2015 preamble: Hello dear site visitor. Welcome to the site.
You have chosen to check out a 2015 posting. 2015 was my breakthrough year. Up till then I’d been wedded to direct scorching of hot metal template (whether fully 3D or bas relief). Why? The resulting imprints were not unlike TS body image, albeit sharper, but were, nevertheless, negative tone-reversed, responsive to 3D-rendering software (ImageJ) , bleachable etc etc. (All very encouraging).
But there was a fly-in-the-ointment: one cannot monitor degree of coloration when metal is pressed into linen – the action/contact zone being shielded from sight.
The solution took shape in late 2014: instead of heating the template, I coated it with a thin smear of oil, then lightly dusted with white flour ,then imprinted the flour-image onto linen. I then heated the linen over a ceramic hot plate (later with a modern electric iron or fan oven). Result: an arguably better model of the TS body image (fuzzier etc)
But the full potential of the was new procedure not realized. Why? Because I imprinted onto dry linen.
Similar two-step technology was developed in 2015 via an entirely different route.
I had been looking at acids as possible colorants for creating a look-alike “Shroud” image (with most or all its distinctive and unusual features) . Weak organic acids and even strong mineral acids (sulphuric etc) were quickly rejected for one reason or another. They either failed to produce colour, or, if they did (sulphuric) it was not only scarcely visible, but the cloth was dramatically weakened.
It was nitric acid (HNO3) that proved interesting. It produced a faint yellow coloration of untreated linen, probably on account of protein traces.. Could that be made more pronounced? Answer: YES, first by coating the linen with a high concentration of protein (gelatin or egg white), then realizing that a more common medieval commodity, i.e. plain white flour with its 10% or thereabouts of protein would serve.
Image formation? Initially I created imprints of metal and other templates (ceramic etc) using a slurry of wheat flour in water, with or without heat treatment to gelatinize the starch. I found to my delight that I could produce a negative image of my face, 3D enhancible, simply by taking the flour imprint and bolding up the intrinsic faint yellow colour of wheat flour using simple commercial photoediting software (Windows Office).
Insert image of my face, from May 2015: get it from this link.
Images of hands etc, brass crucifixes, plastic figurines quickly followed, still using liquid flour slurry as imprinting medium.
But they were criticized by a particular high-profile individual: I was told the edges were too sharp, too well defined to be considered a valid model.
There was a simple solution that largely silenced the critic.
I returned to the Oct 14 technique that had been shelved, with a small modification: smear the hand, (or metal or plastic template) with veg oil, sprinkle with white flour, shake off excess flour, imprint onto WET linen, then heat the linen until the desired degree of yellow coloration had been obtained (via the kind of Maillard browning or caramelization reactions that occur rotinely when baking flour-based goods).
Yes, nitric acid was dispensed with as the means of coloration. In its place was thermal colour development. Expressed more simply: HEAT the imprinted linen!
No, not a scorch, in the sense that the linen constituents per se (cellulose etc) were being coloured via complex thermal reactions, but, totally separate, at least chemically the acquired flour imprint. (How that imprint interacts physically with linen fibres provides a whole new dimension for speculation and detailed research – with microscopy leading the way.
One final step: a vigorous rub with soap and water to dislodge loose encrustations. What stubbornly remains behind is a somewhat diffuse fuzzy-edged yellow to brown discoloration of the cloth. If imprinted as an image, one sees with time and further reseacrh (2015 and beyond) a growing list of resemblances to (guess what?) the reported properties of the TS body image, including those bizarre features revealed by microscopy (“half tone effect”, “image discontinuities” etc). Yup, I say we’re home and dry with “Model 10”. Correction – home and wet (after the final washing step). Just add 30 mins for drying and we’re home and dry!
It did not take long for the rest of the faux-biblical ‘narrative’ pieces to fall into place. A fuzzy whole body imprint obtained with white flour and heating, with blood in all the right places, is likely to have been a 14th century Veil of Veronica -obsesssed attempt to simulate (“fake”) the imprint that might have been left on Joseph of Arimathea’s fine linen, used to retrieve a recently crucified body from a cross, for transport to a nearby rock tomb. (NO, neither intended nor used as the final burial shroud in 33AD, taking the biblical account as, er, 100% Gospel truth, thereby making the term “Turin Shroud” highly misleading, especially as it’s routinely expanded to “burial shroud”). See margin comments on this site for more details.
Here are the two key links: the first to the floured-up horsebrass from 2014:
The second is the link to imprinting of my face with plain white flour (amazingly) WITHOUT use of physical developing agent (mere recourse to photoediting software):
Maybe three more links from red-letter year, 2015, like Dan Porter’s reports on my Model 10 thinking, proposed mechanism for “half tone effect etc etc.
So much for the background to 2015. (Thanking you dear reader in advance for your patience and forebearance. (Hopefully you’ll appreciate that when one has posted a reported-in-real time online learning curve via 350+ postings, here and elsewhere, some kind of packaging then makes sense).
Here’s the start of the original posting.
This is the second instalment of a 3-part series that looks at uv-fluorescence of model scorch imprints and/or burn marks in general. See the posting immediately preceding this one for a brief introduction, stating the long-overdue need to re-evaluate a previous claim, made by the President of the Shroud of Turin Education and Research Association in a comment directed at this Shroud-detective some 4 years ago (see comment, Feb 10, 8:20). Yes, this blogger/retired science bod was slated by Mr. Barrie M.Schwortz no less, Documenting Photographer for the seminal 1978 STURP team, just as soon as I had settled on thermal imprinting as a model system, inspired as it happens by a line or two in STURP’s 1981 Final Summary.
Here again are his exact words:
To buisness, using the simple uv lamp described in the previous posting, capable of showing the fluorescence in (a) security markings on bank notes (b) fluorescent marker pens (c) the quinine in tonic water and (b) the riboflavin in Marmite (just).
First test: heated bas relief template (horse brass) pressed onto linen 4 times as it cooled to get progressively fainter imprints.
Apologies to any artistic aficionados for the horses being inverted. I wanted the faintest imprint closest to the uv lamp (as an afterthought).
Result: the bas relief scorches do NOT fluoresce under uv.
Note the use of the fluorescent marker pens to act as a reference. The highlighted numbers closer to the lamp show better fluorescence.
3. Here’s the same, using my old friend from previous Mark 1 modelling (these direct scorch imprints having now been superceded by the more recent Mark 2 “indirect” two-step flour imprinting technology). Yes, it’s the fully 3D brass crucifix, purchased in the weekly Antibes open-air market, still doing servic.e.
Result: the imprint off the fully 3D template does NOT fluoresce under uv light.
What we see so far are imprints produced by jsu one of the three modes of heat transfer, namely conduction, requiring direct atom-to-atom contact with no air gap. One should not ignore the other two modes – convection (rising hot air) and radiation, especially infrared. Is it possible to provide just those two alone, excluding conduction? Answer: yes, by using flat bed toaster (found in a charity shop) with a low wattage electric element and metal grid (the latter conducting heat AWAY from the contact areas between linen and grid).
Again: the thermal imprints do NOT fluoresce under uv.
Here’s a variant on the above routine in which aluminium foil was used to excude most air and oxygen access, while incidentally eliminating the radiated energy from the electric elements, such that heating depended almost entirely on convected heat.
Again, the thermal imprints do NOT fluoresce under uv, either the more scorched ends exposed to air, or the fainter scorch regions that had been partially protected by Al foil.
“All scorches fluoresce under uv”? Nope. With the single reservation that my uv lamp is not radiating across then entire range of uv frequencies (it’s UV-A of course, the longer wave, less hazardous form of uv for bank-note checking in shops etc) not shorter wavelength UV-B with its greater risk of skin cancer, eye damage etc) it is already clear that there is no truth in the claim that ALL scorches fluoresce under uv. So how did that false generalization arise? Answer: look at the earlier Shroud literature, and the origin is apparent. It was based on reports that the burn holes, or rather their charred margins, derived from the 1532 fire, fluoresced RED under uv whn tested by STURP. Leaving aside for a moment whether a non -experimental “scorch”, produced by a fire some half a millennium ago under conditions that are a matter of conjecture(molten silver etc, more later), does that particular scenario – ie. full thickness burn hole – lead to fluorescence?
That is the final modelling that will be reported here, in order to keep the posting a reasonable length.
How does one model the 1532 fire? One can’t, but one can produce a full thickeness burn hole, first opening kitchen windows and putting the oven extractor on full speed, then switching on the ceramic hob. (Yes, this blogger’s home has perforce to serve as a makeshift laboratory).
Yes, I used a bank note as the fluorescence reference here (see previous posting). But something suggested that the pinkish fluorescence was not real, but some kind of artefact? Why? First, it’s seen mainly on the left, not the right. Second, more imporatnt, it did NOT appear pink to one’s own eyes. It only looked pink on the screen after uploading from the digital camera. There was another clue to it being an artefact (final picture in this posting):
I shall terminate this posting right now, approx 20:00 on Dec 16th, 2015, because adding more would simply detract from what is presently seen as the takeaway message, namely that scorch imprints used for modelling purposes do not fluoresce under uv, and thus cannot be dismissed as invalid. Red, or maybe pink fluorescence under uv may or may not be a genuine feature of full thickness burn holes, whether produced by heat alone, or by Hugh Farey’s modelling on this site of molten metal (about which more later). Let’s stop there.
I shall also be adding a valedictory later in response to Dan Porter’s announcement yesterday that he is retiring from blogging, leaving an abandoned Marie Celeste site afloat on the blogosphere.
Yes, we’ve had our differences, plenty, maybe too plenty, but he’s always been a smooth-tempered old school gent, to be savoured and/or treasured like fine wine. This Shroud sceptic even gets some appreciative words in the ‘Last Post’. Best wishes for whatever your new direction brings Dan Porter. Maybe we’ll get to hobnob over a beer one day. First, I have a task to complete – sussing out (as we Brits say) the Turin Shroud.
The third and final instalment in this ‘fluorescence’ optic will focus on my current preferred Mark 2 flour-imprinting model (see banner above). It’s one that uses a thermally-induced Maillard reaction in the first of two steps. As to what is left on the linen after the second stage washing with soap and water is anyone’s guess. It might still be a Maillard product, but it’s not impossible that it’s simply superficially pyrolysed linen carbohydrates that have become thermochemically dehydrated by their proximity to a Maillard hotspot, while not being Maillard products themselves.
With the various distractions from shroudstory right now (some folk trying to get in a last swipe, with an ever more blurred demarcation line between representation and misrepresentation) I cannot guarantee to produce Part 3 this side of Christmas. Indeed, year’s end would now be a more realistic target, which coincides with Dan Porter’s stated deadline for folk to submit their last comments before he finally closes up shop for good.
First postscript: here’s a sneak preview of how the next experiment will be phased, using a single flour-coated hand imprint onto wet linen to check the effect of uv radiation on two variables simultaneously:
1. Degree of oven-toasting , by snipping individual fingers off the developing image at increasing time intervals in the oven.
2. Comparing each finger’s image before and after washing in soap and water (labelled A and B).
Second postscript: here’s the draft title for a posting to follow Fluorescence Part 3, hopefully by year’s end.
A new hypothesis for explaining the first recorded appearance of the Turin Shroud in medieval France. Was it purposely designed to be worth a king’s ransom?
The idea has been forming in my head while reading a lot of the pre-Lirey literature that attempts to link the TS with the Mandylion/Image of Edessa etc. There were recurring references to holy relics being seized as battle trophies by invaders and taken home. Then there were numerous references to knights and kings being captured in battle, and then held to ransom, sometimes for extraordianary exchequer-busting sums of money. Geoffroi de Charny of Lirey, first known owner of the double-image “Turin” Shroud, and the king alongside whom he died in 1356 at the Battle of Poitiers (John II “The Good” of France both had experience of being held to ransom. (in the case of John one could say that it was France itself that was held to ransom by the victorious Black Prince from across the Channel). These ideas suddenly gelled last night, and an opportunity presented itself to post this swansong comment or two to the dying shroudstory site. See bolded passage.
The above comment had been preceded earlier on a different thread, same site, with this one (again, the reader may wish to skip to the bolded passage):
Right or wrong, for better or for worse, you read the king’s keep-for-a-bad day-at-the-battelefield ransom idea here or the last gasp shroudstory site first!
Third postscript Saturday 19th Dec 2015:
Want to see a logical train crash? The sort that says a mouse is a perfect elephant, having a mouth, teeth, the same number of ears, eyes, legs AND a tail etc etc. ? See bolded passage:
December 18, 2015 at 8:15 pm
We have seen that logical fallacy appear time and time again, notably on the deplorable Stephen Jones site. How many times does it need to be said? The ability to convert a negative image to a reasonably realistic positive one by means of photography does NOT make the original image a photograph. Certainly, the original image is some kind of -graph, I grant you, almost certainly a ‘contacto-graph’ ie contact-imprint, but that’s as far as it goes. Logical fallacies are cheap today, cheaper than yesterday…
Fourth postscript, still Saturday 19 Dec
To those like Jim Carney above whose first reaction is to assume this private eye must be barking up the wrong tree, or simply barking mad, I suggest they try googling (geoffroi de charny ransom).
I’ve shown a few of the entries below , which I’m busy exploring right now. Note the closeness between the year (1351) in which King John II is said to have paid a ransom to secure the release of Geoffroi (followed by the latter’s immediate ELEVATION of the latter in the royal court) and the first showing of the Lirey Shroud, approx 1355, i.e. a mere 4 years later. But 4 years is plenty of time in which to do a considerable amount of imprinting R&D, producing 3D enhancible NEGATIVE images, as this investigator can attest (first Shroud-related posting December 2011).
Do I hear distant mutterings that say this posting is turning into a shroudological striptease? Er, guilty as charged…
How come I’m reading the above words for the first time, after researching the TS for 4 years, putting up some 300 or more postings on this and my other 2 sites, putting 2000+ comments on shroudstory, and reading a vastly greater number of Dan’s postings and the comments they attract? How come?
How come that someone who spent most of his working life in biomedical research labs with nothing beyond GCE O-Level history (but two sons both with history degrees!) is the one to unearth something so petently noteworthy (and instantly Googleable) as a 4 year gap between Geoffroi de Charny having his ransom paid by the King of France, and pilgrims flocking to the tiny parish of Lirey to see the purportedly ‘genuine’ Shroud (oh, and buy the takeaway souvenir badge too). This is far, far too much of a coincidence to be lightly brushed aside as being of no relevance to the sudden appearance of the Shroud at that particular point in French history, with no back story worth speaking of, and indeed no attempt on the part of de Charny or his wife/widow to provide a convincing back story.
Update: Monday 15th Feb: anyone wishing to see “fluorescence”, or rather falsely cited fluorescence, being peddled to serve a pseudoscientific pro-authenticity agenda, and an especially bigoted one at that, should take a look at this image that has just appeared on the Stephen Jones site (to which I refuse to link, don’t ask!) and its accompanying caption.
No, it’s not a fluorescence photograph. Where did he get that idea? It’s simply a photoedited Enrie image in which density has been colour coded – with highest density being red. No, none of the red is due to “blood fluorescence”, given that the non-bloodied nose, beard, chin crease etc are red as well as bloodstains like the “3 on forehead. The iron has to be chemically stripped out of haem in order to see porphyrin fluorescence, as extensively described by STURP’s Heller and Adler. If it really were fluorescent image, then one could not accept Jones’s claim that it’s only the blood that fluoresces. The body image would have to b e described as fluorescent as well, albeit as yellow rather than red fluorescnce.
The image that one sees above is a ‘flat’ version of what one obtains in ImageJ’s “thermal LUT’ mode, which is a sub-program in the 3D menu, except that there’s no 3D-rendering. (ImageJ does not allow one to remove the slight 3D rendering that one sees with the z slide control in its minimal value of 0.1).
Update Tuesday 16th Feb
My suggestion that the above photo is not a uv-fluorescence photograph, but a photoedited Enrie negative has been challenged in the comments elsewhere. The photo we’re told is from the cover of the journal that published Pellicori and Miller’s work for STURP in 1981, while acknowledging that the entire picture is not INSIDE the paper (curiously we’re told it’s separated into two halves, upper and lower).
What can one say? If it’s not an Enrie negative, confusingly photoedited to make blood indistinguishable from body image – both being the same shade of red – then what is it? What information does it convey that is NOT in the Enrie negative?
Which parts of the so-called fluorescence image are genuinely fluorescing? Aren’t we told that the only parts that fluoresce are the serum halos around bloodstains, of which there’s no obvious evidence above, and which would require close-up views of each bloodstain in order to discern anyway.
If one goes to this shroudstory posting from Dec 2014, then thanks to Hugh Farey one sees what a real uv-fluorescence photograph from the Miller/Pellicori paper looks like.
Should anyone still be in any doubt as to the true nature of that alleged “fluorescence photograph” which I say is simple a false-colour rendering of a standard negative, if not the 1931 Enrie, then an exact equivalent, look at the following comparison: