imageRemember ‘The Second Messiah: Templars, the Turin Shroud and the Great Secret of Freemasonry,’ by Christopher Knight and Robert Lomas. Amazon in the U.K. has five copies. In the U.S. where you can buy a Kindle version, Amazon proclaims, “Using the latest scientific techniques , the authors prove that the shroud [Jacques de]Molay was wrapped in is the one now known as the Turin Shroud.

Well, Colin Berry, has a new twist on this. Yes, it is still a scorch ala Berry and not the chemical approach taken by Knight and Lomas and . . .

. . . the figure depicted on the Badge  and indeed the Shroud is not really that of Christ – even if  most casual observers assume  that -  but Geoffroi de Charney, being portrayed as a Christ-like figure who shared a similar fate. And it was his nephew (?) who commissioned the Shroud as a memorial to his uncle (?), given he had no body to place in the family tomb. He commissioned an artefact that would combine two powerful ideas – martyrdom for having the wrong ideas, punished by burning at the stake, and Christ’s crucifixion.

Who is Geoffroi de Charney? He was a Templar knight burned at the stake with de Molay. Henry Charles Lea reports in ‘A History of the Inquisition of the Middle ages’:

That same day, by sunset, a pile was erected on a small island in the Seine, the Isle des Juifs, near the palace garden. There de Molay and de Charney were slowly burned to death, refusing all offers of pardon for retraction, and bearing their torment with a composure which won for them the reputation of martyrs among the people, who reverently collected their ashes as relics’.

imageWhat badge? Apparently Colin thinks they commissioned a medal. Yes, this medal:

That explains of course why the figure looks nothing like Christ – no long hair, beard  etc. because it’s a proxy for Christ – a martyred Templar. It explains why he looks as if  he were wearing armour around the shoulders and chest.   But here’s the clincher – that chain around the waist, and possibly  the ankles too (or kindling?) It has nothing to do with crucifixion – obviously, but everything to do with being burned at the stake.

[ . . . ]

. . .  the Badge could be used as a bas-relief, given all those knobbly bits. Either do a rubbing,  as with brass rubbing, or heat it, press onto linen, as if a rubber stamp, and one gets a negative scorched imprint, hey, just like the one on the Shroud. The ability to use the badge as a printing template may have been pushed as a “selling point”.  (OK, that one’s a bit of a long shot, but I have been pondering for weeks why those shoulders etc look so plump  and bloated – seeking an alternative to the “armour” hypothesis – it was to ensure a good impression).

So at what stage did the scorch image of a martyred Knight morph into that of the crucified Christ with all the extra details – the blood stains, the spear wound in the side, the nail wound in the wrist? And was it done on the same image, or was it done starting with a clean sheet (of linen) so to speak?

[. . . ]

One could describe the Shroud as the visual equivalent of a double entendre  (say one thing but mean another).  Only those in the know  – the few remaining members of a powerful but persecuted  fraternity – may have been aware of its true meaning and significance.

And before developing this great historical hypothesis, Colin warned:

Those blood stains [= his previous posting] will look like a side show, compared with the post I am preparing for tomorrow … Some folk here will need to have their tranquilisers and blood pressure pills handy. Hint: New Bridge (Paris).

or an antacid tablet. I didn’t do it justice. Read Was the Shroud of Turin intended as a visual double entendre – with an martyred Knight Templar serving as proxy for the crucified Christ?