" and was covering for it. So it may be that part of the "substratum of fact" underlying the Abgar story was that Abgar was healed by the Image of Edessa/Shroud carried by Thaddeus, but it remained in Thaddeus' possession, not Abgar's.

From here on, despite it being a very interesting, what seems to be an authentic description of first century Christian evangelism, there is nothing of relevance to the Shroud in the Acts, so I will briefly summarise what remains of interest (each quote is from the online Acts of Thaddeus):

"And after the passion, and the resurrection, and the ascension, Thaddaeus went to Abgarus; and having found him in health, he gave him an account of the incarnation of Christ, and baptized him, with all his house. And having instructed great multitudes, both of Hebrews and Greeks, Syrians and Armenians, he baptized them in the name of the Father, and Son, and Holy Spirit ... and he communicated to them of the undefiled mysteries of the sacred body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ ... and to give close heed to the things that had been said by the apostles in Jerusalem. For year by year they came together to the passover, and again he imparted to them the Holy Spirit."
This is further evidence of the Acts basic authenticity. Not only are there no citations from the New Testament, because it hadn't yet been written, the reference to heeding "the things that had been said by the apostles in Jerusalem" might seem to be a problem because according to the Acts, Thaddeus was an Apostle (see above). But as the New Testament Book of Acts, chapter 15 reveals, up to about the year 50, the central authority of the early Church was a Jerusalem Council of the Apostles who remained in Jerusalem.

The Acts of Thaddeus records that Thaddeus, with Abgar's help, destroyed pagan temples (presumably in Osroene) and built Christian churches:

"And Thaddaeus along with Abgarus destroyed idol-temples and built churches; ordained as bishop one of his disciples, and presbyters, and deacons, and gave them the rule of the psalmody and the holy liturgy."
There is a statement of the content of Thaddeus' teaching, which seems to have been retrospectively added because it seems to contain quotations from the New Testament (although they could be independent accounts of the same things):
"And Thaddaeus said: No doubt you have heard of what has taken place in Jerusalem about Jesus Christ, and we are His disciples, and witnesses of the wonderful things which He did and taught, and how through hatred the chief priests delivered Him to Pilate the procurator of Judaea. And Pilate, having examined Him and found no case, wished to let Him go; but they cried out, If you let him go, you are not Caesar's friend, because he proclaims himself king. And he being afraid, washed his hands in the sight of the multitude, and said, I am innocent of the blood of this man; see ye to it. And the chief priests answered and said, His blood be upon us and our children. And Pilate gave him up to them. And they took Him, and spit upon Him, with the soldiers, and made a great mock of Him, and crucified Him, and laid Him in the tomb, and secured it well, having also set guards upon Him. And on the third day before dawn He rose, leaving His burial-clothes in the tomb. And He was seen first by His mother and other women, and by Peter and John first of my fellow disciples, and thereafter to us the twelve, who ate and drank with Him after His resurrection for many days. And He sent us in His name to proclaim repentance and remission of sins to all the nations, that those who were baptized, having had the kingdom of the heavens preached to them, would rise up incorruptible at the end of this age; and He gave us power to expel demons, and heal every disease and every malady, and raise the dead."
In particular, "And He was seen first by His mother and other women" is evidence of a later Mariolatry, because the Gospels record that Jesus was seen first by women, none of whom were Mary the mother of Jesus, namely "Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome" (Mk 16:1). Salome was evidently "the mother of the sons of Zebedee" (Mt 27:56), who were the Apostles James and John (Mk 3:17; 10:35; Lk 5:10). Salome was evidently the sister of Mary the mother of Jesus (Jn 19:25), and Mary the mother of James [and Joseph] (Mk 15:40), the "other Mary" (Mt 27:61; 28:1) was "Mary the wife of Clopas" (Jn 19:25). The first recorded appearance of the Risen Jesus was to Mary Magdalene (Jn 20:11-17).

The final evidence of the authenticity of the Acts is that it does not record Thaddeus having died and been buried in Edessa, but in "Berytus, a city of Phoenicia," which is modern Beirut:

"Teaching, therefore, and evangelizing along with the disciples, and healing the sick, he went to Berytus, a city of Phoenicia by the sea; and there, having taught and enlightened many, he fell asleep on the twenty-first of the month of August. And the disciples having come together, buried him with great honour ..."

Continued in the next part #7 of this series.

1. This post is copyright. I grant permission to quote from any part of this post (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. "File:Faddei70.JPG," Wikimedia Commons, 24 March 2017. [return]
3. Knight, K., ed., 2018, "The Acts of Thaddaeus, One of the Twelve," New Advent, 18 October. [return]
4. Hendriksen, W., 1964, "A Commentary on the Gospel of John: Two Volumes Complete and Unabridged in One," [1954], Banner of Truth: London, Third edition, Vol. I, p.105; Kruse, C.G., 2003, "The Gospel According to St. John: An Introduction and Commentary," The Tyndale New Testament Commentaries, Inter-Varsity Press: Leicester UK, p.84. [return]
5. "E Kaine Diatheke," (Greek New Testament), Second Edition, The British and Foreign Bible Society, London, 1958, reprinted 1964, pp.27, 108. [return]
6. Ibid. [return]
7. Metzger, B.M., 1975, "A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament," United Bible Societies: London, Third edition, pp.26, 81. [return]
8. Extract from "Edessa citadel in Urfa, Turkey (Google Maps)," Virtual Globetrotting, 2016. [return]
9. Scavone, D.C., 1989, "The Shroud of Turin: Opposing Viewpoints," Greenhaven Press: San Diego CA, p.82; Petrosillo, O. & Marinelli, E., 1996, "The Enigma of the Shroud: A Challenge to Science," Scerri, L.J., transl., Publishers Enterprises Group: Malta, p.174; Guscin, M., 2009, "The Image of Edessa," Brill: Leiden, Netherlands & Boston MA, pp.146; Wilson, I., 2010, "The Shroud: The 2000-Year-Old Mystery Solved," Bantam Press: London, pp.140-141. [return]
10. Drews, R., 1984, "In Search of the Shroud of Turin: New Light on Its History and Origins," Rowman & Littlefield: Lanham MD, p.41. [return]

Posted 28 March 2019. Updated 7 January 2024.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

`wrong is the radiocarbon dating of Shroud of Turin in the consequence of biological isotopfractionation'

© Stephen E. Jones[1]

Dr. Tibor Szarvas

This is my response in this separate post, to your two-part comment of 21 January 2019 under my post, "`Poker holes' #29: Other marks and images: The evidence is overwhelming that the Turin Shroud is authentic!" Your words are bold and prefaced by ">" to distinguish them from mine. Emphases are mine unless otherwise indicated.

Dr. Tibor Szarvas

>You wrote a critique in connection our opinion : wrong is the radiocarbon dating of Shroud of Turin in the consequence of biological isotopfractionation.

[Above (enlarge)[2]: The differences between the three isotopes of carbon: Carbon (carbon 12) has 6 protons, 6 neutrons & 6 electrons (stable); carbon 13 has 6 protons, 7 neutrons & 6 electrons (stable); and carbon 14 has 6 protons, 8 neutrons & 6 electrons (unstable). For isotope fractionation to work at the microbiological level between these three isotopes of carbon requires that microbes can distinguish between molecules containing carbon atoms differing by 1 or 2 neutrons, and that they do `prefer' the latter over the former. Yet carbon-14 is exceedingly rare, making up only about 1 or 1.5 atoms per 1012 (1,000,000,000, 000 or one trillion, i.e. a million million) atoms of carbon in the atmosphere. The claim that microbiological isotope fractionation is responsible for the first-century Shroud having a radiocarbon date of 1260-1390 requires that microbes can, and did, distinguish between molecules containing those 1 in a trillion carbon 14 atoms in the linen of the Shroud such that they shifted the radiocarbon date of the first-century Shroud, thirteen centuries into the future, to not just any date, but 1325 ±65, the midpoint of which is a mere 30 years before the the Shroud first appeared in undisputed history at an exposition in the French village of Lirey in 1355.]

My first, and main point in my comment of 10 September 2018 was that:

"Microbe contamination (e.g. a bioplastic coating) might explain why the Shroud would not date 1st century (e.g. 4th century), but it would not explain why the 1st century Shroud's radiocarbon date was shifted 12-13 centuries into the future, let alone to the `bull's eye' date 1325 ±65."
But you have not addressed that my main point. I assume this is because you cannot. In which case you have already tacitly conceded the entire argument!

>Let me now to respond to your comments. I already did let you respond to my comments, but you didn't, instead you ignored them and used my comments as a pretext to post a large block of your own comments. See above and future below.

>It is obvious, that a contradiction is between the radiocarbon dating of 3 labs and the Pray Codex. You know well the history. Agreed, but this is irrelevant to what we disagree on. Which is that microbial contamination (and in fact any contamination with new carbon 14):

1) While it can explain why the first century Shroud would not have a first century radiocarbon date, due to new carbon that the radiocarbon dating pre-cleaning process could not remove:

"In 1532 the Shroud was being kept inside a silver casket stored in the Sainte Chapelle, Chambéry, when a fire nearly destroyed the building. The intense heat melted a corner of the casket, scorching the folded linen within, and producing the now familiar scorch marks on the Shroud. Since silver melts only at 960 degrees centigrade, the heat inside the casket must have been intense. In these circumstances moisture in the Shroud would turn to steam, probably at superheat, trapped in the folds and layers of the Shroud. Any contaminants on the cloth would be dissolved by the steam and forced not only into the weave and yarn, but also into the flax fibres' very lumen and molecular structure. ... contaminants would have become part of the chemistry of the flax fibres themselves and would be impossible to remove satisfactorily by surface actants and ultrasonic cleaning. More drastic treatments to destroy the contaminants would inevitably damage the flax fibres themselves"[3].
2) It cannot plausibly explain why the first century Shroud's radiocarbon date was shifted thirteen centuries into the future to the `bull's eye' date, 1325 +/- 65, the midpoint of which `just happened' to be a mere ~30 years before the Shroud first appeared in undisputed history at Lirey, France in ~1355.

But my hacking theory can and does (and is the only theory to date) which plausibly explains why the first-century Shroud had a 1325±65 radiocarbon date. See my "conventional explanations all fail."

>Therefore, we carried out model experiments to study the possible errors in the radiocarbon dating of the 3 labs. The basic problem in all these attempts (including yours) to reconcile the first century date of the Shroud with the 13th-14th century radiocarbon date is that they accept that the 1260-1390 date was valid.

But see my post [17Feb19a] that the 1260-1390 date was achieved through scientific fraud in combining Arizona's eight runs into 4 runs which never happened. And fraudulently done in such a way that dates that were after the Shroud's 1355 first appearance in undisputed history at Lirey, France, were almost eliminated[17Feb19b].

And also that there is a fatal flaw in the dating in that the agreement across the three laboratories of the control samples was "exceptionally good" yet the "spread of the measurements" of the Shroud samples across the three laboratories was "greater than would be expected"[17Feb19c]:

"An initial inspection of Table 2 shows that the agreement among the three laboratories for [control] samples 2, 3 and 4 is exceptionally good. The spread of the measurements for sample 1 [the Shroud] is somewhat greater than would be expected from the errors quoted"[4].
Why would you, a Shroud pro-authenticist, want to reconcile the date of the first-century Shroud with a fraudulent 13th-14th century radiocarbon date?

>Our main conclusion was the possible radiocarbon enrichment by microbes wiches exist on linen material that caused the error in the radiocarbon dating. Only "possible"? Anything that is not self-contradictory is "possible". But is it likely that the mindless actions of countless billions of microbes `just happened' to shift the radiocarbon date of the first-century Shroud thirteen centuries into the future to the `bull's eye' date 1325±65?

The physicist Frank J. Tipler (1947-) noted that it "would be an extraordinary and very improbable coincidence if the amount of carbon added to the Shroud were exactly the amount needed to give the date that indicated a fraud" but he believes that is what actually happened, and it was literally a "miracle":

"A very plausible history of the Shroud from A.D. 30 to the present has been constructed ... the first time the Shroud is agreed by all scholars to have existed is 1355, when a French squire, Geoffrey de Charny of Lirey, in the bishopric of Troyes ... display[ed] it as the unique burial cloth of Jesus ... De Charny never explained how a completely unimportant person such as he managed to obtain possession of the most important relic in Christendom. ... A few decades after de Charny's death, the bishop of Troyes denounced the Shroud as a fake and said that he knew the name of the forger, who had confessed. So if the bishop and later skeptics were correct, we would expect the linen of which the Shroud is made to date from the time of the forgery. That is, the middle of the fourteenth century. When the radiocarbon date was discovered to be between 1260 and 1390 (95 percent confidence interval), most scientists (including myself until a few years ago) were convinced that the Shroud had been proven a fraud. If bacterial or other contamination had distorted the date, we would expect the measured radiocarbon date to be some random date between A.D. 30 and the present. It would be an extraordinary and very improbable coincidence if the amount of carbon added to the Shroud were exactly the amount needed to give the date that indicated a fraud. That is, unless the radiocarbon date were itself a miracle ..."[5].
And that is what you are claiming: that the mindless growth of microbes on the Shroud's linen just happened to add enough new carbon-14 to shift the first-century Shroud's radiocarbon date thirteen century into the future to, not just any date, but 1325 +/-65, a date which is so close to the Shroud's 1355 first appearance in undisputed history that its upper limit is 1390, 35 years after it!

Tipler was right when he concluded that would be a miracle (if it had happened). But it would have been a deceptive miracle by God! Why would Jesus, the Man on the Shroud, who is ruling over all (Acts 10:36; Rom 9:5; Eph 1:21-22; Php 2:9), deliberately deceive His followers (like me) and provide evidence for anti-Christians that the Shroud (and Christianity) is false?

>You quote from Adler's publication. Adler listed the problems with Garza-Valdes bioplasting coating theory. We accept this opinion. There are no bioplastic coatings on the Shroud, This is just playing with words. The late Dr Alan D. Adler (1931-2000)'s criticisms of the late Dr Leoncio Garza-Valdes (1939-2010) bioplastic

[Right (enlarge)[6]: Dr Leoncio Garza-Valdes (left) and microbiologist Prof. Stephen Mattingly (right).]

coating theory apply to all theories (including yours) which claim that a build up of bacterial or microorganism carbon shifted the radiocarbon date of the first-century Shroud thirteen centuries into the future. My words above were "Microbe contamination (e.g. a bioplastic coating) ..."

Adler's main points were, "where does all this energy for growth come from?" and "Where does the" huge "[bio]mass come from?":

"In `The DNA of God?' Garza-Valdez makes a large number of extravagant claims, many of them self-contradictory, at odds with accepted Shroud scientific literature, or at odds with basic accepted biochemical, chemical, or physical knowledge ... His ... contention is that the entire cloth is more or less covered by a bioplastic coating deposited by a novel microbe that he himself has discovered in the Shroud samples in his possession. He claims this bioplastic has corrupted the radiocarbon date ... It should be noted that to corrupt the observed radiodate from a first century date to that reported requires about a 50% increase in the C14 mole fraction. This is a prodigious amount of bacterial metabolism. Even if we ignore the Second Law of Thermodynamics and only satisfy the First Law, where does all this energy for growth come from? Are the organisms photosynthetic? Where does the mass come from? Does this microorganism fix the nitrogen from air as required for its growth and metabolism? Where does it get its sulfur, phosphorus, and minerals from and to where have they disappeared?"[7].

>but there were always present different microorganism on the Shroud for many hundred years to date. This is so vague it is meaningless. How many different microorganism? What species were they? If you claim that you cannot know (but see below), then you don't have a scientific theory.

>They did not disappeared. First, they have disappeared. The same lack of evidence under the microscope for Garza-Valdes' microorganisms build-up, applies to your theory. Second, if your claimed bacteria on the Shroud have not disappeared, then you have no excuse not to name them. Third, in 1532 the Shroud was in a fire which melted silver at ~961°C into its casket [20Jan18]. Water that was poured into the casket to extinguish the fire would have turned to steam. This would likely have killed any bacteria then on the Shroud, resetting your bacterial `clock' back to zero. Previous to 1532 there are depictions of the Shroud being held by clergy by their bare hands. This presumably had gone on for centuries. But after the 1532 fire the Shroud has not been exhibited as frequently, nor by being held by hands. Your theory must take that into account. Fourth, Arizona laboratory still has part of its Shroud sample that was never dated (see below), and as can be seen, it does not look like it is contaminated by a huge build up of bacteria or micro-organisms that it would need to have, if your theory were true.

[Above (enlarge)[8]: Photomicrograph taken by pro-authenticist STURP photographer Barrie Schwortz in 2012, of Arizona laboratory's remaining undated part of its Shroud sample[7]. As can be seen it is visually not ~60% contaminated with younger carbon in the form of a bacterial/microorganisms build-up, which it would need to have to shift the radiocarbon date of the 1st century Shroud 12-13 centuries into the future to 1260-1390[9].]

>It is well known, that the cellulose molecules of linen can change slowly particularly after a long time. Again this is too vague to be meaningful: "change" - how much? "slowly" how slowly? "long time" - how long?

And there are linen cloths that are much older than the first-century

[Above (enlarge):

"Pleated tunic (2435-2118 BC) ... linen pleated tunics and textiles crafted more than 4200 years ago are extremely rare artifacts. However, the Turin Egypt museum has about a dozen specimens. They were discovered in female burials mostly from the late Old Kingdom, during excavations conducted by the museum at the sites of Gebelein"[10].]


"There would appear to be no reason why the Shroud linen could not have survived from the first century. Much older linen fabrics are extant, for example, Tutankhamun [c.1341–c.1323 BC]'s curtains. Flax fibres are not attacked by moth grubs, which require keratin to feed on, and other insects tend to avoid flax if they can because of its hardness. When boiled or bleached, flax has a high resistance to bacteriological attack. Under certain conditions of warmth, dampness and contamination, micro-organisms may attack cellulose, notably cotton, but flax fibres will resist damage well if kept dry. The most important factor in the preservation from decay would seem to be the purity of the fibre and the effectiveness of the bleach"[11].

"While in so many respects the Shroud is the most extraordinary cloth ever known, it is not close to being the oldest surviving cloth of its kind. If kept in dry climates and exposed to little air, textiles will survive for thousands and thousands of years. The examples are numerous. STURP scientist Dr. John Heller [1921-95] observed a cloth at the archaeological site of Diuropus [Dura-Europos?] that was five thousand years old and in good condition. Many surviving mummy cloths originated two thousand to three thousand years before Christ. At the Museum of Egyptology in Turin, I observed numerous cloths from Egyptian dynasties that predated the Shroud by thousands of years ... Throughout the Shroud's history, the cloth has always been kept in the ideal environment for preservation: dark, arid surroundings, either folded or rolled inside a container or sealed inside a wall. With the exception of a few public viewings each century, the linen has rarely been exposed to sunlight or open air ... STURP scientists described it as being in excellent condition ..."[12].
So why didn't the above linen cloths that are thousands of years older than the Shroud, biofractionate?

Control sample 3 was linen from an early second century AD Egyptian mummy and its radiocarbon date across the three laboratories of 110 BC - AD 75 agreed with its known date (the linen must be older than the mummy):

"Sample 3. Linen ... associated with an early second century AD mummy of Cleopatra [not Queen Cleopatra (51 BC-30 BC )] from Thebes (EA6707). This linen was dated ... giving a radiocarbon age of 2,010 ± 80 yr BP (BM-2558). This corresponds to a calendar age, rounded to the nearest 5 years, of 110 cal BC - AD 75 cal ... (where cal denotes calibrated radiocarbon dates)"[13].
So why didn't this "early second century AD" mummy's linen biofractionate?

>These chemical reaction can proceed in the presence of bacteria and fungi, wich are present all type of linen. You don't name what species they are, nor provide any evidence that they have been found in your required quantity on the Shroud. And you cannot know that these unnamed bacteria were present in the first century through to 1988 when the Shroud was radiocarbon dated. Also there was the 1532 fire and steam (see above) which would have sterilised the Shroud, and reset your bacterial/fungi `clock,' back to zero. Then instead of 1988-30 = 1958 years for your proposed bacterial/fungi build up, you only have 1988-1532 = 456 years!

Bacterial growth is typically exponential until it hits limiting factors such as phosphorous, nitrogen, sulphur and other minerals and nutrients necessary for growth. So if there was "the presence of bacteria and fungi" at one time on the Shroud, it could have all be over in a matter of months!

>The microbiological cellulose degradation is also a serious problem in the bibliothecs. According to an online dictionary, "bibliothec" is a "collection of books", so I presume you meant "the literature"?

There are online articles on the biological degradation of cellulose and of linen in particular. Cellulose is a major component of plants and obviously dead plant material is decomposed by termites, fungi and bacteria. But it doesn't happen unless the conditions for those decomposers' growth is present.

The oldest wooden building (wood is comprised largely of cellulose) is a temple in Japan, part of which is 1,300 years old. It would have been even older but the previous temple burned down. But if wooden buildings are protected from fire, weather, wood rot (fungi), and demolition, they would

[Left (enlarge)[14]: Ancient Kauri wood in New Zealand which looks as good as new, yet it has been preserved under-ground for more than 45,000 years!]

last indefinitely. The world's oldest wood is 45,000 years old (above) because it has been protected from decomposition and fire by having been buried underground all that time.

Similarly with linen. It has been pointed out that there is no linen shroud still existing that was buried wrapped around a body. That is because they decompose with those bodies from the putrefaction products.

But there are many surviving linen shrouds covering mummified bodies in Egypt. That is because the mummification process involves removing a body's internal organs and brain and drying out the remaining body so that it doesn't decompose.

>The main reaction caused by microbes is the depolimerisation.

Depolymerization (or depolymerisation) is the process of converting a polymer into a monomer or a mixture of monomers. You need to show that this has happened to the Shroud. At least to any great degree that shifted its radiocarbon date thirteen centuries into the future.

>The beta-glucosidase enzyme of the microbes(many microbes have this enzyme) decompose slowly the cellulose macromolecules and the endproduct is beta-glucose. "Beta-glucosidase catalyzes the hydrolysis of the glycosidic bonds to terminal non-reducing residues in beta-D-glucosides and oligosaccharides, with release of glucose ... Cellulose is a polymer composed of beta-1,4-linked glucosyl residues. Cellulases (endoglucanases), cellobiosidases (exoglucanases), and beta-glucosidases are required by organisms (some fungi, bacteria) that can consume it. These enzymes are powerful tools for degradation of plant cell walls by pathogens and other organisms consuming plant biomass." But again (see above) you do not name what this/these bacterial or microorganism species is/are and whether it/them has been found in sufficient quantities on the Shroud. Also see above on the conditions necessary for these decomposers to work, and that they have not worked on the early second-century linen control sample 3.

>It was verified in this process. The microorganism use beta-glucose as energy substrate in their metabolism prroducing carbon dioxide and water. What "microorganism" is that exactly? Which has been found on the Shroud in sufficient quantity to shifted its radiocarbon date thirteen centuries into the future? And why did it/they not work on control sample 3? See above.

[...] I have deleted the rest of your comment because there is so much you need to address that it is pointless me wasting any more of my scarce time in responding to it.

>Dr. Tibor Szarvas
>radiochemist, radioanalyst in, former in Institute of Isotopes, Hung.Acad Sci. Budapest)
With all due respect Dr Szarvas, if you are reading this, which I doubt, the standard of your argument above falls far short of what I would expect of a Member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences!

But then you (like all the other proposers of the "conventional explanations which all fail") are trying to explain by conventional science why the first-century Shroud's radiocarbon date was shifted twelve to thirteen centuries into the future, to the `bull's eye' date 1325 ±65.

I predict that all conventional explanations of why the first-century Shroud had a 1325 ±65 radiocarbon date are doomed to fail, because the true explanation is, as I emailed Joe Marino and Ian Wilson in response to an Archaeometry article [see 11Apr19] about Oxford's "raw data strongly suggests that homogeneity is lacking":

"The Shroud samples radiocarbon dates were not true dates, but were generated by a hacker's (allegedly Arizona's Timothy W. Linick) computer program which substituted the actual Shroud samples' C14 dates with random numbers generated within limits imposed by the previous computer-generated dates of the Shroud sample at each laboratory."
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. Combs, R., 2016, "A normal carbon atom has 6 neutrons, and carbon-12 has 6 neutrons, so how is carbon-12 an isotope?," Quora, 18 November. [return]
3. Tyrer, J., in Wilson, I., 1988, "So How Could the Carbon Dating Be Wrong?," British Society for the Turin Shroud Newsletter, No. 20, October, pp.10-12. [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. Tipler, F.J., 2007, "The Physics of Christianity," Doubleday: New York NY, p.178. [return]
6. "CURIOSEANDO: febrero 2013," YouTube, 2013. [return]
7. Adler, A.D., 1999, "The Nature of the Body Images on the Shroud of Turin," in Adler, A.D. & Crispino, D., ed., "The Orphaned Manuscript: A Gathering of Publications on the Shroud of Turin," Effatà Editrice: Cantalupa, Italy, 2002, pp.103-112, 108-109. [return]
8. Schwortz, B.M., 2012, "New Photographs of Arizona Radiocarbon Dating Laboratory Samples,", November 21. [return]
9. Wilson, I, 1989, "Lecture by Professor Hall of Oxford," BSTS Newsletter, No. 21, January/February, pp.7-10, 9-10; Petrosillo, O. & Marinelli, E., 1996, "The Enigma of the Shroud: A Challenge to Science," Scerri, L.J., transl., Publishers Enterprises Group: Malta, p.118; Oxley, M., 2010, "The Challenge of the Shroud: History, Science and the Shroud of Turin," AuthorHouse: Milton Keynes UK, p.225; Wilson, I., 2010, "The Shroud: The 2000-Year-Old Mystery Solved," Bantam Press: London, p.96. [return]
10. "Victory's Museum Trip II - The Museo Egizio of Turin X," — Steemit, 2018. [return]
11. Tyrer, J., 1983, "Looking at the Turin Shroud as a Textile," Shroud Spectrum International, No. 6, March, pp.35-45, 39. [return]
12. Antonacci, M., 2000, "Resurrection of the Shroud: New Scientific, Medical, and Archeological Evidence," M. Evans & Co: New York NY, p.97. [return]
13. Damon, 1989, p.612. [return]
14. "Ancient Kauri – World’s Oldest Wood Now at Woodcraft," Woodcraft, 4 October 2016 . [return]

Posted: 20 March 2019. Updated: 12 April 2021.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

acheiropoietos: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia

Turin Shroud Encyclopedia
Copyright © Stephen E. Jones

acheiropoietos #5

This is part #5, "acheiropoietos," of my new Turin Shroud Encyclopedia. For information about this series, see part #1 and part #2. Emphases are mine unless otherwise indicated.

[Index #1] [Previous: Accetta, August #4] [Next: Acts of Thaddeus #6]

Meaning Acheiropoietos is a Greek word meaning "not made by hands.". It is a compound of three Greek words, a = "not" + cheiro = "hands" + poietos = "made".

[Above: Twelfth century Christ Acheiropoietos ("not made with hands" - see Mk 14:58; 2Cor 5:1; Col 2:11. Cf. Acts 7:48; Heb 9:11,24), copy of the Mandylion/Shroud face panel) from the Assumption (Dormition) Cathedral in the Moscow Kremlin, now in the Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow[2] [see 20Dec18]. By my count this icon of the Image of Edessa has 12 out of the 15 Vignon markings found on the Shroud! Which is further evidence that the Image of Edessa was the Shroud "four-doubled" - tetradiplon!]

New Testament The word and its variants occur three times in the New Testament:

Mk 14:58. "We heard him saying `I will destroy this temple made with hands, and in three days I will build another not made with hands [acheiropoieton].'"

2Cor 5:1. "For we know that if our earthly house, the tent we live in, is taken down, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands [acheiropoieton], eternal, in the heavens."

Col 2:11 "In him you also were circumcised with a circumcision not made with hands [acheiropoietoo], by the putting off of the body of flesh by the circumcision of Christ."
Acheiropoietos is God's work, in contrast with human work:
"The NT [New Testament] contrasts what is made by human hands with God's work. Mk. 14:58 refers to a temple not made with hands [Jesus' resurrected body - Jn 2:18-21] ... Col. 2:11 refers to the circumcision that is made without hands, i.e., that of Christ, whereby his people are buried and raised again with him. The heavenly house of 2 Cor. 5:1 is not made with hands. After death, God will have ready for us the new dwelling with which we shall be clothed"[3].
Evagrius Scholasticus c.590 In about 590 the ancient historian Evagrius Scholasticus (c.536-594) recorded in his Ecclesiastical History that in the 544 siege of Edessa by the Persian king Khosrow I (r. 531-579), "the divinely made image not made by the hands of man" [acheiropoietos], i.e. the face of the Image of Edessa/Shroud, caused the Persian siege tower to catch fire and saved the city:
"The mine was completed; but they [the Edessans] failed in attempting to fire the wood, because the fire, having no exit whence it could obtain a supply of air, was unable to take hold of it. In this state of utter perplexity they brought out the divinely made image not made by the hands of man, which Christ our God sent to King Abgar when he desired to see him. Accordingly, having introduced this sacred likeness into the mine and washed it over with water, they sprinkled some upon the timber ... the timber immediately caught the flame, and being in an instant reduced to cinders, communicated with that above, and the fire spread in all directions."
This is the first known use of the word acheiropoietos in relation to the Image of Edessa/Shroud.

Acheropita, Rome c.590-754 Since at least 754 and probably before 590, a copy of the Image of Edessa/Shroud called the

[Right (enlarge)[4]: The Acheropita since at least 754 has been preserved in Rome's Sancta Sanctorum [Latin "Holy of Holies"] chapel of the Vatican's Lateran Palace Sancta Sanctorum chapel, originally the private chapel of the popes before papal residence shifted to the Vatican. The icon's cover is thirteenth-century, and its face a crude over-painting. But beneath it lies a near totally-effaced original that dates back at least as far as 754 and probably before 590. Note that the head is centred in landscape aspect, exactly as it is on the Shroud and the icon's proportions appear close to the Shroud's 4:1[24Feb17].]

Acheropita, a Latinization of acheiropoietos ("not made with hands" - Mk 14:58; 2Cor 5:1; Col 2:11) was in the Sancta Sanctorum Chapel of the Vatican's Lateran Palace by at least 754. That is because when Rome was threatened by the Lombards after their capture of Ravenna in 751, Pope Stephen II (r. 752-757) in 754 personally carried this Acheropita barefoot at the head of a huge procession in Rome, praying for this icon to be instrumental in the deliverance of their city. Yet it likely was brought to Rome over 160 years previously by Pope Gregory I the Great (r. 590-604). Before he became Pope, Gregory had been the papal legate in Constantinople at the court of the Byzantine Emperor Tiberius II (r. 574-582), when interest in acheiropoietic images, after the discovery of the Image of Edessa in 544, was at its peak in Constantinople. It is therefore very likely that this Acheropita icon was given to Gregory before 590, based on the Image of Edessa, for him to take back to Rome[24Feb17]!

Gregory Referendarius, Constantinople 944 Gregory Referendarius was the archdeacon of Hagia Sophia cathedral in Constantinople when the Image of Edessa/Shroud arrived in Constantinople from Edessa on 15 August 944. The next day, 16 August 944, Gregory delivered a sermon in which he referred to the Image of Edessa as not only "sweat from the face of the ruler of life, falling like drops of blood" but also "drops from his own side ... [of] blood and water." Since the face-only Image of Edessa does not show the blood and fluid stained spear wound in Jesus' side that is on the Shroud,

[Above (enlarge)[5]: Face and spear in the side wound on the Shroud, showing that it would have been impossible for Gregory Referendarius to have seen that under the face of Image of Edessa, there was the image of a body with a spear wound in its side. Gregory could not simply have looked down below the face panel and seen the spear wound in the side (which he could only do if there was a body under the face of the Image of Edessa), because the latter was folded under the face panel [see 15Sep12]. Gregory would have had to have unfolded at least the front half of the Shroud to see the spear wound in the man's side, and why would he have stopped there?]

Gregory must have known that under the Image of Edessa's face was the full-length, bloodstained, body image of Jesus that is on the Shroud! This is a further corroboration of Ian Wilson's insight that the Image of Edessa was the Shroud ("four-doubled" - tetradiplon)! In the course of his sermon, Gregory referred to the Image of Edessa, when it was in Edessa in 544, as being on "linen" and "not made by human hands [acheiropoietos]"[6].

Church of the Acheiropoietos, Thessaloniki, Greece This Byzantine church [Left[7].] dates from the 5th century. The conventional explanation of its name is that a so-called "not made by hands" icon of "Panagia Hodegetria" (Mary holding the infant Jesus) was housed there in the 14th century. However, that icon was transferred to Constantinople where it was lost in the 1453 Fall of Constantinople. But there is another explanation linked to the Shroud. After the 1204 Sack of Constantinople by the Fourth Crusade, the Crusade's leader Boniface I, Marquess of Montferrat (c.1150–1207), in 1205 married the recently widowed Empress Mary-Margaret of Hungary (1175-), whose husband Emperor Isaac II Angelos (r.1185-1195, 1203-1204) had died during the conquest. After the conquest, Boniface founded the Crusader Kingdom of Thessalonica and moved there with his new Queen.

Boniface granted the title "Lord of Athens" to one of his commanders, Othon de la Roche (c.1170-1234). Othon was a direct ancestor of Jeanne de Vergy (c.1332–1428), wife of Geoffroy I de Charny (c.1300-56), the first undisputed owner of the Shroud. Evidently Boniface had granted Othon to take the Shroud from Constantinople as a reward for his share in the successful campaign. Othon's Duchy of Athens was immediately to the south of Boniface and Mary's Kingdom of Thessalonica [Right[8].]. It has therefore been proposed that the Shroud was temporarily housed by Othon on its way to Athens in this church in Thessaloniki, then called the "Church of the Mother of God"[9]. And the church was then renamed by Queen Mary-Margaret the Church of the Acheiropoietos, to commemorate the Shroud's brief stay there[10].

Church of the Acheiropoietos, Cyprus This Church of Panagia Acheiropoietos[Left[11].] is part of the Acheiropoietos Monastery, near the village of Karavas, Cyprus. The monastery, now a monument, was a medieval Byzantine Orthodox Monastery. According to tradition the monastery was named after an acheiropoietos ("made without hands") icon believed to have been miraculously moved from its original location in Asia Minor by the Virgin Mary in order to save it from destruction due to the Turkish conquest (1071-96). According to legend, the shroud of Joseph of Arimathea was once held in the monastery and was taken to Turin, Italy, in 1452 where it is now known as the Shroud of Turin! That in this first tradition the icon does not have a name, and in the second legend, this Shroud came to Turin in 1452 (when it was in 1578 that the Shroud came to Turin from Chambéry, France) makes me question whether this 11th century Byzantine monastery was originally named after the Shroud?

Anne de Lusignan (1418–62), was a daughter of King Janus of Cyprus (1375–1432), and grew up there until she married Duke Louis I of Savoy (r. 1440-65) at the age of 16 in 1434. Up to then Anne had lived in the de Lusignan Palace at Lapithos, which was near this Church of the Acheiropoietos in Karavas. The Greek Orthodox Church in Cyprus

[Above: Map of part of northern Cyprus showing that Lapithos (red arrow), where Anne de Lusignan had lived until she was 16, and Karavas (blue arrow), where this Church of the Acheiropoietos was, are only 5.5 kms (3.4 mi.) apart!]

would have every 16 August celebrated the coming of the Image of Edessa to Constantinople. Although a Roman Catholic, Anne would surely have been aware of these celebrations in the next town. She likely would have recognized similarities between the face of the Image of Edessa and that of the Shroud of Lirey, and believed that the two may have been one and the same. If so this would have been an important factor in Anne and Louis persuading Marguerite de Charny (c. 1393–1460) to transfer the Shroud to them, representing the House of Savoy.

Icons Icons named acheiropoietos based on the Image of Edessa/Shroud include the above Christ Acheiropoietos in the Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, and the above Acheropita, in the Sancta Sanctorum Chapel of the Vatican's Lateran Palace, but now deteriorated and covered.

The Shroud I am not aware of any early reference which explicitly states that the Shroud is acheiropoietos. That is not surprising because the first appearance of the Shroud in undisputed history was at an exposition in the French village of Lirey in 1355. That was in Latin, not Greek, Christianity when the Greek word acheiropoietos would be unlikely to be used of the Shroud.

But as historian Prof. Daniel Scavone pointed out, there is a reference in the seventh century Acts of Thaddeus [see next part #6] where the words sindon "shroud," tetradiplon "doubled in four" and acheiropoietos "not made by human hands" are all used to describe the one cloth, which can only be "the Shroud of Turin":

"Still another version of the Abgar story [see "Abgar V"] appeared in a work called The Acts of Thaddeus. The messenger of Abgar, in this account named Ananias, tried to paint Jesus, but he was unsuccessful. Taking pity on him, Jesus washed and then wiped his face with a cloth `doubled in four.' On this towel Jesus left the miraculous `not-made-by-human hands' imprint of his face. Three details should be noted. First, the word used for `towel' in this version is sindon, which is the Greek word for body shroud. Second, the towel is tetradiplon, `doubled in four.' Third, the portrait is now `not made by human hands' (Greek word, acheiropoietos). These three clues finally bring us back in touch with the Shroud of Turin"[12]

To be continued in the next part #6 of this series.

1. This post is copyright. I grant permission to quote from any part of this post (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. "File:Christos Acheiropoietos.jpg," Wikipedia, 2 July 2008. [return]
3. Kittel, G. & Friedrich, G., eds., 1985, "Theological Dictionary of the New Testament: Abridged in one Volume," Bromiley, G.W., transl., Eerdmans: Grand Rapids MI, Reprinted, 1988, p.1312. [return]
4. Wilson, I., 1991, "Holy Faces, Secret Places: The Quest for Jesus' True Likeness," Doubleday: London, p.46C. [return]
5. Latendresse, M., 2010, "Shroud Scope: Durante 2002: Horizontal (Major bloodstains)" (rotated left 90°), [return]
6. Guscin, M., 2009, "The Image of Edessa," Brill: Leiden, Netherlands & Boston MA, pp.76-77. [return]
7. "File:Church of the Acheiropoietos (Thessaloniki) by Joy of Museums 4.jpg," Wikimedia Commons, 27 October 2018. [return]
8. "File:Carte Thessalonique 1204.png," Wikimedia Commons, 21 May 2017. [return]
9. Oxley, M., 2010, "The Challenge of the Shroud: History, Science and the Shroud of Turin," AuthorHouse: Milton Keynes UK, p.108. [return]
10. Wilson, I., 1983, "Some Recent Society Meetings," BSTS Newsletter, No. 6, September/December, p.13; Currer-Briggs, N., 1988, "The Shroud in Greece," British Society for the Turin Shroud Monograph no. 1, pp.1-16, 4. [return]
11. "File:Παναγία Ἀχειροποίητος in 1973 35 mm.jpg," Wikimedia Commons, 19 November 2016. [return]
12. Scavone, D.C., 1989, "The Shroud of Turin: Opposing Viewpoints," Greenhaven Press: San Diego CA, pp.81-82. [return]

Posted: 13 March 2019. Updated: 21 September 2021.

Sunday, March 10, 2019

"News and Editorial," Shroud of Turin News, February 2019

Shroud of Turin News - February 2019
© Stephen E. Jones

[Previous: January 2019, part #1] [Next: March 2019, part #1]

This is the February 2019 issue of my Shroud of Turin News. I have listed below linked news articles about the Shroud in February as a service to readers, without necessarily endorsing any of them.

• "Researchers hung men on a cross and added blood in bid to prove Turin Shroud is real," Science Magazine, David Adam, 15 February 2019:

"Some people believe that a fuzzy, negative image of a face on a strip of linen belongs to Jesus. But studies have shown the cloth was created in the 14th century."
This is false. Only ONE study, the 1988 "radiocarbon dating of the Shroud," claimed that "the cloth was created in the 14th century." And the 1989 Nature article which reported that study falsely claimed that, "The age of the shroud is obtained as AD 1260-1390, with at least 95% confidence." But see 17Feb19 where this was a deliberate lie by the author of the article, Dr Michael Tite then of the British Museum. Contrary to that ONE study, the evidence is overwhelming that the Shroud is authentic, i.e. the very first-century burial sheet of Jesus!
"Fanti says arguments over the authenticity of the shroud can come down to faith. Borrini, a Christian, disagrees. `I have faith. Here we are discussing authenticity.'
If Fanti was correctly quoted (which I doubt) then I agree with Borrini on that point. There are those who do not have a Christian faith, such as Barrie Schwortz, a Jew and the agnostic art historian Thomas de Wesselow, who on the basic of the evidence, accept that the Shroud is authentic.

But as for Borrini's claim to be "a Christian," he is a member of CICAP, the Italian Committee for the Investigation of Claims of the Pseudosciences, which denies that there can be evidence for Christianity being true. Jesus warned that on the Day of Judgment there would be "many" who claimed to be Christians but found out too late that they were not, because Jesus did not know them personally:

Mt 7:22-23. "On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?' And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.'"
"Researchers Strapped People to a Cross to Authenticate the Turin Shroud," The Inquisitr, February 16, 2019, Jose Aguilar ...
"Whether you believe this is the image of Jesus or not, the question of how something that's essentially a photograph appeared three centuries before the invention of photography is one that deserves an answer"!
"Turin Shroud is REAL claim researchers who stuck volunteers on giant [sic] crosses," DailyStar, Sophie Jones, 18 February 2019 ... "Now researchers have strapped human volunteers to a cross and drenched them in blood to try and recreate the shroud. These mock crucifixions are `realistic' recreations of the death of Jesus, the researchers suggest in the abstract of their paper. The group plans to present their findings next week at a forensic science conference in Baltimore, US.

Some people believe these prints reveal the body of Jesus (Pic: GETTY)

They add they hope the experiment will `support the hypothesis of Shroud authenticity in some new and unexpected ways.' The research team, from the Turin Shroud Center of Colorado in Colorado Springs, would not comment on the crucifixion experiments before presenting them to the American Academy of Forensic Sciences's annual meeting on February 21. In the abstract, the researchers claim to have created `an experimental protocol by which special wrist and foot attachment mechanisms safely and realistically suspend the male subjects on a full-size cross'. They added the experiment managed to `test the blood flow patterns' from the wrists and forearms of volunteers."

This was the 2019 American Academy of Forensic Sciences annual meeting which was the same body which Borrini & Garlaschelli, presented their "A BPA Approach to the Shroud of Turin" paper in 2018.

Here is the overview of Jackson et al.'s paper:

E73 A Crucifixion Experiment to Assess Wrist and Forearm Blood Flows as Observed on the Shroud of Turin

John P. Jackson, PhD*, Turin Shroud Center of Colorado, Colorado Springs, CO 80922; Keith E. Propp, PhD*, Colorado Springs, CO 80936; Kim M. Look, DDS*, Colorado Springs, CO 80916; Rebecca S. Jackson, MBA*, Colorado Springs, CO 80936

Learning Overview: The goal of this presentation is to test the blood flow patterns on the Shroud of Turin with actual crucifixion configurations of a human body.

Impact on the Forensic Science Community: This presentation will impact the forensic science community by utilizing medical forensics, physics, and historical data to probe and provide insight into the practice of crucifixion, using the Shroud of Turin as a possible example of that ancient practice, and by possibly providing help with other forensic problems or having forensic applications to archaeology.

A recent paper reported by Borrini and Garlaschelli concluded from blood flow experiments that the observed wrist/forearm blood flow patterns on the Shroud of Turin are sufficiently inconsistent with the studies so that the Shroud of Turin should be considered to be a probable forgery.1 However, the conclusion of the scientific experiments and analyses of the same blood flows have reached the opposite conclusion. In this presentation, the forensic analysis is based on live suspensions on a cross with volunteer subjects, a methodology that was not used by Borrini and Garlaschelli to reach the conclusions.1 After reviewing and discussing important pertinent historical data and archaeological artifacts related to the practice of crucifixion in the ancient Roman world, this study designed an experimental protocol by which special wrist and foot attachment mechanisms safely and realistically suspend the male subjects on a full-size cross. Professional medical personnel were invited to not only contribute to the experimental protocol and analyses, but also to ensure the medical safety of the subjects. The male subjects were carefully chosen to correspond, as closely as possible, to the physiology depicted by the frontal and dorsal imprints visible on the Shroud of Turin. A comprehensive evaluation was performed of the totality of blood flows found on the Shroud to determine which flows occurred during the alleged crucifixion process and which were of a postmortem nature. The specific crucifixion nailing characteristics and locations represented by the Shroud image were also determined. The subjects were then suspended on the cross according to those determinations. The cross and suspension system were designed to accommodate various positional adjustments of the body as appropriate.

Once the study team and supporting review team were satisfied with the validity of the crucifixion positions of the subjects, blood was deposited externally on the body at the previously determined nail sites. The resulting flow patterns over the simulated, crucified subjects were documented and analyzed. The crucifixion positions of the subjects were likewise documented.

These experiments represent an important utilization of medical forensics, physics, and historical data to probe and provide insight into the practice of crucifixion, using the Shroud of Turin as a possible archaeological depiction of that ancient practice, the details of which are virtually unknown in modern times. Moreover, the techniques that were specifically developed for this study conceivably may be helpful in analyzing certain other forensic problems, as well as in forensic applications to archaeology.

The presentation, using the perspectives from the above disciplines, will discuss how conclusions were obtained that appear to support the hypothesis of Shroud authenticity in some new and unexpected ways.

1 Matteo Borrini and Luigi Garlaschelli. A BPA Approach to the Shroud of Turin. Journal of Forensic Sciences. 2018.
If I read anything further about Jackson et al.'s above presentation I will post it here.

Posts: In February I blogged only 2 new posts (latest uppermost): "16 February 1989: On this day 30 years ago in the radiocarbon dating of the Turin Shroud," - 17th and "`News and Editorial,' Shroud of Turin News, January 2019" - 14th.

Updates In February I completed my updates in the background of my "Abgar V: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia" post, about the c.945 Official History's account of how the Image of Edessa/Shroud came to be in Edessa.

Comments: There were no comments in February worth mentioning.

Radiocarbon dating of the Shroud. As I have had no response to my "Open letter to Professor Christopher Ramsey" of 4 October 2018, not even an acknowledgment, so now 5 months later, I assume that I am not going to get one. Since I proved in my Open Letter that the Shroud "existed ... at least 716 years before the earliest 1260 radiocarbon date of the Shroud:

"In conclusion, as we have seen ... the Shroud of Turin existed not just 65 years, nor only 316 years, but at least 716 years before the earliest 1260 radiocarbon date of the Shroud! Therefore, the 1260-1390 radiocarbon date of the Shroud of Turin must be wrong and cannot be salvaged."
And therefore the 1989 Nature paper is wrong and should be retracted:
"I therefore respectfully request that you, Professor Ramsey, commence a process of consultation with your relevant colleagues. The result of which will be a joint communication to Nature advising that the 1260-1390 date of the Shroud in its 16 February 1989 paper, "Radiocarbon Dating of the Shroud of Turin," must be wrong, since it conflicts with the overwhelming weight of the historical and artistic evidence, and that therefore the paper be retracted."
I will therefore assume from his total lack of response that Prof. Ramsey knows (or at least suspects) that I am right, but he is too afraid to publicly admit that, for more than thirty years, many millions have been misled on this supremely important matter.

It cannot be that it is beneath Prof. Ramsey's dignity to respond to a mere blogger, because in 2014 both he and Arizona's Dr Jull did respond (and falsely) to one of my posts which proposed that the 1988 "1260-1390" radiocarbon date of the Shroud was the result of a computer hacking.

Since Jesus, the Man on the Shroud, is ruling over all (Acts 10:36; Rom 9:5; Eph 1:21-22; Php 2:9), I expect that eventually He will ensure this truth about His Shroud will come out (as He has been doing). And when it does, future historians of science will not view Prof. Ramsey and his ilk favourably in their failure to publicly admit that the 1989 Nature article was patently wrong in its claim that:

"The results provide conclusive evidence that the linen of the Shroud of Turin is mediaeval ... AD 1260-1390"[2].
My book: [see 09May17, 06Jul17 & 05Jan19]. In February I completed on my word-processor the short Chapter 1, "What is the Shroud of Turin?" and continued writing Chapter 2, "A linen sheet." Progress was at first slow because I had to solve some technical problems, such as how to present photographs and figures such that they will be eventually printed on photograph quality plates in the book.

Pageviews: At midnight on 28 February 2019, Google Analytics [Below (enlarge)] gave this blog's "Pageviews all time history" as 1,022,356. This compares with 855,514 at the same time in February 2018. That is 166,842 pageviews over the past 12 months, or an average of ~457 pageviews per day.

Google Analytics also gave the most viewed posts for the month (highest uppermost) as: "Abgar V: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia," Jan 8, 2019 - 147; "The Shroud of Turin: 2.6. The other marks (2): Poker holes," Mar 6, 2013 - 103; "Chronology of the Turin Shroud: AD 30 to the present: 1st century and Index," Jul 24, 2016 - 77; "Abgar VIII: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia," Jan 31, 2019 - 68 and "Introduction to my The Shroud of Turin (TSoT) blog!," Jun 30, 2007 - 65.

1. This post is copyright. I grant permission to extract or quote from any part of it (but not the whole post), provided the extract or quote includes a reference citing my name, its title, its date, and a hyperlink back to this page. [return]
2. Damon, P.E., et al., 1989, "Radiocarbon Dating of the Shroud of Turin," Nature, Vol. 337, 16 February, pp.611-615, 611. [return]

Posted: 10 March 2019. Updated: 11 April 2019.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Accetta, August, Turin Shroud Encyclopedia

Turin Shroud Encyclopedia
Copyright © Stephen E. Jones

Accetta, August #4

This is "Accetta, August," part #4 of my new Turin Shroud Encyclopedia. For information about this series, see part #1 and part #2. Emphases are mine unless otherwise indicated.

[Index #1] [Previous: Abgar VIII #3] [Next: acheiropoietos #5]

Accetta, August August David Accetta (c. 1959-), M.D., is (or was) a urogynecologist and

[Right (enlarge)[2]: Dr August Accetta and the full-size replica of the Shroud at his The Shroud Center of Southern California, in Silverado, California. See 14May07 (my CED blog), 09Oct07, 29Oct07, 10Oct08, 11Jun16, 20Apr17]

cosmetic surgeon living and practicing in Huntington Beach, California.

He is not to be confused with Joseph S. Accetta who was a member of STURP but is an anti-authenticist.

August Accetta was raised a Roman Catholic but in medical school became an agnostic. He married an evangelical protestant and became a protestant but later returned to the Roman Catholic church.

Accetta's becoming a Christian began with his interest in the medical evidence for the Shroud. In 1992 Accetta heard a radio talk by Dr. Alan Whanger (1930-2017), a professor emeritus at Duke University and chief researcher for the Council for Study of the Shroud of Turin. Accetta met with Whanger and began to collect information on the Shroud.

In 1996 Accetta founded the Shroud of Turin Center of Southern California in Huntington Beach in 1996, relocating to Fountain Valley Californian in 2002. It now is in the Santiago Retreat Center in Silverado, California. [Left (enlarge)[3].] The Center has a museum and research facility dedicated to the scientific study of the Shroud.

Accetta has written four research papers in support of the Shroud's authenticity, journeyed to Turin to view the Shroud and injected himself with radioactive dye to test his theory of how the Shroud image was formed.

[Right (enlarge): Nuclear radiation image of Dr. August Accetta[4]. The projections are due to technetium-99m concentrating in the internal organs. The hole and V-shape over the pelvis is due to a protective shield over the genitals.]

Dr Accetta injected into his own veins a solution of methylene-diphosphonate, containing radioactive technetium-99m, a radioisotope with a short half life. The radiation from the technetium atoms produced gamma rays, which could be detected by the VP8 Image Analyzer Computer. Dr Accetta produced an image on the VP8 computer similar, but with less definition, than the Shroud image.

Accetta’s theory is that at the moment of Jesus’ resurrection, His body in the tomb turned to light [sic - see 23Jun15, 05Sep16, 22Dec16 & 05Feb17], emitting a radiance that created a head-to-toe likeness of Jesus on the Shroud.

As evidence for his radiation theory, Accetta points to the New Testament accounts of the Transfiguration of Jesus (Mt 17:1–8; Mk 9:2–8, Lk 9:28–36; 2Pet 1:16–18). It was a moment in Jesus’ life when his body turned briefly into light, and Accetta says it may have foreshadowed what happened in His resurrection.

Ian Wilson listed the similarities between Accetta's above radiation experiment's results and the Shroud:

"First, it was conclusively demonstrated that a full-body radiation image could be produced by this means, without the application of any paints or dyes, which replicated all the Shroud image's monochromatic characteristics. Second, the image had the same collimated, or straight-up, straight-down character as that of the Shroud's imprint, though in fairness it should be said that a collimator in the set-up ensured this, since otherwise the radiation would have spilled out at all sides. Third, apart from its being slightly more distinct against its background, the image had the same lack of outline as that on the Shroud. Fourth, the image shared the Shroud's otherwise seemingly unique lack of any light focus. Fifth, the Shroud's X-ray properties were strikingly replicated, spectacularly in the case of the hands, in which the metacarpal bones and phalange or finger bones could clearly be distinguished with a most compelling similarity to these same bones on the Shroud. Sixth, when viewed via the VP-8 Image Analyzer, Accetta's body exhibited the same three-dimensional properties as that on the Shroud imprint, the limbs being particularly similar."

This is strong evidence (if not proof beyond reasonable doubt) that the Man on the Shroud is Jesus, His image having been imprinted on the Shroud by the light of His resurrection! [see 22Dec11].

To be continued in the next part #5 of this series.

1. This post is copyright. I grant permission to quote from any part of this post (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. "Shining a light on the Shroud of Turin," Orange County Register, September 6, 2007. [return]
3. "Shroud Center: Santiago Retreat Center," 2019. [return]
4. Wilson, I. & Schwortz, B., 2000, "The Turin Shroud: The Illustrated Evidence," Michael O'Mara Books: London, p.131. [return]

Posted 7 March 2019. Updated 13 September 2023.