Postscript (correction: ‘prescript‘) added July 2019:
You have arrived at a 2014 posting. That was the year in which this investigator finally abandoned the notion of the body image being made by direct scorch off a heated metal template (despite many attractions, like negative image, 3D response etc. But hear later: orchestral DA DA! Yup, still there with the revised technology! DA DA! ).
In its place came two stage image production.
Stage 1: sprinkle white wheaten flour or suchlike vertically onto human subject from head to foot, front and rear (ideally with initial smear of oil to act as weak adhesive). Shake off excess flour, then cover the lightly coated subject with wet linen. Press down VERTICALLY and firmly (thus avoiding sides of subject). Then (and here’s the key step):
Stage 2: suspend the linen horizontally over glowing charcoal embers and roast gently until the desired degree of coloration, thus ‘developing’ the flour imprint, so as to simulate a sweat-generated body image that has become yellowed with centuries of ageing.
The novel two-stage “flour-imprinting’ technology was unveiled initially on my generalist “sciencebuzz” site. (Warning: one has to search assiduously to find it, and it still uses a metal template, albeit unheated, as distinct from human anatomy):
So it’s still thermal development of sorts, but with a key difference. One can take imprints off human anatomy (dead or alive!).
A final wash of the roasted flour imprint with soap and water yields a straw-coloured nebulous image, i.e. with fuzzy, poorly defined edges. It’s still a negative (tone-reversed) image that responds to 3D-rendering software, notably the splendid freely-downloadable ImageJ. (Ring any bells? Better still, orchestral accompaniment – see , correction HEAR earlier – DA DA!))
This 2014 “prescript” replaces the one used for my earlier 2012/2013 postings, deploying abandoned ‘direct scorch’ technology.
Thank you for your patience and forbearance. Here’s where the original posting started:
Original posting starts here:
And here’s the picture that caused me to change my mind, posted just a few hours ago on the previous blog, initially small format, and then enlarged (when what appeared initially to be “poking rods” by the torturers/executioners showed up as coil-like, and almost certainly a single length of rope used to raise and lower the victim.
PS. I’d have preferred the rope held by the nearside fella to have gone over the side member of the gridiron, not under it. But you know these medieval artists – so challenged re perspective.
Possibly more to come. Must go back and take another look at the “crucifixion” paraphernalia on the border of the Lirey badge.
PS: I’ve used the term “rope” in its broadest sense. It may have been metal cable (heat-resistant). Or maybe cable had not been invented, so they used water-soaked rope? I’ve seen another picture (will search out) of the martyrdom with a big container at the end of the grid. Water?
Afterthought. As I said recently, I’m my own harshest critic. Coming back to that picture, there are contrary reasons for thinking it may not be a rope being worked from left to right, First, the free end behind the grip of the man on the right is rigid, not flopping down, so could be a rod of pole. Secondly what appears to be a twisted rope-like appearance might be an artefact of viewing online. The coiled effect is best seen in enlargments, making it possible it’s an artefact, though it is still visible (just) in the non-enlarged pictures. I guess it’s possible that two men are both poking their separate rigid poles at the same bit of embers near the feet , though why the artist would choose to draw the “poles” so they appear to meet as if one is anybody’s guess.
Update: Thursday Feb 13: I’ve added a question mark to the title!
(This blog being a real time account of the way my thinking evolves, complete with wrong turnings, cul-de-sacs etc).