Archive for the ‘Blood Studies’ Category

Bob Rucker: A Burst of Radiation Did Three Things

October 30, 2015 56 comments

Alas,  I could not find that Bob Rucker or his work was mentioned
anywhere in the Critical Summary.

clip_image001Bob Rucker (pictured) posted what follows as a comment last evening. I have added a link to a previous comment by Bob and some links to more information.

It is my opinion that enough evidence has accumulated that we should now realize that there was no invisible repair/reweave in the C14 sample area, and that the solution to the C14 dating problem is what I presented at the St. Louis conference in 2014. I showed that MCNP nuclear analysis calculations indicate that if 3.0 x 10^18 neutrons are emitted uniformly in the body while it was in the shroud in the tomb, then three mysteries related to C14 dating are solved:

1) Neutron absorption in N14 in the shroud creates new C14 in the shroud that is identical to the original C14 in the shroud so that the C14 date is shifted from 30 AD to 1260 AD. The dating laboratories, not realizing that the shroud had been through a neutron absorption event, would have misinterpreted their result by assuming the wrong C14 decay curve.

2) The results reported by the three dating laboratories were not in good agreement with each other. Statistical analysis indicates only a 5% chance that their results were within their measurement uncertainty, so that the differences were probably (95% probability?) caused by something. Plotting their results as a function of the distance from the end of the shroud indicates that there is a slope or gradient of 42 to 57 years per cm across their data depending on the sampling done in Tucson. This slope in the C14 dates from the three laboratories agrees with the MCNP nuclear analysis calculations, which calculate that a uniform neutron emission in the body causes a neutron distribution in the tomb which produces just this range in the C14 dates across the sample region, so that the disagreement between the laboratory values is the result of the slope of the neutron distribution at the sample location resulting from homogeneous emission of neutrons in the body.

image3) These same MCNP calculations predict that a piece of cloth placed on the side bench about a foot in front of the back bench where the body in the shroud was located would date to about 700 AD. This location in the tomb is a natural location for the person working on the body in the tomb to lay the face/head cloth. According to tradition, the Sudarium of Oviedo is the face/head cloth of Jesus. It was C14 dated to 700 AD, in excellent agreement with the MCNP results.

We should realize the importance of not making the common a priori presupposition of naturalism, so that we not automatically rule out anything that is beyond the laws of science as we currently understand them, so that we can follow the scientific evidence where it leads. When this is done, I believe that the scientific evidence indicates that the solution to the enigma of the shroud is that a burst of radiation occurred within the body that did three things: 1) It caused the image, perhaps either by protons or ultraviolet based on experiments. 2) It thrust the blood off of the body, heated it turning it into a liquid, and thrust it against and into the fibers of the shroud, and 3) It caused the shift in the C14 date from 30 to 1260 AD and the slope in the C14 dates as discussed above. Bob Rucker

I’ve noticed that as you age, you learn that when the morning coffee isn’t yet ready, the mind wanders somewhere between wakefulness and wackiness. Hey, I thought in this state, what does the Critical Summary have to say about this. Alas,  I could not find that Bob Rucker or his work was mentioned anywhere in the Critical Summary. Maybe it was just me. Maybe it was too early in the morning to find such stuff.  But then I did find this interesting paragraph on page 82:

Neutron Flux: In the same issue of Nature that reported the 1988 radiocarbon testing results there was an important letter to the editor. This letter rings out today with possibly more force than when It was first written. It causes one again to ponder and adopt a position of caution. The correspondence was with Thomas J. Phillips of the High Energy Physics Laboratory at Harvard University. Phillips suggested that the Shroud might be a fundamentally altered fabric with respect to its C-14 content due its possible witness to some unexplained event, possibly in the tomb of Jesus. He hypothesized that such an unexplained event, which itself cannot be the subject of scientific inquiry, may have had an effect on the Shroud that can be studied scientifically. The unknown event may have generated a flux of neutrons that could have skewed the C-14 / C-12 ratio of the linen doth…..

I met Bob in St. Louis. Nice guy. Undeniably brilliant. Maybe he is on to something. But I’m just not there yet in being able to accept this or any other hypothesis, at least when it comes to how the image was formed. To restate with a bit of on-the-fly-rewrting of what I’ve said before, I say …

With regard to the image I’m stuck in the “it is inexplicable” camp.

You don’t like that? Well then you can consider Bob Rucker’s radiation, John Jackson’s cloth falling through a mechanically transparent body whatever that means, Tipler’s sphaleron quantum tunneling, Giulio Fanti’s corona discharge, Paolo Di Lazzaro’s ultraviolet (with or without the cloth falling through the body, Rogers’ Maillard reactions (quite natural if it could work but requiring every bit as much of a miraculous manipulation to produce such an image as any of the other byproduct of a miracle hypotheses would), Charles Freeman’s it’s-not-a-fraud painting (if STURP and Colin Berry are wrong) and Colin Berry’s fraud-by-Maillard if everyone else is wrong (which is not unreasonable to suppose).  Or think of something else.

As for the C14 question, I’m also stuck in the “so far inexplicable” camp.

Here are some resources for understanding and thinking about Bob’s ideas.

Another Comment by Bob Rucker: Reaction to Ray Rogers’ Paper on Radiation

Abstract for the Following Paper

MCNP Analysis of Neutrons Released from Jesus’ Body in the Resurrection (54 Slides)

Notes for the 54 Slides

Video of the Presentation in St. Louis (1 Hour)

Was Jesus’ Body Washed?

October 11, 2015 45 comments

imageStephen Jones has just completed a lengthy, ten-installment posting (appearing in chunks over a one month period) that is part of a response to a reader named Daryl, who asks, "Wasn’t Jesus’ body washed before putting it in the grave?"

It is certainly worth taking the time to read since it illustrates how complicated that question can be.  Stephen lists three possible answers that may be held by those who are what he calls “pro-authenticists.”

1) A full washing of Jesus’ body and a later oozing of blood This was the position of the lateFrederick Zugibe (1928-2013), the Chief Medical Examiner of Rockland County, New York:

"The body unquestionably would have been covered with blood because the heart pumps about 4,500 gallons of blood through the more than 60,000 miles of large and small blood vessels throughout the whole body each day. Instead of the very exact imprints of the wounds, the Shroud would bear large indistinct masses of blood over the entire image, including the face, arms, hands, feet, and trunk."[2]

But then Zugibe has a problem. If Jesus’ body was fully washed, how does he account for the fact that there is still blood on the Shroud? Zugibe’s unconvincing and inconsistent answer is that after Jesus’ body was washed, blood that was still in the wounds then oozed out onto the Shroud…


2) An incomplete washing due to shortness of time, leaving some blood on the Shroud This is a possible pro-authenticist position on the washing of Jesus’ body, although I don’t know of anyone who has held it. But as we saw above, since there was insufficient time for the full Jewish burial rites (see below), Joseph and Nicodemus would have postponed the washing of Jesus’ body (if there was to be one – see future) until after the Sabbath. And, as we saw, the bloodstains and dirt on Jesus’ face were not washed, which surely they would have been, even in an incomplete washing. So this second possible pro- authenticist position on the washing of Jesus’ body is also refuted by the evidence.

3) No washing due to shortness of time and Jewish law This is, as I understand it, the majority position held by Shroud pro-authenticists.

I guess I am in the minority or maybe even the group of none ( make that now one). I just don’t buy arguments like “surely they [=the wounds on Jesus’ face] would have been,”  given that we know so little about what really happened, and why so, some 2000 years ago. Moreover, I do find Zugibe quiet convincing for the most part.

Categories: Blood Studies, Other Blogs

Oy vey! We’ve got a problem?

August 24, 2015 133 comments

imageA reader writes:

Greetings, Mr. Porter,

I just read your piece  [Pictures of the Day] … Standing room only for talk by Barrie Schwortz at Jalsa Salana United Kingdom yesterday….

I would like to give some input, and perhaps you’ll have some answers.  The question of how the images, on both the ventral and dorsal sides of the Shroud were made, is still considered a mystery.  By the way, I’m not a scientist.  But I do remember what "dorsal" and "ventral" mean." *:D big grin

I have what might be an answer.  But first, a tiny bit of background.  For a short while, I befriended Barry Schwortz, the photographer that was hired by STURP, in 1978, to photograph ever square centimeter of the Shroud.  When I say, "For a short while," I do not mean to suggest that Barry and I had any problems.  We did not.  In fact, we corresponded very well.  It’s just that we just happened to lose contact.

Anyway, you can check with him on the following, if he remembers.  Once, I asked him the following question: "Barry, has there ever been a test conducted, on the Santa Sindone, that would determine whether or not the blood on it was pre-mortem blood, or post-mortem blood."  He answered, "Well, I can’t answer that, but I am certain, of course, that they would have conducted such a test.  But, I’m going to be having lunch, in Turin, with Dr. Adler, and I’ll ask him."

So, he did have lunch with Dr. Adler, in Turin.  Eventually, he got back to me, through email, and said that he was very surprised at Dr. Adler’s response.  Dr. Adler told him that, no, no such test had ever been performed on the Shroud.  That is very hard to believe.  And Barry was as surprised, of course, as I was.  But, this was coming from the horse’s mouth, so to speak–Dr. Adler, a prime and important member of the STURP team.  There would be no reason that he would state that no such test had been performed, if that had not been the case.

How did I know to ask such a question?  Hey, just thinking, that’s all; wondering.  I barely knew if there was any such thing as "post mortem" blood, but the thought came to me, so I pushed it forward.

Now, I am aware that, in the literature, one reads, for example phrases like, "The pre-mortem and post-mortem blood on the Shroud…" and one assumes that, since the statement was made, matter-of-factly, that tests were actually done.  But, were they?  Or has it just been assumed, all these years since STURP, that post-mortem blood exists on the Shroud?

I am aware, because I read his book, that Dr. Heller proved, beyond any doubt whatsoever, that the stains on the Shroud are blood stains.  I was just looking for that book, in my library, but I can’t find it.  I might have made the mistake of loaning it out to someone.  Anyway, I do not recall Dr. Heller, in that book, saying a single word about post-mortem blood.

Now to the point.  And this is a point that would be very uncomfortable for those who believe in the doctrine of Christianity.  But, if we’re talking about science, and following where the science goes, and what it reveals, then we cannot allow doctrines to interfere with science…Can we?

Now if, indeed, no post-mortem blood exists on the Shroud, and it has simply been assumed, by the scientists, including Heller, that the Shroud contains post-mortem blood [Hang with me, here!!], then would our conclusions regarding the scientific results of studies on the Shroud change?

If STURP began its scientific studies with the idea that "The Man of the Shroud," as he is sometimes called, was dead when the Shroud was draped over him, might that affect how STURP interpreted scientific results?

So, now I’ll get to the point: If we assume that "The Man of the Shroud" was not dead, but was merely unconscious; that is, that he did not die as a result of his ordeal; and if we assume, as a consequence of that first assumption, that the only blood stains on the Shroud are pre-mortem blood stains, might we then be able to explain how the images were made on both sides of the Shroud?

I’m not a scientist, as I said before.  But I do know one thing: Dead people and live people are…ahem…different.  Dead folks do not breath.  Dead folks, that I know of, do not emit uric acid from their skins [except maybe for a while after death??].  Dead folks do not sweat.  Dead folks do not produce heat [Well, maybe they do, but I don’t think so].  The oxygen, in the air, that interacts with the skin of dead folks, interacts differently [doesn’t it??] than oxygen that interacts with the skin of live folks.

You may be aware that a new study has concluded that oils were on the Shroud [I can send you that if you’re interested, although you might know of this study], contrary to what was concluded by STURP.  And those oils were burned off in 1532, at the fire, which is why STURP found no oil residue.

Now, if we assume that the Biblical account is true, and that Nicodemus brought "100 pounds" of aloe and myrrh to the burial site; and if we further assume that those substances were administered to "Jesus," not because he was dead, but because he was alive; and if we further assume that the substances were administered for the purpose of healing his wounds, then might we also have to re-visit the scientific studies, to determine:

1. What was the effect of those substances on the Shroud?

2. What was the effect of the interaction of those substances with the uric acid, sweat, and heat that "Jesus’" alive body was producing?

Could anything had been burnt, within the open and airy tomb, that would have helped the healing–some kind of ancient, medical practice?  And if some healing substance was burnt, would the smoke from the substance have added to the combination of sweat, uric acid, heat, and oxygen that, together, could somehow have created the images on the Shroud?

Years ago, I contacted the Shema Israel International Burial Society, and I asked them the following question.  Was the application of aloes and myrrh a part of ancient, Jewish burial practices?  Answer?  No.  You can ask them yourselves.  Just Google.  They told me, in email, that no such practice existed, amongst Jews of that time, as part of the burial ritual of a human body.  So, why would Nicodemus have taken "100 pounds" of aloes and myrrh there?  Perhaps for the purpose of healing "Jesus’" body, since both of those substances are healing substances.

I hope you get my point.  By the way, I have been told that the test that determines post or pre-mortem blood is called the gas chromotography test.  If that is true, then it would be interesting to find out of that test was performed.

Now, I have one more thing to say, and this is a bit uncomfortable.  Could any of the STURP scientists have been influenced by religious doctrine, thus drawing conclusions about the scientific results that were skewed because of the influence of those doctrines?  Drawing the conclusion, for instance, that there exists post-mortem blood stains on the Shroud?

I was highly disturbed when I read this statement by Dr. D’Muhala, one of the STURP team members:

Where Do We Go From Here?

Editor’s Note: Tom D’Muhala was a founding member of STURP and was President of the organization from 1978 to 1996.

View on Preview by Yahoo

That is VERY disturbing.  You will see what I’m referring to, if you read all of it.

One more thing, and you can verify this with Barry Schwortz.  Barry told me that, when they first entered the room where the Shroud was, in order to begin their scientific study, a couple of the scientists were wearing crucifixes.  Barry, without hesitating, pointed out to them that this was highly inappropriate, and that if it ever got leaked to the news media that members of the STURP team of scientists were performing their scientific studies on the Shroud, while wearing a visible sign of belief in a religious doctrine, then if STURP concluded that the Shroud was genuine, critics, cynics, atheists, and just the general public would believe that the results were not credible.

Am I suggesting that there has been some hanky-panky?  I have no idea.  And I have no way to prove that any of the STURP scientists were operating in any way that was not at the highest professional level.  But, STURP people are just that–people.

Could the STURP team have discovered that there exists only pre-mortem blood on the Shroud?  And then, fully understanding the ramifications of 2 billion Christians potentially being informed that Jesus Christ did not die on the cross "for the sins of the world," but survived that ordeal [as did happen, by the way, sometimes, as is recorded by the Jewish historian of that time, Flavius Josephus]?

This sounds like a suspense novel, I know.  But, I can easily imagine that, in the wee hours of the night, while the STURP team was diligently studying the Santa Sindone, one of them looked up at the others, and said, "Oy vey!!  We’ve got a problem.  It’s clear that whoever this cloth covered was very much alive.  There is no sign of death on this cloth."

I can very well imagine a discussion–a deep discussion taking place as to whether or not their findings should be revealed.  Recall the beginning of Dr. Heller’s book, in which he stated that when he was first asked to be on the STURP team, his first thought was that he did not wish to be involved with something that could turn out to be controversial, since it involved the most important religious figure in human history, Jesus Christ.

But, what attracted Heller was the science.  So, he agreed.

Well, I apologize to have taken so much of your time (assuming that you read this entire note).  Of course, it may be that post-mortem blood does exist on the Shroud, and that that fact was scientifically proven.  But, in truth, I have my doubts.

Thank you for your email. My friend Helmut Felzmann likes to remind me that forensic experts in Spain, Great Britain and Germany agree with him that Jesus survived crucifixion and recovered from his wounds. Perhaps he will join the discussion as he has in the past on this blog. Helmut has a website at

I must draw your attention to comments by Hugh Farey in Have we all been looking in the wrong place?

You might also refer to these prior postings in this blog:

History Remembered: The First International Conference on the Deliverance of Jesus Christ from the Cross

Did Jesus Survive the Crucifixion?

You might try: for more postings.

Again, thanks for your email. Oh, bye-the-way, I cannot imagine a discussion like the one you imagine. I think it is simple conspiracy theory. Sorry, but that is what I think.

Categories: Blood Studies

Colin Berry is not Seeing Red

May 27, 2015 55 comments

Berry: Where did the story of the too-red blood originate?  Answer: from Adler and Heller

imageYou may have noted a comment by Charles Freeman. 

Well, we just have to disagree on the reality of the human blood. I am an independent scholar, formerly a Senior Examiner of the International Baccalaureate;s critical thinking programme, Theory of Knowledge, and thus used to looking at evidence or asking those who know.

I had the Heller/Adler papers read by a professor emeritus of physiology who said that their claims that this was blood were totally unconvincing. I show the bloodstains to any forensic expert i can find and they all say they have never seen dried blood that red.

So I am not working on the understanding that this is blood.

Why can’t the STURP tests be replicated 37 years on? Have they lost the tapes???

Caption:  Robert Downey Jr. telling Charles Freeman that everything looks too red.

Will we ever learn the name of any of Charles’ many experts du jour. But that isn’t the point.  The point is that Charles is playing the blood-is-too-red card, perhaps too carelessly, something that Colin Berry in one of his overly long, topic-drift postings picked up on. In fact, Colin, is challenging the very notion that the blood is too red.

Let’s see some of what he has to say by clicking in and scrolling down until you spot Charles Freeman’s name for the fourth time:

Er, which photograph(s) of the TS show the blood as "too red"? How come after 3 years of looking at TS photographs, I have yet to see them?

It can’t be the 1931 Enrie photographs, since they are B/W. It can’t be the 2002 Durante pictures, at least those that appear on Mario Latendresse’s Shroud Scope, since the colour of the blood in those  pictures is scarcely distinguishable from the body image, the entire look being a dull plum.

Durante 2002 (from Shroud Scope): blood too red?

(The first thing I do with Shroud Scope pictures is put then into MS Office Picture Manager and adjust brightness/contrast/midtone from 0,0,0 to -7/100/15 in order to get the blood looking redder). So which photos are Charles Freeman showing to his buttonholed experts? Maybe those Halta pictures on the iPad app, recently described (aptly methinks) as mere toys?

Blood too red? …

Or maybe the BBC’s earlier release in 2008 of Halta pictures that do show a rosy hue in places where it’s not expected, but in prominent areas of body image, not blood especially.

Halta image from BBC site (2008). Some pink coloration – but it’s mainly in the beard and other body-image locations.

Finally, let’s not forget the Turin custodians’ own site with a selection of TS views, essentially the same it would appear as those on Shroud Scope.No, the bloodstains do not look too red. Indeed, they do not look red at all.

Where did the story of the too-red blood originate?  Answer: from Adler and Heller, who said in writing the blood was too red, the porphyrin spectrum was atypical, and thus was born the "trauma bilirubin/acid methemoglobin" claim, …

Barrie M.Schwortz has been responsible over the years for proselytising the "blood abnormally red" description, and his admiration for Alan Adler’s pro-authenticity narrative-friendly bilirubin explanation. …

Misleading impression of ‘redness’ created by high magnification/strong illumination? RGB reference standards for comparison? Might the colours also have been digitally adjusted in a manner that accentuated redness?

That still leaves unanswered the question as to which photograph Charles Freeman showed to his forensic experts or emeritus professor of physiology. I shan’t bother asking him directly. I’ve wasted too much time already – putting innumerable points and questions to someone who persistently displays a blissful indifference to the hard facts – and getting back nothing useful in return.

Remember the fun days?  Anyone remember Let’s Talk Red Blood: Bilirubin, Saponaria officinalis and UV?  All those other people believing the blood is too red.  Colin wasn’t questioning it then, was he?

Fascinating Video from Dave Hines

May 26, 2015 35 comments

Link =

He writes in YouTube:

This part 1 series of 3 videos goes into how Jesus was buried 1st. Blood stains 1st. We cannot talk about the image formation until we 1st address the blood stains and other aspects of the image that are result of body to cloth contact.

Shroud image is the result of both body to cloth contact and another aspect of the Shroud image is a non contact image.

I want to make it clear I am not proposing that the Shroud image is a contact image only.
We will get into the discussion of what aspect of the Shroud is a non contact image in Part 2 of this series.

In the 2nd video will show how the myrrh resin applied to the cloth will convert the linen into a holographic film plate.

We will demonstrate live on film a laser beam bounced off the figure and then diffracted and the interference pattern recorded on the linen.

Part of the Shroud Image is in fact a hologram.

We will prove that beyond any reasonable doubt.

This is not just a theory I am proposing but you are going to see a up close and personal genuine demonstrated reality in front of your own eyes. "seeing is believing" and you are going to see.

Maybe for the 1st time in your entire life.

One of our goals in this video is to silence the voice of the skeptic once and for all. When we are done there will not be a single witness left to testify against Jesus of Nazareth.

The Man in the Shroud/Jesus is going to get the fair trail he did not get back in 1st Century. This time he is going to be set free along with the viewer. Permanent freedom from the spirit of fear. Spirit of joy will replace it. No one should have to live with a sick spirit of fear. We are setting out to free people of it, so they can have a chance of having a genuine, successful and happy life.

Shroud of Turin is a witnessing tool only so that one may "come to believe in a power greater then themselves that can restore the normal function of the mind and body.

One of the greatest sensations in the world that people spend millions of dollars to experience is freedom. It is positively exhilarating and spirit uplifting. You can have that sensation for free.

The truth revealed in this series of videos, will set you permanently free and it will not cost you one penny to do so, in accordance with the will of the Spirit of God. Spirit of God is not a paper and coin chaser and does not need to know your credit card number or access to your bank account.

He simply does not care how much money you have. It is something else the Spirit of God seeks from you. We suggest sending him a "knee mail" message to figure out what that is exactly.

New Garlaschelli and Borrini Study

April 11, 2015 117 comments

imageThere is a new study out by Matteo Borrini, professor of forensic anthropology at John Moores University in Liverpool (UK), and Luigi Garlaschelli University of Pavia, that argues against the authenticity of the shroud. The following is a Google translation from Italian of a UAAR (Union Atheists Agnostics and Rationalists) press release posted in the A Good Reason blog by the UAAR and reposted in AgoraVox:

Press Release:  Shroud: new studies call into question the authenticity: 

imageThe imprint of the body on the Shroud does not match that of a condemned posted in a location similar to the classical representations of the crucifixion. And not even that of a bloody body lying in the tomb.

These are the findings of new studies by Matteo Borrini, professor of forensic anthropology, now at John Moores University in Liverpool (UK), and Luigi Garlaschelli University of Pavia, that for this research has obtained a contribution of the AU.

The work, presented by Borrini at the Conference of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences in Orlando (USA), confirms the findings already last year by a similar study of the two teachers.

As known, the image of the Shroud of Turin are visible, in addition to the faint image of a body, even trace amounts of (alleged) blood resulting from the wounds of passion on his forehead and neck, on the chest, on the feet, and finally on the back of one hand and on the front of the forearms, from wrist to elbow.

The scope of work of Borrini and Garlaschelli was to verify – using forensic techniques of BPA (Bloodstain Pattern Analysis – analysis of the shape of the blood stains) – what should be the posture of a human body so that the rivulets of blood you have as it appears on the footprint human in the Shroud of Turin.

A thin cannula for transfusion, connected to a bag of blood, was applied to the dorsum of the left hand of a volunteer in three different positions of possible leakage of the nail, in agreement with the most common assumptions about the exact anatomical location of the wound as it follows from the Shroud.

In previous studies, the forearm was kept at different inclinations with the aid of a goniometer ballistic – 0 °, the horizontal arm, 90 °, vertical arm – and a modest amount of blood had been made on the back of the hand casting and along the forearm.

All tests had shown that in order that the stream of blood flowing on the outside of the forearm, as visible on the shroud, the angle of the arm itself must be greater than 80 ° and less than 90 °, and then placing it in a position almost, but not totally vertical.

The new tests now conducted have considered other aspects:

  1. The arms were always placed vertically, even with hands over his head, to play the position assumed if the condemned had been crucified in a single vertical pole.
  2. To simulate the hypothesis that the bleeding had occurred (perhaps by a body washed) after death, blood was dripped from the back of the hand of a volunteer lying with his hands on the pubis in the same position of the Man of the Shroud ( both legs stretched that flexed). In none of these tests has achieved a performance of rivulets similar to that seen on the Shroud.
  3. Scholars have finally run a BPA for the wound to the right side. A sponge (of the same size of the alleged injury readable on the shroud) soaked synthetic blood was pressed through a special grip on the torso of a mannequin standing. The trend trickles result in this case is vertical, consistent with that from image front of the Shroud of Turin. However doing the bleeding experimental with dummy lying (for groped to reproduce leaking from image ridge of the Shroud, which also derives from the wound to the chest for bleeding post-mortal), the result was quite different.

Taken together the results of these tests are therefore not consistent with the general trend of the rivulets of blood on the Shroud of Turin and seem to refuse to testify in favor of their authenticity, but rather in an artistic or didactic.

Link to postings about the previous studies by Borrini and Garlaschelli .

Were Some Bloodstains Added Later or Maybe Retouched?

January 29, 2015 200 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

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