|This blogger's still steering clear of the non-interactive pdf .|
IMPORTANT UPDATE (14 November): from viewing responses to this posting elsewhere, this being an example, it's clear that there's been some misunderstanding, due perhaps to an over-concise title.
Here it is again, with a few extra words (bolded).
Checklist of reasons for thinking the Turin Shroud image represents a dried-on sweat imprint. Real 1st century sweat imprint or simulated 14th century sweat imprint?
Oh, and one other thing before returning to the original post: even if, as I suspect, the TS image was fabricated in the 14th century to look as if it were a sweat imprint left by the crucified Jesus on a linen shroud, not forgetting blood as well, I doubt whether sweat or any other bodily fluid would have been used to achieve that aim. The practical difficulties would have ruled out that option. Some other technology would have needed to be devised that simulated, dare one say "faked" the appearance of a sweat imprint. But please note my earlier suggestion that the TS image was not necessarily created in the first instance as a fake. If the technology used was contact scorching, say, it could have been used on a Mark 0 Shroud to create a grim memento of the fate of one or more of those Templar Knights, slowly roasted to death in Paris 1314, with the image subsequently being 're-ininvented' as the Mark 1 TS by addition of bloodstains and scourge marks. Who knows, the Mark 0 TS may even have been a representation of St.Lawrence of Rome, who also died (allegedly) from being slow-roasted in 258AD.
Here's the original start to this posting:
Today, my wife and I are in London, meeting in the flesh for the first time two fellow bloggers from the old days with whom we've kept in contact via web forums. The initial interaction was on the My Telegraph site (2009) which I helped establish in its pilot phase along with half a dozen or so others. Later a spin-off site developed which helped maintain the contact in a friendlier more informal fashion.
We shall be seeing the amazing poppy spectacle at the Tower of London. Up till now I've only seen it from afar and on high (the elevated hospitality suite of the Shard across the river, now open to the general public, by reservation).
Anyway, with that as preamble, I'll be trying to add to the checklist I've started on this worksheet of reasons for thinking that the Shroud of Turin was designed and produced to represent a notional, i.e. simulated imprint on linen, as bodily sweat (accounting for the faintness of the body image) and of course the more visible blood.
Sorry, no polished end product just yet. It's the way this blogger operates, and has done since December 2011 with his first 'Shroudie' posting on this blog. What's described here is a journey, not a final destination. Who knows, I might even end up in the pro-authenticity camp (but it would take another carbon-14 dating to do that, providing an answer like AD 50 +/- 150 years. The chances of that happening are pretty slim, but you never know).
Come to think of it, a sweat imprint is not incompatible with authenticity any more than, say, Rogers' similarly 'naturalistic' model that visualizes a chemical imprinting of putrefaction amines onto a starch/dextrin 'impurity coating. Compatibility and actual hard physical/chemical/biological evidence are of course two entirely different things.
Here then is the start of the checklist. Hopefully by the end of the day there will be more points. Then comes the task of fleshing out each point to turn a checklist into a mini-thesis. The end-product would be posted here, along with a copy to my dormant TS site whose last posting in March of this year some might find a touch prolix (I certainly do on re-reading). Don't expect a pdf. To be candid, while others may disagree,
I do not approve of the pdf format , given it provides no means for posting comments and/or criticism. For me it's either the informality and interactivity of the blog format OR peer-reviewed papers in reputable journals, with no in-betweens (which would include books, newspaper articles and other press releases).
Knowledge is always provisional, with some knowledge more firmly rooted, less provisional than others. There should be no hint or suggestion of 'fait accompli' where the world of knowledge is concerned, certainly not where science is concerned, especially when it centres on an ancient artefact with no accompanying documentation, one rarely open to public view at close quarters, far less detailed and ongoing scientific examination. So this blogger/retired scientist will continue to keep things informal, both now and for the forseeable future.
|Machy mould for a Lirey badge, presumed circa 1355, Machy field where found being just two km from Lirey. Arrows show location of Veronica-like image above word SVAIRE , i.e. SUAIRE (reversed), meaning "facecloth" with connotations of sweat.|
|Enlargement of that presumed Veronica image, compared with a later artistic rendering (one of several) shown in the wiki entry for 'Veil of Veronica'.|
See wiki entry for: Veil of Veronica
and British Museum (Neil MacGregor is its present Director).
17:15 back from London, having seen the amazing carpet of ceramic poppies in the 'dry' moat of the Tower of London, one for each of the fallen (888,246 of them!) in the Great War, 1914-18.
To think that supposedly civilized nations willingly inflicted that level of carnage on their young men, with an entire generation of the brightest and best - plus essential back-up - virtually wiped out.
On the train back, I gave some more thought to that list. Sadly I could only think of another 13 reasons for thinking the TS body image is a sweat imprint, real or simulated. Must do better ;-)
Is shall add them here this evening, in the same order they were jotted down- in other words, no particular order.Tidying up will come later
Reasons (continued from No.10 above)
11. If not a negative imprinted image, what could it be? A freehand painting? But there's no trace of artists' pigments (STURP 1982 Report), no sign of brush marks, no 'directionality' that gives clues to the direction of illumination.
12. Why the blood trails on hair, supposedly from a crown of thorns? Blood would not form trails on hair - an artists would realize that. Some suggest the separate imaging of hair and body image caused one to be out of stereoregister with the other. There's a simpler explanation. The hair, along with rest of body image, needed additions of conspicuous blood to make it more easily discernible, the hair being virtually indistinguishable in colour from image-free background.
13. Many have commented on the absence of a loin cloth, arguing that implies authenticity - no medieval artist (or artisan) would have risked offending public decency through showing bare buttocks.
But if a decision had been made to simulate a sweat imprint, there could be no clothing of any description (how could one depict a loin cloth except as some subtle change in the character of the sweat imprint?). In any case, a loin cloth becomes unnecessary on a shroud-enveloped cadaver - the medieval pilgrim would have known that.
14. One has an explanation for why blood stains, scourge marks etc HAD to be shown. Any attempt to clean up the corpse before placing in a shroud would have removed sweat as well as blood, and would prevent imprinting by this particular mechanism.
15.One has an explanation for two peculiar features of the 1516 Lier copy of the TS that have been pointed out, namely (a) the very prominent buttocks and (b) the bunching of hair into three conspicuous clumps in the dorsal view.
Not only did the artists manage to convey the faintness of the image, but the reasons for it: prominent buttocks could fit with trapping of sweat, clumping of hair likewise. It's hard to think of alternative explanations.
16. The sweat imprint hypothesis vis -a-vis a painted image explains why the soles of feet are shown in the dorsal view. It's unlikely a artist would have shown the soles, being content to stop at the heels. But an image produced off a template (or even real human subject) allows for the turning of linen upwards through 90 degrees around the heels along the soles before securing with the up-and-over top surface to get a 'tight' wrapping.
17. The sweat imprint hypothesis explains the peculiarity of the TS man's neck, the subject of previous postings. Most recent link. In brief, the unexpected alternation of light and dark transverse bands is interpretable as a weak imaging of the UNDERSIDE of the chin, followed by a stronger imaging where the cloth then meets the neck 'square on'.In other words, fabric followed all the contours, instead of bridging from chin to chest.
18. Speaking of the chin and neck, this blogger has done several postings on the peculiar and distinctive transverse and twin-track crease that one sees at the junction of chin and neck, and concluded that it's a 'baked-in- crease'. Link to a recent posting. While those words were chosen to support the view that the TS image was produced by imprinting from a heated template, sufficientlly hot to produce thermal imprint, i.e. scorch, that conclusion would likewise support a sweat imprint hypothesis too, if one supposed that a heat scorch was used to simulate a sweat imprint.
19. Many have commented on the unnaturally-long fingers on the TS man and their 'boniness', with some even going so far as to posit some kind of X-ray emanations with radiographic imaging. (Yes, seriously!) While I cannot account for the length, simple modelling with hand imprinting, using a sticky spread, shows how fingers that are held together imprint as if separate, due to preferential imprinting of skin directly over bone. Any direct visual evidence such as this for contact imprinting can be legitimately brought forward as evidence for simulated 'sweat imprinting'.
Stopped at 22:40. Still more to come (tomorrow).
Wed 12 November.
Here's one more to make a nice round 20 points, each and all of which in aggregate might be said to support that idea of the TS representing a 'sweat imprint' .
20. Something that is difficult to explain without recourse to some kind of pressure-imprinting, aka impaction scenario is the interesting difference in image intensity of the frontal dorsal surfaces. That was not my observation but none other than John P.Jackson's. Moreover, despite the latter's embrace of radiation as the basis for the imaging mechanism, allowing for imprinting across air gaps (an idea this blogger refuses to accept - no physical atom-to-atom contact, no image) Jackson himself said the dorsal image had more 'direct contact' character. My own explanation was for different geometries deployed by medieval artisans for imprinting the two surfaces, described as LUWU (Linen Underneath With Underlay) and LOTTO (Linen On Top With Overlay). See this posting for a flavour of these ideas. Note that this addition to the list addresses the alternative mechanism of imprinting, with more or less impact pressure, assuming that the image is an imprint, but not necessarily intended as a sweat imprint, so is more by way of indirect, rather than direct evidence for imprinting as simulated sweat.
I rest my case (while still looking for more 'smoking guns').
(1) Annecy, 4 May 1614
Whilst waiting to see you, my very dear Mother, my soul greets yours with a thousand greetings. May God fill your whole soul with the life and death of His Son Our Lord! At about this time, a year ago, I was in Turin, and, while pointing out the Holy Shroud among such a great crowd of people, a few drops of sweat fell from my face on to this Holy Shroud itself. Whereupon, our heart made this wish: May it please You, Saviour of my life, to mingle my unworthy sweat with Yours, and let my blood, my life, my affections merge with the merits of Your sacred sweat! My very dear Mother, the Prince Cardinal was somewhat annoyed that my sweat dripped onto the Holy Shroud of my Saviour; but it came to my heart to tell him that Our Lord was not so delicate, and that He only shed His sweat and His blood for them to be mingled with ours, in order to give us the price of eternal life. And so, may our sighs be joined with His, so that they may ascend in an odour of sweetness before the Eternal Father.
But what am I going to recall? I saw that when my brothers were ill in their childhood, my mother would make them sleep in a shirt of my father’s, saying that the sweat of fathers was salutary for children. Oh, may our heart sleep, on this holy day, in the Shroud of our divine Father, wrapped in His sweat and in His blood; and there may it be, as if at the very death of this divine Saviour, buried in the sepulchre, with a constant resolution to remain always dead to itself until it rises again to eternal glory. We are buried, says the Apostle, with Jesus Christ in death here below, so that we may no more live according to the old life, but according to the new. Amen.
Francis, Bishop of Geneva
The 4th of May 1614
Postscript. Elsewhere I've just spotted a comment that says "historians are trying to kill scientists", as "Church leaders" did in the past.
I thought of posting the following, but decided against it (and not just because my wife said it's too long).
"Killing" is maybe a bit strong. But there's long been an insidious process at work in the UK that has been described as the 'ghettoization' of science. It was addressed some decades ago in a manner of speaking in C.P.Snow's "The Two Cultures". However that title was somewhat misleading, inasmuch as one of those cultures consistently refuses to view the other as a culture, more as a set of preordained and rigid operating instructions (which is actually partly true, thus a contributory source of confusion).
Having done a spell of teaching science in English secondary schools according to the prescribed National Curriculum, I think I can see why the problem of cultural supremacy on the part of the liberal arts establishment in politics, the media, finance etc etc continues year after year, decade after decade to maintain its grip. Too much of our National Curriculum is a box-ticking exercise to get across the so-called principles of the basic sciences, i.e. what has already been discovered, but with scarcely any attention as to HOW it was discovered. The excitement and dare one say intellectual challenge is rarely got across, the opportunities for doing so being curtailed by time constraints. To make matters worse, Government spokespeople and media persistently refer to science and technology as if they were one and the same thing, with scarcely any recognition of the fact that science is rooted firmly in the world of ideas, not facts or things as commonly supposed. The facts, if the truth be told, are as often as not mere reference points, and often only provisional as new facts emerge. It's the ideas that are important, being needed to make sense of the facts regarding the way things behave - initially under laboratory conditions and then the real world.
What's hugely overlooked and/or downplayed is the creative element of science. Scientists are sadly often their own worst enemies, cultivating the myth that they are concerned purely with the search for verifiable facts, and indeed being dismissive of unorthodox lines of investigation deemed to be "blue sky thinking" (used generally as a pejorative term needless to say).
Never could the clash of the Two Cultures be more excruciatingly apparent than right now, Compare this blogger's approach (scorched linen model) with that of historian Charles Freeman's writing off of STURP science (and my own modest contributions).
Solution? Who knows? Maybe win the lottery and set up one's own back yard research facility operating in the manner of 18th/19th century 'amateur' scientists. Recreate curiosity-driven science as a genuine culture that is perceived as such, instead of being written off and indeed 'ghettoized' as if a closed community in which its bespectacled white-coated practitioners peer intently into glassware, communicating among themselves in a strange and incomprehensible language.