I now find that the topic of Mario’s sedillis* was covered by Dan on Jan 29, 2012, provoking a lively debate as to whether the marks were scorches or blood.
I say they were both, acquired in that order.
* Am not sure that the italics are necessary, but I’m using them for now since it’s not a word in common usage in English, and refers in this context to a little known feature of certain crucifixion practice (not mentioned in the biblical account needless to say). I’m also assuming, rightly or wrongly, that the same word serves for both singular and plural (sorry, my Latin’s a bit rusty).
November 20, 2013 at 11:21 am | #44
You make some interesting points. As regards manpower and secrecy, the Shroud is believed is said by authenticists to have been in the protection of the Templars prior to its first display in the mid 1350s. They were, as we know, a highly secretive order so would have had little difficulty in keeping their possession of the relic known only to themselves. By the same token they surely had the ability to fabricate it too, and keep that a secret (and money and manpower would have been no problem, at least prior to their liquidation by Philip the (Un) Fair). So Templar involvement could be said to cut both ways where the debate between authenticity and medieval fabrication is concerned.
As for the nuts and bolts, I frankly don’t know enough about medieval bronzes to know if they were solid or hollow, but am inclined to think they were the first. That would make them an enormous weight. My own brass crucifix from the French street market is less than 15 cm from head to foot, but weighs a whopping 300grams!
If I place it against a wall, the only points of contact are the hands and, guess what – the buttocks? If one tried to secure by the feet there would be an unsightly gap, and the bolts would have to be angled if doubling as crucifixion nails. Frankly I doubt whether
4 3 or 4 crucifixion nails, through hands and feet, could have safely doubled as securing bolts to a wall, even indoors. My crucifix has a long threaded bolt into the middle of the back, but a better, neater solution for a full size effigy would surely be the buttocks, especially as they are flush against the wall, making for an invisible attachment if viewed from the side.
I’m fairly certain that the torso at least would have been modelled on a statue rather than bas relief (and have always considered the head to have a bas-relief mask-like appearance what with that token vertical hair, the sharp cut-off at both sides of face, being unconvinced by the bleaching/banding arguments). It’s the feet that are the give-away. No bas relief would have made the feet so problematical from an imprinting point of view. There is scarcely any imprinting of frontal feet, at least none recognizable as feet with toes, and it’s not difficult to see why if imprinting from a statue with the feet almost at right angles to the legs and torso.
Enough for now. I’ll give some thought to your other points.
Max contrast (-7,100,15 in MS Photeditor)
November 20, 2013 at 6:33 pm | #52
I wasn’t going to start the microscopy for a few days, Thibault, but you asked, so here’s the first using my revised technique (linen on top of heated template, damp cloth on top of linen, gentle manual pressure).
For Thibault Heimburger
(quickie look at my new scorch technique onto linen at lowest mag)
Let me say first of all that the procedure produces very faint scorches, dare I say Shroud-like, so faint that one can scarcely see them at all under a hand lens. Here’s a picture I have just taken at x40, the lowest magnification on my USB microscope.
I’d say the threads and fibres were a pale yellow, with no obvious “patchiness” or restriction to crowns of threads only, but these are early days.
Update Thursday 21 Nov: the above x40 photomicrograph, obtained with a degree of alacrity last night in response to a request from Thibault Heimburger MD, has now been displayed on Dan Porter’s shroudstory.com site , inviting comments, none yet at the time of posting this update.
November 21, 2013 at 4:56 am | #54
What is the temperature of your “hot” template ?
Could you quantify the pressure ?
Good morning anoxie.
I place my template on a halogen ring turned up to its maximum value (incandescent red) and leave it there for at least 5 minutes until a small swab of fabric, touched against its top surface instantly chars to a toasted colour.
I had not thought seriously about measuring temperature precisely, making no secret of working in a kitchen But you have just given me an idea. If I drop my heated 320g template into a known volume of water, and measure the temperature rise, then knowing the specific heat capacity of brass (approx) it should be possible to work out its temperature.
I could give you ballpark estimates of course, based on the fact that the template is not hot enough to affect cellulose appreciably, the scorch presumably being a chemical dehydration of the more reactive hemicellulose constituents.
There’s a useful paper that gives the pyrolysis temperature of hemicellulose as 220
– 315 degrees C compared with 315 to 400 degrees C for cellulose.
Pressure? Apply fingers lightly based on the fact that the overlay gets hot quite quickly. Sorry I can’t be more precise, but this is less about science now, more about hands-on technology…
Opportunist question put to Hugh Farey, who has just now placed a comment on the latest (unrelated) posting on shroudstory.com:
November 21, 2013 at 7:44 am | #5
On a different matter Hugh, might I ask your assistance? You are the one with the uv lamp. Could you try out faint scorching in my new geometry- linen and damp overlay on top of heated template. Is there still that taboo fluorescence? (Hunch – the geometry allows easier escape of low-boiling fluorescent species via steam distillation).