Old Video: Ancient Secrets of the Bible – The Shroud of Turin

imageDoes anyone remember the 1992 television series, Ancient Secrets of the Bible. I was reminded of it this morning when I noticed that the blog, Christian Origins, had recently posted a YouTube for the Shroud of Turin episode. There were episodes, as well, on the Tower of Babel,  Sodom and Gomorrah, Walls of Jericho, Moses’ Ten Commandments, Moses’ Red Sea Miracle, Noah’s Ark, The Ark of the Covenant, The Battle of David and Goliath and the story of Samson and Delilah:

This installment to the popular Ancient Secrets of the Bible series analyzes one of the religious community’s most legendary artifacts, the Shroud of Turin, which is alleged to be the burial shroud of Jesus Christ. Biblical analysts and scholars weigh in on the physical evidence regarding the shroud, discuss why some believe it is merely an elaborate fraud, and consider its overall spiritual impact on Christianity.

Okay, it’s a bit out of date. Still, it is worth the time to watch it.

Shroud of Turin

9 thoughts on “Old Video: Ancient Secrets of the Bible – The Shroud of Turin”

  1. Interesting. Once again it focuses on image formation, so let’s forget 2 min about image formation.

    Has anyone reproduced blood stains pattern ?
    Take the last mediatic attempt to reproduce the shroud, namely Luigi Garlaschelli’s. What did he naively say to thibault about blood stains ?

    “I have absolutely not tackled the problem of blood stains (…)”

    Has anyone reproduced blood stains ? macroscopically ? microscopically ?
    Has anyone studied such pathological blood thanks to thromboelastography ?
    Was the strain used to remove flax fibers percisely measured ?
    Is it close to the strength of a blood clot ?
    Were flax fibers broken when the corpse was removed from the shroud ?
    What do we know about mechanical properties of flax fibers ?

    1. If you have read something … Goldoni, Lavoie
      and others worked with the blood … !
      — —
      I tried to watch under the address :
      I have read the following words :
      >Thromboelastography [TE] was first described by Hartert in 1948.
      >Thromboelastography® (TEG®) and Thromboelastometry (ROTEM®) provide global information on the dynamics of clot development, stabilisation and dissolution that reflect in vivo haemostasis.
      >Although TE has not been subjected to the same evaluation processes as conventional haemostatic tests, its use as a POCT monitor in complex major surgery has been shown to significantly reduce the use of blood component therapy and overall blood loss.

      So …
      You have to take into account that now (on Turin Shroud) we can only
      control the bloodstains (on linen) of a (presumed) deceased person.
      What is the meaning of that thromboelastography in a dead person ?
      In any case …
      I want to respect the sacred blood of Jesus !
      See also (for the blood and the cardiac muscle) : the famous Miracle of
      Lanciano (and the old analyses by Dr. Linoli) !
      The blood turned out as a true blood (of Jesus. But, until now, we have
      not yet seen an interesting plan about the DNA analyses for the true
      cardiac muscle) !

      Instead, in my opinion, we have to control the linen fibrils using the advanced
      tools, using the SPMs (= Scanning Probe Microscopies)…
      — —
      Why we are not yet able to do that “very simple” operation ?
      For example : Atomic Force Microscopy (= AFM) is a tool not only to image
      the topography, but also provides valuable information regarding adhesion
      and surface density using force curves !
      — —
      It is very simple to test the linen fibrils under an adequate probe in an AFM
      three-point bending test !
      If you have some exact knowledge in the field of Structural Mechanics you
      can work with good gains … and you can also explore (in a non-destructive
      manner) the biological traces.
      Am I wrong in my old ideas (= 1998) about these Secrets ?
      — —
      What will be the result from the controls for the Ancient Secrets of the
      Bible (and then see also : the SPM controls about the papyrus of
      Qumran, a more exact way to test these ancient reperts) under
      the SPMs survey ?

      1. Obviously, i didn’t mean to test the blood on the shroud.

        What’s the point ? Quantification.
        You must have heard about post mortem fibrinolysis, but it is still in balance with coagulation.
        Post mortem clots are weaker, but still develop.
        Now you can easily imagine that if coagulation/fibrinolysis of normal blood and pathological blood (it has been suggested the victim suffered disseminated intravascular coagulation) in vivo is different, post mortem coagulation/fibrinolysis will be different, clots properties will be different, kinetics of clots formation will be different, shape of bloodstains will be different.

  2. Lanciano Miracle: There are several discussions on the “Catholic Answers” web-site. I get the impression that most of the investigative work was carried out by a Dr Linoli around 1970, and informed that blood was shown to be human AB, that analysis of the flesh was reported as including ventricle cells, vagus nerve etc. Wiki has a succinct summary of the findings. No DNA was apparently recognised. The various discussions on the “Catholic Answers” web-site seem to be inconclusive, part of the problem apparently being that Linoli’s paper was only ever published in Italian and technical Italian is apparently notoriously difficult to translate into coherent English. The Wiki site also mentioned about five other sites in Italy, where similar miracles have said to have occurred. Another occurrence has said to have occurred in Argentina. I was referred to a book in our Parish library “Reason to Believe” by Ron Tesoriero (an Australian) which I can check out. I was unable to discover if any other scientific investigation had been carried out on the Lanciano material, apart from Linoli’s work. Does anyone know anything more, if there has been any other research into Lanciano?

    The comments by Anoxie & Piero contain some excellent suggestions, but are very high tech, and would probably require a highly specialised materials laboratory, probably in nano-technology to take any further.

  3. The Miracle of Lanciano is often referenced in relation to the typing studies on the Shroud of Turin, and to a lesser extent, the Sudarium of Oviedo. Similar to the blood types reported for the Shroud and the Sudarium, the Lanciano host is reported as being type AB. The primary reference for the Lanciano studies is an article by Dr. Lonoli, published in Italian in Quad Sclavo Diagn. 7, n 3, 1971. (A PDF is available on the web). It is often mentioned that subsequent studies were conducted on the Lanciano sample by the World Health Organization in 1973, although I have been unsuccessful in finding a reference or any details from these studies. I am also unaware if any follow up studies to extend and confirm the original findings have been performed-if so, would be interested in a reference.

    In the Lanciano typing experiments, reactivity of the sample with anti-A and anti-B antibodies is described, resulting in a designation of AB. This situation is somewhat unique, in that unlike the Shroud, there are no “off areas”, which may be used as negative controls. In the case of the Shroud, unstained fibers adjacent to bloodstains are suitable, built-in controls to include in the design of such experiments. As reported for the Shroud, when unstained fibers (even those at the bed of the bloodstains) are mixed with anti-A and anti-B antibodies, no reactivity is observed. This is important as it demonstrates that anti-A and anti-B reactivity is specific for bloodstained fibers and shows that nonspecific binding of antibodies to the cloth does not occur. Inclusion of positive and negative controls to verify the specificity of binding is an important (essential) component of such serological studies.

    Further typing studies performed on Shroud fibers using monoclonal antibodies demonstrated that bloodstained fibers failed to react with anti-O specific reagents, providing a further control for antibody specificity. This is significant as the O blood group shares the exact same core carbohydrate structure as A and B blood types. Only the terminal sugar is different between O, A, and B blood types (see previous postings on AB typing). Such anti-O specific reagents were not available in the past (1971) and could prove useful in the confirmation and extension of the Lanciano typing results-it would be important to demonstrate the specificity of the typing reagents that were used, i.e. does a nonspecific antibody fail to react (negative control), and do the specific antibodies (anti-A, anti-B) demonstrate selective binding (positive control).

    1. First of all : the exact italian name is Linoli (Odoardo) and not Lonoli …
      My interest is in the textile field and my old idea (1998) to control the linen fibrils
      using the advanced the SPMs (= Scanning Probe Microscopies… and working,
      for example : with the three-point bending tests and also with the controls about
      the cellulosic DP) can also be useful in the biological domain … because we
      can study the relics in a better manner with all the adequate tools for
      SPM investigations (= Applied Structural Mechanics and Applied Nanotechnology).

      Under the address :
      we can read the following words :
      >In 1970-’71 and taken up again partly in 1981 there took place a scientific investigation by the most illustrious scientist Prof. Odoardo Linoli, eminent Professor in Anatomy and Pathological Histology and in Chemistry and Clinical Microscopy. He was assisted by Prof. Ruggero Bertelli of the University of Siena.
      >The analyses were conducted with absolute and unquestionable scientific precision and they were documented with a series of microscopic photographs.

      instead under :
      we can read :
      >Linoli extracted parts of the relics with great care and then analyzed the remains of “miraculous flesh and blood.” He presented his findings on March 4, 1971.
      >His study confirmed that the flesh and blood were of human origin. The flesh was unequivocally cardiac tissue, and the blood was of type AB.
      >Consulted by ZENIT, Linoli explained that “as regards the flesh, I had in my hand the endocardium. Therefore, there is no doubt at all that it is cardiac tissue.”
      >In regard to the blood, the scientist emphasized that “the blood group is the same as that of the man of the holy Shroud of Turin

      In any case the possible key to solve the enigma of Lanciano (apart the Faith)
      is the DNA analysis. But I remember that an ancient DNA can be very difficult to control …
      So … How to see the scientific truth ?
      In the past (in Civitavecchia, Italy) the statue of Mary was weeping tears of blood.
      Perhaps this happened because Jesus is her only Son and She wants us to follow him.
      But (clearly) this is not a scientific explanation and we don’t know what is the scientific answer from the new intruments.
      — — —
      Sorry. I am not an expert in the field of coagulation/fibrinolysis of normal blood and pathological blood. I am only curious to know where are located the Labs interested in these particular experiments.
      — —
      I have found a vague bibliographic reference :
      S. Thalhammer, W.M. Heckl (2004) : Atomic Force Microscopy as a tool in nanobiology
      But I don’t agree with idea to do the nano-destructions.
      See for example the previous work :
      R. Stark, S. Thalhammer, J. Wienberg, W.M. Heckl (1998): The AFM as a tool for
      chromosomal dissection – the influence of physical parameters. Appl.Phys., A66, 579-584

  4. Pardon for the misspelling of Linoli-appreciate the links; am familiar with the content- was hoping for a reference where the data in the follow up studies could actually be viewed, especially regarding the materials & methods-were the 1981 studies ever formally published?

  5. I don’t think relics of Lanciano have anything to tell us about the shroud. Dr Linoli was so clearly influenced by pre-existing his faith in the miracle that his paper cannot be considered wholly unbiased, and the World Health Organisation report has many of the characteristics of a myth (such as its extremes of detail – 500 experiments, time – 15 months, length – 700 pages, and authority – the Chief Advisory Board, as well as the fact that no-one on the internet has actually seen it or quoted from it).

    An English translation of Dr Linoli’s paper is extensively quoted by an (admitted sceptic) Aruman Chan, and largely appears to state that the biological remains are mouldy, dried up, shrivelled, and degraded to the extent that the cells of both flesh and blood lack nuclei. The minerals in the blood are in widely different proportions from modern human blood. But (according to Chan) Dr Linoli uses all this to conclude that this is evidence for miraculous preservation.

    There has been no attempt to carbon date these relics, and no particular reason to suppose that they date back more than the time needed to shrivel up a piece of meat into its present state. Having done that, I dare say they might remain in that state for a very long time, but there’s no obvious evidence that they have.

    There are five (solid) globules of blood, which are supposed to be all different sizes but exactly the same masses, according to the Miracle Rosary Mission (at http://www.miraclerosarymission.org/lanciano.html). I do not know if Dr Linoli checked that.

    But most importantly, even if the remains are from a 1300 year old man, there is nothing about them to suggest that they derived from bread and wine.

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