My response to a typical ‘Ron-putdown’ arising from Dan Porter’s latest pirating of my content


Late addition (July 2019)

Please forgive this postscript, correction, “prescript”,  correction, intrusion, added many years later – based on some 350 and more postings here and elsewhere.

That’s including some 7 years of my hands-on investigation into image-forming techniques, chosen to be credible with simple, indeed crude, medieval (14th century) technology etc etc.

(Oh, and yes, I accept the radiocarbon dating, despite it being restricted to a single non-random corner sample, making all the oh-so-dismissive, oh-so-derogatory statistics-based sniping totally irrelevant – a ranging shot being just that me dears- a single ranging shot, albeit subdivided into three for Arizona, Oxford and Zurich).
Sindonology (i.e. the “science” , read pseudoscience – of the so-called “Shroud ” of Turin) can be simply summed up. It’s a re-branding exercise, one designed to pretend that the prized Turin possession is not just J of A’s “fine linen”, described in the biblical account as used to transport a crucified body from cross to tomb.

Oh no, it goes further, much further, way way beyond the biblical account. How? By making out that it was the SAME linen as that described in the Gospel of John, deployed as final “burial clothes”. Thus the description “Shroud” for the Turin Linen, usually with the addition “burial shroud”. Why the elision of two different linens, deployed for entirely different purposes (transport first, then final interment)? 
Go figure! Key words to consider are: authentic relic v manufactured medieval icon; mystique, peaceful death-repose, unlimited opportunity for proposing new and ever more improbable image-formation mechanisms etc. How much easier it is to attach the label “Holy” to Shroud if seen as final burial clothes, in final at-peace repose – prior to Resurrection- as distinct from a means of temporary swaying side-to-side transport in an improvised makeshift stretcher !
As I say, a rebranding exercise (transport to final burial shroud) and a very smart and subtle one at that . Not for nothing did that angry local Bishop of Troyes suddenly refer to a “sleight of hand” after allegedly accepting it when first displayed. Seems the script was altered, or as some might say, tampered with! It might also explain why there were two Lirey badges, not just one. Entire books could be written on which of the two came first… I think I know which, with its allusion (?) to the Veil of Veronica… yes, there are alternative views (the face above “SUAIRE” a visual link to the face-only display of the Linen as the “Image of Edessa” or as that on the then current “Shroud” per se.


Face shown  (left) on mid- 14th century Machy Mould (recently discovered variant of the Lirey Pilgrim Badge) above the word “SUAIRE” (allegedly meaning “shroud”). Inset image on the right: one version among many of the fabled “Veil of Veronica” image.  I say the two are related, and deliberately so, but this is not the time or place to go into detail.

No, NOT  a resurrectional selfie, but instead a full size version of, wait for it,  the legendary VEIL OF VERONICA , product of inital body contact – no air gaps- between body and fabric, but with one important difference. The Turin image was intended to look more realistic, less artistic.

How? By displaying a negative tone-reversed image implying IMPRINT (unless, that is, you’re a modern day sindonologist, in which case ‘resurrectional proto-photographic selfie” becomes the preferred, nay, vigorously proferred explanation assisted by unrestrained imagination, creation of endless pseudoscience etc etc, with resort to laser beams, corona discharges, nuclear physics, elementary particles, earthquakes etc etc – the list is seemingly endless! 
Welcome to modern day sindonology. 
Personally, I prefer no-nonsense feet-on-the-ground hypothesis-testing science, aided by lashings of, wait for it, plain down-to-earth common sense.

Start of original posting:



Once again, Dan Porter has pirated my copy, graphic included (one showing MY research, MY own photograph), and the inevitable happens. His Shroudie regulars, most of them arch-authenticists to a man or woman, engage in all the usual put-down remarks at my expense, responding to a title that was clearly intended as a prompt to ridicule.

So when I log on this morning it is to see “Ron” put in an appearance, right on cue, with this flippant and supercilious put-down comment:

September 7, 2012 at 5:16 pm | #3

Paulette; please let’s not quibble about the details, Colin Berry has MANAGED to scourch (sic) linen here…. 😉


Actually, my dear chap, it was Dr. Paolo Di Lazzaro, the subject of my post,  who has been content merely to produce a faint scorch on linen with that uv excimer laser of his, or rather his ENEA employers. That’s a lot of technology, or, as I would maintain, technological overkill, all for one small yellow-brown discoloration of linen.

I have done more than produce a “scorch”, dear Ron. It may have escaped your notice, given I was trying deliberately to produce a faint scorch, that my end result has infinitely more relevance to the Shroud of Turin than you suggest.  Let me explain, as if to a complete newcomer to this area of research, which you are not, needless to say, making your debunking all the harder to comprehend.

This morning I took yesterday’s photograph, the one that Pirate Porter purloined, cropped it down to the region which has the faint sepia imprint from the horse brass, and then took it through two further processing steps.

Here are the 3 steps:

Faint thermal imprint from horse brass (aka superficial scorch mark) after removal from oven at 250 degrees C – cropped from yesterday’s photograph.

As above, after light/dark reversal (comparable to Secondo Pia’s 1898 conversion of the pseudo-negative Shroud image to a positive).

Final step: here’s that same scorch after 3D enhancement with ImageJ software

Here’s the original for comparison (flipped left-to-right) for comparison with the above images. Not bad eh?

So yes, Ron, I have “MANAGED to scourch linen”.  Oh, and somehow, don’t ask me how,  I have also MANAGED to model the procedure by which the Shroud image could have been  (and probably was) produced by thermal imprinting from a semi 3D bas-relief.  What a wonderful thing is this serendipity thingy, if that is what you think it is,. Speaking of which, Ron, thinking that is,  do you by any chance have any more profound observations to make, or are you now in a state of exhaustion – or maybe mental nirvana – after all that intellectual effort?

Message  to Dan Porter: again I ask you to stop pirating my content, allowing you and your regulars can trivialize or snipe at my research on your site.

You may not like my findings or my conclusions, but for your information I am adhering strictly to a conventional scientific approach. If you ridicule or attack me personally, it  says more about yourself than it does of me – since what you are doing is proving beyond any shadow of doubt that you are only interested in one kind of “science” – the pseudoscience of agenda-driven Shroudology – the sort that you so subtly and assiduously promote on those sites of yours (“shroudofturin4journalists” especially). You reveal yourself to be intolerant of the real science, the kind that I in my modest way pursue with limited resources and which I attempt to report promptly and accurately with photographs (MY photographs) on MY site.

Reminder: you really have no business reproducing my photographs without first seeking my permission. For as long as you continue to make me and my research an object of ridicule – as you did yesterday – in your choice of title no less – then you can assume that permission to use my photographs or extensive passages of text is denied.

About Colin Berry

Retired science bod, previous research interests: phototherapy of neonatal jaundice, membrane influences on microsomal UDP-glucuronyltransferase, defective bilirubin and xenobiotic conjugation and hepatic excretion, dietary fibre and resistant starch.
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