the key problem is survival
Charles Freeman writes in a comment:
As 99.9999 per cent or more of ancient textiles ( and these included all clothing) are lost, it is hard to say anything more than that the Shroud, if it is indeed first century, is a unique SURVIVAL. I am more interested in knowing about the looms ,ancient or medieval, that could have produced it and I am aware that this is a highly specialist area and I would defer to expert opinion.
Still there is much basic work to be done. Contrary to what Ian Wilson tells us ,the Shroud is not a particularly fine linen cloth. Examples of linen with 40 to 70 warp and weft threads per cm are known from Egypt, Palestine and Syria in this period, much greater quality than the Shroud. (See the good article on weaving in the ancient eastern Mediterranean in the Cambridge History of Western textiles ( p, 110 for the figures).
Again if one looks at examples such as the Ramesses Girdle, now in Liverpool, of c. 1200 BC, which, even with computer help, has proved almost impossible to reweave, the Shroud is not especially complicated.
So when one says that the Shroud is unique, it does not mean that one should say it is something special as a cloth so long as much finer and more complicated cloths from the ancient Mediterranean are known to exist.
For me, the key problem is survival. Although I believe that the Shroud is medieval, if a first century date does come up on a radiocarbon redating, I would assume that it was kept somewhere among the large and vibrant early Christian communities of Egypt where the damp would not have got at it. I am frustrated by the way so-called Shroud researchers are not prepared to look outside the Edessa/Constantinople route, when there are so many alternatives to it to explore. The Shroud would not have survived long cooped up in a brick wall in damp (even subject to flooding) Edessa!!
this is, of course, what we do best: answer questions
Kenneth K. Vernor writes:
I am a new student in the shroud world, but I am about 98% convinced it is legitimate.
I am interested in studying the scourging in depth. Mostly, I would like to read accounts of HOW the Romans scourged.
So far I have come across these methods:
The two most common seem to be tied with His hands above His head facing a column or a small post and tied to a low post. The third one is suspension by His hands with 100 lbs of weight tied to the feet. And I found one reference that mentions being tied between two columns.
In all instances He was naked.
I have also read accounts where salt was applied to the wounds. In another salt water was dumped on Him if He passed out.
I have read two well researched papers on scourging (Scourge bloodstains on the Turin Shroud: an evidence for different instruments used by Barbara Faccini, New Image Processing of the Turin Shroud Scourge Marks by Barbara Faccini and Giulio Fanti) that differs from Zugibe’s book. While Zugibe wrote a great book, I do believe he missed the boat on the scourging. He thought the Romans did the Jewish thing and limited the beating to 40 strokes. I do not know why he would think that. They didn’t follow other Jewish rules like where to administer the strokes. Plus, I am confident the Man of the shroud had well over 40 strokes. (Zugibe counted over 100 and using a three thonged flagrum, that would fit in his window. However, I would assume the Body had many more scourge marks that are not imaged on the shroud; on the sides and under the arms. Faccini counted 196 flagrum marks with a total of 372 including all the marks.)
At any rate, these two papers show scourge marks across the middle of the chest. I would think this may point to the suspension method. (with another type of whip also being used) Acts 22:25 seems to also support this method. What do you think?
Can you point me to some information on Roman scourging? I think I have searched the web thoroughly.
I have also been in contact with Barrie Schwortz. He has been great.
Thank you for your time.
Picture: Peter Paul Rubens, Flagellation of Christ, Antwerp, Church of St. Paul. ca. A.D. 1616. Source: Wikimedia (Wikipedia), hot linked with permissions.
The video and Facebook entries previously referred to in this posting have been removed from the Internet. Those things happen.
There is no point in providing links that won’t work so they have been removed.
The topic is important and so are your comments, which remain with this posting. Discussions may continue.
Here is a posting that provides some information on the topic: Will the Alfred Rosenberg Diaries Tell Us Anything?
Paul Maier is retired professor of ancient history at Western Michigan University. He also attended Concordia Seminary in St. Louis. I’m not sure when the talk was actually given, but it was put on Youtube on 5/11/13.
Maier is very entertaining. He once wrote an historical novel in which the Shroud was mentioned as having been proven a fake. I started corresponding with him and he used to receive my print newsletter and also my email bulletins.
Since he was discussing archaeological evidence for the existence of Jesus, I thought he might mention the Shroud or I thought someone would bring it up in the Q & A. Neither happened. Granted, the Shroud isn’t "new," but I would have thought it was worth a mention.
He did mention several interesting things not directly related to the Shroud. Regarding the date of the crucifixion, he mentions 2 things. He said that Josephus wrote that James the Just was murdered 29 years after Jesus’ death. Everyone gives the date of James’ death as 62, so that would put the crucifixion in AD 33. He also said that a Greek writer named Phlegon recounted a darkness at noon and an earthquake in Nicea in the 4th month of the 4th year of the 202nd Olympiad, which Maier says matches to April, 33 AD.
He also said that the Jordan River Excavations show that the Strata from 33 AD indicates there was an earthquake disruption. I’m not sure how you get a Strata for a specific year.
The whole thing is about 1 1/2 hours but it’s very informative and very entertaining.
Click on the image for a larger version
I have run across something interesting and am trying to determine if it has significance. From the 3rd to the 9th centuries it was apparently common in Byzantine iconography for the outer garments, especially representing people with high authority, to be marked with a stylized "L" called a "Gammadia". No one seems to know what the origin is but is it possible it is derived from the L-shaped pattern of burns on the Shroud? These holes when seen on the Lierre copy are very pronounced and for centuries, until the 1532 fire would have been the most obvious marking on the cloth. Was it picked up and turned into a symbol for ancient iconographers? Would some of your participants like to investigate this further? Here is an example from Ravenna:
I have not seen this video before: Thomas de Wesselow discussing his theory that the Shroud of Turin provides an explanation as to why the first Christians came to believe in the Resurrection. It is an IdeaCity series page at Hulu.com. The video was made on June 18, 2012 and just published yesterday at DailyMotion. It runs 22 minutes.
Rice Professor writes:
Here are some possibly useful links. These links contain the picture in question. Plan to use Google translate unless you are brilliant. I think this is a picture of the shroud.