Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Problems of the forgery theory #2: Shroud of Turin: Burial Sheet of Jesus!

© Stephen E. Jones[1]

This is the fourteenth and final installment of my "Problems of the forgery theory #2," which is based on, and will help me write, Chapter 19, "Problems of the forgery theory," of my book in progress, "Shroud of Turin: Burial Sheet of Jesus!" See part #1 for more information about this series.

[Previous #1][Next #3]


PROBLEMS OF THE FORGERY THEORY #2
© Stephen E. Jones

The Man on the Shroud (Ch. 4). Double image Why would a medieval forger depict the man's back, with its over 100 tiny scourge wounds[AF82, 70; AM00, 76; WI10, 44-45], when the front image, or even the face, would have sufficed for his gullible contemporaries[WI98, 59-60]? A

[Right (enlarge): "Full-length image of the Turin Shroud before the 2002 restoration" (Wikipedia)[STW]. Seriously, could an unknown medieval forger have created this? Negative? Three-dimensional? Non-directional? Extremely superficial? Not with paint, pigment or dye? X-rays? With real, human blood? Which was on the cloth before the image? Res ipsa loquitur!]

~4.4 metre (14.5 foot) long Shroud would be too large to easily display and so would detract from its sale value[OG85, 53]. A face only shroud "would have been much easier to make than a full-body image, and it would have been much more saleable"[DT12, 138]. In fact, a medieval forger of the Shroud could have subdivided his ~4.4 x ~1.1 m (~14.5 x ~3.7 ft) cloth into 16 face only shrouds of ~55.2 x ~56.7 cm (~21.7 x ~22.3 in.) each! [see 20Jun24]. All sceptics' `replications' of the Shroud are either face or front only[WI98, pl. 47c; DT12, 138]. But:

"If a modern debunker cannot be bothered to reproduce the whole figure, front and back, it is difficult to see why a medieval hoaxer would have been any more industrious"[DT12, 138]!

How did a medieval forger depict the more than 100 scourge wounds on the back, legs and chest of the Shroudman, when each of these has a serum halo [see 27Dec21], many of which are visible only under a microscope (invented c. 1609) and in ultraviolet light (discovered 1801)[AM00, 76; WS00, 70]!

Faint Why would a forger have depicted the man's image so

[Left (enlarge): Full-length double image of the man on the Shroud after the 2002 restoration[SU14], showing that the image is very faint (and photographs enhance the image[BM95, 32; WI98, 4]).]

faint[AF82, 5] that it cannot be seen close up[HJ83, 2; BM95, 32; WI98, 4; AM00, 37], but only at a distance of about about 10 feet (3 metres)[HJ83, 2; SD91, 192; OM10, 52-53; RC99, 12]? How could a forger depict the Shroudman when he could not see up close what he was depicting[HJ83, 202; WM86, 82; TF06, 152; DT12, 138]?

Colour Why would, and how did, a medieval forger use dehydrative oxidation and conjugation of the cellulose in the Shroud's flax fibrils[HA81, 35; HJ83, 198-200; BM95, 22, 40; AA99, 105; AA0a, 113, 120; AA0c, 22-25; AM00, 212, 221; GV01, 65; TF06, 187; OM10, 218] to create the man's uniform straw-yellow image[AA99, 104-105; AA0a, 116; AA0c, 15; AM00, 36; DT12, 106]? Why would a medieval forger have depicted the man by such a time-consuming method as an areal density image[AA99, 105; AA0a, 113, 116; AA0c, 15; ], that is, the body image is not variations in concentrations of applied pigment (of which there is none - see 11Jul16) but by variation in the number of uniformly colored image fibres per unit area[AA99, 105; AA0a, 113, 116 ; AA0c, 15]?

[Right (enlarge[HTW].): The first printed photo using a halftone (i.e. an areal density image), in the Canadian Illustrated News, 30 October 1869].

Which was only discovered in the 19th century (see above).

Hands Why would a medieval forger depict Jesus hands with his fingers unnaturally long[DD84; SH88, 70; SS98]? And with no thumbs[BP53, 106, 119; BR78, 44; DR84, 4; BM95, 24; AM00, 24]?

[Left (enlarge): The nail exit wound and bloodstain on the back of the left hand of the man on the Shroud[LM10a]. Only one nail wound is visible because the corresponding wound in the right wrist (inferred by identical blood flows down his right forearm[WI98, 34; DT12, 119]) is covered by his left hand[BP53, 106; WI98, 34; DT12, 119]. As can be seen, the thumbs are not visible and the man's retracted left thumb bones can be seen through the flesh of his left hand[JJ91, 334]! The man's fingers seem too long because they are x-rays of his under-the-skin hand bones [see 20Apr17]! A medieval forger would not know about, let alone depict, x-rays, as they were discovered in 1895[XRW] by Wilhelm Roentgen (1845-1923)[WRW]!]

Shroud sceptics Picknett and Prince claim that the forger was Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519)[PP06, 91], but if these were mistakes, a high school art student would not have made them. However, French surgeon Pierre Barbet (1884–1961) found that when he drove a large Roman nail into the wrists of fresh cadavers, at the Space of Destot, where the nail exit wound is in the man's left wrist, the median nerve which controls the thumb was grazed, causing the thumb to contract inward and lie across the palm[BP53, 118-119; WI98, 35; AM00, 24]! "Could a [medieval] forger have imagined this?", Barbet asked[BP53, 119], and the answer clearly is NO!

Feet Why would a medieval forger depict the square cross-section

[Right (enlarge[LM10b]):
"Half-way along there is a rectangular stain, rather nearer to the inner than to the outer edge of the impression, and this is where the flows seem to have their centre ... This four-sided image is certainly the mark of the nail ..."[BP53, 125].]

imprint of a Roman nail in the man's right foot, when it was only discovered in the mid-20th century[BP53, 125]?

Non-traditional Why would a medieval forger depict the crucified Jesus non-traditionally? A medieval forger would need to conform to tradition for his forgery to be accepted[SH90, 93]:

"How could an artist, who was painting a shroud destined for public exposition, have dared to do an unheard-of thing, that of portraying a Christ who was entirely naked? How would he have come to contradict the traditional iconography, with a nail in the wrist, with a thumb hidden in the palm of the hand ... who only shows one pierced hand and one pierced foot ..."[BP53, 31].
"Now we come to a more important point. The nail-wound of the left hand is in the wrist, not in the centre of the palm, as demanded by tradition. In a forged relic such a parade of independence would scarcely have been tolerated. As it was, to have shown the public only one hand, and consequently only one wound, was remarkable enough. Such licences would be pardoned only in the most authentic relic. Yet anatomy proves that the nails must have been driven into the wrists, not into the hands. Here again tradition is contradicted" (emphasis original)[VP02, 40].
Naked A medieval forger would not have defied tradition by depicting Jesus entirely naked[BP53, 31; BR78, 44; DR84, 29; OG85, 53]. He would likely have been burned at the stake for blasphemy[WR10, 188], as would a buyer of his forgery who displayed it. A naked rear view of Jesus would be especially shocking to the medieval mind because that was the evident intent of the 2nd century Alexamenos graffito (below), to depict Jesus in that most degrading pose.

[Left (enlarge[AGW].): The c. 200 Alexamenos graffito, discovered in 1857, mocks Alexamenos, a second century Christian[OG85, 237; WI98, 49], who is depicted raising a hand in worship of a naked Jesus with a donkey's head, on a cross from the rear, with the caption, "Alexamenos worships [his] God"]

Nails in the wrists Why would a medieval forger contradict traditional iconography by correctly depicting Jesus with nails in his wrists, not his palms[VP02, 40; BP53, 31; BR78, 44; WI79, 40-41; DR84, 25; SH90, 92; BM95, 24; IJ98, 57-58; WR10, 188; DT12, 119]? See above on the nail wound in the hidden right wrist is inferred from identical bloodflows down the right forearm.

Cap of thorns Why would a medieval forger depict the man with numerous scalp puncture wounds consistent with a cap of thorns which covered his entire head rather than a traditional circlet crown of thorns depicted in medieval Christian art[BM95, 26; GM98, 30; GV01, 38]? See 02Jul24.

No right hand nor left foot nail wound Why would a medieval forger not depict the nail wounds in the man's right hand [see above] and left foot?

[Right (enlarge[LM10c]): Feet dorsal view showing the man's right foot (left-right reversed-see 05Jun22) with a nail wound but no complete left foot with a nail wound. See frontal view of the feet where none of the left foot is visible (due to the man's left foot having been nailed to the cross with a single nail through his right foot - see 23Jan23).]

"The lack of clarity regarding the stigmata in the feet is itself significant. If the Shroud were a medieval forgery, the wounds in the feet (along with every other wound) would surely have been clearly marked ... Christ's wounds were not just incidental traces of torture in the Middle Ages. As the source of the blood that bought salvation, they were considered profoundly meaningful and were a focus of devotion. Accordingly, when medieval artists depicted Christ's wounded feet, they were always careful to indicate the marks of the nails"[DT12, 121-122].
To be continued in a future "Problems of the forgery theory #3."

Notes
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]

Bibliography
AA99. Adler, A.D., 1999, "The Nature of the Body Images on the Shroud of Turin," in AC02, 103-112.
AA0a. Adler, A.D., 2000, "The Shroud Fabric and the Body Image: Chemical and Physical Characteristics," in AC02, 113-127.
AA0c. Adler, A.D., 2000c, "Chemical and Physical Aspects of the Sindonic Images," in AC02, 10-27.
AC02. Adler, A.D. & Crispino, D., ed., 2002, "The Orphaned Manuscript: A Gathering of Publications on the Shroud of Turin," Effatà Editrice: Cantalupa, Italy.
AF82. Adams, F.O., 1982, "Sindon: A Layman's Guide to the Shroud of Turin," Synergy Books: Tempe AZ.
AGW. "Alexamenos graffito," Wikipedia, 25 June 2024.
AM00. Antonacci, M., 2000, "Resurrection of the Shroud: New Scientific, Medical, and Archeological Evidence," M. Evans & Co: New York NY.
BA91. Berard, A., ed., 1991, "History, Science, Theology and the Shroud," Symposium Proceedings, St. Louis Missouri, June 22-23, 1991, The Man in the Shroud Committee of Amarillo, Texas: Amarillo TX.
BM95. Borkan, M., 1995, "Ecce Homo?: Science and the Authenticity of the Turin Shroud," Vertices, Duke University, Vol. X, No. 2, Winter, 18-51.
BP53. Barbet, P., 1953, "A Doctor at Calvary," Earl of Wicklow, transl., Image Books: Garden City NY, Reprinted, 1963.
BR78. Brent, P. & Rolfe, D., 1978, "The Silent Witness: The Mysteries of the Turin Shroud Revealed," Futura Publications: London.
DD84. Dutton, D., 1984, "Requiem for the Shroud of Turin," Michigan Quarterly Review, 23, 243-55.
DT12. de Wesselow, T., 2012, "The Sign: The Shroud of Turin and the Secret of the Resurrection," Viking: London.
DR84. Drews, R., 1984, "In Search of the Shroud of Turin: New Light on Its History and Origins," Rowman & Littlefield: Lanham MD.
GM98. Guscin, M., 1998, "The Oviedo Cloth," Lutterworth Press: Cambridge UK.
GV01. Guerrera, V., 2001, "The Shroud of Turin: A Case for Authenticity," TAN: Rockford IL.
HA81. Heller, J.H. & Adler, A.D., 1981, "A Chemical Investigation of the Shroud of Turin," in AC02, 34-57.
HJ83. Heller, J.H., 1983, "Report on the Shroud of Turin," Houghton Mifflin Co: Boston MA.
HTW. "Halfton," Wikipedia, 6 July 2024.
IJ98. Iannone, J.C., 1998, "The Mystery of the Shroud of Turin: New Scientific Evidence," St Pauls: Staten Island NY.
JJ91. Jackson, J.P., "An Unconventional Hypothesis to Explain all Image Characteristics Found on the Shroud Image," in BA91, 171-204., 325-344.
OG85. O'Rahilly, A. & Gaughan, J.A., ed., 1985, "The Crucified," Kingdom Books: Dublin.
LM10a. Extract from Latendresse, M., 2010, "Shroud Scope: Durante 2002 Vertical," Sindonology.org
LM10b. Latendresse, M., 2010, Shroud Scope: Enrie Negative Vertical, Sindonology.org
LM10c. Extract from Latendresse, M., 2010, "Shroud Scope: Durante 2002 Vertical," Sindonology.org
OM10. Oxley, M., 2010, "The Challenge of the Shroud: History, Science and the Shroud of Turin," AuthorHouse: Milton Keynes UK.
PP06. Picknett, L. & Prince, C., 2006, "The Turin Shroud: How da Vinci Fooled History," [1994], Touchstone: New York NY, Second edition, Reprinted, 2007.
RTB. Reference(s) to be provided.
RC99. Ruffin, C.B., 1999, "The Shroud of Turin: The Most Up-To-Date Analysis of All the Facts Regarding the Church's Controversial Relic," Our Sunday Visitor: Huntington IN.
SD91. Scavone, D.C., "The History of the Turin Shroud to the 14th C.," in BA91, 171-204.
SH88. Sox, H.D., 1988, "The Shroud Unmasked: Uncovering the Greatest Forgery of All Time," Lamp Press: Basingstoke UK.
SH90. Stevenson, K.E. & Habermas, G.R., 1990, "The Shroud and the Controversy," Thomas Nelson: Nashville TN.
SS98. Schafersman, S.D., 1998, "Unraveling the Shroud of Turin," Approfondimento Sindone, Vol. 2., 3 October 2002.
STW. "Shroud of Turin," Wikipedia, 20 June 2024.
SU14. "Image of Full 2002 Restored Shroud," High Resolution Imagery, Shroud University, 2014.
TF06. Tribbe, F.C., 2006, "Portrait of Jesus: The Illustrated Story of the Shroud of Turin," Paragon House Publishers: St. Paul MN, Second edition.
VP02. Vignon, P., 1902, "The Shroud of Christ," University Books: New York NY, Reprinted, 1970.
WR10. Wilcox, R.K., 2010, "The Truth About the Shroud of Turin: Solving the Mystery," [1977], Regnery: Washington DC.
WI79. Wilson, I., 1979, "The Shroud of Turin: The Burial Cloth of Jesus?," [1978], Image Books: New York NY, Revised edition.
WI98. Wilson, I., 1998, "The Blood and the Shroud: New Evidence that the World's Most Sacred Relic is Real," Simon & Schuster: New York NY.
WI10. Wilson, I., 2010, "The Shroud: The 2000-Year-Old Mystery Solved," Bantam Press: London.
WM86. Wilson, I. & Miller, V., 1986, "The Evidence of the Shroud," Guild Publishing: London.
WS00. Wilson, I. & Schwortz, B., 2000, "The Turin Shroud: The Illustrated Evidence," Michael O'Mara Books: London.
WRW. "Wilhelm Röntgen: Discovery of X-rays," Wikipedia, 27 June 2024.
XRW. "X-ray: Discovery by Rontgen," Wikipedia, 17 July 2024.

Posted 10 July 2024. Updated 25 July 2024.

Tuesday, July 2, 2024

Shroud of Turin News, January - June 2024

© Stephen E. Jones[1]

[Previous: 2023] [Next: July - December 2024]

This is my Shroud of Turin News for January - June 2024. My words are bold to distinguish them from the articles'.


"Leading apologist takes part in Shroud of Turin film, releases first volume in new work on the resurrection," Liberty University, Christian Shields, 26 January 2024. ... Professor Dr. Gary Habermas [Right (enlarge).], an esteemed apologist and recognized expert on the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ ... recently provided his expertise for filmmaker Robert Orlando's new documentary "Shroud of Turin: Face to Face," [Below (enlarge)] about the famous artifact that has been the object of scientists and researchers worldwide for decades. The mysterious figure on the linen, along with blood stains, are used as evidence that it was once a burial cloth — and many have set out to prove that the markings, which correspond to crucifixion wounds, are those of Jesus Christ. The film was released in November ... Habermas said Christian scientists believe that the famous images on the centuries-old cloth are due to an excessive amount of radiation only made possible by a supernatural resurrection. I don't agree with the "excessive amount of radiation," unless by "radiation" is meant light. Luke's account of The Transfiguration in Lk 9:28-31:
28 Now about eight days after these sayings he took with him Peter and John and James and went up on the mountain to pray. 29 And as he was praying, the appearance of his face was altered, and his clothing became dazzling white. 30 And behold, two men were talking with him, Moses and Elijah, 31 who appeared in glory and spoke of his departure,[Greek exodus] which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem."
coupled with Mt 17:2, "he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun," indicates that The Transfiguration was a prefiguration of Jesus' resurrection, when his body would emit intense light... The film takes a scientific approach to analyze various characteristics of the shroud through digital technology and includes expert interviews to determine its significance to Christ and His burial. ... Habermas has cowritten two books on the shroud, ("Verdict on the Shroud: Evidence for the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ," 1981, and "The Shroud and the Controversy," 1990). As I wrote in 2015:
"I already had a number of Habermas' works on Christian apologetics, and I knew him to be a sound, evidence-based, evangelical Christian philosopher, [so] when in 2005 I found his book, "Verdict on the Shroud" in a secondhand bookstall ... I set aside my Protestant prejudice that the Shroud was just another fake Roman Catholic relic, and bought and read it ... I accepted then provisionally, and later fully, that the Shroud is indeed the very burial sheet of Jesus, bearing His crucified and resurrected image!"
See my first introductory post to this blog."

"Supporters offer million-dollar prize to replicate Shroud of Turin," Catholic Review, Christian Shields, 26 January 2024. See also 240209DC & 240222CW. [Right (enlarge). David Rolfe [1951-], a British documentary film producer, speaks ... at a news conference ... to announce a $1 million challenge prize to anyone who can recreate the Shroud of Turin using only tools and techniques from the 14th century.] ... Are you looking to make an easy $1 million? All you have to do is recreate a photographic negative image of an apparently crucified man on a 14-foot-by-3-foot piece of linen. And it has to have ... features, so that when it is rendered as ... three-dimensional ... based on the intensity of the shading, it should produce an accurately contoured 3-D image of a human form. ... the linen ... will be provided – it ... has to be done using only materials and methods that would have been available in medieval times, specifically between AD 1260 and 1390. Maybe it’s not an easy million bucks after all ... Rolfe ... first announced the challenge to the British Museum in his 2022 documentary, "Who Can He Be?" See 22May22. The British Museum supervised a carbon-14 dating of the Shroud of Turin in 1988, with a few labs from around the world. That testing pronounced that the shroud was not the genuine burial cloth of Christ, as many believe, because the testing showed it to be produced in the 13th or 14th century. However, since then, many researchers have noted that the testing was flawed. ... If, as museum officials said in 1988, some resourceful artist in the 1200s "Faked it and flogged it off," It was Oxford radiocarbon dating laboratory Director Prof. Edward Hall (1924-2001))[WI98, 7]. then ... it should be reproducible, including the unique characteristics that show the image of a man on the cloth does not contain any paint, ink, dye, stain or pigments, and that there is no image underneath the blood stains. After almost two years of no response from the British Museum, the challenge is being extended to the United States [on] Feb. 8. ... A donor who helped Rolfe finance his 2022 documentary also agreed to put up the money for the prize. The same donor agreed to cover the U.S. prize, if anyone succeeds. "He thinks his money is safe," Rolfe said. ... From my book, Chapter 2, "What is the Turin Shoud?":

"No explanation Modern science has no viable explanation of how the Shroudman's image was formed[TF06, 177], and neither has modern science been able to replicate the Shroud[BA11.]. In 2022, film-maker David Rolfe (1951-) offered the British Museum (which was involved in the 1988 radiocarbon dating)[DP89, 611], US$1M to replicate the Shroud[MJ22]. But neither the Museum nor other sceptics who claim to have replicated the Shroud, have taken up Rolfe's offer[GC24]! In February 2024 Rolfe extended his US$1M challenge to the USA[GC24]. It obviously is impossible that an unknown medieval artist could forge the Shroud and modern 21st century science cannot replicate it. But if the Shroud is acheiropoiētos ("not made with hands"), but made by God, as claimed for the Image of Edessa/Shroud since at least the sixth century[WI79, 138; WI91, 135; RC99, 55; WB06, 225; WI10, 128], then modern science may never be able to replicate it!"
"New evidence indicates Turin Shroud not a European forgery," Catholic Herald, Simon Caldwell, 26 March 2024 ... New scientific tests conducted on the famous Shroud of Turin have revealed that the flax used to make the linen was grown in the Middle East. The results of isotope tests provide new evidence that the shroud is the actual garment that was used to cover the body of Jesus Christ following his crucifixion – and is not a forgery that was created in medieval Europe. Fragments of cloth taken from the shroud show that

[Above (enlarge). Photograph Ray Rogers [1927-2005] took in 1979 showing the threads that came from the "Raes piece" – removed from the Shroud in 1973 for textile research – and from which William Meacham obtained his sample.]

its flax originated in the western Levant, a swathe of land occupied today by Israel, Lebanon and western parts of Jordan and Syria (see below).

[Above (enlarge)."Testing yielded the expected regional grouping. The two Shroud samples gave virtually identical results that fell into the cluster from Israel, as shown in the diagram" above. Linen is woven flax. Flax is mostly cellulose. Cellulose is repeating chains of molecules of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. Ignoring carbon, ... hydrogen can be found either as deuterium (1 proton and 1 neutron) or protium (1 proton), and oxygen can be found either as oxygen-16 (8 protons and 8 neutrons), oxygen-17 (8 protons and 9 neutrons), or oxygen-18 (8 protons and 10 neutrons). Plants derive their oxygen and hydrogen by splitting water in photosynthesis. Therefore, plants in a region have a particular ratio of oxygen and hydrogen isotopes of that region, called an Isoscape. "There are several hypotheses to account for the outliers: linen fiber imported from another country, irrigation using water from deep ground, or contamination due to pest repellent or preservative." The Raes sample, of which these threads were a part, and the

[Left (enlarge). "Warp fibers from the radiocarbon sample ... The gum is swelling, becoming more transparent, and detaching from the fibers"[RR05, 191].].

radiocarbon dating sample, are covered with Alarizin (or Rose Madder) dye gum, which had been used in medieval Europe since 1291 [in fact more than 500 years before that - see below], as Rogers reported:

"All threads from the Raes sample and the yarn segments from the radiocarbon sample show colored encrustations (or coatings) on their surfaces .... The coating material ... consist[s] of a plant gum containing alizarin dye present in two forms. ... The main part of the shroud does not contain these materials. Alizarin and purpurin are extracted from Madder root and first appeared in Italy about A.D. 1291 ..."[RR05, 191].
"In the Middle Ages, Charlemagne [r. 768-814] encouraged madder cultivation. Madder was widely used as a dye in Western Europe in the Late Medieval centuries"[ALW]. So Madder Rose was being grown in Europe from at least the 8th century. And "Alizarin ... is an organic compound with formula C14H8O4 that has been used throughout history as a prominent red dye, principally for dyeing textile fabrics"[ALW]. With 8 hydrogen, and 4 oxygen, atoms in every alizarin molecule, Madder Rose grown in Europe would take up water into photosynthesis containing oxygen-18 and hydrogen-2 (deuterium) and split them into H2 and O18

[Above (enlarge[WSC]). Photosynthesis equations of experiments by Ruben et al. (1940) showing that plants derive their oxygen (and hydrogen - not shown) from soil water, not atmospheric carbon dioxide or water. And because soil water is regional, not global as atmospheric carbon dioxide is, the cellulose of plants, including flax, reflects their regional ratios of oxygen-18 and hydrogen-2.]

which would be incorporated into Madder Rose dye, in a European isoscape H2 and O18 ratio. So the "Europe outlier" in the graph above is readily explained by contamination of the Raes threads with a medieval European Madder Rose dye. This leaves the Shroud's flax having been grown in "the western Levant, a swathe of land occupied today by Israel, Lebanon and western parts of Jordan and Syria"!

William Meacham, the American archaeologist who commissioned the study, said: "With a probable near Eastern origin, new doubts must be raised about interpreting the shroud as simply a fake relic made in medieval Europe, and new questions arise about what the image on the cloth signifies. "The possibility that this cloth is actually the burial shroud of Jesus is strengthened by this new evidence. "In my view, that remains the best explanation for the shroud." As a member of the board of directors of the Shroud of Turin Education and Research Association (STERA), Meacham obtained permission to test five of seven threads in the possession of the group. The threads originated from a sample known as the "Raes piece" that was removed from the Shroud in 1973 for textile research. Fourteen threads were provided by the Turin archdiocese to the physicist [sic thermal chemist] Ray Rogers, a member of the American scientific team that had conducted an onsite study of the shroud in 1978, and which were later passed on to STERA. Testing was undertaken at the Stable Isotopes Laboratory of the University of Hong Kong, which is able to test very small samples of even less than 1mg. Meacham said the Eastern origin of the shroud is important because "it reinforces other features that point in that direction". He explained: "Most notable was the pollen. Even though many identifications have since been discounted, certain species taken together still indicate an Eastern Mediterranean presence. For example, pollen of halophyte (salt tolerant) plants which only grow around the Dead Sea:

"But as he [Frei] steadily identified one pollen after another ... there began emerging certain specimens that had to be of import ... In particular, he found himself identifying pollens from halophytes, that is, from plants typical of the desert regions around the Jordan valley and specifically adapted to live in soils with the high salt content found almost exclusively around the Dead Sea. In his own words: `These plants are of great diagnostic value for our geographical studies as identical desert plants are missing in all the other countries where the Shroud is believed to have been exposed to the open air. Consequently a forgery, produced somewhere in France during the Middle Ages in a country lacking these typical halophytes, could not contain such characteristic pollen grains from the desert regions of Palestine.' [Frei, "From a report to British film producer David Rolfe, January 1977"][WI98, 99-100, 252].
Similarly, the crown of thorns [on the shroud] in helmet style rather than Roman circlet is a feature characteristic of Asia Minor and the Levant. A positive photograph of the back of the man's head

[Right (enlarge[LM10]). "Close-up of the blood flows on the Shroud's back-of-the-head imprint. These appear to have derived from a cap of spikes ... rather than the neat circlet often imagined by artists"[WS00, 57].

(rotated 90 degrees because it is upside down - above right), shows trickles of blood consistent with a `cap of thorns' having been forced down upon his head. And also a horizontal band keeping the `cap' in place (consistent with the Crown of Thorns now in the Louvre, Paris - see 11Feb23):

"... all around the Shroud man's forehead and again around the back of his head, we noted a series of reddish-coloured, irregularly spaced trickles, as if something spiked had caused his scalp to bleed in several places. Even for a layman, these fairly obviously suggest the 'crown of thorns' that all four gospels describe as having been thrust on Jesus' head to humiliate him - although the Shroud indicates that this was very much more like a crude, tangled clump of some barbed plant, than the neat circlet imagined by most artists. However, it is again the medical specialist. who notes ... the medically convincing character of each blood trickle ..."[WS00, 57-58].

Another is the claim of coins on the eyes in the shroud image that matched a documented instance from a second century burial in Judea. "This was an impressive confirmation of a hypothesis generated by computer 3D analysis in 1977, at a time when there was no known

[Left (enlarge[JJ77, 88]). 1977 VP-8 Image Analyzer close-up of the Shroudman's face, showing circular bulges over each eye, which are the same size and shape of Pontius Pilate lepton coins, minted in AD 29! See 10May13 & 18Apr20]

instance (outside of Israel) of such a practice in antiquity." ... While the latest findings counter the accusation that the shroud is only a forgery, mystery remains and Meacham admits ... that "there is slight overlap of a couple of samples (of flax) from western Europe with those of Israel". See above that the "overlap" is explained by the Raes fibres being contaminated by medieval Rose Madder dye, with its European ratio of oxygen-18 and hydrogen-2. ...

Notes:
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]

Bibliography
ALW. "Alizarin," Wikipedia, 11 November 2023.
BA11. Boyle, A., 2011, "Was Holy Shroud created in a flash? Italian researchers resurrect claim," 22 December.
DP89. Damon, P.E., et al., 1989, "Radiocarbon Dating of the Shroud of Turin," Nature, Vol. 337, 16th February, 611-615.
GC24. Gunty, C.,2024, "Supporters offer million-dollar prize to replicate Shroud of Turin," Catholic Review, 9 February.
JJ77". Jackson, J.P., Jumper, E.J., Mottern, R.W. & Stevenson, K.E., ed., 1977, "The Three Dimensional Image on Jesus' Burial Cloth," in Stevenson, K.E., ed., "Proceedings of the 1977 United States Conference of Research on The Shroud of Turin," Holy Shroud Guild: Bronx NY.
LM10. Extract from Latendresse, M., 2010, "Shroud Scope: Durante 2002 Vertical" (rotated 90 degrees), Sindonology.org.
MJ22. Moorhead, J., 2022, "The $1m challenge: `If the Turin Shroud is a forgery, show how it was done'," The Observer, 17 April.
RR05. Rogers, R.N., 2005, "Studies on the Radiocarbon Sample from the Shroud of Turin," Thermochimica Acta, Vol. 425, Nos 1-2, 20 January, 189-194.
RC99. Ruffin, C.B., 1999, "The Shroud of Turin: The Most Up-To-Date Analysis of All the Facts Regarding the Church's Controversial Relic," Our Sunday Visitor: Huntington IN.
TF06. Tribbe, F.C., 2006, "Portrait of Jesus: The Illustrated Story of the Shroud of Turin," Paragon House Publishers: St. Paul MN, Second edition.
WSC. "What is the correct balanced equation of Photosynthesis?," Biology4U, 2024.
WB06. Whiting, B., 2006, "The Shroud Story," Harbour Publishing: Strathfield NSW, Australia.
WI79. Wilson, I., 1979, "The Shroud of Turin: The Burial Cloth of Jesus?," [1978], Image Books: New York NY, Revised edition.
WI91. Wilson, I., 1991, "Holy Faces, Secret Places: The Quest for Jesus' True Likeness," Doubleday: London.
WI98. Wilson, I., 1998, "The Blood and the Shroud: New Evidence that the World's Most Sacred Relic is Real," Simon & Schuster: New York NY.
WI10. Wilson, I., 2010, "The Shroud: The 2000-Year-Old Mystery Solved," Bantam Press: London.
WS00. Wilson, I. & Schwortz, B., 2000, "The Turin Shroud: The Illustrated Evidence," Michael O'Mara Books: London.

Posted 2 July 2024. Updated 16 July 2024.

Thursday, June 20, 2024

Problems of the forgery theory #1: Shroud of Turin: Burial Sheet of Jesus!

© Stephen E. Jones[1]

This is "Problems of the forgery theory #1," which is based on, and will help me write, Chapter 19 of my book in progress, "Shroud of Turin: Burial Sheet of Jesus!" (see

[Right (enlarge[SU91]): The planned cover of my book.]

06Jul17, 03Jun18, 04Apr22, 13Jul22 & 8 Nov 22). See also my 2016 series, "Problems of the Turin Shroud forgery theory: Index A-F" and my 2020 series, "Problems of the forgery theory A-Z: The evidence is overwhelming that the Turin Shroud is Jesus' burial sheet! ". Last week (9 June) I did a word count of my book in Google.docs and it was 83724 words or 101.5% of a 300-page book of 82500 words! But I have much to include in it, and therefore much to edit out. I am aiming for 360 pages, including front and back matter. The in-line references clutter this post, but in my book they will mostly be in the chapters referred to, will be in unobtrusive endnotes, and due to limitations on space in the book, there will be less of them. I include them here to help me write my book.

[Next #2]


PROBLEMS OF THE FORGERY THEORY #1
© Stephen E. Jones
"At first sight it would seem that the image on the shroud is ... a painting made for the purpose of a pious fraud. But when this hypothesis is examined with care, we see that it must be rejected for the following reasons: (1) As the shroud is authenticated since the fourteenth century, if the image is a faked painting, there must at this epoch have existed an artist - who has remained unknown - capable of executing a work hardly within the power of the greatest Renaissance painters" (Delage, 1902)[DY02, 72].
"Also is it not rather incredible that this unknown individual should have gone to so much trouble and effort to deceive in an age in which, as twentieth-century journalists have reminded us[SR88], a large proportion of the populace would have been very easily duped by a feather of the Archangel Gabriel or a phial of the last breath of St Joseph?" (Wilson, 1998)[WI98, 59-60].

Theory That the Shroud is a 14th century or earlier forgery is only a theory[GM69, 7], not a fact. Moreover, it is a weak theory. The forger is unknown[WI79, 32; CN88, 30; DT12, 17] and therefore merely hypothetical[AF82, 70]. He would have been at least the equal of Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519)[CN84, 155] but the Shroud was undisputably exhibited in c. 1355[GV01, 14; OM10, 52-53; WI10, 222], which was ~98 years before Leonardo was born[RC99, 139]!

Forgery The essence of forgery is the intent to deceive[MP78, 32]. Sceptics and shroudies agree that if the Shroud is not the burial sheet of Jesus, then it is a forgery, not simply a work of art[CN84, 154-155]. The Shroud does not purport to be a depiction of Jesus' burial shroud, but to be actually Jesus' burial shroud[WI79, 210, 266]! The Shroud has no signature of an artist who created it[RC99, 161]. There is no record of the Shroud having been sold by an artist, or donated to a church[CN84, 155]. The first undisputed owners of the Shroud, Geoffroy I de Charny (c.1300-56) and his wife Jeanne de Vergy (c.1332–1428), were comparatively poor[BM95, 18; DT12, 14] and they could not have afforded to buy the Shroud for the king's ransom price it would have fetched[WI79, 87; SH81, 109].

Unknown Who was the pre-1355 artistic genius who forged the Shroud[BA34, 15; CN88, 31]? Where are the other examples of his work[GD07]? Where are the contemporary references to him and his Shroud[PM96, 15]? How could he be unknown[PM96, 15]? Medieval artists did not, like the Greek goddess Athena, spring into existence, fully-formed[ATW]. They served an apprenticeship under a master artist[LJ98; FA20]. They increasingly produced their own improving works of art, under the guidance of their master[LJ98; FA20]. Then when the apprentice artist had served his apprenticeship and had become a master, he was supported by a wealthy patron[LJ98; FA20]. Eventually the now master medieval artist established his own studio and took in his own apprentices[LJ98; FA20]. Each of these steps were public, involving a great many contemporaries. So an unknown medieval artist who created the Shroud is an unrealistic impossibility!

Why only one? If there was a multi-million-pound equivalent business in making forgeries during the 14th century[WI98, 7] then why did the forger stop at one shroud[GD07; WS00, 37]? Churches then did not care that other churches claimed to have the same relic[SH90, 77].

No consensus Sceptics claim that the Shroud was forged using different, mutually exclusive techniques[SD96]: painted (McCrone)[MW99, 122], powder rubbing (Nickell)[NJ87, 101-106], photograph (Allen)[AN98, 32-45]. They cannot all be right but they could all be wrong! What Ian Wilson (1941-) wrote over a quarter century ago is still true today:

"Indeed, if anyone had come up with a convincing solution as to how and by whom the Shroud was forged, they would inevitably have created a consensus around which everyone sceptical on the matter would rally. Yet so far this has not even begun to happen" (my emphasis)[WI98, 235].
The following are problems of the forgery theory from previous chapters. In the book these problems will be understandable to readers because they will have read the previous chapters referred to, and can refer back to them, if need be. That is not possible here, but I will try to link back to where those problems are mentioned elsewhere.

Central dilemma of the Shroud (Ch. 2). [18Jul20] The Shroud either is a forgery of Jesus burial shroud or it is Jesus' burial shroud[MP78, 23]. There is no realistic third alternative[MP78, 33; WJ63, x-xii]. This was, and is, admitted by leading Shroud sceptics Fr. Herbert Thurston (1856–1939)[TH03], Steven Schafersman (1948-)[SS82], and Joe Nickell (1944-)[NJ87, 141]. So, evidence against the Shroud being a forgery is evidence for it being Jesus’ burial sheet!

Linen cloth (Ch. 3). Fine linen The Greek word translated "linen shroud" in the Gospels[Mt 27:59; Mk 15:46; Lk 23:53] is sindon, which means "fine linen"[AG37, 311], especially that which was fine and costly[TJ01, 576]. But how would a pre-1355 forger have known that? The first published Greek New Testament, that of Desiderius Erasmus (c.1466-1536), was in 1516, which was 161 years after the first undisputed exhibition of the Shroud in c. 1355 (see above). In the first century fine linen ranked in value with with gold and silver[DI90, 10-11], so it may have been even more valuable in the fourteenth century. The Gospels only say that Jesus was buried in a “linen shroud”[Mt 27:59; Mk 15:46; Lk 23:53][SH81, 47; TF06, 64], so any sheet of linen would suffice for a medieval forger to pass off as being Jesus' burial shroud. Oxford radiocarbon dating laboratory Director Prof. Edward Hall (1924-2001) correctly stated that a medieval forger of the Shroud would have: "... just got a bit of linen, faked it up and flogged (sold) it" (my emphasis)[WI98, 7]. That is, a medieval forger would have used the least expensive and smallest size linen cloth on which he could have depicted Jesus’ crucified body.

Flax The Shroud’s flax contains calcium, strontium and iron which is consistent with it having been retted in a natural body of water[HJ83, 174; WM86, 91], as was done in Antiquity (before the 5th century). But not in medieval Europe when, because of water pollution, retting of linen was done in vats of water[TF06, 64].

Yarn The Shroud's linen is comprised of variegated bands of colour, as

[Left (enlarge[LM10a]): Shroud near bottom left corner, compared to the medieval Holland cloth linen backing (bottom left). As can be seen, the Shroud's linen is strongly banded lengthwise, but the Holland cloth is not banded.]

do ancient linen cloths, but not medieval linen cloths[RR08, 18; DT12, 110]. This is because each hank of ancient linen yarn was bleached separately, whereas medieval linen was bleached as the whole cloth, and does not show bands of different-colored yarn in its weave as the Shroud does[RR08, 18].

Weave The Shroud's weave is three-to-one herringbone twill[WI79, 68; WI98, 68; AM00, 98; WI10, 74], which was expensive[DR84, 12; AM00, 98; DT12, 109] and rare[WI98, 68]. A medieval forger would not likely have found a rare herringbone twill fine linen sheet on which to depict his forgery, especially a 4.2 by 1.1 metre (~14.5 x ~3.7 foot) one (see next), and if he did it would have been too expensive for him to use as his first and only forgery of the Shroud

Dimensions A medieval forger could not likely obtain a fine linen sheet, the dimensions of which are close to 8 x 2 Assyrian Standard Cubits (which the Shroud is - see 10Jul15 and 08Apr20),

[Right (enlarge)[LM10b]: Shroud photograph with an 8 x 2 grid overlay showing that the Shroud divides evenly into 16 squares, each 442/8 = 55.25 cm = ~21.7 in. long by 113.35/2 = 56.7 cm = ~22.3 in. wide. This is only 0.15 in. longer and 0.7 in. wider than the Assyrian Standard cubit of 21.6 in! These units are too close to the Assyrian Standard Cubit of Jesus' day (see 10Jul15) to be a coincidence[CM93, 6!]

because it is not a medieval unit of length and nor would he cut his cloth to Assyrian Standard Cubits lengths because he would not know how long that was (the Bible doesn't say and its length was only discovered in the 19th century). If Shroud sceptics resort to McCrone's pre-radiocarbon dating fall-back position, that "a first century cloth could have been found and used by a 14th century artist to paint the image"[MW99, 141], apart from its unlikeliness, it would mean admitting that both Bishop d'Arcis and the 1260-1390 radiocarbon date of the Shroud were wrong! A ~4 metre (~14 foot) long sheet is difficult to display[RTB], so it would be a negative selling point for a forger[RTB]. And cutting a ~4 metre sheet in half lengthways would allow two ~2 metre frontal image shrouds to be forged[RTB]!

Wide loom How did the medieval forger obtain a large linen sheet that

[Left (enlarge[WI10, 73]): "... for the production of the Shroud a length of fabric, 350 cm wide and 440 cm long, would have been cut first into two sections, 104 and 9 cm wide, each one having a selvage [sic] and a cut edge. The cut edges would then have been sewn together to form the Shroud of 114 cm width with two selvages at both lengthwise edges. The remainder, 230-250 cm of the original width of fabric could then either be cut again to make two more similar pieces of cloth, with two cut edges each which needed to be hemmed ..." [FM01, 58].]

had been woven on an extra-wide loom, which are only known from Roman Egypt and Syria, and not from medieval Europe[FM01, 58; WI10, 71-72]? See 31Oct12; 11Sep15, 08Oct16; 24May20 & 18Apr21.

Stitching How did the medieval forger obtain a linen sheet with a seam,

[Right (enlarge): Sketch of unusual stitching found on cloth fragments at the first-century Jewish fortress of Masada[WI10, 74], which is "identical to that found on the Shroud and nowhere else" (my emphasis)[DT12, 109]. See 24Aug15, 08Oct16; 24May20; 21Mar23 & 04Jun24].

the stitching of which has only been found in first-century Masada?

To be continued in part #2 of this series.

Notes
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]

Bibliography
AF82. Adams, F.O., 1982, "Sindon: A Layman's Guide to the Shroud of Turin," Synergy Books: Tempe AZ.
AG37. Abbott-Smith, G., 1937, "A Manual Greek Lexicon of the New Testament," [1921], T. & T. Clark: Edinburgh, Third edition, Reprinted, 1956.
AM00. Antonacci, M., 2000, "Resurrection of the Shroud: New Scientific, Medical, and Archeological Evidence," M. Evans & Co: New York NY.
AN98. Allen, N., 1998, "The Turin Shroud and the Crystal Lens: Testament to a Lost Technology," Empowerment Technologies: Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
ATW. "Athena," Wikipedia, 12 March 2024.
BA34. Barnes, A.S., 1934, "The Holy Shroud of Turin," Burns Oates & Washbourne: London.
BM95. Borkan, M., 1995, "Ecce Homo?: Science and the Authenticity of the Turin Shroud," Vertices, Duke University, Vol. X, No. 2, Winter, 18-51.
BW57. Bulst, W., 1957, "The Shroud of Turin," McKenna, S. & Galvin, J.J., transl., Bruce Publishing Co: Milwaukee WI.
CN88. Currer-Briggs, N., 1988, "The Shroud and the Grail: A Modern Quest for the True Grail," St. Martin's Press: New York NY.
DI90. Dickinson, I., 1990, "The Shroud and the Cubit Measure,"BSTS Newsletter, No. 24, January, 8-11.
DR84. Drews, R., 1984, "In Search of the Shroud of Turin: New Light on Its History and Origins," Rowman & Littlefield: Lanham MD.
DT12. de Wesselow, T., 2012, "The Sign: The Shroud of Turin and the Secret of the Resurrection," Viking: London.
CM93. Clift, M., 1993, "Carbon dating - what some of us think now," BSTS Newsletter, No. 33, February, 5-6.
CN84. Currer-Briggs, N., 1984, "The Holy Grail and the Shroud of Christ: The Quest Renewed," ARA Publications: Maulden UK.
DY02. Delage, Y., 1902, "Letter to M. Charles Richet," in Review scientifique, 31 May, in OG85, 72.
FA20. "From Apprentice Artist to Master: Art Lessons From Da Vinci," Milan Art Institute, 20 November 2020.
FM01. Flury-Lemberg, M., 2001, "The Linen Cloth of the Turin Shroud: Some Observations of its Technical Aspects," Sindon, New series, No. 16, December, 55-76 (not online).
GD07. Goska, D.V., 2007, "The Shroud of Turin???," 11 April..
GV01. Guerrera, V., 2001, "The Shroud of Turin: A Case for Authenticity," TAN: Rockford IL.
GM69. Green, M., 1969, "Enshrouded in Silence: In search of the First Millennium of the Holy Shroud," Ampleforth Journal, Vol. 74, No. 3, Autumn, 319-345.
HJ83. Heller, J.H., 1983, "Report on the Shroud of Turin," Houghton Mifflin Co: Boston MA.
JP78. Jennings, P., ed., 1978, "Face to Face with the Turin Shroud ," Mayhew-McCrimmon: Great Wakering UK.
LJ98. "The Medieval Artist's Apprentice," HumanitiesWeb.org, 6 September.
LM10a. Extract from Latendresse, M., 2010, "Shroud Scope: Durante 2002 Vertical," Sindonology.org.
LM10b. Extract from Latendresse, M., 2010, "Shroud Scope: Durante 2002 Vertical," Sindonology.org.
MP78. McNair, P., 1978, "The Shroud and History: Fantasy, Fake or Fact?," in JP78, 21-40.
MW99. McCrone, W.C., 1999, "Judgment Day for the Shroud of Turin," Prometheus Books: Amherst NY.
NJ87. Nickell, J., 1987, "Inquest on the Shroud of Turin," [1983], Prometheus Books: Buffalo NY, Revised, Reprinted, 2000.
OG85. O'Rahilly, A. & Gaughan, J.A., ed., 1985, "The Crucified," Kingdom Books: Dublin.
OM10. Oxley, M., 2010, "The Challenge of the Shroud: History, Science and the Shroud of Turin," AuthorHouse: Milton Keynes UK.
PM96. Petrosillo, O. & Marinelli, E., 1996, "The Enigma of the Shroud: A Challenge to Science," Scerri, L.J., transl., Publishers Enterprises Group: Malta.
RTB. Reference(s) to be provided.
RC99. Ruffin, C.B., 1999, "The Shroud of Turin: The Most Up-To-Date Analysis of All the Facts Regarding the Church's Controversial Relic," Our Sunday Visitor: Huntington IN.
RR08. Rogers, R.N., 2008, "A Chemist's Perspective on the Shroud of Turin," Lulu Press: Raleigh, NC.
SD96. Scavone, D.C., 1996, "Book Review of `The Turin Shroud: In Whose Image?," Shroud.com.
SH81. Stevenson, K.E. & Habermas, G.R., 1981, "Verdict on the Shroud: Evidence for the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ," Servant Books: Ann Arbor MI.
SH90. Stevenson, K.E. & Habermas, G.R., 1990, "The Shroud and the Controversy," Thomas Nelson: Nashville TN.
SS82. Schafersman, S.D., "Science, the public, and the Shroud of Turin," The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. 6, No. 3, Spring 1982, 37-56, 42 in NJ87, 141.
SR88. Sheridan, M. & Reeves, P., 1988, "Turin Shroud shown to be a fake," Independent, 14 October.
SU91. "Shroud University - Exploring the Mystery Since 33 A.D.," Shroud of Turin Education Project, Inc., Peachtree City, GA.
TF06. Tribbe, F.C., 2006, "Portrait of Jesus: The Illustrated Story of the Shroud of Turin," Paragon House Publishers: St. Paul MN, Second edition.
TH03. Thurston, H., 1903, "The Holy Shroud and the Verdict of History," The Month, CI, p.19 in WI79, 52.
WI79. Wilson, I., 1979, "The Shroud of Turin: The Burial Cloth of Jesus?," [1978], Image Books: New York NY, Revised edition.
TJ01. Thayer, J.H., 1901, "A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament: Being Grimm's Wilke's Clovis Novi Testamenti Translated Revised and Enlarged," T & T. Clark: Edinburgh, Fourth edition, Reprinted, 1961.
WI98. Wilson, I., 1998, "The Blood and the Shroud: New Evidence that the World's Most Sacred Relic is Real," Simon & Schuster: New York NY.
WI00. Wilson, I., 2000, "``The Turin Shroud - past, present and future', Turin, 2-5 March, 2000 - probably the best-ever Shroud Symposium," BSTS Newsletter, No. 51, June.
WI10. Wilson, I., 2010, "The Shroud: The 2000-Year-Old Mystery Solved," Bantam Press: London.
WJ63. Walsh, J.E., 1963, "The Shroud," Random House: New York NY.
WS00. Wilson, I. & Schwortz, B., 2000, "The Turin Shroud: The Illustrated Evidence," Michael O'Mara Books: London.
WM86. Wilson, I. & Miller, V., 1986, "The Evidence of the Shroud," Guild Publishing: London.

Posted 20 June 2024. Updated 10 July 2024.

Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Further evidence that Heaphy's 1st century sketch of Jesus in the Domitilla catacomb is of him sitting up at his resurrection with the Shroud over his shoulder!

© Stephen E. Jones[1]

In my post of 05Jun21 I wrote: "One of Heaphy's [Thomas Frank Heaphy (1813-73)] watercolour paintings ... of a fresco in the" Orpheus Cubiculum of the Domitilla catacomb, I propose ... is a depiction of Jesus sitting up in the Tomb immediately after His resurrection, and the `white mantle' around His shoulder and back is the Shroud"!

[Above (enlarge): "Original [Heaphy] painting of fresco. Catacomb of SS Nereo and Achilleo [sic. it was the Orpheus Cubiculum of the Domitilla catacomb.]. Probably 1st century ..."[MR86, plate 1]. Ian Wilson (1941-) noted of this, "the Heaphy profile view" was an "odd-man-out" in depictions of Jesus[WI92, 8]. Rex Morgan (1936-) confirmed that Heaphy's painting was of the "three-quarters profile portrait of Christ, in a fresco ... in the ceiling of a vault in the Orpheus Cubiculum of the Domitilla catacomb," because "The figure [in the fresco] has long hair and a beard; a white mantle is clasped upon the right shoulder. Just as Heaphy had copied it" (my emphasis)[MR93, 28]. See also 21Mar23. Belgian industrial chemist, Remi Van Haelst (1931-2003), saw this fresco and was told by his guide, "This is the oldest representation of the Lord, made by an unknown artist ... who had know[n] Jesus" (my emphasis):

"On the sepulchral vault, in the light of his flashlamp, the guide showed me a very vague painting. In a kind of circular inset on the ceiling of the chamber I saw the figure of a human bust, looking from the left side. With a kind of sepulchral voice the monk told me: `This is the oldest representation of the Lord, made by an unknown artist, probably based on descriptions or perhaps a sketch or painting by someone who had know[n] Jesus or his disciples"[VR87]
My reasons for thinking that this is a depiction of Jesus sitting up in the Tomb immediately after his resurrection, and the "white mantle" around His shoulder and back is the Shroud, are: 1) The simplest way to show Jesus sitting up after his resurrection is by a profile view (see below); 2) Jesus is naked under the "white mantle" as he was when buried (Jn 19:23); and 3) There is no mention in Scripture (or elsewhere as far as I am aware) of Jesus wearing a white mantle, but the Gospels mention that Jesus was buried in a "linen shroud" (Mt 27:59; Mk 15:46; Lk 23:53) which would have been originally white (Rev 19:14)[AM00, 72, 212]. Therefore, I no longer propose, but claim that this is the earliest (during the reign of Nero r. 54-68)[MR93, 28]), first century depiction of the Shroud!]

The "further evidence" that the simplest way to depict Jesus immediately after his resurrection, is him sitting up in profile, as in the resurrection scene in Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ":

[Above (enlarge): Jesus depicted in profile, sitting up immediately after his resurrection, in Mel Gibson's movie "The Passion of the Christ." Watch the YouTube video here. I saw this harrowing movie on my own in a theatre in 2004-05 and I remember this scene as the ultimate happy ending!]

Notes
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]

Bibliography
AM00. Antonacci, M., 2000, "Resurrection of the Shroud: New Scientific, Medical, and Archeological Evidence," M. Evans & Co: New York NY.
MR86. Morgan, R., 1986, "The Holy Shroud and the Earliest Paintings of Christ," Runciman Press: Manly NSW, Australia, plate 1.
MR93. Morgan, R.H., 1993, "New Evidence for the Earliest Portrait of Jesus," Shroud Spectrum International, No. 42, December, 28-29, 28.
VR87. Van Haelst, R., 1987, "Did I see the Lord?," Shroud News, No. 44, December, 11-15, 12.
WI92. Wilson, I., 1992, "Still in Rome: Rediscovery of 'Oldest Painted Likeness of Christ'?," BSTS Newsletter, No. 32, 7-10.

Posted 19 June 2024. Updated 20 June 2024.

Tuesday, June 4, 2024

Shroud of Turin News, 2023

© Stephen E. Jones[1]

[Previous: June - December 2022] [Next: January - June 2024]

This is my Shroud of Turin News 2023. See previous why I had fallen behind and why I need to catch up. The articles' words are bold to distinguish them from mine.


"Is the Shroud of Turin authentic? A new 'investigation' reopens the debate," Le Monde, Laurent Testot, 1 January 2023. The writer Jean-Christian Petitfils put the Holy Shroud back on the loom. In his work, he mixes history, science and esotericism in the hope of proving that the cloth did indeed wrap the body of Christ after his crucifixion. See 11May24a. The Shroud of Turin would appear to be a miracle in the literal sense of the term ... In his latest book, Le Saint Suaire de Turin. Témoin de la Passion de Jésus-Christ ("The Holy Shroud of Turin. Witness to the Passion of Jesus Christ") [Right (enlarge)], presented as a "definitive investigation," the historian Jean-Christian Petitfils traces the path of the cloth ... Petfils is a very significant French scholar: see his 15 books on Amazon.com! His `coming out' in favour of the Shroud's authenticity could have a big impact in France! For the author, the shroud is a miracle and science confirms it. Which is true! See 11May24b. In contrast to the Catholic Church, which has cautiously ruled that the object is an image or an icon ... That is, a fake! This is an example of what I had previously stated (11May24c), of the Vatican's duplicity (two-facedness) in its refusing to confirm that the Shroud is Jesus' burial sheet, sceptics cite that as evidence that the Shroud is a fake, when by its actions in spending the equivalent of millions of US dollars preserving the Shroud and exhibiting it to millions of people, the Vatican clearly does believe that the Shroud is Jesus' burial sheet! the author firmly defends: 1) that we are dealing with a true "relic," dating from the beginning of the Christian era, 2) that the cloth held the body of a supplicant victim? who could in all logic only be Jesus Christ. Bravo M. Petitfils! Jesus said, "So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven" (Mt 10:32). And the same presumably applies to his burial shroud, upon which he imprinted his image and has preserved down through the ages, against all the odds. Readers who immersed themselves in his biography of Jesus ... already knew what to expect from Mr. Petitfils' opinion on the Shroud of Turin: "The Shroud of Turin is the cloth that apparently wrapped the body of Christ. It represents the frontal and dorsal imprint, inverted, of a man of Semitic type, scourged, violently struck in the face, bloody, crowned with a band of thorns, crucified according to Roman techniques, with nails on the wrists and feet, bearing a wound on the right side. In other words, the wounds of The Passion. It is an impressive image, acheiropoietic (not made by human hands), almost indelible, isotropic (i.e., without directional effect), which one has never managed to reproduce, even in the laboratory, by the most varied techniques." Indeed it is! So how could a medieval forger have produced the Shroud if modern 20th and 21st century science and technology has been unable to?

"Documentary on Shroud of Turin to be released this November," Aleteia, J-P Mauro, 8 February 2023. The film will explore many aspects of the Shroud of Turin and its history, seeking to determine once and for all if this was the burial cloth of Christ ... A documentary examining the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin, believed by many to be the cloth in which Christ was buried, will be released this November. The film, [Above (enlarge). Click here to watch the video.] The Shroud: Face to Face, is by Robert Orlando, who wrote a book of the same title on the topic. It is expected to explore many aspects of the Shroud, while debunking the failed attempt to carbon date the cloth in 1988. ... Orlando ... compared the documentary's investigative style to that of the ever popular True Crime genre. ... He explained that the content will include recent discoveries regarding the image on the Shroud, which can only be seen in photographic negative. These include the determination that the head wounds inflicted on the image cover the whole head, suggesting that the Crown of Thorns may have more resembled a helmet. This is not recent - see my 2013 "3.5. The man on the Shroud and Jesus were crowned with thorns" and my 2022 "The Shroud man and Jesus were crowned with thorns #38." It was also determined that the man in the shroud's shoulder was dislocated, which experts suggest could have been caused by one of Christ's falls, and would explain why the Romans allowed Simon of Cyrene to help Jesus carry the cross I wasn't aware of, or had forgtten, this:
"The man seems to have had a dislocated shoulder (inferred from the right shoulder being lower than the left on the back-of-the-body image)"[WI98, 26]

"And so is fulfilled the prophecy of the 22nd Psalm which Jesus drew attention to while hanging on the cross when He quoted the first verse: `My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me?' This same Psalm goes on to give a graphic description of the scene of crucifixion (not invented until 900 years after David wrote the Psalm, which states among other things: 6. But I am a worm, and not a man, a reproach of men, and despised by the people. 7. All who see me sneer at me (see Luke 23:35); they separate with the lip, they wag the head, saying, 8. commit thyself to the Lord; let Him deliver him; let Him rescue him, because He delights in him (see Luke 23:35,37). ... 14. I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint; my heart is like wax; it is melted in me, 15. My strength is dried up, like a potsherd, and my tongue cleaves to my jaws; and Thou dost lay me in the dust of death. 16. for dogs (Hebrew for gentiles, Romans) have surrounded me; a band of evildoers has encompassed me; they pierced my hands and my feet. 17. I can count all my bones. They look, they stare at me; 18. they divide my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots" (my emphasis)[Jn 19:24][MA87, 9-10].
... While an attempt has been made to carbon date the Shroud of Turin, the results of the test were contended. Those who took the sample of the cloth reportedly chose a spot that had been repaired after fire damage in the 16th century. Because of this, the dating results of 700 years old have been discredited. The problem with this Medieval Repair Theory, and all Shroudie theories which attempt to explain how the first century Shroud has the `bull's eye' 1325 ±65 radiocarbon date, is that, as the physicist Frank Tipler (1947-) pointed out, for carbon contamination to shift the 1st century radiocarbon date of the Shroud 13 centuries into the future, to 1260-1390, the mid-point of which, 1325 ±65, `just happpens' to be 30 years before the Shroud entered undisputed history in 1355, would be a miracle:
"If the radiocarbon date is ignored, there are quite a few reasons for accepting the Shroud as genuine ... But ... what must be answered before the Shroud can be accepted as genuine - is why the radiocarbon date is exactly what one would expect it to be if the Turin Shroud were actually a fraud. A very plausible history of the Shroud from A.D. 30 to the present has been constructed ... However, 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, petitioned the Pope to display it as the unique burial cloth of Jesus. ... 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 ..." (my emphasis)[TF07, 178-179]
The only viable explanation why the first century Shroud has a 1325 ±65 radiocarbon date is my Hacker Theory! All other Shroudie explanations why the first century Shroud has a 1325 ±65 radiocarbon date have an implied, but hidden conclusion, "... therefore the Shroud has a 1260-1390 (1325 ±65) radiocarbon date." But then the non sequitur (L. "it does not follow") would be obvious. ... Father Robert J. Spitzer [1952-], Jesuit scholar ... believes that the Shroud of Turin is genuine. He hailed the film for its educational value ... "This is the way, I think, to get the message out, and in a compelling way that doesn't force people, that allows them to make a decision for themselves," [he] said ....the filmmakers of The Shroud: Face to Face say it should be released in November 2023. Learn more about this exciting documentary at the movie's official website.

"The Mystery Man: An exhibition that has done `a lot of good'," Aleteia, Daniel Esparza, 24 March 2023. The exhibition presenting the first hyper-realistic, science-based sculpted reconstruction of the Man in the Holy Shroud closed last week in Salamanca and now begins a global tour. According

[Artisplendore - The Mystery Man (enlarge)]

to biblical tradition, only Joseph of Arimathea and a few women saw Jesus' tortured, broken, wounded, naked body after his death on the cross. As well as Joseph of Arimathea (Mt 27:57-60; Mk 15:43-46; Lk 23:50-53; Jn 19:38-42), they were Nicodemus (Jn 19:39), and "Mary Magdalene and the other Mary" (Mt 27:61). The "other Mary" was Mary the mother of James the younger and Joseph (Mt 27:56; Mk 15:40,47; 16:1; Lk 24:10). She was "the wife of Clopas" (Jn 19:25). Jesus appeared to Clopas and presumably his wife Mary on the road to Emmaus (Lk 24:13-31). The early church historian Hegesippus (c.110-180) identified Clopas as a brother of Jesus' `father' Joseph[WJ84, 36-38]! At least, that was the case before "The Mystery Man," an exhibition presenting the first hyper-realistic What does "hyper-realistic" mean? It is either realistic or it isn't!, science-based sculpted reconstruction of the Man of the Holy Shroud, While this is helpful in conveying the horror of Jesus' sufferings, the bleeding scourge wounds on the dead Jesus are not Biblically realistic. First, the type of Roman flagrum which matches the Shroudman's dumbbell-shaped scourge wounds had three leather thongs and

[Right (enlarge): Roman flagrum reconstructed by Paul Vignon (1865-1943) from the Shroud-man's scourge wounds. A flagrum similar to this was later recovered from the Roman city of Herculaneum, which, with its neighbour Pompeii, was buried in the eruption of Mt Vesuvius in AD 79.]

two lead balls (plumbatae) spaced near the end of each thong, which self-evidently were designed to cause internal bleeding so that the scourged crucifixion victim would experience agony but not die prematurely from loss of blood (see 27Dec21). Second, after Jesus was scourged (Mt 27:26; Mk 15:15; Jn 19:1), the Roman soldiers put a purple robe on him (Mt 27:28; Mk 15:17; Jn 19:2), which would have absorbed what blood there was from the scourging. Then after Jesus was crowned with thorns (Mt 27:29; Mk 15:17; Jn 19:2), the soldiers stripped Jesus of the robe and put his own clothes back on him and led him away to crucify him (Mt 27:31; Mk 15:20). This second change of Jesus' clothes would have absorbed what undried blood, if any, from his scourging that remained on Jesus' body. Finally, at the site of crucifixion, Jesus clothes were stripped off him again (Mt 27:35; Mk 15:24; Lk 23:33-34; Jn 19:23). As Oxley pointed out, when Jesus clothes were removed, any blood on His body, which would have become stuck to His clothes, would have been torn away, "like a giant plaster strip"[see 30Sep15a]:

"Following the scourging and his being dressed in a purple robe for the purpose of mockery, Jesus had had his clothes restored to him. He did not make the journey to Calvary naked. This, however, must have led to another source of extreme pain. On arrival at Calvary Jesus was stripped of his clothing. His cloak or tunic would have stuck to the blood covering his body. It must have been torn off his body prior to crucifixion, like a giant plaster strip attached to his whole body"[OM10, 165]
Third, which explains the lack of blood on the Shroudman's scourged back (below):

[Above (enlarge[LM10a]): The back of the man on the Shroud, showing the lack of bleeding of the scourge wounds, which are skin lacerations, each terminating in a circular indentation caused by a scourge's lead ball, in the centre of which is a tiny scratch-like bloodstain[AM00, 76].]

which closed last week after being on display for five months in the new cathedral of Salamanca in Spain. It will now start touring the globe, and will be taken to international events such as the World Youth Day in Lisbon (2023) and the coming Rome Jubilee (2025). The Mystery Man opened last October. Centered around a hyper-realistic reconstruction of the body of the Man in the Holy Shroud, the traveling exhibition is the result of 15 years of research into the Holy Shroud of Turin ... The hyper-realistic sculpture is 179 centimeters (almost 5 ft 9 in) tall. It weighs 75 kilos (165 lbs) and is made from a latex and silicone alloy, with real human hair. Some of its details can be only seen up close. ... During these five months, more than 70,000 people have visited The Mystery Man. ... (Slideshow) The Mystery Man: A reconstruction of the Man in the Holy Shroud. Launch the slideshow.

"Clues and Evidence," S4 Ep3: Shroud of Christ?: Secrets of the Dead, PBS, April 21, 2023 ... Stephen J. Mattingly, a Professor of Micro-biology [Right (enlarge): Professor Mattingly at work in his laboratory ...] and Immunology at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center in San Antonio, also doubts the 1988 radiocarbon results — though he blames not fire, but microbes This adds to the cacophony of mutually exlusive Shroudie attempted explanations why the first century Shroud had a 1260-1390 (1325 ±65) radiocarbon date. But see Tipler's point above that it would be "a miracle" "if the amount of carbon added to the Shroud were exactly the amount needed to give the date that indicated a fraud," i.e. 1325 ±65. Only my Hacker Theory (other than Tipler's "miracle" - he does believe that it was!), explains why the first century Shroud has a 1260-1390 (1325 ±65) radiocarbon date"! ... In the case of the Shroud of Turin, says Mattingly, the younger contaminants were bacteria. "You might imagine that over hundreds of years or several thousand, the Shroud has come in contact with many thousands of species of bacteria and fungi and some were able to grow for short or long periods of time," he explains. Is this true? The Shroud has been kept rolled up in total darkness for long periods of time, e.g. between expositions: 1898 to 1931 (~33 years), 1931 to 1973 (~42 years), and 1978 to 1998 (~20 years). Can bacteria and fungi keep growing in total darkness with no external inputs of water or nutrients? Can they even survive? That STURP found no evidence of them indicates that they cannot survive. "Some of these organisms would be more recent and be incorporating more recent radiocarbon material. The microbes are not digesting the linen, they are eating one another so to speak. Again, is this true? And if the bacteria and fungi are "eating one another" then there would be no increase in carbon! It would be a closed system. From as long as they can grow and incorporate carbon dioxide, which many microbes can do, they are actually making the Shroud appear more recent as time continues." Not unless new carbon is continuously entering the system from outside it, which is no the case with the Shroud, having been sealed off in total darkeness between expositions for several periods of multiple decades. If the bacteria and fungi died in between, they would have to start from scratch again. ... Mattingly and his colleague Leoncio Garza-Valdes [1939-2010] This is a recycled 2004 (i.e. 20 years ago) article, which I had saved a copy of but it is no longer online. Garza-Valdes died in 2010 and Mattingly is evidently no longer a professor at the University of Texas. have found several different species of bacteria colonizing pieces of the Shroud, including some organisms that had never been seen before. STURP's Ray Rogers (1927-2005) stated that, after extensive tests which would have detected a film of bacteria and fungi which was all over the Shroud and responsible for its image, STURP did not find any:

"The primary emphasis by STURP before Turin was testing whether the image had been painted, as claimed by Bishop d'Arcis. That emphasis made it necessary to search for all possible vehicles/media and pigments that could have been added to the cloth. We tested for all of them ... Al Adler, John Heller, and I did a battery of sensitive chemical spot tests on the fibril samples from the Shroud ... STURP observations do not agree with Mattingly's thesis, and he should have addressed and explained those disagreements. He did not test his hypothesis against all pertinent data. ... Biological materials, e.g., proteins, contain elements other than C, H, and O. Spot tests with iodine-azide reagent showed sulfur compounds in the blood areas on the shroud, but there were none in non-image areas. None of us ever saw a coating on any shroud image or non-image fibril. We did not detect any of the elements you would expect to find in an autotrophic organism, although the x-ray fluorescence runs were sensitive enough to detect the iron in the blood. Porphyrins and other pigments would have appeared clearly in the reflectance spectra. Pyrolysis-MS was the most sensitive test used. ... We would certainly have detected the `N-acetyl groups and several amino acids' mentioned by Mattingly; however, pyrolysis-MS did not find any nitrogen or sulfur compounds in pure image on non-image fibrils. Laser Raman is another extremely sensitive analytical method, and it did not detect any spurious materials. STURP concluded that the image could not be a painting, because nothing had been added to the cloth. That was the major finding of STURP. There is no `bioplastic polymer' on the surface of the Shroud"[RR02].

They tested samples from an outside strip of the cloth removed during the 1988 dating effort. Giovani Riggi, the scientific caretaker of the Shroud at the time, kept the strip and later provided samples to Mattingly and Garza-Valdes. "The Catholic Church did not sanction the removal and

[Above (enlarge)[WI10, 88]: Extract of a composite photograph of the Shroud sub-samples, cut from the Shroud on 21 April 1988. Their different textures are explained by some having been photographed from the underside. The sub-samples given to the laboratories to carbon-date were: a and d Arizona, b Zurich and c Oxford. e was retained by the Turin Archdiocese. To the right of the laboratories' sub-samples a, b and c are trimmings removed by Turin's Giovanni Riggi (1935-2008) and retained by him. The bottom right-hand triangular piece was that which was given to Prof. Gilbert Raes (1914-2001) in 1973 to study and returned to Turin by him in 1977. The sample provided by Riggi to Garza-Valdes, and through him to Mattingly, came from the trimmings on the far right. As can be seen, they are not representative of the rest of the Shroud and far from the image and blood areas. By my calculations from a Shroud photo, the area of the trimmings are about (3 x 1 x 100)/(265 x 68) mm = 0.017% of the area of the Shroud! It is therefore an unsound extrapolation by Mattingly and Garza-Valdes to base their "bioplastic coating" theory about the entire Shroud on these tiny edge trimmings!]

giving< of the material to us and would not certify that the pieces were authentic. Nevertheless, we know that they are authentic," Mattingly says.

Intriguingly, one of the microbe species seems to be producing an unusual material that coats the linen threads "with a brittle plastic-like material that made the linen difficult to cut, much like trying to cut through dry pasta," Mattingly says. STURP certainly wouldn't have missed this, if it was there. "It appears that this polymer may have actually helped preserve the Shroud linen through time." Linen does not need help in its preservation: linen cloths have been found which are many thousands of years old, yet are in a "perfect state of preservation":

"For example, the Tarkhan dress, considered to be among the oldest woven garments in the world and dated to between 3482 and 3102 BC, is made of linen. ... When the tomb of the Pharaoh Ramses II, who died in 1213 BC, was discovered in 1881, the linen wrappings were in a state of perfect preservation after more than 3000 years. ... In the Ulster Museum, Belfast there is the mummy of 'Takabuti' the daughter of a priest of Amun, who died 2,500 years ago. The linen on this mummy is also in a perfect state of preservation" (footnotes omitted)[LNW].
Similar coatings on other artifacts — the linen wrappings on mummies, for example — could also be affecting their radiocarbon ages. It is up to Mattingly to show that linen wrappings on Egyptian mummies have a bacteria and/or fungi biofilm coating which is affecting their radiocarbon ages. He hasn't because we would have heard about it-remember this is a 20 year-old article from 2004 (see above)

Mattingly also suspects that bacteria are responsible for the Shroud's ethereal image. His idea is that as the crucified man was dying, bacteria such as the common skin microbe Staphylococcus epidermis would have colonized and multiplied in his bloody wounds, creating a thin layer called a biofilm. A biofilm can soak up water like a sponge. After the man died and his body was washed, The Shroudman's body was not washed: see my post of 30Sep15b. If it had been, there would be no reversed `3' bloodstain on man's face (below).

[Above (enlarge): The reversed `3' or epsilon bloodstain on the Shroud man's forehead, as well as other blood trickles from the crown of thorns punctures in the man's scalp[LM10b].]

Being on the man's face, these bloodflows would surely have been washed first, if the man's body had been washed. Moreover, the reversed `3' bloodstain did not ooze out after the man had been washed because he was then alive since the bloodflow followed the furrows of his forehead as its muscles contracted in pain[WI79, 37; AM00, 26; OM10, 171; WI10, 35]. ... Over time, the degradation of the microbes would have produced a faint yellow imprint of the face and body that slowly darkened like a photographic image. "I have observed the drying of bacteria on surfaces before and noticed that they leave a straw yellow color similar to that observed with the Turin Shroud," he says ... A "straw yellow color" is only one of the at least eleven major features of the Shroud. Mattingly (and anyone who claims to have replicated the Shroud) needs to replicate all eleven! From my book: "Chapter 17: How was the image formed?"

"In the end, any attempt at duplicating the image on the Shroud of Turin must match all of its physical and chemical properties, not just a select few" (emphasis original)(Schwortz, 2000)[SB00].
"Major features Any explanation of how the Shroudman's image was formed must explain all the Shroud's major features[SB00] (see "[Chapter 5:] The man's image"). Claimed replications of the Shroud which do not include each and every major feature of the Shroud, are a type of `straw man' fallacy[SMW]. That is, they present a claimed replication of the Shroud which does not truly replicate it, and then falsely claim that they have replicated the Shroud!

Major features of the Shroud include: 1. Double body image; 2. Negative; 3. Three-dimensional; 4. Non-directional; 5. Superficial; 6. Uniform colour; 7. Faint; 8. No added colour (paint, etc); 9. Blood is real and human; 10. Blood was on the cloth before the image; and 11. X-rays of hands, teeth, etc."

To test his theory that a biofilm of fungi and bacteria is the Shroudman's image[SL03; SF98], Mattingly could have replicated the conditions of Jesus' burial on a freshly dead pig and seen if a fungi and/or bacteria biofilm formed on the pig's body within 3 days (if Mattingly denies the Shroudman is Jesus to buy more time[SL03], then he has the problem that the probability that the man is someone else is at least "1 in 83 million"[SH81, 128; NJ87, 141), which replicated the major features of the Shroudman's image: 1. Double body image The pig's front and back, head to head, image must have been imprinted on its linen shroud. It must not have exhibited wrap-around distortion since the Shroud image does not:

"Schwortz cautions that there seem to be discrepancies between Mattingly's image [I don't have this photo but I am taking steps to get it] and the shroud. For instance, the image of Mattingly's face is distorted by the wrap-around effect of the cloth, but the image on the shroud is not"[SL03].
2. Negative A positive photograph of the pig must have been a photographic negative, such that its negative is realistic and life-like, as the Shroud image is. 3. Three-dimensional. The negative of Mattingly's pig photograph must have appeared in three-dimensional relief on a VP-8 Image Analyzer, as it does on the Shroud. But Mattingly's theory fails by his own admission, that the three-dimensionality of his image relies on "bacteria accumulating [on] ... the ... man's body":
"If he is right, his theory could clear up some long-standing mysteries about the image: its striking three-dimensional quality, which he accounts for by varying densities of bacteria accumulating in the nooks and crannies of the dying man's body"[SL03]
I had assumed that that "dying" was an error by the journalist and should have read "dead" but in the 2004 version of this, which seems to be no longer online, it has:
"Mattingly also suspects that bacteria are responsible for the Shroud's ethereal image. His idea is that as the crucified man was dying, bacteria such as the common skin microbe Staphylococcus epidermis would have colonized and multiplied in his bloody wounds, creating a thin layer called a biofilm."
Jesus was crucified at 9am on Easter Friday and died at 3pm (Mk 15:25, 33-37) = 6 hours. Between Jesus' death at 3pm Friday and his resurrection on Easter Sunday at 6am is: Friday 3pm - midnight = 9 hours + Saturday = 24 hours + Sunday midnight-6am = 6 hours; a total of 39 hours. Adding 6 hours between Jesus' crucifixion and death, is a total of 45 hours that Mattingly has for his bacteria to multiply and create the Shroudman's front and back, head to head, image! He would need to show that that is feasible under Biblically realistic conditions. Mattingly's image's three-dimensionality by bacterial accumulation conflicts with the Shroud image being superficial. The Shroud image contains three-dimensional information, but it is not physically three-dimensional, so it is also extremely superficial. For

[Left enlarge[WI10, pl. 8a]: Three-dimension-ality of the Shroud image as revealed by the VP-8 Image Analyzer [SB97].]

example, the Shroud-man's image on a flat two-dimensional Enrie 1931 Shroud photo, under a VP-8 Image Analyzer, displays in three-dimensional relief:

"[John] Jackson had never heard of a VP-8 [Image Analyzer], but when he drove over to Sandia, he took photos of the Shroud with him. [Bill] Mottern ... put forward a really dumb idea. `Why,' he suggested, `don't we put the photos of the Shroud into the VP-8?' Never loath to try a new idea, Jackson agreed. All in all, it should have been a stupid waste of time, for a flat photo will, and can, give only a warped picture. They placed the Shroud photo in the VP-8 and twiddled the dials, focus, and rotation. Suddenly, both men saw, swimming up from the electronic fog of the screen, a perfect three-dimensional image of a scourged, crucified man. Impossible! Ridiculous! Outrageous! Yes. But it was there. The two scientists just stared. The positive photograph of the man in the Shroud had the appearance of a two-dimensional face. The VP-8's three-dimensional image was as stunningly different from the photograph as a statue is from a painting. The long hair, full beard and mustache, the serenity on the face of a badly battered, crucified man, came alive, giving Jackson and Mottern the eerie impression that they were gazing at an actual face of a man, not at a painting or a sculpture. Finally, Jackson took a deep breath. `Bill,' he said, `do you realize that we may be the first people in two thousand years who know exactly how Christ looked in the tomb?'"[HJ83, 39-40]
4. Non-directional. Mattingly's pig image must have appeared all at once, from no direction, as the Shroud image did. So Mattingly's bacteria/fungi image cannot have grown across the pig's body surface. Mattingly's:
"and, perhaps most damning of all for the artist hypothesis, the complete absence of brushstrokes. `Bacteria do not need a paintbrush,' he says"[SL03]
misses STURP's point: The Shroud man's image has no directionality at all! Mattingly's bacteria and fungi would need to multiply and in so doing move across his pig shroud's surface. And that movement is as directional as an artist's paintbrush! 5. Superficial. The image of Mattingly's pig must have been extremely superficial, 0.2 of a micrometre, as the Shroud image is (11Nov16). But the diameter of a Staphylococcus epidermidis bacterium is 0.5–1.5 micrometers which is already more than twice as thick as the Shroud image, and "Staphylococcus epidermidis ... forms white, raised, cohesive colonies about 1–2 mm in diameter after overnight incubation" which are at least 5 times thicker than the Shroud image! 6. Uniform colour The uniform straw yellow colour of the Shroud image is due to dehydration, oxidation and conjugation of cellulose molecules. It seems most unlikely that Mattingly's biofilm would have exactly that straw yellow colour. 7. Faint. The man on the Shroud's image is extremely faint and cannot be seen close up. This may also apply to Mattingly's biofilm. 8. No added colour (paint, etc). According to Ray Rogers, what STURP meant by this is that "nothing had been added to the cloth" including a "bioplastic polymer" (see above). 9. Blood is real and human. For the purposes of Mattingly's test of his theory with a freshly dead pig, real pig's blood would be acceptable. But in the 2004 version of this, Mattingly said that "the common skin microbe Staphylococcus epidermis would have colonized and multiplied in his bloody wounds," so presumably they would have consumed the pig's blood. 10. Blood was on the cloth before the image See "No image under blood." See previously that Mattingly's bacteria is the image and it would have consumed the blood. 11. X-rays of hands, teeth, etc. There is no way that bacteria and/or fungi could generate an x-ray image of Mattingly's pig's paw bones, teeth and skull (see "X-rays #22)." So by my count, Mattingly's pig Shroud replication experiment, had he tried it, would have scored only one out of the eleven Shroud's major features: 1. Double body image 0; 2. Negative 0; 3. Three-dimensional 0; 4. Non-directional 0; 5. Superficial 0; 6. Uniform colour 0; 7. Faint 1; 8. No added colour (paint, etc) 0; 9. Blood is real and human (pig's allowed) 0; 10. Blood was on the cloth before the image 0; and 11. X-rays of hands, teeth, etc. 0"; Total 1! I have taken this trouble to evaluate Mattingly's resplication of the Shroudman's image because in my book, "Chapter 17: How was the image formed?," I will similarly evaluate all claimed replications of the Shroud.

"Interview with Mechthild Flury-Lemberg," S4 Ep3: Shroud of Christ?, Secrets of the Dead, PBS, April 21, 2023. Mechthild Flury-Lemberg [1929- age 95!] [Right: "Mechthild Flury-Lemberg, a master textile restorer, came out of retirement for the conservation of the Shroud"] began to spin and weave wool shorn from the sheep on her family's post-World War II German farm at the tender age of 16, "for fun," she says. She never imagined that the hobby, which led to a career in textile conservation, would also eventually lead her to head the restoration of one of the most cherished and mysterious relics in Christendom

[Left (enlarge): Full-length double image of the man on the Shroud after the 2002 restoration[SU14]. "Thirty triangular patches, sewn by nuns of Chambery, France, in 1534, after a fire damaged the relic in 1532, were removed from the shroud. Also removed was the `Holland cloth' sewn on the reverse of the shroud 450 years ago to preserve it."[SU14].]

— the Shroud of Turin — or that her examination would produce new evidence that the famed linen dates to the first century A.D., to the time of Christ. (See future below<). Flury-Lemberg studied weaving at an academy in Hamburg, Germany, then earned degrees in the history of art from universities in Kiel and Munich. She then worked for three decades as head of the textile department of the Abegg Foundation in Riggisberg, Switzerland before she retired in 1994 (she came out of retirement for the restoration of the Shroud). ... Ancient textiles like the Shroud of Turin, which ... dates to the first century A.D., are quite rare and generally badly preserved. "The textiles handed down to us are normally grave garments, found in burial sites," she said. "They were wrapped about a dead body and stayed in a chemical climate which forced their oxidation. We rarely find well-preserved linen or silk fabrics." The Shroud of Turin is so remarkably preserved, she says, because "this cloth was not kept in a tomb. The crucified man was only for some hours wrapped in that linen." I hadn't heard of this evidence for the good condition of the Shroud before. ... "It is the fascination of my profession to discover hidden information by staying and `talking' with the object during conservation," she says. "The same is true for the Shroud of Turin." ... Flury-Lemberg had originally been approached back in the early 1980s to try to date the Shroud by analyzing the structure of the cloth. She refused, "because," she says, "it is impossible to get a serious result dating a textile by textile analysis alone." ... And yet, when Flury-Lemberg finally did agree to head the restoration and conservation of the linen in the summer of 2002, the Shroud had a far different story to tell her. She first noticed that the entire cloth was crafted with a weave known as a three-to-one herringbone pattern. "This kind of weave was special in antiquity because it denoted an extraordinary quality," she says. I also hadn't heard before this "extraordinary quality" claim about the Shroud's three-to-one herringbone weave pattern. (Less fine linens of the first century would have had a one-to-one herringbone pattern). That same pattern is present on a 12th century illustration that depicts Christ's funeral cloth, which, she says, is "extremely significant, because it shows that the painter was familiar with Christ's Shroud and that he recognized the indubitably exceptional nature of the weave of the cloth." By this, Flury-Lemberg meant the 1192-95 Pray Codex:

"It was good, therefore, in David Rolfe's recent Shroud documentary, to see Dr. Mechthild Flury-Lemberg pointing out in the lower of its two scenes the tiny holes faintly visible on the shroud and on the herringbone decorated lid of the box-like sepulchre, seemingly representing the Turin Shroud's still mysterious pre-1532 burn holes"[WI08].

[Left (enlarge[PCW].): "The Entombment of Christ (above) and Three Marys [sic] at the tomb (below).

"The most conspicuous and peculiar features of this composition are the large, ornate rectangles beneath the figures. ... an empty sarcophagus, but no sarcophagus was ever painted with crosses and zigzags like this. It is the zigzags that give the game away. ... they look like an attempt to imitate the herringbone weave of the Shroud. The artist has struggled to work out the design, but the stepped-pyramid pattern that fills the upper rectangle clearly evokes the visual effect of the Shroud's three-to-one twill weave ..."[DT12, 179].]
Flury-Lemberg also discovered a peculiar stitching pattern in the seam of one long side of the Shroud, where a three-inch wide strip of the same original fabric The sidestrip (see 24Aug15). was sewn onto a larger segment. The stitching pattern, which she says was the work of a professional,

[Left (enlarge): Sketch of unusual stitching found on cloth fragments at the first-century Jewish fortress of Masada[WI10, 74], which is "identical to that found on the Shroud and nowhere else" (my emphasis)[DT12, 109].]

is surprisingly similar to the hem of a cloth found in the tombs of the Jewish fortress of Masada. The Masada cloth dates to between 40 B.C. and 73 A.D. The evidence, says Flury-Lemberg, is clear: "The linen cloth of the Shroud of Turin does not display any weaving or sewing techniques which would speak against its origin as a high quality product of the textile workers of the first century." On the other hand, the Shroud does not display any weaving or sewing techniques which would speak for it as a product of the textile workers of the Middle Ages! Elsewhere, Flury-Lemberg has stated that, "the shroud is not a medieval fake":

"In my opinion, the shroud is not a medieval fake. The parallels I have found indicate that it could have existed at the same time as Jesus Christ and in what is now Israel"[FJ00].
Notes:
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]

Bibliography
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DT12. de Wesselow, T., 2012, "The Sign: The Shroud of Turin and the Secret of the Resurrection," Viking: London.
FJ00. Follain, J., 2000, "Fresh evidence could date Turin shroud to Christ," The Sunday Times, London, 12 March..
HJ83. Heller, J.H., 1983, "Report on the Shroud of Turin," Houghton Mifflin Co: Boston MA.
LM10a. Extract from Latendresse, M., 2010, "Shroud Scope: Durante 2002 Vertical," Sindonology.org.
LM10b. Extract from Latendresse, M., 2010, "Shroud Scope: Face Only Vertical.," Sindonology.org.
LNW. "Linen: Early history," Wikipedia, 31 May 2024.
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OM10. Oxley, M., 2010, "The Challenge of the Shroud: History, Science and the Shroud of Turin," AuthorHouse: Milton Keynes UK.
PCW. "Pray Codex," Wikipedia, 19 December 2023.
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SB97. Schwortz, B., 1997, "The VP-8 Image Analyzer," Shroud.com, Updated 30 March 2014.
SB00. Schwortz, B.M., 2000, "Is The Shroud of Turin a Medieval Photograph?: A Critical Examination of the Theory," Shroud.com.
SF98. "A shroud of doubt," BBC, 17 April 1998.
SL03. Spinney, L., 2003, "Shroud of germs," The Guardian, June 12.
SH81. Stevenson, K.E. & Habermas, G.R., 1981, "Verdict on the Shroud: Evidence for the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ," Servant Books: Ann Arbor MI.
SMW. "Straw man," Wikipedia, 16 January 2024.
SU14. "Image of Full 2002 Restored Shroud," High Resolution Imagery, Shroud University, 2014.
TF07. Tipler, F.J., 2007, "The Physics of Christianity," Doubleday: New York NY.
WI79. Wilson, I., 1979, "The Shroud of Turin: The Burial Cloth of Jesus?," [1978], Image Books: New York NY, Revised edition.
WI98. Wilson, I., 1998, "The Blood and the Shroud: New Evidence that the World's Most Sacred Relic is Real," Simon & Schuster: New York NY.
WI08. Wilson, I., 2008, "II: Nicholas of Verdun: Scene of the Entombment, from the Verdun altar in the monastery of Klosterneuburg, near Vienna," British Society for the Turin Shroud Newsletter, No. 67, June. .
WI10. Wilson, I., 2010, "The Shroud: The 2000-Year-Old Mystery Solved," Bantam Press: London.
WJ84. Wenham, J.W., 1984, "Easter Enigma: Are the Resurrection Stories in Conflict?," Paternoster: Exeter UK, Reprinted, 1987.

Posted 4 June 2024. Updated 12 July 2024.