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Author Topic: The Shroud of Turin revisited
Charles
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I saw a recent documentary about the Shroud of Turin that really got me thinking. Until now, I didn't buy into its authenticity. I felt it was a brilliant forgery devised by Leonardo Da Vinci using a process called the camera obscura, the earliest attempt at photography, and that the face on the cloth is his own.

Even after the documentary, I'm still not 100% sold that this was the cloth that covered the executed body of Jesus Christ, but I'm much more open minded about the possibility than I was before.

What's changed my mind is something that came about through the documentary. It was a comparison between the facial image on the shroud and the oldest existing formal icon of a bearded Christ dating back to around 550 AD.

So I put together my own presentation comparing the facial similarities between the ancient icon and Leonardo and will follow up soon with the results, which I'm sure you're going to find very intetresting and intriguing.

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Charles
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This is where the focus of my study took place, on the face of the shroud. The image on the left is the shroud as it appears in real life. On the right is a photographic negative in which the image appears as a positive.

Notice that the image in the photographic negative is reversed. For use later in the topic I flopped it back so it would properly reflect that of the actual image.


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Charles
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This is a portrait of Leonardo Da Vinci in the prime of his life. I believe it's another artist's copy of a self portrait Da Vinci did, with a very high degree of fidelity to the likeness in the original. He was a good looking man.

If you consider the image of the shroud above and the face of Leonardo, it does bears a resemblance to him as far as proportions and facial features.


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Charles
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In this comparison, I used a profile image of Leonardo drawn by Francesco Bartolozzi which was drawn from Leonardo's own self portrait from the side view.

I lined up the top of the head, the tip of the nose and the corner of the mouth to the shroud's image as best I could. There's a very close allignment proportionally, except around the eyebrow and eye area. It's slightly off.


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Charles
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This I picked up off the Web. It's a comparison that someone else had done based upon Leonardo's portrait in his later years and the shroud's image.

Notice that the alignment is close, but in the eye and brow area the proportions are off as they are in the previous comparison above. Also, the mouth isn't quite there either. Facial features and proportions can change over the course of one's life, still I'm prone to be a bit more sceptical about similarities to Leonardo's appearance after these observations, especially considering what I'll be showing next.

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Charles
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This is the oldest painted image, or icon, of a bearded Jesus Christ. It's the oldest in existence and is kept at the Monastery of St. Catherine in Egypt in the lower Sinai. It was painted around 550 AD.

All the extant painted images of Jesus prior to this show him as a young man with shorter hair and clean shaven. The oldest of these in the catacombs of Rome.

This is called 'Christ Pantocrator' which in the Greek is translated something like 'All Encompassing' or 'All Bearing'...

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Charles
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The icon of Christ Pantocrator at St. Catherine's was singled out in the documentary for its striking similarities to the face on the shroud, so I thought I'd run a series of my own comparisons.

First, I lined the images up next to each other as with the Leonardo comparisons and extruded lines at key points from one facial image to the other. At the nose tip, the mouth, corners of the eye, eyebrows and edge of beard.

The proportional similarities are very obvious.

By the way, the photographic negative is reversed to properly reflect the way the face would appear on the shroud itself.


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Charles
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Next, I found a 3D computer image of the face on the shroud and aligned it with the icon's face. Except for some distortion from perspective on the 3D image, the features align with remarkable accuracy.


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Greg B
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http://www.thenazareneway.com/likeness_of_our_saviour.htm

That's a nice reference regarding historical data to what Yeshua may have appeared like. It's funny how different people describe him differently.

The best way to determine a close proximity depends on the remains we have of people of that era and the DNA they left behind. Also descriptions from government officials at that time which was common. Soldiers too wrote home describing persons and tribes. Some of these documents survive to this day. Some reportedly are descriptions of Yeshua and his disciples and family members.

It's amazing that we still have the remains of some of the saints. Simple DNA analysis could yield many facts.

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Charles
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I find this the most intriguing similarity. The documentary missed it, but I caught it right away.

The image on the left is the actual image of the shroud. Notice how the left edge of the moustache slants at an angle as compared to the right edge. Notice that the exact same slant is portrayed in the icon. You can see this better by looking at the photographic negative above.


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Charles
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In this comparison, I spliced half of each facial image to the other. A virtually perfect match.


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Charles
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Next, I made a transparent image of the shroud face and placed it over the face of the icon. Check this out...


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Charles
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On the left is a painted image of the face on the shroud, created by an artist whose name I don't know, sometime in the 20th century.

On the right is the photo negative of the shroud super impossed over the St. Catherine's icon, at 20% transparency.

The similarity between the two images is uncanny.


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Charles
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My personal conclusion...

Whovever painted the Christ Pantocrator icon of St. Catherine's had the image on the shroud as reference, with little doubt in my mind. If that is the case, then the shroud is about 900 years older than Leonardo Da Vinci.

Or, whoever created the shroud if it is indeed a fraudulent relic, must have had a knowledge so intimate of the icon they were able to use it as an exact reference for the facial image on the shroud.

The similarities to the icon are much greater than the similarities to Leonardo, and if Leonardo created the shroud, would he be so naive as to think that people wouldn't recognize his face if he used himself as the subject?

So the jury is still out on the fascinating and enthralling enigma called the Shroud of Turin.

Hope you enjoyed the presentation, it was fun putting it together.

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Greg B
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Thanks Charles.

I've been studying the shroud for 30 years now.

You're right that early painters did use the shroud as a reference.

I too don't believe that DaVinci created the shroud and the suspicion he did is because the carbon dating of the shroud only went back almost a millenium not 2,000 years. However the portions of the shroud tested may be patches to repair it after a fire some centuries ago.

Examination of the image pigments is the key. Any physical body in contact with the cloth would have left some skin cells, blood, etc.

The church and scientists are somewhat evasive on that evidence though. I'll dig up some stuff for you.

Another examination with the latest technologies is warranted and is being petitioned.

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nettajean
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Here is a new article about an Italian scientist who claims to have recreated the Shroud of Turin using techniques available during the era the carbon dating dated the cloth.

Italian Scientist Reproduces Shroud of Turin

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tstevens
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I don't buy it...

The same old things still apply: You can't get an image like that by laying a shroud over someone. Because of the way cloth drapes around a dimensional object, you would get an image that looks more akin to a 3D texture map and less like a 2D image. Though I don't recommend it, if you paint someone completely in black and then laid a similar white cloth over them you would see approximately what kind of image is created and how things like the hair would actually lay. So the big question has more to do with who made it and why. My guess is that (based on what I have heard) it probably came out of the same era as the crusades when there was a mad rush to find relics related to Christianity.

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