Bent Spoon Article on the Shroud of Turin

imageThe opening paragraph of a five page article on the Shroud of Turin in The Bent Spoon online magazine shows how little the author knows about the subject:

To believe that the Shroud of Turin was the burial cloth of Jesus, you must accept that no one knew of its existence until 1353. Before that time, there is simply no record of the Shroud existing. No talk of a miraculous linen bearing the image of Christ’s crucified body, no record of an archaeological excavation uncovering it. Nothing. It was either the best kept secret in history, or something very strange was going on.

Except, that is, for the many references to such items.

imageBTW: It seems impossible from this magazine to figure out the name of the author for an article. They list the names of contributing authors without pictures in one place and provide a photograph of the author at the beginning of each article. So the author, pictured here, after telling us that Benedict XVI called it an icon, which means by definition of the word that he implies it is a painting, the author states:

The linen cloth now known as the Shroud of Turin appeared out of nowhere in 1353, and was being used in a faith-healing scam by a church in Lirey. The testimony of two Bishops at the time convinced Clement VII that it was nothing more than the work of a clever artist, and should not be billed as the true burial sheet of Christ. Scientific examination of the Shroud backs this up by carbon dating it to exactly the same period of time as its appearance in history.

The authenticity of the Shroud of Turin is also called into question by comparing it with the gospel accounts of Christ’s burial and resurrection. They clearly do not match and, in fact, have major contradictions between them. For the Shroud to be real, you would have to believe that not only are the gospels wrong, but that traditionally respectful burial practices of Jews at the time were completely thrown out the window in the case of a man they called the son of God.

Nothing new that I can see: Cafeteria facts, inaccuracies, and the old argument that the shroud contradicts the Bible (as the author of the article interprets the text).

3 thoughts on “Bent Spoon Article on the Shroud of Turin”

  1. Recently they discovered a new DaVinci. Nobody knew it existed. So that makes it a fake, BECAUSE it wasn’t documented somewhere?

    The Shroud is an ancient artifact, same as any other artifact. Why does he demand a paper trail? I don’t see why he’s got a beef with the discovery of the Shroud. It was lost, now it’s found. What’s the big deal. This happens a lot, and people are usually very happy to find amazing ancient things rather than GRIPING about it.

    I still kinda suspect that God was saving the Shroud just for us. Obviously it causes the atheists a great deal of stress, since they bring it up so often. Noah’s flood stresses them out a whole lot, too. The resurrection makes them go bonkers as well.

    I think we should make a list of things that ESPECIALLY drive the atheists crazy. I like to know the things that punch their buttons. :D

  2. Doubtless the author of the “Bent Spoon” article was paid for his services, despite his several errors of fact, so who’s scamming whom?! Maybe he’s a post-modernist who doesn’t believe in facts anyway, so what’s his opinion worth? He’s obviously ignorant of Ian Wilson’s credible reconstruction of the the Shroud’s history, supported by extensive documentation.

    Fact 1: 544 AD, Persian prince Khosraw with formidable army is repulsed from Edessa’s walls; Attributed to protective powers of the Jesus-imprinted cloth, confidently referred to as being brought to Edessa during reign of Abgar V, five centuries earlier. Cloth had been recenty found sealed above the city gates, where it had been hidden when Abgar’s successors reverted to paganism. Contemporary accounts refer to it as “not by hand made”, some call it a “sindon”, and also as “tetradiplon”, doubled in four, that it was therefore a much larger cloth folded considerably smaller than its full size.

    Fact 2: Previous depictions of Jesus in art, had shown him as beardless. From this time on (544) the distinctive depictions of Jesus as long-haired and bearded, with many of the incidental features of the “Shroud” face (Vignon markings).emerge and are extensively copied and distributed throughout Eastern Christendom. Yet, prior to 430 AD, St Augustine of Hippo had previously mentioned a general ignorance in his time about the physical appearance of Jesus. Coinage is issued showing the Jesus likeness.

    Fact 3: 943 AD: Byzantine general with large army at Edessa’s walls, negotiates for surrender of Jesus-imprinted cloth, in return for sparing the city and the release of Muslim prisoners. Cloth is taken to Constantinople. Under Byzantine religious culture, public showings are extremely rare.

    Fact 4: 1130 AD: High-ranking western visitors to Constaninople are occasionally shown treasures of the relic collection. Normandy-based monk Orderic Vitalis and others report that the Edessa cloth, besides Jesus’ facial imprint, displays ‘the form and size of the Lord’s body to all who look upon it’.

    Fact 5: ~1192: Hungary’s ‘Pray manuscript’ shows body of Jesus laid out totally naked in identical ‘crossed hands’ style to Shroud. The drawings depict the mysterious triple poker holes (ordeal by fire about 679 AD?), as well as indications of the 3-in-1 herring-bone weave of the Shroud textile,

    Fact 6: 1204: French-led Fourth Crusade sacks Contantinople with pillaging of several relics. Edessa Mandylion disappears. In 1205, letter to Pope Innocent III complains of loss of “the linen in which Our Lord Jesus Christ was wrapped after his death”. Wilson makes a strong case for it being kept in secret by the Knights Templar until their suppression by Philip the Fair 1307-1314.

    Fact 7: 1344: French knight Geoffry I de Charny, first-known Western owner of the Shroud fights Turks in Smyrna. In 1349, back in France, he seeks and obtains permission from Pope Clement VI to build a church in his home village of Lirey, where the Shroud is later exhibited. Connections can be made between Geoffrey I and an earlier namesake of the Knights Templar burnt at the stake with Jaques de Molay, both high dignitaries of the order. Geoffrey de Charney is killed at the Battle of Poitiers 1356, before he is ready to divulge his ownership of the Shroud.

    Fact 8: 1356; Bishop Henry of Troyes praises Geoffry I de Charny for his founding of the Lirey church. In 1389, his successor Bishop D’Arcis of Troyes instigates royal officials to seize the Shroud from Geoffrey II de Charny but are folied. Bishop D’Arcis writes forceful letter to Pope Clement VII, claiming that Bishop Henry had looked into the matter and that it had been cunningly painted. Pope Clement VII declines his request that showings be stopped and orders Bishop D’Arcis to perpetual silence on the matter under pain of excommunication. Letter from Bishop D’Arcis is devoid of any documentary or factual evidence or proof, even though any documentation would have been available to him. His charge seems to be based on hearsay.

    Conclusion: To say that the Shroud emerged out of nowhere in 1353 is a gross exaggeration. A credible history can be reconstructed. We do not have the testimony of two bishops, but only one bishop who alleges that his predecessor found that it had been “cunningly painted”, apparently based on hearsay. Clearly the image was not painted, cunningly or otherwise. He did not convince Pope Clement VII, but quite the reverse.

    Still, the author probably got paid for his efforts of misrepresentation. Clearly it is the readers of “Bent Spoon” who are being scammed! .

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