A new taint on the Shroud of Turin?

October 6, 2009

shroud-faces

(Photo: An archive negative image of the Shroud of Turin (L) next to one created by Luigi Garlaschelli and released in Pavia, Italy, on 5 Oct 2009/Turin Diocese (L) and Luigi Garlaschelli (R)/Turin Diocese (L) and Luigi Garlaschelli)

Italian scientist Luigi Garlaschelli tells me he has been getting lots of hate mail as well as emails of support since our Oct 5 story that he had reproduced the Shroud of Turin with material available in the Middle Ages, a feat that he says proves definitively that the linen some Christians revere as Jesus Christ’s burial cloth is a medieval fake.

Given the controversy that has surrounded the Shroud, particularly since the 1988 carbon dating tests, this was hardly a surprise. One of Christianity’s most disputed relics, it is locked away at Turin Cathedral in Italy and rarely exhibited. It was last on display in 2000 and is due to be shown again next year. The Catholic Church does not claim the Shroud is authentic nor that it is a matter of faith, but says it should be a powerful reminder of Christ’s passion.

Until now, scientists have been at a loss to explain how the eery image like a photographic negative of a crucified man was left on the cloth.  Garlaschelli, a professor of organic chemistry at the University of Pavia, will present his findings at a conference in northern Italy this weekend.

shroud-bodies

(Photo: An archive negative image of the Shroud of Turin (L) in full length next to one created by Luigi Garlaschelli and released in Pavia, Italy, on 5 Oct 2009/Turin Diocese (L) and Luigi Garlaschelli (R)

No one expects this to be the last we hear of the Shroud. As Garlaschelli told me in our telephone interview, those who fervently believe the Shroud is real will continue to do so. Our main news website, www.reuters.com, gave a rough gauge of international interest in the Shroud in its “Most Popular” rankings. Over 24 hours after we ran the news, it was still the third most popular story out there, ahead of a host of important economic stories and the latest twists in the David Letterman sex scandal. That says something about how the Shroud still arouses passions — whether it is 2,000 years old or only 700.

What is your feeling on the Shroud and the controversy that has surrounded it. Does it make a difference to one’s faith if it is real or not?

Follow FaithWorld on Twitter at RTRFaithWorld

58 comments

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/

Why not report that it was an atheist group who produced this velvet Elvis quality reproduction. Or that the carbon dating was from a repaired portion of the shroud.I have no idea whether it is real or not, but leave it to reuters to leave out all the factsthat don’t support their own biases.

Posted by Danielle | Report as abusive

No, Danielle, they’re just not reporting your biases.

Posted by cheese | Report as abusive

Testing and saying its a FAKE an atheist group. Testing and saying its FOR REAL a christian group. Does it really matter? Don’t we have more life issues to worry about? One thing is for sure. Christianity in western Europe has dropped dramatically in the past 40 years and secularism is rising quickly among the former believers. Within a generation or so this shroud of Turin will have very little interest.

Facts aren’t “biases,” “cheese”…facts are facts.Why isn’t anyone saying the obvious? Compare these two images… the modern copy is garish, lacking any gradations of tone… it’s completely inferior, especially when one contrasts the faces and the chest areas.

Posted by Jeff Messenger | Report as abusive

The shroud is simply a material object, which may or may not be the “real thing”. I suspect that it is not, but whether it is actually the burial shroud of Christ has no bearing on my faith. Are we like the disciple Thomas, that our faith depends on being able to physically touch, even indirectly, the crucified Christ?

Posted by Roger | Report as abusive

I can’t believe that there is anyone in the world who believes that the image on the right is anywhere near as realistic or compelling as the face on the Shroud of Turin. Isn’t there one journalist out there who has the guts to point out the obvious: that the recreation of the Shroud produced by Garlaschelli is vastly inferior in every detail to the cloth that is preserved in Turin, Italy? And will this experiment be analyzed in peer reviewed scientific journals? Or will the word of a man who did this for money provided by an atheist organization suffice?

Posted by Leonard | Report as abusive

The Italian group think that they may have been able to recreate the Shroud of Turin. Maybe they have? But, I’d love for them to try and recreate the coffee stained image of the Virgin Mary I personally have. A few photos of the image can be found here on Flickr. http://www.flickr.com/photos/7690119@N03  /sets/72157617453203072/detail/

Posted by Dan | Report as abusive

[...] to this day it is a mystery… despite the fact that some have claimed to be able to duplicate the process using Medival material.  The Italian scientists claims that his replication definatively proves it is a fake.  Perhaps [...]

The most important discrepency between the copy and the original is with the blood. There is no image under the blood, which means the blood got there first followed by the image. Logical if authentic, impossible if is art. The blood on the shroud is the exudate from actual wounds. It is not whole blood, but blood components such as bile, bilirubin, heme and serum. Much of the blood is post mortem, blood that flowed after death. A very high bilirubin content is consistent with a man undergoing severe stress. Just a few points the fake version seems to overlook.

The Italian group is NOT an atheist group, it is, as its name makes plain, a group that checks claims of the paranormal. I feel sorry for anyone whose faith is so insecure that they have to cling to tricks and hoaxes.

Posted by Ray Dobson | Report as abusive

That painting ressembles the Shroud like my painting of the Mona Lisa. It looks like an amateur contest winner. Now let’s see if they allow this copy to be examined by experts. Let’s see if the paint is strictly a surface phenomenon as is the Shroud. Let them examine the minute examination of the scourging that the Shroud successfully underwent. Let’s see if the image produces a 3 dimensional image like the Shroud.Me thinks that they will not allow a scientific look at their “Shroud.” It looks like a fake and will be shown to be one. There is a very great difference between an original and a fake. Their sin will find them out.

Posted by Charles | Report as abusive

Do a DNA test on the blood stains on the so called original shroud. Each human body has 46 chromosomes. 2 sex chromosomes, 1 from each human parent. If the blood was tested and found to have two sex chromosomes then Jesus was mortal not divine as christians want to believe. In other words then Joseph and Mary were his natural parents, not Mary and the Holy Ghost (Spirit)

Wow what a terrible copy, they have to be kidding.

Posted by Susan | Report as abusive

About Carbon Datingyou can take a piece of wood 25 years old, compress very hard in a dirt compact and fossilize that that piece of wood in seven days.and that piece of wood will carbon date thousands of years old.No validity in carbon dating at all.Dominick FromWorld School Of Prophecy & News EventsWSOPNE.org

I am really and truly sick of those who look for whatever excuse they can to deny the fact that God exists and he is real. This tops the cake with their asinine thinking of how the Shroud of Turin is fake because they were able to make a mockery [replica] of it. I hope that Italian scientist enjoys his 15 minutes of fame and the money he was paid to utter horrible blasphemies. I would not even be a bit surprised if he’s one of the scientists involved in making a body/clone for the Antichrist.I encourage anyone who has ears to hear and eyes to see with to get a copy of the book called “Antichrist: The Cloned Image of Jesus Christ” by Joye Jeffries Pugh. The book discusses the Shroud of Turin and the coming Cloned Antichrist. The greatest deception that the world has ever seen is coming.

Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered, saying, “Teacher, we want to see a sign from You.” But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. The men of Nineveh will rise up in the judgment with this generation and condemn it, because they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and indeed a greater than Jonah is here. The queen of the South will rise up in the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and indeed a greater than Solomon is here. (Matthew 12:38-42)AND AGAIN:But he said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’ (Luke 16:31)FINALLY:”…Let them alone. They are blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind leads the blind, both will fall into a ditch.” (Matthew 15:14)

Posted by dewman | Report as abusive

Nice fact, Dominick. But not relevent.It is true that a piece of wood can be compressed and fossilised to give the impression of any age when carbon tested.But this doesn’t mean carbon testing is flawed, only that it can be fooled with the right conditions.The cloth of the shroud is not wood, nor is it compressed or fossilised. It cannot be altered to change the age given by a carbon test. So the result of the test stand.Here are some more relevent facts:-There is no conclusive evidence the shroud is genuine.-It could be from any time, from any person.-This research proves that it was possible to create a fake shroud using the abilities of the day.-The carbon test indicates the shroud is a forgery.

Posted by Noah Idea | Report as abusive

This is not a COPY, but a proof of concept. This new shroud was done by scientists, not artists. – Using their techniques, an artist (or forger) could do a better, more realistic job.@ Dominic – You, sir, are fooling noone but yourself. Carbon dating’s flaws were first demonstrated by the scientific community. Show ANY reference for being able to truly fossilize wood in seven days. (you cannot.)

Posted by TJ | Report as abusive

“He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’”For those who believe no explanation is necessary. For those who do not believe no explanation will suffice.The reality of the Shroud isn’t the point. It has already proven to be authentic by a thousand “scientific” points of evidence. But those who are faithless will always attempt to ignore the facts in front of them. Let’s face it if the Resurrection were a lie the Apostles would never have given their lives no matter how stubborn they may have been. Yet the Jewish authorities denied the the fact of the empty tomb no matter how many miracles were performed in the name of the Risen Christ. A.J. West

Righto. False logic busting time. I love Faithworld blogs:1. “The image of the copy isn’t exactly the same as the original”Well, the image in the copy was of a different person, wasn’t it? And they were wearing a mask which was not as detailed as the original face. And the cloth isn’t several hundred years old, it was artificially aged. And it was a first attempt at making a copy.So yeah, there will be a lesser quality image. Big surprise.If the true shroud was made by a forger, trying to figure out how he is likely to have done it, and perfecting the process, might take a few goes.2. “Blood on the cloth came first, the image came second”Wow. So you are saying that if the shroud was fake, they would need to put blood on first. THEN create the image. How exactly would this be difficult?3. “Blood from the shroud had indicators of having been from a body, blah blah, bile, blah blah, bilirubin blah”.And that means what, exactly? That the blood on the shroud came from a dead body? Well that limits the culprit down to a billion suspects who died around or prior to 1300AD.4. “The (scientist/research team/fund-provider/reporter) that (produced/research/financed/reported) this project is Athiest.”You know why people don’t listen to comments like that? Because personal attacks are not relevent. Whether a person is athiest or not has no bearing on this project, or whether the actual shroud is a fake or not.5. “Insert barely coherent argument that fake will not provide a 3D image if checked”If you bother to read relevent articles, you would know the fake shroud was created by being held over a real face when the copy was made. So the image on the fake shroud will logically create a 3d face. Why people think this is an issue, who can say?

Posted by JoeyJoe | Report as abusive

While the “fake” shroud on the right has some striking simlilarities to the original, it looks like a cheap knock-off.I am not sure if the Shroud of Turin is real, but I am certainly sure that it wasn’t made the way the Italian scientist claims.

False logic busting time- addition6. “The bible says ……..”The bible is a book. Written by man. It has been edited and censored. It has been translated several times. There is no proof the supernatural events depicted in the bible is true, or that it was inspired by a deity in any way.So please do not quote anything from the bible. It is hearsay, and not proof of anything.And you waste forum space if you think the bible has any probative weight as to whether the shroud is genuine.

Posted by JoeyJoe | Report as abusive

I have always believed and continue to believe that the Shroud of Turin is real. It would not make any difference to my faith if the shroud were proven to be a medieval forgery. However, Garlaschelli has proven nothing with his laughable imitation. I know that my Redeemer lives. Nothing will ever change that for me.

Posted by Kathleen Hundt | Report as abusive

Now, one can look at Church and Rome who are good at washing sins, with sympathy. They themselves, now, need some washing as they advocated bigotry, slavery, racial discrimination, genocide, false theory of white superiority around the world for the sake of demeaning other religions, and increasing their fold, all in name of washing sins. I guess how many times they offer prayers of sin in a day than prayer of good in a day.

Posted by JC Moolah | Report as abusive

whether the shroud is real or fake will not add or subtract to my faith. let them keep arguing about shroud and not make us of their short time for vital things, i am not condemning those trying to prove that the shroud is true or false but i am saying you may waste your life trying to prove that God is not real because you cant see Him and because His ways are the ways of men. that will not do anything to God,s plan. whether the shroud exists or not God will always be God

Most christians on this forum that quote the bible and continually talk about God as if he is exclusive to them only, are probably christians who inherited their beliefs from their families through centuries of traditional indoctrination. From a young age told that this is what you are going to believe (thats all we have ever known) and this is what you are going to be, because mom and dad says so. For those few christians who found the belief through their own life experiences with an open mind to all and decided for themselves personally have more relevance then those that knew nothing else but christianity throughout their lives because thats all they were allowed to learn.The Pope is sitting on the fence and doesn’t even know if the Shroud is real or not. COME ON! They keep it locked away and its good business for tourism $$ for the church when its brought out. Remember the catholic church is about MONEY & POWER and controls the flock through FEAR & GUILT. Catholics believe the Pope is suppose to be Gods right hand man on earth and would get either a thumbs up or thumbs down from God himself whether the Shroud is real or not. Nothing! and how about the world wide sex abuse scandals that continually keep multiplying and now even in Vatican city Italy. Where is God and why is he allowing these terrible things to happen to our children within the catholic church? Thats not a loving God.We will never know for certain about the shroud. Ever! There will always be the believers and non believers. The Pope should be the deal breaker but its obvious he doens’t have as much clout with God as many catholics believe he does. If catholics believe men get a calling from God to become priests, why can’t God give the Pope who is chief CEO of the catholic church the same message about the shroud? No wonder catholicism in the western world is fading away.

NoahThe Test does NOT prove that the original shroud is a fake. Carbon testing is no more factual than the ghost meter made by science. It was a way to sell public on spending for science research.Here, for years science said, there was no evidence of a flood. Well they could not explain all the sea shells on top of the mountains. Science finally admitted that clams don’t climb, that there was in fact a flood. But it didn’t happen the way the Bible said.I’ll stick with what the word saysDominick fromWSOPNE.org

To Joey Joeyou know that is a cop out, how much Greek and Hebrew do you study?I do it on a daily basis, as a matter of fact, It blows most scholars away how close the English translation actually isThat is always a cop out, even true atheist language scholars will not argue with how close the English translations are.I wouldn’t go thereDominick fromWSOPNE.org

To charts 1Paul said Everyman was born with a measure of faithRomans 12:33 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.KJV

@ Dominick Villapiano”Here, for years science said, there was no evidence of a flood. Well they could not explain all the sea shells on top of the mountains.”Dominick. It may come as a shock to you, but the surface of the earth is made up of massive slabs of earth crust called “tectonic plates”.These plates grind together to cause earthquakes. Over millions of years, they were responsible for the creation of islands, volcanos and mountains.Many areas which were once sea floor, have eventually ended up as the tops of mountains due to being at the ridge of two tectonic plates. So clam fossils on mountains, if they do exist, would not be surprising.Basic geological theory, Dominick. The kind of things that are taught in high school.”The Test does NOT prove that the original shroud is a fake. Carbon testing is no more factual than the ghost meter made by science.”Radiocarbon dating is based on principles of physics. You equate it to a ghost meter, for reasons known only to yourself. Unless you have a specific reason dismissing it, it will be attributed to denial.If anyone wishes to educate themselves on what radiocarbon dating involves, see the following:-http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Radiocarbon_dating”you know that is a cop out”The only cop out here, Villapiano, is that the only evidence for your belief is a man-made book. Do you have any actual evidence that the man-made book is true?Please present this actual evidence. Take care. Any illogical arguments will be pointed out.

Posted by Noah Idea | Report as abusive

KJV: According the Bible, Paul never met or knew a man named Jesus (yeshua) We don’t even know if there was a man named Paul. The bible was written in Greek by unknown writers probably Goat and Sheep herders. Edited over and over to get their story right. Catholics believe Jesus lived between 6 BCE and 30 AD. Paul was born years after this supposed Jesus died. The bible writings say Paul saw Jesus as a vision only. Thats not very credible. You wouldn’t accept that as an answer in any other context or discussion of someone else. Paul and a few others started christianity to make a new religion to dist the Jews.

Well, it looks like Constantine can’t come to the rescue to save the shroud, as this 2000 year old house of cards comes crumbling down. I wonder what Marcion would do???

Posted by Jerome L. | Report as abusive

IMPORTANT: A couple, living I belieeve in Illinois or another mid-western state, despite a lack of formal training, were aware of a weaving technique used to restore cloth. It is a slow, expensive and tedious process, but IT WAS USED ON THE SHROUD many years ago AND on the very area chosen for the Carbon 14 dating, and is thought to be reason for the questionalbe results of the radiocarbon dating of a few yearss ago. If any reader can provide me with either the name of the couple or the term used to siscribe the process, I’d be grateful. Please e-mail me Thanks!

That reproduction is laughable. Look at how crude it is. The eyes are totally cockeyed.

Posted by Jeff Bagnell | Report as abusive

False Busting Time- Addition7. “The part of the shroud that was tested was subject to a restoration process centuries ago, which changed the carbon dating”The problem here is that the shroud was tested several times, on several dates, by several groups, with separate samples from the cloth.So the next excuse by theists is that *all* of the tests were flawed. And all used restored cloth (even though there is little evidence that was the case)So the Church goes “Oh, the reason all these tests failed is because the samples were all from recovered parts of the cloth. And no you can’t redo the tests with unaltered cloth from the shroud to prove us wrong”It looks as bad as it sounds.8. “The shroud was affected by atmosphere/fire/carbonmonoxide/handling/ poor storage.”Nice theory. But these excuses have either been discredited, or have little relevence to the actual science behind their claim.If anyone wants an interesting read:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radioc arbon_14_dating_of_the_Shroud_of_Turin#1 978:_the_creation_of_S.Tu.R.P.

Posted by Joeyjoe | Report as abusive

When someone makes a good or bad reproduction of a great painting,it does not prove or disprove the authenticity of the original, nor does it diminish its meaning.

Posted by A BL | Report as abusive

Chart 1that would be a great theory, but the sea shells are only found in the surface layers. IF the mountains were made the way you and science said, then are they not throughout the layers, and again, even science will tell now that the sea shells got there by flood……….I guess DR. Noah was a better scientist than we thought

People,Don’t you find It a little Ironic that people have men havespent their lives trying to disprove 5000 year old writings.Look at the millions of dollars, spent on science, to say finally, there was a flood, but it did not happen when the bible said it did.

Original has these qualities, does the fake have them.1. The image has no directionality: random, without pattern, and without direction on application, such as left-right, up-down, circular, ect.2. No outline. This means the bloodstains must be applied first, with no points of reference. There is no body image under the blood stains.3. No made with direct contact: Parts of the image had no direct contact with the cloth. The front and the back image are the same density ruling out pressure. No plateaus or saturation points4. It would have to be on the top 2-3 fibrils of a 100 fibril thread, as is on the original. These fibrils are 1/7th of a millimeter wide5. Be thermally stable, be chemically and water stable. Heat ruled out because scorch areas fluoresce and the body image does not6. No pigments or binders for pigments of any kind to a level of 2,000,000th of a gram. No pigments, stains, powders, dyes or painting media. No capillary flow, ruling out liquid movement.7. Contains 3-D imagery: Computers at Air Force Academy (VP-8 Image analyzer) for interpreting deep space satellite pictures can read data on it to create a recognizable human image with depth information. It is a true negative with details in the great extreme. Copies of the shroud using the most advanced modern techniques lack this data.8. Bloodstains must follow the natural flow of gravity in every instance, the natural hills and valleys of the body.Any takers on making an authentic copy like the original

Posted by Doug Peterson | Report as abusive

@ Dominick Villapiano”Don’t you find It a little Ironic that people have men have spent their lives trying to disprove 5000 year old writings.”No. This is about the shroud. Scientists have already proven the shroud is fake from radiocarbon dating. Now they are trying to find out how the fake was actually made. It is very interesting, don’t you agree?You know what the real irony is?You think scientists need to prove the bible is *false*. But you have not even proven the bible is *true* in the first place.”that would be a great theory, but the sea shells are only found in the surface layers. IF the mountains were made the way you and science said, then are they not throughout the layers”You seem to have difficulty understanding the concept of how mountains are formed. I am not sure if you actually went to high school or not, so I will provide the information to you.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mountai n#Geology“and again, even science will tell now that the sea shells got there by flood”No scientist, ever, has concluded that a flood put sea shells on the tops of mountains. And if they did, it would not be based on scientific evidence.

Posted by Noah Idea | Report as abusive

Dominick,Are you sure you want to argue against rationality and science with a book? Spend your time in reinforcing your faith in the book than the time of others. When people will get fed up with science and rationality, they will come seeking your faith based messages. Till that time, develop your faith than developing faith of others. You have the faith in this Taurin and you believe it is true then why are you getting perturbed? The guys are not trying to prove that your faith is wrong. The guys are testing whether what guys like you are feeding to the world is worth eating or not. Don’t they have this right too?

Posted by Bunny | Report as abusive

Ms HeatherYOU BET YOUR LIFE!May I please have the honor?Where do you want to start?Dominick fromWSOPNE.org

Ms HeatherI have set of 1964 encyclopedias, 44 years old right?Would you like me to go down a little list of things, just a little list, only 5 or six pages of just titles, not including my study, of subjects that the bible has been saying happened, that in 1964 science did not, or could not have happened. And then I have a three page list of titles, on subjects, that science NOW SAYS did happen and growing. Ya me and “THAT JUST A BOOK” are ready. A better name for that book, “I Am Who I Am” or “My Jehovah” or “Abba Father”I do not argue, I prove?Dominick fromWSOPNE.org

Dominic: So why do you have a set of encylopedias if you don’t believe what is written in them? (LOL) Are there stories in the encyclopedias about talking snakes and talking donkeys, and jesus cursing a fig tree. Or Adam living to be 930 years old? Come on Dom, you were probably indoctrinated into this belief system like me and learned only one narrow minded view. Time you expanded your ability and knowledge and worked with people instead of conflicting with them. Organized religion is the great wall builder around people. Thats sad.The Pope doesn’t even know if the Shroud is real or not. UNBLIEVABLE!

1. last comments were to Bunny, not heather…Now to chat 1 you think this is a new between the Word and science, here read thisPaul told Timothy, don’t waste to much with those who are full of the world and themselves. They Have chose not believe. That Is your FREE WILL, you have exercised it, so why argue with me.I’m not picking on you, when you ask, I’ll show you the truth.1 Tim 6:19-2119 Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.20 O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called:21 Which some professing have erred concerning the faith. Grace be with thee. Amen.KJVDominick FromWSOPNE.org

Chart 1″talking snakes”……..ya some of that..LOLwhere would I ever find one? LOLDominick fromWSOPNE.org

I have a holy book that was written by God, not just inspired by him. In it, he says the Bible is a fake and that Dominick is a nerd. Can’t argue with revelation!

Posted by cheese | Report as abusive

[...] According to a Reuter’s follow-up post, Garslaschelli has been getting lots of hate mail since going public with his claims. Why am I not [...]

Dominick: I have two friends who have snakes. Neither snake can talk? No matter how much we try, or how much we pray, they just won’t talk. I wonder how the one in the Bible talked? Snakes don’t have vocal chords…..but catholics believe it all!….UNBELIEVABLE!The Pope says he doesn’t know if the shroud is genuine or not. Doesn’t the Pope have communications with God? Isn’t he the representative for God on earth? Catholics are taught this. Something is wrong!

What if I change my first name to God or to Jesus or Allah? How will preacher like Dominik say that it is wrong? Will it be as simple as “Jesus you are wrong.” or “Allah you are wrong.”

Posted by Bunny | Report as abusive

It’s quite amusing to read some of the comments on here, discussions of the shroud’s authenticity need be only scientific in nature, since “authentic” really means only that we can date it definitely to the time of Jesus. Proof that it actually *is* the burial shroud of Jesus is well-nigh impossible. Such a leap would always be a leap of faith. The scientific study of the shroud has been to determine where and when and how it was made and many of these questions remain unanswered. Far too many atheists and skeptics simply take the scientific data they *like* and toss out everything else, without truly refuting or explaining it. Hardly good science. True shroud study requires being able to explain all the data that is found…most scientists have no issue at ALL with the radiocarbon dating for instance, and discounted many of the early “nutty” explanations for it that came out immediately after the results were given. However, we have considerable proof now that the dating was accurate *for the sample they had*, but the sampling was faulty. Multiple tests were done, but they were all on the same faulty sample, so equally inaccurate in terms of dating the entire shroud. The protocol agreed on (samples from multiple sites) was not followed so for now, all we know from the RC is that the shroud is considerably OLDER than what the labs found. This is backed up but the fact that the shroud proper has no vanillin, and no cotton, two things found in the sample used for dating.To say that this simplistic reproduction proves that that the shroud was a fake is absurd in the extremes, and ignores huge amounts of scientific data as to the nature of the image. Copies of the shroud are nothing new, we certainly can mimic the basic appearance of the shroud, but the description of this procedure makes it clear that these do not come even close to meeting the scientific understanding of the shroud that we have today. Lack of pigment on the linen, the superficiality, lack of direction, 3D encoding, the lack of image under the blood stains, etc. Also in 2004 a second image was found on the back of the shroud, equally superficial and yet totally in-line with the front image. One can only imagine the difficulty of creating such an image without using some substance that would bleed through the entire cloth (which we know it did not). There are far, far many more criteria that have to be met by a “fake” shroud than simple image production.

Posted by Mary Jo | Report as abusive

No scientist has any issue with the carbon dating. And according to this, the shroud was a fake.People have argued various reasons for why the dating was flawed, but none of these arguments are scientific or have been disproven.The only other thing that religious folk can say is that the sample was from the medieval ages, but not the shroud.This ignores the fact that:-Multiple samples were tested, using different science teams, at several different times over the decade.-There is no actual evidence that the tested samples were any different to the rest of the shroud.-The vatican has since refused to provide further samples for testing.The only issue now is discovering how the fake was made. Something which is both interesting and a puzzle worth solving.But just because we have not figured out how to make it yet, doesn’t negate the carbon evidence. As far as science is concerned, the shroud is fake. Because this is what the evidence has indicated.

Posted by Noah Idea | Report as abusive

Noah – your posting is full of completely inaccurate information. Let’s dissect this.”No scientist has any issue with the carbon dating. And according to this, the shroud was a fake.” Correct on the first part. However, all the dating tells us is that date of the samples. From that we have to decide if we can infer anything about the shroud proper. Sampling has long been an issue with C14 dating, and the shroud is far from the only antiquity to be incorrectly dated as a result.”People have argued various reasons for why the dating was flawed, but none of these arguments are scientific or have been disproven.” Totally false. Ray Rogers published his findings regarding that invalid sampling in a peer-reviewed scientific journal. His results were validated by other scientists independently. It’s important to note as well that Dr. Rogers was totally expecting to prove the carbon dating was valid, and had debunked earlier attempts to discredit the C14 dating. His results were a surprise to him and he made quite certain to validate them fully before publishing.”Multiple samples were tested, using different science teams, at several different times over the decade.” Also not accurate. The samples were all taken from the same area on the edge of the shroud, so essentially the same sample. Here is the quote from the original paper on the radiocarbon dating that clearly states this:”The strip came from a single site on the main body of the shroud away from any patches or charred areas.”It was very, very poor sampling and has little validity for proving the age of the entire shroud, unless we can prove definitely that the sample is exactly representative of the shroud proper. All the evidence indicates this is not the case.”There is no actual evidence that the tested samples were any different to the rest of the shroud.” There is CONSIDERABLE evidence. There is cotton present in the sample (not present in the shroud). There is vanillin present (not present in the shroud). There is a dye-gum mixture on the sample (not present in the shroud). The area even appears darker to the naked eye than other areas of the shroud (the result of the dyed cotton aging differently than other areas). The scientists that did the C14 testing even commented on “fibres of other origins” found prior to testing the samples. The evidence is overwhelming that this was not a valid sample and the testing simply cannot be considered accurate. No matter how much you would like it to be.”But just because we have not figured out how to make it yet, doesn’t negate the carbon evidence. As far as science is concerned, the shroud is fake.”I agree, negating the C14 results has nothing to do with whether or not we know how the image is made. Nor can we say that because we don’t know how the image was made, that it had to be of supernatural origin. Many of us, Dr. Rogers included, feel there was a natural phenomenon at work that caused the image formation (the amine vapors from a decomposing body causing a Mailliard reaction that formed the image is the leading theory currently). The word “fake” implying that someone purposely created the image is highly improbable given what we know about it. Nor has science come even remotely close to proving that it was a “fake” in that respect. You cannot just pick and choose what science you want to believe just because it fits what you want to be true. However, there’s nothing that we’ve learned about the shroud that would force anyone to believe something of a religious nature either. Even should the shroud actually match the historical person of Jesus, that need not lead one to assume that it had to be of supernatural origin. One could postulate just as easily that the natural formation of this unusual image was what gave rise to the “story” of resurrection.

Posted by Mary Jo | Report as abusive

Many excuses vetted by creationists have been been debunked over the years.In one case, a documentary attributed a CO2 reaction theory to a Dr. Ramsey, a scientist who had never even heard the theory before. Dr. Ramsey not only dismissed the link to him as the theories creator, but went on to disprove the theory itself.Another similar theory was proposed by Dr Kouznetsov. It was later shown that he had not only never done the experiments he had claimed, but he was arrested for accepting a bribe to manufature scientific evidence as to the shroud’s legitimacy.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Radiocarbon_14_dating_of_the_Shroud_of_T urin#The_1985_rift_between_S.Tu.R.P._and _the_candidate_labsThe scientific community generally accept that the radiocarbon dating was accurate.A single reference to Ray Rogers does not overturn radiocarbon dating, chemistry, pigment analysis and years of scientific inquiry.It is true that his post-death article was published, but there is serious misgivings about his findings.-The vatican has denied allowing him to do any testing on the shroud, or giving him any samples.-His ‘home experiments’ were not subject to any independent quality control, assuming that they happened at all.-He reached a conclusion on the shroud’s age which was not based on any data in his findings.-Textile and pigment experts (some admitted creationists) have since claimed that his assertions as to the different compounds in the shroud samples compared to are incorrect.-Several of his references either do not actually support his claims, or were based on the conclusions of others who were not experts in the relevent scientific fields.-There are concerns that his article was not properly peer reviewed, and was submitted into a journal it was not eligable to be included in.You are free to read:http://www.freeinquiry.com/skeptic/ shroud/articles/rogers-ta-response.htmOt her references can certainly be found, but few consider the issue worth discussing in detail.Even if Ray Rogers research on the was somehow credible, it does not in itself validate the radiocarbon dating.For the test to be dismissed, an ‘accurate’ sample must be provided. The vatican has refused to provide this sample. And while we can only guess at the vaticans motives for failing to do so, the radiocarbon tests must be considered definitive until proven otherwise.And even if his research was credible, and a sample was provided, and the age turned out to be 2000 years, this STILL doesn’t prove anything other then it’s age.While proving the shroud is not 2000 years old certainly proves it is not legitimate.

Posted by Noah Idea | Report as abusive

“Wikipedia- Walter McCrone”In 1977, a team of scientists selected by the Holy Shroud Guild developed a program of tests that they proposed to conduct on the Shroud. The Archbishop of Turin granted permission.The STURP scientists conducted their testing over five days in 1978. McCrone, upon analyzing the samples he had, concluded that the red stains that had been pointed to as blood were actually pigment—specifically, red ochre and vermilion tempera paint.Two later additions to the STURP team, John Heller and Alan Adler, published their own peer-reviewed analysis concluding that the stains were blood. (Heller, J.H. and A.D. Adler, “Blood on the Shroud of Turin”, Applied Optics, 19:2742-4, 1980; Heller, J.H. and A.D. Adler, “A Chemical Investigation on the Shroud of Turin”, Canadian Society of Forensic Sciences Journal 81-103, 1981)According to Shroud skeptic Joe Nickell, neither Heller nor Adler was a forensic serologist or a pigment expert.Nickell adds that, “at the 1983 conference of the International Association for Identification, forensic analyst John E Fischer explained how results similar to theirs could be obtained from tempera paint.”

Posted by Ohman | Report as abusive

Yeah right you know is baloney when they say it is a cheap copy done over only a couple of weeks while at the same time they don’t disclose how much funding he had and how long he had to work on it. Not to mention it does not look that much like the showed in overall quality- which is probably why they are trying to down play their efforts. Bottom line… Not a strong copy.

Posted by boon | Report as abusive

McCrone’s conclusions have been disproved numerous times over the last 25+ years. No one has yet to publish any peer-reviewed article to collaborate his “theory” based on tiny specks taken from the shroud with tape. The Vineland Map debacle shows that he is far from a credible source for which to throw away hundreds of other published papers that speak to a different conclusion (the shroud was *not* painted). Yet skeptics continually trot him out because he’s all they really have to base this flawed theory on. One need only view some of the microscopy of the shroud to see that it clearly could not have been painted (the image is too superficial, shows no capillary action, etc) let alone other characteristics that point to some other means of image formation…most likely theory being amine reactions with the starch left by the linen preparation. The age of the shroud is another matter, separate from how the image formed, but McCrone’s conclusions have been disproved by more than just Heller and Adler. They were just the first to do it (and all their conclusions have long since been validated).http://www.shroud.com/pdfs/fo rd1.pdfAs for Rogers, his conclusions as well were independently confirmed. He, and many of us that are interested in shroud science was hoping for a repeat (with proper sampling) C14 test to be done. Perhaps the Vatican in the future will agree. It’s hard to see why they would. Certainly to the religious, cutting pieces off it is tantamount to desecration. And should the shroud test to be near first century, the skeptics will all just claim the test was faked somehow, they switched samples, something along those lines. They certainly would never accept the results, just as they haven’t accepted the mountain of data that STURP has produced.

Posted by Mary Jo | Report as abusive

From 4 BCE to 30 AD no historical contemporary evidence that Jesus ever existed. No writings, no eye witness accounts on parchment or tablets, no wall carvings, no works of carpentry, no physical description, no generational hand me down information whatsoever, no coins depicting him. To christians jesus is suppose to be the greatest man that ever lived and thousands were suppose to have witnessed his many miracles including his family and the 12 apostles yet at the time they didn’t think he was important enough to write things down about him as was very common back then. Lots of information written at the time about King Herod yet nothing about him slaughtering an entire city of male infants under 2. Libraries full of information about Pontius Pilate personal writings and offical governor documents of Judea yet not one word about a divine man named jesus who was crucified.According to christians The persecution of jesus in jersusalem was such a big deal that Pontius Pilate and the hig priest joseph caiaphas not only knew about it but were part of it according to the scriptures. Matt 21:15-23, 26:3 Luke 19:47 23:13 yet nothing in any history documents indicate that this event ever happened.The 4 gospels never once give a description of this man Jesus yet the catholic church still gives the OK to make millions $$ from statues and pictures showing a man that looks like a man from western cultures even though he was suppose to be from the middle east. Catholics don’t want jesus to look jewish or midle eastern even though thats what he would have been if he existed.Mystery around the shroud will carry on for centuries by those still clinging to this belief. To me this mytical jesus is BUSTED!

Charts- You are incorrect in your posting. Although many atheists state that Jesus never lived, He is mentioned by many contemporary, non-Christian historians. There is ample historical evidence that Jesus of Nazareth walked the Earth.

Flavius Josephus, a first century Jewish historian wrote of Jesus and the Christians: “So he (Ananus, son of the high priest) assembled the sanhedrin of judges, and brought before him the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, whose name was James, and some others and when he had formed an accusation against them, he delivered them to be stoned.”

Other Jewish rabbinical writings, including Rabbi Eliezer and writers of the Talmud, talk about Jesus and his miracles. They never denied that miracles took place, but attempted to explain them as a result of evil.

Cornelius Tacitus wrote about Jesus and the first century Christians in his Annals (a history of the Roman empire): “Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus.”

Thallus, a Samaritan historian, wrote ca. 52 A.D. attempting to give a natural explanation for the earthquake and darkness which occurred at the crucifixion of Jesus. Mara Bar-Seraphon wrote a letter to his son in 73 A.D. which tells of the deaths of Socrates, Pythagoras, and of Jesus, “What advantage did the Jews gain from executing their wise king?…Nor did the wise king die for good; he lived on in the teaching which he had given.” Jesus is also mentioned by Phlegon, a first-century historian, Lucian of Samosata (in The Passing Peregrinus), and Plinius Secundus, (Pliny the Younger).

Scholars have made statements such as, “no serious scholar has ventured to postulate the non-historicity of Jesus .”

Encyclopedia Britannica says in its discussion of the multiple extra-biblical witnesses: “These independent accounts prove that in ancient times even the opponents of Christianity never doubted the historicity of Jesus, which was disputed for the first time and on inadequate grounds by several authors at the end of the 18, during the 19, and at the beginning of the 20th centuries.”

Even well known atheist H.G. Wells mentions the fact that it’s foolish to claim Jesus never lived. He stated, “Here was a man. This part of the tale could not have been invented.”

Posted by JimmyR | Report as abusive

Garlaschelli’s simulation is very interesting, but not for what he would like it to be.

Detractors sometimes say that the Shroud is fake because the hair is in an unnatural straight position and the hands could not be there, covering the genitals. But Garlaschelli’s simulation actually shows that it is anatomically correct to have the hair and hands in that position.

Also the Garlaschelli’s result is not also more crude and rough than the original (just compare the faces in the top picture), but it very different at a microscopical level. Starting with the fact that the the blood was placed after the painting of the human figure (and not before as the Shroud of Turin does) and is not
real blood (the Shroud of Turin has real human blood).

So on the contrary of what he intended, his demostration can actually be used by believers to support the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin.

Personally I don’t know if the Shroud is fake, but if that’s the case, it’s the best falsification ever. A masterpiece work of art. And what drives me crazy is the fact that there’s no other similar object on Earth. When an artist creates a masterpiece in any art, you can see a tradition of masters and students improving their art for centuries before they can master the art. But to make such a work ex novo, out from scratch: the only single existing piece of this art (and we still are not sure how the forger did it), is just amazing.

Posted by duran3d | Report as abusive