New Bari Paper on Academia.edu

January 30, 2015 Leave a comment

clip_image001José L. Fernández-Sánchez  has uploaded a paper prepared for the Bari conference:  A Features Model of the Shroud of Turin: Considering it as a system. The paper is in English and may be found at Academia.edu.

Here is an abstract:

The Shroud of Turin is among the most studied, controversial and enigmatic of all archaeological objects. The Turin Shroud is an old linen fabric imprinted with the image of a man who lies prone with his hands crossed before him.

The big effort spent in studying the Turin Shroud has produced a huge amount of observations and features describing it. Unfortunately this knowledge is not well classified and structured, and it is frequently presented as ordered lists or tables of properties of the archaeological object.

This paper proposes a modeling approach borrowed from systems engineering and computer science, to be applied to the structuring of the Turin Shroud knowledge representation. The scope of the research modeling presented in the paper includes those features related to the image, but includes, although incompletely, other features as well.

The model shows the features allocated to the different parts of the object, giving a quick view of the Turin Shroud breadth of properties. Further organizing the features in this model makes it easier to identify inconsistent features, missing features and redundant features. The features model presented here may be a framework for adding the new features to be discovered in future observations and experiments of the Turin Shroud.

I very much like the way many features are not overstated. This takes discipline. For instance:

. . . Other experiments show that the shading of the TS image has a correlation with expected cloth-body distances as the shading produced by an unknown image formation mechanism actuating on a cloth draping over a body shape [6].

How much better is this than saying that the shading represents distance? For instance, I think it represents shape. It could be distance. But no one has ever shown me that it is, in fact, distance. The word “correlation” works for me.

I wonder, though, how can we get past the controversy and the presumptions about imaging or authenticity that some features imply? For instance:

No image under bloodstains. As the feature described previously this absence, that needs to be confirmed [21], suggests than the blood images where present on the cloth before the body image formation mechanism actuated on the TS cloth.

How do we call this a feature? System engineering principles are loath to accept ambiguity.

It is a great idea.  It will take a lot of work.

Picture for Today: 1973 Exhibition of the Shroud

January 29, 2015 2 comments
Categories: Uncategorized

Were Some Bloodstains Added Later or Maybe Retouched?

January 29, 2015 60 comments

imageColin Berry in part of a comment writes:

Twice now on this site I’ve reminded folk that any difficulty in seeing the TS body image from a distance would have been rendered less of a problem in public displays by the presence (or maybe deliberate addition) of blood stains and scourge marks. So while “over-flagellation” has been cited as evidence of a paying of lip service to prevailing artistic fashion it might equally well have been done to assist visibility, while not compromising the credibility that attaches to a faint body image per se deemed to be a genuine imprint of the body of Christ.

To which Thomas replies:

Nice theory re: blood Colin. I’ve said it before, I’ve got a feeling some, if not all the blood, was added. I still on balance believe the image is ‘authentic’. But not necessarily the blood. Or at least not all of it.

And Colin replies:

Thanks Thomas. It’s in fact quite instructive and possibly enlightening to put oneself in the position of a medieval monk who has been given the task of making a faint body imprint more visible from 50 yards,while (a) doing nothing that detracts from the ghostly body image and (b) can lend further credibility to a 33AD provenance consistent with or reinforcing the New Testament accounts of the torture and crucifixion..

Personally, I’d start with the major blood flows, and not worry too much about some of them seeming to trickle down the frontal hair, the important thing being to leave a signature of the crown of thorns (the latter not being imaged). I’d then add the scourge marks, making them as evenly spaced as possible, with minimal cross-crossing that looks untidy, and trying not to undo my major bloodstain handiwork work by mixing up or overlapping the two types. Forearms? There’s a lot of work gone into creating those intricate blood trails there, so don’t go and spoil it by adding some distracting scourge marks as well, bar the merest hint. I’d also be very careful to keep scourge marks clear of the area on the dorsal side where the viewer expects there to have been long hair reaching down to the shoulders, especially as the latter itself is poorly imaged. Maybe the colleague who did the body image to simulate a sweat imprint felt it best to give the merest hint of a hair imprint, hair tending to trap sweat, perhaps, as distinct from facilitating its passage from scalp to linen.

And BT from Connecticut, where the snow has finally stopped for awhile, writes in an email:

Dr. Berry’s theory is interesting and should be carefully considered. I am inclined to speculate that all or some of the bloodstains were originally there and remain so. I say this because it seems likely and it appears from a very limited sampling that some bloodstains may have blocked image formation. We can not rule out the possibility that well intentioned caretakers of the relic may have retouched the bloodstains. When you consider that the Holy Shroud may be 2000 years old and that it was unfurled before crowds and folded and unfolded countless times the idea of retouching bloodstains becomes plausible.

This is why we need to see the high definition images that church is withholding.

Source of above image:  a clipping from Haltadefinizione image at Sindone.org

Categories: Blood Studies Tags:

Is that another example of medieval herringbone linen?

January 28, 2015 8 comments

imageHat tip to Stephen Jones for finding this image


Yesterday, Stephen Jones published a photographic copy of possibly the only known example of a three over one herringbone twill weave from the mediaeval era. It is in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London (ref. no. 8615-1863).  It has been discussed in this blog but never shown that I can remember.

Stephen writes in his blog:

. . . medieval herringbone twill linen cloths are exceedingly rare, and in fact there is only one known example of a medieval herringbone twill linen weave: a fourteenth century, block-painted linen fragment with a 3:1 chevron (herringbone) twill weave, in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Further evidence of the extreme rarity of medieval linen with a Shroud-like herringbone twill weave, was the fact that the British Museum’s Dr. Michael Tite was unable to find any medieval linen with a weave that resembled the Shroud, to use as control samples for the 1988 radiocarbon dating. . . .

BUT:  To my way of thinking about history, only one known example does not necessarily mean rare. In fact, I’ve always thought only one known example implied other unknown examples.

The above image is stored in Stephen’s blog (I have stretched it a bit). Based on a citation to a site called the V&A Spelunker, I was able to trace down the image directly from the V&A museum’s online catalog. You can obtain that same image by clicking on the thumbnail image to the right.

The next step was to chase down the V&A image using Google’s powerful image searching facilities.  This brought me to a site by Maxim Sokokov in Russian.  Google translates it thus:

Medieval Heel XII-XV centuries.
Silk fabrics with pattern vytkanym were so expensive that for everyday use or church decoration often use cheaper analogue – linen fabric with printed motifs in the same style. The European Centre for the production of such textiles were Italy and Germany. Therefore, the majority of tissues in museum collections, which are difficult to attribute, and usually signed: "Italy (Germany?)." "Take a plank of walnut, pear or other very solid wood the size of a brick … pictures on this tablet should be painted and cut (in depth) of thick rope. On the tablets should be shown all kinds of pattern that you want, leaves or animals, but to do so they were drawn and cut so that the boards of all four parties were well suited to each other and in general formed a complete and coupled drawing … " From Cennino Cennini treatise "The book about the art or Treatise on Painting", approx. 1400.

On that website I spotted something. Or maybe it is just I think I see.  Is that another example of medieval herringbone twill linen? Three over one? Maybe just two over one! You decide. CLICK HERE. More thoughts?

image

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Humor for Today: The Shroud Authenticated By Antiques Roadshow

January 27, 2015 Leave a comment

imageThe spoof blog Vatican Enquirer posted Shroud Of Turin Authenticated By Antiques Roadshow. It begins:

THE VATICAN – The hosts of long-running TV series Antiques Roadshow from the United States, UK, and Canada teamed up at the request of Pope Francis and have determined that the Shroud of Turin was without a doubt Jesus Christ’s funereal blanket.

After hours of examining the tattered 8 cubits by 2 cubits piece of blood-stained linen, Mark Walberg (PBS), Fiona Bruce (BBC), and Valerie Pringle (CBC and heiress to the Pringle Chips empire) announced that the Shroud is legitimate and “could fetch upwards of $200 million (BPS 131, $204 CDN).”

And there was this at the end:

American reality TV show Pawn Stars was also asked by the Vatican to examine the Shroud but declined, saying their participation could put the legitimacy of the research in doubt.

“If it was in mint condition, I’d have been interested,” said Richard “Old Man” Harrison, star of the History Channel’s Pawn Stars. “But it’d be hard for us to sell when you can get a pretty realistic Shroud knock-off printed on a beach towel for around $99 with free overnight FedEx delivery.”

Categories: Humor

Picture for Today from the Sindone 2015 Facebook Page

January 27, 2015 1 comment

Tweet of the Day Out of Turin: Shroud is Message of Unity

January 26, 2015 3 comments
Categories: News & Views
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