Skip to comments.Surprising new study on Shroud of Turin
Posted on 02/26/2005 8:43:02 PM PST by ETERNAL WARMING
Surprising new study on Shroud of Turin Simple technique could have been used to produce image
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Posted: February 26, 2005 1:19 p.m. Eastern
By Aaron Rench © 2005 Assist News Service
MOSCOW, Idaho The Shroud of Turin has long baffled scientists and scholars, Christians and skeptics for over seven centuries. The cloth bears a photonegative image of a man crucified and is thought by many to be the miraculously preserved burial cloth of Christ. Over the years, skeptics have been unable to convincingly demonstrate how any medieval forger could have produced such an image.
N.D. Wilson, a fellow of literature at New St. Andrews College in Moscow, Idaho, believes that he has done just that.
"The Shroud has always been particularly mysterious because the image is both three-dimensional and a photonegative," Wilson says. "Artists are simply not able to produce images like that on their own, and so many conclude the Shroud is an authentic relic of Christ's resurrection. What I've done is demonstrate how easy it could have been for a medieval to create a three-dimensional photonegative."
Wilson, who describes his experiment in an article published in Books and Culture, (March/April, 2005) as well as on his website, began his experiment by painting faces on glass. The painted panes of glass were then set on top of linen and left in the sun for various lengths of time. Dr. Scott Minnich, a microbiologist well-known in Intelligent Design circles, provided Wilson with scientific advice on structuring his experiment. Minnich was not expecting the results the experiment produced.
"The success of these experiments was a surprise to me," Minnich said. "And as Nate [Wilson] aptly concludes in his paper, it doesn't disprove the Shroud's authenticity. However, it does show an alternative hypothesis for its making that has not been considered to my knowledge. And I don't think he goes beyond the data in his interpretation."
Commenting on Wilson's lack of scientific credentials, Minnich said, "It is the irony of science that often someone out of the mainstream shoots an outside shot with such accuracy."
Though the images Wilson produced look remarkably similar to the Shroud of Turin, he does not believe he has proved the relic to be a fraud.
"I believe it to have been faked. But that's not something I can prove," he said. "What I have demonstrated is that in order to produce an image like the one on the Shroud, nothing more is required than the cloth itself, and a painting on glass. All things available to a medieval. A forger would have three-dimensionally encoded a photonegative onto cloth, without even being aware of the completeness of his art, or for how long he would be confusing the rest of us."
Antonio Lombatti, a fellow researcher of medieval church history at the Deputazione di Storia Patria in Parma, Italy, was quite interested in Wilson's findings.
"I am eager to examine his results under the microscope to check the chemical properties of his shroud. What I really find interesting about Wilson's experiment is that his shroud has encoded 3D data even if it was not produced with a real face or a bas-relief."
Wilson said that his faith has surprised people: "Im a Trinitarian Christian. I believe in the Resurrection and all that it means for this world. Either the Shroud is genuine or, as I believe, it is a lie about a great truth. I think Christians should want to see religious fraud exposed wherever we can find it."
Scientists from around the world have already begun requesting samples of Wilson's shrouds. When asked if he would distribute samples from his experiments, Wilson was unsure.
I haven't thought that far ahead."
One of Wilson's Shrouds, as it appears to the eye (left) and as it appears in photonegative (right)
Starting next year, many more hundreds of thousands of people world wide will become familiar with The Shroud as the Winter Olympics will be held in Turin.
In the meanwhile, here are just a couple sites folks might find interesting.
but only in tiny panes until cedturies AFTER the Shroud or even the 1200's.
see my post #41
Why is it that these "debunkers" of the Shroud of Turin NEVER publish their findings in Peer Reviewed journals??? Could it be that it is that Schafersman relies heavily on Dr. Walter C. McCrone whose un-peer-reviewed work, published only in his own vanity press Journal The Microscopist, has NEVER been duplicated by any other researcher who DOES publish their results in peer-reviewed scientific journals? Could it be that his claims that Dr. Max Frie PLANTED the pollen grains has been disputed and DISPROVEN by other researchers, including Dr. Avinoam Danin, the world's foremost expert on the pollens found in Israel, who have ALSO found pollen from the Palestinian area on the Shroud on samples that Dr. Frei did not handle.
This evidence was sufficient for any objective and rational person to accept the fact that the Shroud was an artistic representation of the Shroud, and not the real thing. But McCrone was illogically and unjustifiably criticized by STURP participants and other advocates of authenticity, who then and now attempt to clumsily explain away the plain and obvious evidence of artifice that he first discovered. Walter McCrone recently summarized his results again in this journal17, so I will not repeat them again.
Gosh... clumsy attempts to explain away McCrone's findings. It is McCrone who is clumsy in his findings and his science! McCrone has been completely discredited. NOT ONE scientist examining the shroud has seen what McCrone claims (not peer-reviewed) to have seen on the shroud fibers.
McCrone sees "paint" on the shroud... in fact, he claims it is Red Ocher that was painted on in a 1/10 dilute solution of water and egg albumin (how anyone can determine the dilution of something that has been dry for at least 700 years is beyond ANYONE who has read McCrone's ridiculous conclusion based on what he sees in his microscope). This cannot possibly be in agreement with what we now KNOW forms the image:
The substance is a dried carbohydrate mixture of starch fractions and various saccharides (sugars). It is as thin (180 to 600 nanometers) as the wall of a soap bubble. It is thinner than the invisible glare proof coating on modern eyeglasses. . . In some places the coating has turned a golden brown. This is the result of a chemical change: the formation of a complex carbon-carbon double molecular bond within the coating. There are two ways this could have happened chemically: 1) caramelization, whereby heat caused molecular breakdown into other volatile compounds and 2) a Maillard reaction in which a carbonyl group of sugars reacted with an amino group producing N-substituted glycosylamine. An unstable glycosylamine undergoes Amadori rearrangement, forming ketosamines, which then form nitrogenous polymers and melanoidins. Voila, pictures of Jesus.
There is a problem with caramelization. The amount of heat required for browning would also heat the cellulose fiber sufficiently to change its crystalline structure and cause it to change color as well. That has not happened. Where a picture bearing bit of coating is removed, either with adhesive or with a reducing agent such as diimide, the fiber beneath is clear and un-ablated.
A Maillard reaction seems more promising because of the presence of amines needed for a Maillard reaction. Of course, it didn't need to be Jesus; at least chemically. It could have been any recently deceased person.
Ergo, NO paint! This alone discredits McCrone... and by extension, Schafersman, who relies so heavily on discredited evidence.
McCrone claims "No blood" on the shroud... only Red Ochre (Iron Oxide - Fe2O3 and Vermilion (Mercury Sulfide - HgS)... he knows because he can see it in his optical microscope.
Instead of discredited McCrone, let's take the testimony of:
. . . chemist Dr. Alan Adler and biophysicist Dr. John Heller, experts on blood and blood fractions, who state categorically in peer-reviewed scientific Journals, that the blood stains consist of hemoglobin and its derivatives. Aside from light microscopy, Heller and Adler tested for hemochromagen (positive), cyanmethemoglovin (positive), bile pigment bilirubin (positive), and proteolytic enzymes (positive), human specific protein albumin (positive), presence of serum halos around stains (positive), and immunological determination that the blood is of primate origin. Perhaps we should look at Yale University's Dr. Joseph Gall's spectrophotometer tests that showed the blood absorbing light in 410 nanometers... a test that he states is "specific" for blood as "nothing in nature that absorbs light at four hundred ten nanometers that strongly". Or perhaps we should accept the word of Dr. Bruce Cameron, whose "double doctorate is dedicated to hemoglobin in all its many forms", who on reviewing the test results stated "You both should know what it is. It's old acid met-hemoglobin." (a remnant compound of aged blood.)
Ergo, according to some of the world's top experts on blood, the blood stains on the Shroud of Turin, are exactly that... blood stains. Again McCrone's bald statements are refuted. I could also go into McCrone's attempts to sabotage other researcher's work including preventing his own colleagues from having access to the samples of Shroud threads he had.
Schafersman's original letter was published where... The Microscope... edited and published by McCrone. His other source of "debunking" the shroud is Joe Nickell... whose degree is in English Literature... and who also has never been published in a peer-reviewed journal. And who is Schafersman... his PhD is inGeology... and a geologist who really is not qualified to judge the results of scientists like Rogers, Adler, Heller, Gall, Cameron, et. al., WHO HAVE HAD THEIR WORK CRITIQUED IN PEER REVIEWED SCIENTIFIC JOURNALS.
All the historical, artistic, iconographical, and scientific evidence compels one to accept this conclusion. No further examinations or tests of the Shroud are needed: the Shroud of Turin is not the burial shroud of Jesus, and certain individuals, authors3, magazines4, organizations5, and institutions6 should stop the unseemly exploitation of it as if it were or as if it could be.
It is obvious to anyone who has research and read all the peer-reviewed scientific and scholarly work that has been done on the Shroud in the past 104 years, that Schafersman has NOT read it. He has an adgenda: "There is nothing here. Don't look. My mind is made up. Don't bother me with the facts."
Well, that presents a little problem... because if it were a 14th Century fake, we KNOW where it HAS been since it first appeared in Lirey, France, in 1352... and it has never been in the area of Israel since then.
The shroud is interesting, but it's not a dogma of Faith. The most it tells us today is that the man wrapped in it had suffered terribly.
Oh, he looked at the samples... but he, like Percival Lowell who say "canals" on Mars, saw only what he wanted to see... and he had to look mighty hard to find it.
For example, he DID find a scrap of Vermilion pigment on the Shroud... but that was all it was, a scrap, probably contamination from the Shroud being displayed in churches surrounded by art works painted with vermilion. Examination with much more delicate and precise instruments than a light microscope determined that while there was vermilion (Mercury Sulfide - HgS) on the Shroud, it was never more than 2 micrograms per cm2... way below the threshold of visibility, even in the blood areas that McCrone claimed were "painted with vermilion".
Also, there are hundreds of icons painted for churches and home shrines that are all of the same image - done before the 1300's - and oviously using the face in the Shroud ...
(above) Christ Pantocrator, c. 1100 from dome of Church at Daphni, near Athens. Note U at bridge of nose, triangle on nose, raised right eyebrow, uneven hair, owlish eyes.
In the 1930's, French Shroud scholar Paul Vignon described a series of common characteristics visible in many early artistic depictions of Jesus. The Vignon marking, as they are known, all appear on the Shroud suggesting that it is the source of later pictures of Jesus. Christ Pantocrator, c. 1100 from dome of Church at Daphni, near Athens. Note U at bridge of nose, triangle on nose, raised right eyebrow, uneven hair, owlish eyes. A square U-shape between the eyebrows.
A downward pointing triangle or V-shape just below the U-shape, on the bridge of the nose.
Two wisps of hair going downward and then to the right.
A raised right eyebrow.
Large, seemingly "owlish" eyes.
An accent on the left cheek and an accent on the right cheek that is somewhat lower.
A forked beard and hair parted in the middle, a custom of the Nazarenes.
Hair on one side of the head that is shorter than on the other side.
An enlarged left nostril.
An accent line below the nose and a dark line just below the lower lip.
A gap in the beard below the lower lip.
Draped clothing of white linen typical of the ancient Essenes
Excuse me... but "saying it" and PROVING IT are two completely different things. In this instance, the SAMPLE was flawed... it was contaminated by more modern materials. This is no longer in question. The proof of contamination has been published and peer-reviewed... the science is solid. The sample was contaminated with non-shroud linen of unknown provenance. Garbage in, garbage out. Mixed age material in, averaged age out. Harry Gove, the inventor of the C14 testing method used in testing the Shroud, is in agreement.
The tests were accurate for what they tested... a sample that was a mixture of old "original" shroud material and new "patch" material. Since there was "contamination" of the old linen with new, the reported date is skewed toward the date of the newer material. The sample was, against advice of all the scientists who had examined the Shroud, taken from an area that was KNOWN to have been repaired... and it has now been proven that the C14 test sample included approximately 40-60 percent rewoven linen that was not original to the Shroud.
Interestingly, this 40-60 percent contamination explains the extraordinary spread of dates reported by the three labs doing the tests. Although the four tested samples (of five) were cut from the SAME SAMPLE, the reported dates were spread over 130 years with a degree of confidence of only 25 years... giving a possible range of creation dates of an amazing 180 years! NOT ONE SUB-SAMPLE TESTED WITHIN ANOTHER'S DEGREE OF CONFIDENCE! Once the rewoven patch was noticed in the ONE remaining control sample (of 5), the discrepency became explicable. The French "invisible reweaving" technique requires that new threads be "rewoven" into old... and the junction between the old and new, as observed on the remaining sample, runs at a diagonal... and the later reported dates are proprotional to the approximate percentage of "NEW" material incorporated in the sample. One of the C14 scientists was asked to calculate what age the "original" material must be if it was mixed with 16th Century material... as it was. He did some calculations based on both the oldest dates and the newest dates (which incidentally were reported for the pieces cut closest and farthest from the edge) and came up with a date of 1st Century with a degree of confidence of plus or minus 100 years.
As a result of NOT FOLLOWING THE AGREED AND ESTABLISHED PROTOCAL, the sample was invalid and therefore, beyond doubt, the test is invalid.
Real, fake, what's the big deal?
If your computer supports "drag and drop" like my Mac G5 does, you can test the 3D-ability of Wilson's efforts.
Simply click on the picture in the acticle and drag the positive over the negative. While holding the mousebutton down, move the ghosted positive over the negative and offset them slightly to either side or up or down. On pictures of the real shroud, this produces a pronounced 3D effect... on photographs, it results slight 3D but in flattened 3D mesas.
Wilson's effort does have a slight 3D but it shows flattened mesas... In other words, it is a photograph, not a terrain map like the shroud.
Yet another appeal to superstition posing as a basis for authority. Where's Art Bell and the 'I saw a UFO' infomercial crowd?
Believe what you want if it makes you feel better.
Science does not deal in "proofs".
- that the carbon dating tests claiming it to be a fake have been proven wrong - I wont bother going into why - you can read for yourself -
I've read it already. It's not conclusive, but enough questions have been raised that there ought to be new radiocarbon dating of other areas of the shroud just to settle the matter. But I'll bet you ten bucks that even if several samples from other areas return a date inconsistent with a "it's Christ's shroud" explanation, the shroudies will *still* find excuses to reject it and all other contrary evidence.
but I realize that anyone that does not want the Shroud to be authenic will never accept anything that refutes what they don't want to believe
That cuts both ways.
Also, there are hundreds of icons painted for churches and home shrines that are all of the same image - done before the 1300's - and oviously using the face in the Shroud ... [...] The Vignon marking, as they are known, all appear on the Shroud suggesting that it is the source of later pictures of Jesus.
EERRNNTT!! You're engaging in circular reasoning. It could equally suggest that the maker(s) of the shroud image copied the earlier works, rather than vice versa.
Of course you have.
The web site referenced by the author of the article, American Humanist, is an interesting web site to say the least. It declares itself as staunchly opposed to a belief in the supernatural, and includes lauds to Betty Friedan, Gloria Steinem, Margaret Sanger Harris, Ted Turner, Faye Wattleton, Bill Baird, Oliver Stone, and assorted other people who can accurately be described as athiest nutballs.
So, of course, it *must* be wrong on scientific issues, right? Gosh, how could anyone argue with such unassailable logic. (Didn't anyone ever tell you that ad hominem is a fallacy?)
It's hardly an unbiased site.
Neither are the shroudie sites.
Thanks for playing, though.
And why do shroudies SHOUT so MUCH?
A Maillard reaction seems more promising because of the presence of amines needed for a Maillard reaction. Of course, it didn't need to be Jesus; at least chemically. It could have been any recently deceased person. Ergo, NO paint! This alone discredits McCrone...
What have you been smoking? No it doesn't.
and by extension, Schafersman, who relies so heavily on discredited evidence.
Yes, *wave* those hands, the contrary evidence is sure to just blow away...
And who is Schafersman... his PhD is inGeology... and a geologist who really is not qualified to judge the results of scientists like Rogers, Adler, Heller, Gall, Cameron, et. al., WHO HAVE HAD THEIR WORK CRITIQUED IN PEER REVIEWED SCIENTIFIC JOURNALS.
I have explained to you before your misunderstandings of the strengths and weaknesses of the peer-review process. And yet you continue to say "peer-review peer-review" in almost every sentence as if it's some sort of talisman guaranteeing validity. It most certainly is not. You just sound silly when you keep screaming it so much, as if it proves anything.
It is obvious to anyone who has research and read all the peer-reviewed scientific and scholarly work
...there you go again...
that has been done on the Shroud in the past 104 years, that Schafersman has NOT read it.
Sure looks to me like he has. And unlike a lot of the shroudies, he's familiar with both sides of the evidence and doesn't just ignore what he doesn't like.
He has an adgenda: "There is nothing here. Don't look. My mind is made up. Don't bother me with the facts."
Well if so, then he's got a lot in common with you folks.
Believe what you wish, you will anyway.
The shroud's image is not a "terrain map".
You beat us to it, particularly as to the bits of pollen.
Now I have nothing left to believe in. O you wicked man!
Yes, it is... it encodes the distance of the body to the shroud material. What appears to be shadow caused by lack of light is merely greater distance from the shroud. As the distance approaches about 4 cm, the image fades to nothing.
It is the encoding of the body to shroud distance as a gradient that makes it a terrain map instead of a photograph. There are no light artifacts on the shroud.
Yes, it does discredit him. McCrone makes a scientific claim that the image on the Shroud is painted... with Red Ochre Tempera paint. He claims the fibers are "coated with paint," that it is everywhere he looked. But ever other scientists who looks at the exact same fibers samples that McCrone looked at, both using McCrone's beloved microscope and many far more sophisticated physics based instruments, find no paint. No paint coating. No significant Red Ochre. No significant Vermilion. There is no red ochre or vermilion sufficient to be visible anywhere on the shroud... and what little there is randomly distributed in image and non-image areas equally, consistent with environmental contamination. The image has been proved to not be painted. McCrone's findings are not believable... thay cannot be given credit. Yet McCrone still continued to make the claims despite lack of any verification. That discredits McCrone himself.
McCrone says the blood is vermilion paint. World renowned experts on blood and blood products say bull pucky to McCrone and provide their tests and results. They publish according to the rules of good science. There findings have been vetted by other experts in the field of blood. Their conclusion is that the blood stains are blood... human blood.
On one hand, we have Walter C. McCrone... microscopist who claims that his eyes can determine that that stain is merely vermilion paint... on the other hand we have dozens other scientists whose specialty is blood, who have used dozens of tests, none of which found paint, but everyone of which was positive for blood and blood remnants... and whose results were checked by other scientists who know what they are doing. Who do we believe. Certainly not McCrone. Again, McCrone's findings have been found unbelievable... and again McCrone continues to trumpet his answer is the only answer. And again that unwillingness to participate in the scientific method discredits McCrone.
McCrone refused peer-review... none of the other have refused it. No one can duplicated McCrone's findings... therefore it is not science.
You follow McCrone and his outdated microscope. I'll follow the science.
Let me say it once again: Just because McCrone says it was painted, unless his work is confirmed by others, it is just his unsupported opinion. When it directly refuted by scientists who are far more expert on their subjects, say like blood and blood products, who's work has been vetted by other scientists in the same fields and found sound, you do not take the non-experts findings as fact. Since there are no pigments, and no paint on the Shroud, McCrone's claims that there are (with no one else claiming it) are discredited. Period. When others look at the samples McCrone claims prove his point and fail to see what he claims is there, his conclusions become delusion.
Why do I put stress on certain words? Because you don't seem to understand without the stress.
You have claimed that you have explained the shortcomings of peer-review to me. You made some wrong assertions in an earlier post that peer-review merely meant the article "got past an editor" and only then would other scientists look at the work. That is untrue.
You seem think that non-peer-reviewed "science" is equal to peer-reviewed... it isn't. You think that work by non-scientists such as Joe Nickell is comparable to objective science, it is not.
Peer review means that other scientists who work in the field that is being used to test a theory have examined the methods and science, the statistical analysis of the findings, checking to assured that the conclusions are logically derived (they may be wrong, but they are not merely jumped to without evidence). All of this occurs prior to as well as after publishing. Before an article can be published in a peer-reviewed journal, other scientists selected by the editors are sent the article and supporting evidence for their examination and critiques. Objections are raised, errors pointed out, corrections are made. Many times the whole thing falls apart under the scrutiny it receives. Most importantly, it allows other scientists to try the same experiments to see if they get the same results.
McCrone submitted two "research paprers" to committee for peer-review. When he didn't like the critiques he was receiving... from scientists who could not even find what he claimed was "obvious", he refused to allow his work to be peer-reviewed. One peer-review committee wrote to McCrone:
"In short, your data is misrepresented, your observations are highly questionable, and your conclusions are pontifications rather than scientific logic . . .
McCrone's response? He pulled his paper out of the peer-review process. Despite a signed agreement that he would only publish after peer-review and that all announcements of findings would be handled at the project level, McCrone held a press conference to announce his findings "that the Shroud was beautiful medieval painting". And then he published in his own vanity press magazine, where he could say what he wanted without peer-review, also in violation of that agreement. That makes his science no good... and it makes McCrone unethical.
Sure looks to me like he has. And unlike a lot of the shroudies, he's familiar with both sides of the evidence and doesn't just ignore what he doesn't like.
No, when he only accepts McCrone's unverified findings, he ignores 25 years of other research that IS verified. He ignores everything that is contrary to what he wants it to be. He says "Ah, but McCrone proved..." and that is his trump card to everything. McCrone... delusional and unethical McCrone. That is cherry picking his data... just as you do. You refuse any research that does not fit your world view... regardless of the standing and expertise of the person doing the research. In McCrone's world and obviously Schaferman's, only McCrone's little polarized light microscope can solve this riddle... just ignore the far more sophisticated tests that prove McCrone wrong... over and over again.
Your ad hominem referal to those scientists interested in this research as "shroudies" is merely designed to denigrate their work. You come into these topics and use rhetorical questions like "What are you smoking?" and comments like "...there you go again..." or "believe what you want if it makes you feel better" to further marginalize anyone who fails to recognize your world view. Schafersman goes so far as to slander and libel the late Max Frei, snidely implying that Frei "doctored" the samples and perpetrated scientific fraud, with no proof other than his "feelings" that the evidence "was too good to be true", to further his agenda. That is reprehensible.
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