There are 4,911,458 English language articles in Wikipedia. Today’s featured article for July 8, 2015, is Radiocarbon dating. Therein we find the Shroud of Turin mentioned in the fourth paragraph of the introduction and again, many dozens of paragraphs later, in the next to last paragraph under Use in Archaeology.
The Shroud of Turin was the featured article in Wikipedia on Christmas Day, December 25, 2004.
Out of 4, 911,458 articles what are the chances of that?
After all, we do find in Wikipedia “that Leonardo da Vinci had faked the Shroud.”
I discovered this morning that the “Shroud of Turin” entry in Wikipedia no longer contains attempts by Freeman and Berry to include their -hypotheses in this, their latest attempts at social encyclopedia-ing. In fact, their names cannot be found at all on the page. It was like awakening from a strange dream.
It was real. It wasn’t a dream. Moderator comments do state:
- Deelted (sic) Colin Berrys removed as self promotion unsubstantiated in theory or peer reviewed in notable articles)
- Removal of Charles Freeman theory article overloading on theories
Colin fired back on a discussion page that Wikipedia created for him:
I concluded my account with:
"Links to Berry’s ‘simulated sweat imprint’ hypothesis"
Note the term "hypothesis", meaning idea. So where’s the conflict of interest in expressing an idea? Where’s the self-promotion in expressing an idea? Why bandy around these silly terms in a way that totally misrepresents this researcher’s interest in the Shroud? Are you aware that I have published over 250 postings on my science buzz and specialist Shroud sites, many with original research findings you will not find elsewhere. As for deleting the earlier reference to my scorch findings that someone else, not I, chose to publicize, that is just small-mindedness.
My IDEA is any original one, as you can check for yourself by googling, that can be expressed in a few words,and which does not need "peer review" to which incidentally I am no stranger:
The faint yellow Shroud body image was almost certainly an attempt to simulate a sweat imprint on linen, as if from a recently crucified man. In reality it was probably a thermal imprint ("scorch mark") from a heated 3D or bas relief template.
Do you not consider that folk who consult wiki have a right to be informed of the latest thinking? Do you not understand the difference between hypotheses that invite further experimentation and tendentious claims?
Colin Berry PhD
Does Colin have a point? He has done a lot of experimenting (not that I’m convinced by it). I don’t buy into the simulation of a sweat imprint idea but, then again, compare it to some other ideas that have been floated. After all we find this on the Wikipedia page:
Lynn Picknett has written a book proposing that Leonardo da Vinci had faked the Shroud. Picknett and Larissa Tracy appeared on a Channel 5 (UK) TV program that announced that the Shroud was the oldest known surviving photograph.
Colin, it seems that all you need to do is appear on Channel 5.
Shall this become the future of the Shroud of Turin entries in Wikipedia, where every
person with an idea posts his own theory out there? What about the guy in Australia
who has discovered that if he tilts his laptop screen at a certain angle he can make
Jesus’s eyes open, thus proving he is alive. Or Stephen Jones (is there something
about the equator or something) who concludes that the carbon dating was hacked
by the KGB. And . . . oh, no, we don’t want to tip him off to the idea.
Yes, I’ve taken a leaf from Charles Freeman’s book, and submitted a brief synopsis of my ‘simulated sweat imprint’ idea to wikipedia. Charles sent his to the History of the Shroud page, but noting there was now a version of the same at the end of the main Shroud of Turin entry under "Recent Developments" . . .
Colin tells us that it was erased but . . .
Tried re-submitting my screed, but this time logging into wiki, which had fortunately remembered me from a long time ago, attempting to edit something or other (non-TS related).
My piece now appears like an old-fashioned ticker tape/ telegram at the end of the Recent Developments section, and I’m still none the wiser about how to format in wiki.
It remains on the page in a strange, so-called edit format. This is what it says after you clear it up a bit:
Shroud researcher Colin Berry (mentioned earlier) has recently made a significant modification to his belief that the body image was imprinted onto linen as a scorch from a heated template. He had originally speculated that the scorch technology had been chosen deliberately to represent either Templar Grand Master Jacques de Molay or Geoffroi de Charney midway through being slowly-roasted to death at the stake in Paris, with a fanciful imprinting of hot tissue onto a burial shroud. In that view the de Molay image was later‘re-invented’ as that of the crucified Jesus by additions of blood at the appropriate wound locations described in the New Testament accounts.
The Templar link has now been abandoned. While Berry still considers the TS image to be a contact scorch, he proposes that it was intended to be seen by the very first cohorts of pilgrims at Lirey in 1357 as the genuine sweat (and blood) imprint left on linen by the recumbent crucified Jesus (228,229) . In other words, the scorch technology was designed to simulate the appearance of an ancient sweat imprint, yellowed with age. That interpretation may have found a resonance with mid-14th century pilgrims, given that the highly venerated Veil of Veronica had been attracting large numbers at the same time, notably in the ‘Holy Year’ 1350, just 7 years prior to the first known Lirey display. The ‘Veronica’ too, according to legend, was initially a body imprint, solely of the facial features of Jesus, captured onto a bystander’s veil as she stepped forward in a charitable gesture to wipe sweat and blood from the face of Jesus as the latter passed by, bearing his cross to the site of execution at Calvary. Might this idea of sweat/blood imprinting have served as the inspiration for a medieval ‘thought experiment’ combining art and technology, imagining how a similar whole body imprint, both frontal and dorsal sides, of the recently deceased and traumatized (bloodied/sweat-soaked) Jesus might look after 13 centuries of ageing and yellowing?
Links to Berry’s ‘simulated sweat imprint’ hypothesis
Edit contributed by Colin Berry, Nov 23, 2014
(only the English Edition was searched)
Do you recall when Wikipedia had a small article on the Shroud of Turin. That article now, if you print it out, is 22 pages long followed by 13 pages of references. But that is not enough. In addition to the main article, Shroud of Turin, there are other articles that include “Shroud of Turin” in the title:
- Conservation of the Shroud of Turin
- Shroud of Turin Research Project
- History of the Shroud of Turin
- Radiocarbon 14 dating of the Shroud of Turin
There are articles about many shroud researchers. Here are some of them in no particular order:
- Secondo Pia
- Walter McCrone
- Raymond Rogers
- Isabel Piczec
- Barbara Frale
- Frederick Zugibe
- Gilbert R. Lavoie
- Ian Wilson (author)
- Pierre Barbet (physician)
- Yves Delage
And there are articles with significant discussion of the shroud
- Pray Codex
- Image of Edessa
- Sudarium of Oviedo
- Veil of Veronica
- Manoppello Image
- VP8 Image Analyzer
- Chapel of the Holy Shroud
- Turin Cathedra
- Royal Palace of Turin
Altogether, 430 Wikipedia English edition articles mention the Shroud of Turin according to Google.
In the last 60 days, the Wikipedia article on the shroud was viewed some 56,000 times.
Pages in this blog were viewed 161,000 times by at least 48,000 visitors.
Yes, I know that is apples and oranges.
Religion News Service (RNS) has an interesting story about Wikipedia editing wars:
The problem confronting many Wikipedia editors is that religion elicits passion — and often, more than a little vitriol as believers and critics spar over facts, sources and context. For “Wikipedians” like Willey, trying to put a lid on the online hate speech that can be endemic to Wikipedia entries is a key part of their job.
Religion is among several of the top 100 altered topics on Wikipedia, according to a recent list published by Five Thirty Eight. Former President George W. Bush is the most contested entry, but Jesus (No. 5) and the Catholic Church (No. 7) fall closely behind.
For instance, a graphic for the RNS story tells us that the Wikipedia article about Jesus has been revised 26, 580 times; about the Catholic Church, 23,884 times; about Christianity, 17,273 times.
That made me wonder: How many times has the Wikipedia article on the shroud been revised? According to Wikipedia statistics for the page it has been revised 4,235 times since 2002 (click graph to enlarge).
The conventional image of a fully bearded Jesus with long hair did not become established until the 6th century in Eastern Christianity, and much later in the West. Earlier images were much more varied. Images of Jesus tend to show ethnic characteristics similar to those of the culture in which the image has been created. Beliefs that certain images are historically authentic, or have acquired an authoritative status from Church tradition, remain powerful among some of the faithful, in Eastern Orthodoxy, Anglicanism, and Roman Catholicism. The Shroud of Turin is now the best-known example, though the Image of Edessa and the Veil of Veronica were better known in medieval times.
The image shone here, one of dozens in the article, is described as, “Christ in majesty, still with no beard, from an English 12th century illuminated manuscript.”