Twelve feet of beautifully preserved linen fabric is fascinating enough. People don't understand just how valuable fabric used to be, just a century ago. A yard of any fabric, wool in the age before machines was a staggering investment in labor and materials. When you read old wills, textiles were always mentioned as "heirlooms". Looms, weaving.
Linen is harvested by hand, pulling it up by the roots to make the fiber as long as possible. Then it must be rotted ("retted") to clean off the outer layer of fiber. Then it must be hackled, which means struck until it's soft, then combed. Finally, it's spun. The spinning wheel is a relatively modern invention, spinning in pre-medieval times was with a spindle that would look to someone like a top.
Now, to weaving--wide warps were rarer, more expensive, harder to manage. The wider the piece of fabric, the more likely it is to be either modern or a very valuable antique indeed. I've read that this length of fabric is wide (from selvedge edge to edge), and is pieced of wide sections. You need an expert to take a close look at those selvedges. Forget about the picture and claims of faith. It's right under your nose!
Remember Jesus' robe that was gambled? It had no seam, says the bible. If you know weaving, you know that it is possible to weave a garment with no seam. It is a huge undertaking, a lot of trouble. It involves having mulitiple layers of warp threads and carefully weaving "tube" shapes into the fabric.
The reason this was mentioned is that a seamless garment would be an item of high prestige, suitable for royalty.
The Bible has a lot to say about textiles, their meaning and just how much work was involved in creating a twelve-yard sheet of linen.
This is why I keep thinking it is a hoax. Surely they can't miss something so obvious. Then I read they've taken samples from the patched areas!! Well, a patch is something that could have been added on at any time. Patching was an art form, talented menders can conceal their repairs. Take samples from the selvedges.
There are more people on this earth that would love to disprove” this artifact than to prove it. Although I don’t question your expertise, your rationalizations are ridiculous.
I see what your argument is, but this has to be a VERY old hoax.....
.....AND the image is not ordinary.
I have a hard time believing it is a hoax because the image was not painted.
How on earth would a person create a hoax without painting the image using the technology of the day?
Not quite correct. The word comes from the old english word “lome” which meant looms as well as any other tools. Heirlooms did not mean looms so much as any tool (which were the most valuable things one could inherit) left by the deceased.
The rest of your post is accurate from my limited knowledge. My understanding is that weaving didn’t get less expensive till the 14th century, when Italian looms became common.
Also, I believe the discovery channel show is a rerun, either that or I read a long writeup on it online months ago as the tale of Ray Rogers' end of life discovery had been mentally filed as old data.
The article here linked to a recent piece in the UK Mail on this. The Telegraph and the Sun there also have current articles on this. The latter included one interesting bit I either hadn't known or had forgotten. Apparently in 2002, 5 years after the Turin Cathedral fire and rescue, bugs were found within the case and the shroud was cleaned with a strong insecticide. Thus contaminating all of it with modern carbon atoms and obviating future carbon dating of new samples. However the church may have some small separate samples that might offer chances for testing, although the Sun didn't give any details on those samples and whatever technical problems they may add to the saga.
God works in mysterious ways and I've long believed He values FAITH and acts to preserve both the possibility and the need for it. Assuming for the sake of argument that the Shroud is Jesus's Shroud consider how both the impressions of the faithful and of people in general have evolved over time. The early reports of the Mandylion (which recently found Vatican records support being what we now call the Shroud) focused on the visible image, accepted it as a miracle and didn't consider the mechanics of the miracle because people then didn't consider such. They were enough impressed by it to change religious art of Jesus to match this image. The visible like positive image is known to be slowly fading, which means it used to be darker. As thought became more modern interest in it faded with that image until the new science of photography restored interest and faith in it. With STRP modern science analyzed it in many independent ways, nearly all of which supported the concept of it being real. The 3-D image analysis was as instantly striking as the first photograph had been. Historical fabric analysis, analysis of pollen on it, confirmation that there was blood and of a type common to that time and place and in a pattern fitting the story was strong for those who could follow it. Evidence that the image itself fit the crucifixion story anatomically in ways prior generations couldn't have understood, and proofs that it wasn't painted were strong to the scientifically oriented. For those less scientific the mere statement of the scientists that after ever they could think of they had no idea how it was produced strongly supported their faith. But when all this risked removing the need for faith up came the medieval carbon date, and all but the most faithful believed the god of science rather than the God of miracles. Continued efforts by those most faithful is removing the prior carbon test doubt, but events in the interim may block a carbon test from providing supporting evidence in its place. How very clever of Him!
I wonder what technicality will prevent DNA testing from matching the Shroud's blood with that of the Sudarium of Oviedo, which the faithful accept and which current knowledge leaves plausible as another of Jesus's burial cloths. Or will God allow a DNA match some day. Their blood types are known to match, AB. Although the Sudarium also has some carbon dating issues to overcome, a DNA match with it would force any forgery theories back to before either were documented to exist, at least before the early 600s. When most forgery theories aren't going to sound very plausible. Other than someone torturing and crucifying some one else as per the Bible account, wrapping that body to stain both and managing by unknown science to produce the image we now see.
Mamzelle, numerous textile experts, including some of the top experts in ancient textiles in the world such as Madame Mechthild Flury-Lemberg, of the have examined the shroud...
"Born in Hamburg in 1929, Mechthild Flury-Lemberg studied textile art at the Staatliche Hochschule für Bildende Künste in Hamburg under Else Mögelin. From 1952 56 she studied archaeology and art history at the Universities of Munich and Kiel. These studies were succeeded by a training in textile conservation at the Bayerisches Nationalmuseum in Munich under the tutorship of Sigrid Müller- Christensen.
In 1957 Mechthild Flury-Lemberg was asked by Michael Stettler, then director of the Bernisches Historisches Museum of Berne, to take care of its unique textile treasures. At the same time she worked with Felix Guicherd on weaving techniques at the Centre International dÉtudes des textiles Anciens (CIETA) in Lyons. From 1963 she was in charge of planning and preparing the textile department of the newly established Abegg Foundation.
In 1967 the Museum of the Abegg Foundation was opened and Mechthild Flury- Lemberg took charge of the textile department that includes a workshop where students fulfil their training by working with important textiles from all over the world. "
Professor Gilbert Raes, of the Ghent (Belgium) University's Institute of Textile Technology, another world recognized textile expert was allowed to cut a sample from the Shroud in the same corner that would later be sampled for the 1988 C14 tests.
Dr. Raes examined his sample under microscope and compared it to threads lifted from other parts of the Shroud. He discovered that in his sample, cotton was interwoven with Linen... something not found anywhere else on the Shroud.
M. Sue Benford is another textile expert. It was she, along with her husband, who proposed the medieval patching done by French Invisible Reweaving as the reason why the 1988 Carbon14 testing dates were out of step with all the other science and scholarship about the Shroud. Her hypothesis was proved to be correct when separate scientists found that the area tested incorporated COTTON interwoven into the original material and actually spliced to original Linen threads.
These textile experts are in agreement the cloth is NOT medieval.
The yarn was potash and sun bleached in hanks, something that was not done in France but was commonly done in the 1st Century. It was woven on a vertical hand loom and the the various vertical warp threads show variegation due to the technique of hank sun bleaching. Medieval cloth was bleached AFTER weaving using a Lye soak, washing out the lye, and then soaking in sour milk before being laying the completed cloth out in the sun on bushes, which resulted in a more homogenous tone to the color of the cloth.
To make the weaving easier, the yarn used on the Shroud was treated with a crude starch like substance. The complete cloth was then washed in soapwort (saponaria officinalis) to remove the starch, and then rinsed. Microscopic traces of both the starch and soapwort residues are still present on the main body threads of the Shroud. This residue is consistent with evaporation drying after the rinsing. In fact, it is in this residue (less than 100å thick, about 1/100th the thickness of a human hair) that the image on the Shroud has formed. All of this, especially the residues, is expected from first century methods of linen manufacturing described by the historian Pliny the Elder. It is NOT consistent with Medieval cloth making and weaving techniques.
However, NEITHER starch or soapwort is present on the Cotton repair threads of the C14 sample area. Instead, the cotton threads were found to have Madder root alizarin dyes and an Alum (Aluminum in concentrations as high as 2%) mordant that is NOT found anywhere on the main body Linen threads. The use of Alum as a mordant was something that was developed in the 15th Century. Gum Arabic was also found... used as an adhesive to glue the end-to-end inter-twisting splicing of the old to new threads. All of this is consistent with 16th Century repair techniques.
It should be noted that despite these physical and chemical findings by numerous scientists with peer-review and duplication of experiments that prove the C14 sample is both chemically and physically not the same as the main body of the Shroud, Mechthild Flury-Lemberg, still claims that the Benford-Marino hypothesis is wrong because, ignoring the evidence, she "cannot find the patch," stating that a "darn repair" would be noticeable on the back of the Shroud."
The old to new material in the sample varied from 40% - 60% new to old material to 60% - 40% new to oldgiving rise to a statistical anomaly that had the sub-samples supposedly clipped from a homogenous main sample reporting dates that varied from 1260 to 1390, a red flag that should have alerted scientists that something was wrong with the sample.
Based on estimates of the ratios of New Cotton to Old Linen from observation of photomicrographs of the 1988 C14 test samples, using a historically-plausible date for reweaving of 1560, Ronald Hatfield of the radiocarbon dating firm Beta Analytic provided estimates that show that the original shroud Linen cloth might easily be 2000 years old. Harry Gove, the inventor of the C14 process used to date the Shroud concurred with that estimate. An unauthorized C14 test performed on a thread pulled from the center of the Shroud reported a creation date of 1st century, plus or minus 100 years.
Pollen from plants growing only in the Jerusalem area has been found on the Shroud as well as imbedded limestone dustTravertine Aragonitea type that is unique and found also only in the Jerusalem area near Golgotha... The limestone dust is found ONLY on the backside of the dorsal image where the cloth would have been laid against freshly hewn limestone.
As to your comments about the value of cloth in historic times, if you will recall you and I had a discussion several years ago on FR about the amount of labor that went into producing a cloth of this nature... and its relative value. The Bible states that Joseph of Arimathea purchased a fine Linen cloth for Jesus' burial... the cloth of the Shroud meets that criteria.
You are spot on with the value of woven cloth - the labour required to produce it was mind-boggling.
That is why rag-pickers could make a living at it - it was an early form of recycling, I suppose.
But I do not think it is a fake.