Home > Other Blogs > Maybe a Not So Startling Coincidence of Something that is Approximate and Presumably Averaged

Maybe a Not So Startling Coincidence of Something that is Approximate and Presumably Averaged

July 16, 2015

So even the dimensions of the Shroud are evidence beyond
reasonable doubt of it’s authenticity!

— Stephen Jones

imageStephen is revisiting evidence that he believes affirms the shroud’s authenticity. His latest completed posting revisits the subject of cubits.

But despite this being claimed by non-/anti-authenticists as evidence against my statement in my post, "Dimensions of the Shroud: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia," that, "The Shroud measures 8 by 2 Assyrian cubits," Dietz & Zaccone’s 2002 measurement does not materially (pun unintended) change the fact that, when right and left, top and bottom, sides of the Shroud are averaged, which is presumably what Flury-Lemberg did, to the nearest centimetre, the Shroud still measures the equivalent of 8 x 2 Assyrian cubits!


[Above: As can be seen in the table above, when Dietz and Zaccone’s separate right and left, top and bottom, dimensions of the Shroud are averaged, to the nearest centimetre, the Shroud’s dimensions are still the equivalent of 8 x 2 (8.06 x 2.07) Assyrian cubits!]

We’ve been there:

Authoritatively? I would have liked to have seen some discussion about other measurements. See , for instance, Length Measurements on the Shroud of Turin by Mario Latendresse. There are some significant differences:

Measurements taken by Bruno Barberis and Gian Maria Zaccone give (frontal image at the bottom left, dorsal image at the top) 441.5 cm for the right height, and 442.5 cm for the left height. The bottom width is 113.0 cm and the top width is 113.7 cm.

If Stephen doesn’t address these differences he is likely to be challenged. He needs to address the differences in the  length for the left and right sides (see the top edge in the partial image above) if he is going to quote Ian Wilson speaking of “conformity to an exact 8 by 2 Jewish cubits” in his 1991 book, "Holy Faces, Secret Places: The Quest for Jesus’ True Likeness.”


For an encyclopedia entry there is too much topic drift and too much opining in the following:

Medieval forger? It is highly unlikely that a medieval forger would even know about the Assyrian standard cubit , and even if he did, it is even more unlikely that he would botherobtaining a first century fine linen shroud, especially given that fine linen then ranked with gold in value. And that is assuming that he could obtain one, especially one with the Shroud’s three-to-one herringbone twill linen, of which the Shroud is the only one remaining in existence!

[ . . . ]

Proof the Shroud is authentic. So even the dimensions of the Shroud of Turin are among the many proofs beyond reasonable doubt that the Shroud of Turin is authentic . . . .

It may be that or maybe, just maybe, a not so startling coincidence of something that is approximately so!

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  1. ekmcmahon
    July 16, 2015 at 5:07 am

    I have enough of a problem dealing with inches and centimeters then we have to add the cubit to my un-math mind to quickly calculate.

  2. Charles Freeman
    July 16, 2015 at 5:16 am

    We have been here before- Assyrian civilization collapsed in the seventh century BC and there are cubits of varying lengths- not difficult to find one which fits!
    113 -114 cms is the standard width of the English ell used in commercial transactions for cloth. Treadle looms can still be bought in a standard size of 45 inches. The six linen strips that make up the Zittau Veil, 1462, averaged 113 cms in width. This has always been one of the strongest pieces of evidence for a medieval weave.

  3. Hugh Farey
    July 16, 2015 at 9:13 am

    Charles is perfectly correct. There is very little evidence for any standards of length anywhere in the 1st century, and none whatever for 1st century Middle Eastern weaving looms. Such definite evidence as there is – some Roman, some Herodian – does not support the contention that the Shroud was made to a definite size, although I agree that its proportions of 8 x 2 do seem deliberate. If anything, 1st century cubits were considerably smaller than Assyrian ones. Jones, quoting Dickinson, says “a particular cubit of the market place that is connected with the Shroud, the cubit that is known as the Assyrian cubit: the widely used, indeed, international standard of that time for merchants of the Near East, and had been so for centuries.” I can find no evidence for this at all. I did ask for it the last couple of times this topic was raised, but nobody suggested anything.

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