The Sudarium provides strong, independent evidence for the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin. If the Shroud is a fake, then the Sudarium must also be so. This makes the job of any potential forger close to impossible. The two cloths authenticate and validate each other and together they provide a strong case for being the original burial cloths of Jesus.
— Arif Khan
The current issue of The Review of Religions, an international magazine published by the Ahmadiyya Muslim community, carries an article by Arif Khan, The Sudarium of Oviedo and the Shroud of Turin. The Review is an international magazine published by the Ahmadiyya Muslim community. It has been in print since 1902. The current cover of the print edition is pictured.
Here is what the article says about the carbon dating of the shroud:
Section 3 – Dating the Shroud & the Sudarium
The fact that the Shroud and the Sudarium were together at one time not only authenticates the Sudarium but also crucially proves the authenticity of the Shroud itself.
Ever since the carbon dating results hit the world’s media on October 13, 1988, stating the Shroud dated from 1260 – 1390 CE, there has been a major debate concerning the Shroud’s age.
Several scholars have written about why the carbon dating result for the Shroud is incorrect, the most convincing being by Raymond Rogers. He argues that it is possible that it dated from the 1st Century.
The link between the Sudarium and the Shroud however, casts major doubt over the accuracy of the carbon dating result. The Sudarium is known to have existed hundreds of years prior to the 1260 – 1390 dating result attributed to the Shroud. There is documented evidence, surviving to this day in the Capitular Archives of the cathedral in Oviedo, of the Sudarium being seen by King Alfonso VI and several others on March 14, 1075. The ark containing the cloth was officially opened on this day, and the event recorded. Even in 1075, it is stated that the ark had been in the church for a long time.
References to a Sudarium exist from as early as the Gospels themselves, but proving the Sudarium of Oviedo was the same Sudarium is difficult. The existence of the cloth in 1075, however, is something attested to and officially recorded.
Given the proof that the Sudarium and the Shroud covered the same body, and the proof that the Sudarium was definitely in existence in 1075, the carbon dating results of the Shroud of Turin have again been thrown in to doubt.
Despite this strong evidence, it is not possible to definitively prove that both the Sudarium and the Shroud of Turin dated from the 1st Century. However, it is possible to conclude that given the proven connection between the cloths, the carbon dating result for the Shroud of Turin is incorrect.
Once the carbon dating result for the Shroud is discarded, the case for the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin outweighs claims that it is some form of fake. The strong similarities between the Sudarium and the Shroud, mean the Sudarium now has a high probability of also being authentic.
BUT, BUT, BUT: Here is a part of the article many of this blog’s readership will find uncomfortable:
A key reason for this magazine taking an interest in the Shroud of Turin is that several scholars have argued it proves Jesusas survived the crucifixion, thus validating the belief and teaching of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas. There are Shroud researchers who have reached this exact same conclusion based upon their study of the Shroud of Turin. Those that have argued this viewpoint draw attention to the large amounts of blood on the Shroud, and highlight that it would take an active heart to produce this. Others have stated that for an even formation of the image, the body would need to have been at a constant temperature, again requiring a living body. However, the scholars that hold this view concerning the Shroud are in a minority, and this is un-surprising given that it is a Catholic relic and the vast majority of those who have taken an interest in researching it come from a Christian background. Does the Sudarium shed any light on the question of Jesusas surviving the crucifixion?
The endnote 21, above, is a link address to another article by Arif Khan published in 2010 in the same magazine. Therein we find him writing about Holger Kersten and Elmar Gruber’s, “The Jesus Conspiracy” and Christopher Knight and Robert Lomas’, “The Second Messiah.”
Just yesterday, while unaware of this article, I invited Helmut Felzmann from the Shroud Science Group to write a guest posting. Dr. Felzmann, whose religious perspective is very different, believes that the shroud demonstrates that Jesus survived the crucifixion. I warned him that this is a tough crowd. (Did I say I think the idea is very difficult to accept? Anyway, I want my friend Helmut to have a chance to make his case. Call me biased and balanced, I guess.)
So what do you think? Any chance that Jesus survived the cross?
If new carbon 14 tests show similar results the Jacksons and Fantis of Sindone World will be doing a lot of telling us that radiation from the resurrection changed the date. There will be new explanations. Look at what happened between 1988 and 2015. The Turin Shroud is more real today than it was 25 years ago.
I was checking out some of the videos and stories related to the opening of the exhibition. In one video, Archbishop Nosiglia said the church is not against new testing. One of the new articles quoted Pope John Paul II in 1998 saying continued research should be done. I think researchers have done their part in continuing research but one can only do so much with the 1978 data. I know the Pope has a lot of things on his plate but if Popes and Archbishops are giving lip service to research/new testing, he really needs to reevaluate the role of the Shroud in the church. If new testing did not disprove the authenticity, it could bring a lot more people to Christianity. There have been expositions in 1998, 2000, 2010 and the current one. A tremendous amount of time, energy and money have been spent in each of those. It would have been nice if some of that time, energy and money could have been put in another multi-disciplinary study. We now have Barberis saying another C-14 test should be done. As we saw at the St. Louis conference, there is a lot of debate among researchers whether it should be done. If it is done, a lot would obviously depend on the background study and the various entities involved in the testing. Heaven forbid if it would be anything like the 88 testing.
In referring to Barberis, Joe is, I think, referring to SHROUD: TRACES OF BLOOD FROM THE "CARBON-14": WHAT DOES SCIENCE SAY, a Google Translation of an article, SINDONE, DALLE TRACCE EMATICHE AL "CARBONIO-14": COSA DICE LA SCIENZA in Famiglia Cristiana.
I favor retesting. Bill Meacham (The Rape of the Shroud) continues to advocate for it. Some people believe that the shroud cannot be tested accurately and oppose such testing. One reason: they think that a resurrection miracle changed the ratio of carbon 14 to carbon 12. Maybe. But how do you test for that?
A reader writes:
Did Hugh Farey not just drop a bunker buster on the Quad Mosaics when he wrote [in a comment], “These studies are in fact largely ignored by authenticists, in that they are assumed correct and quoted as gospel without any reference to what they actually say. Non-authenticists, on the other hand, have studied them in considerable detail, such that we can say with authority that any contamination of the radiocarbon corner of the shroud made it appear older, not younger, than it really is […].”
If Rogers misread the Quad Mosaics, now what?
I think Hugh may be paradoxically right!
(link and ellipsis above added by me)
Hugh has since added the following in a clarifying comment:
Claim: “We can say with authority than any contamination of the radiocarbon corner of the shroud made it appear older, not younger, than it really is.” This is based on John M. Morgan III’s paper ‘Digital image processing techniques demonstrating the anomalous nature of the radiocarbon dating sample area of the Shroud of Turin’ at http://www.academicjournals.org/article/article1380798975_Morgan.pdf, where he shows that the radiocarbon samples are increasingly contaminated the closer they are to the corner, and on Ray Schneider’s St Louis paper, ‘Dating The Shroud Of Turin: Weighing All The Evidence’ at http://www.shroud.com/pdfs/stlschneiderpaper.pdf, where he shows a 99.93% correlation between the radiocarbon dates and the UV-fluorescence.
I don’t know what paradoxically right means. However, Hugh is non-paradoxically right, at least as it applies to this blogger: I did assume that what I was being told about the Blue Quad Mosaics was correct. I didn’t think about it at all. Now I’m not going to make the same mistake and assume Hugh is right. I’m a layman. I’ve read the Morgan paper and I listened to Ray in St. Louis. Now I need to have it explained to me. I’m totally confused. No paradox there.
I recommend a paper by Barrie Schwortz: SOME DETAILS ABOUT THE STURP QUAD MOSAIC IMAGES
And I also recommend an earlier posting in this blog: Comment Promoted: Are the Quad Mosaics Meaningless?
There is no new news in James D. Tabor’s posting in the Huffington Post blog two days ago. CNN provided the cover for repetition:
CNN focused on the question of the authenticity of the controversial "Shroud of Turin," in the first episode of its new pre-Easter series "Finding Jesus." Those challenging the authenticity of this ancient relic point to carbon dating tests done at three independent labs in 1988 that dated samples of its cloth to AD 1260-1390, which coincides with the first appearance of the shroud in France in the 1350s. Believers in the shroud’s authenticity have questioned the authenticity of the tests.
What many do not know is that we do in fact have an unquestionably authentic burial shroud from a tomb in Jerusalem that has been carbon dated to the 1st century. Any consideration of the "Shroud of Turin" should begin with a comparison of what we know rather than what we might want to believe.
The tomb of which he speaks is the tomb that Tabor and Shimon Gibson found in June of 2000.
…Textile analysis was done on the cloth–it turned out to be a mixture of linen and wool, not woven together but layered with a separate head piece. It had a distinctive 1st century weave–in contrast to the Shroud of Turin….
And then . . .
The Tomb of the Shroud continues to offer more surprises. We recently noticed that the mitDNA tests of two of the individuals in this tomb match the polymorphisms of two individuals in the Jesus family tomb–namely skeletal materials taken from both the Yeshua and the Mariamene ossuaries. What the implications of this might be, and whether there is any possible relationship between these two families, remains to be explored.
Hat tip to Joe Marino for spotting the posting.
One may find argument with historical evidence of the shroud’s existence before Lirey. But to say there is no evidence is to be …, well, in my opinion, like the nut jobs who go about saying there is no evidence that Jesus ever existed.
John Klotz, in a MUST READ essay, CNN’s Finding Jesus loses Him, makes it abundantly clear. By page 7 John is writing:
There is more: an eyewitness account of exhibitions of a linen shroud that is more than arguably the Shroud of Turin. The witness was a French knight who participated in a siege of Constantinople during the Fourth Crusade which ended with the "Christian" knights looting Constantinople and stripping it of all its cherished relics that could be carried away. Among them was the linen cloth that was the Shroud of Turin.
This is how Gibson and McKinley described it their book Finding Jesus:
"In 1203, a Flemish knight named Robert de Clari, fighting with the Fourth Crusade then camped in Constantinople, noted that a church within the city’s Blachernae Palace put on a very special exhibition every Friday. On display wasn’t just the holy image of the face of Jesus, but the actual cloth in which Christ had been buried. In 1205 de Clari composed a more detailed account: ‘There was a Church which was call[ed] My Lady Saint Mary of Blachernae, where there was the shroud (syndoines) in which Our Lord had been wrapped, which every Friday, raised itself upright so that one could see the form (figure) of Our Lord on it, and no one either Greek or French, ever knew what became of this shroud (syndoines) when the city was taken [by the Crusaders].’" 10
What happened to the Shroud after Constantinople was looted by the French? Wilson has favored the idea that it came into possession of the Order of the Knights Templar in France. The Order was suppressed in 1307 by French King Philip the Fair. On March 19, 1314, its Grandmaster, Jacques deMolay along with the Order’s Master of Normandy Geoffrey de Charny were burned at the stake.11 That Geoffrey may have been related to the Geoffrey de Charny who was the documented owner of the Shroud in 1355.
However, Gibson and McKinley echo another view that has achieved some currency. One of the French knights who participated in the sack of Constantinople was Orthon de la Roche who performed outstanding service and was named the Lord of Athens. He later returned to France. Jeanne de Vergy was a descendant of Orthon. She became the second wife of the 1355 "owner" of the Shroud Geoffrey de Charny. Gibson and McKinley hypothesize that the Shroud was a part of her dowry when she married Geoffrey12
This is not a complete recitation of the reported history of the Shroud prior to 1532. When Professor Goodacre baldy states that there is NO evidence of the Shroud’s history before Lirey, he is simply wrong.
The KO is in the next paragraph:
In my opinion that is not his most egregious error. Perhaps it’s excusable as only his opinion. However, his statement that the critics of the carbon dating were engaged in special pleading is not just wrong but, in my opinion, reprehensible.
Some of us who are not, like John, skilled lawyers, need to remind ourselves what a special pleading is – to pull out that old definition from behind mind’s cobwebs. According to Wikipedia (I’m not a scholar, either) it is “a form of fallacious argument that involves an attempt to cite something as an exception to a generally accepted rule, principle, etc. without justifying the exception.”
I share your opinion, John. It is reprehensible.
Note: The photograph, by an unknown photographer, is of Ingemar Johansson knocking out Floyd Patterson and becoming the boxing heavyweight world champion in 1959 is a press photograph taken before 1969 and is therefore in the public domain (Wikimedia Commons)
Has anyone offered a rebuttal of Dr. Jackson’s refutation of the reweaving theory? Or do all the authenticists just ignore it, as Charles Freeman says.
What say you all?