It’s now just 5 days short of 1 year since I posted my final Model 10, setting out the evidence from some 8 years of reading and practical experimentation, namely that the so-called “Shroud” of Turin was, in fact, an ingenious 14th century mock up of Joseph of Arimathea’s “fine linen”.
The latter was used, I maintain, to transport the crucified Jesus from cross to tomb, bearing a front and rear body imprint, acquired via physical contact only (no input from later Third Day biblical Resurrection, as we were asked to believe by the STURP team-leader (religiously-inclined physicist Dr. John Jackson and others) way back in the late 1970s, early 1980s and indeed ever since to the present day, aided by endless so-called scientific conferences and mass media).
(When will folk learn the modus operandi of science (real science that is) an an alternation between new boundary-expanding hypotheses AND intense critical scrutiny of ones’s own ideas?)
NO! Not the final burial garment! Shorthand description? “Simulated sweat/blood imprint on J of A’s transport linen” – cleverly given a toned-down aged look!
Perpetrators of this ingenious deceit? Probably Geoffroi de Charny”s bevy of self-recruited clerics in his monarch-financed private chapel in the remote hamlet of Lirey, – maybe to supply a seemingly-genuine relic as a striking ornament for the newly created, short-lived “Order of the Star”, a creation of Crusader warrior knight G. de Charny and his reigning monarch, King John II (“The Good”) of France.
Blunt message to all those endlessly pushing the line, decade after decade, century after century, that the Shroud of Turin is the authentic burial shroud of the crucified founder of Christianity:
1. Cease claiming the image has “unique” 3D properties, as stated in that hugely unscientific mystique-mongering STURP Summary.
Nothing could be further from the truth, as simple scribbles with a crayon on paper could have shown. Expect ImageJ graphic shortly!
Late addition: Here’s the response I saw 5 minutes ago to a simple graphic constructed with MS Paint, uploaded to the ImageJ 3D-rendering program, using 5 different superimposed shades of grey!
2. Cease referring to bloodstains as “wounds”.
There is scarcely if any evidence on the body image of “wounds” (whether punctures, torn skin and flesh etc.). What we see are bloodstains, pure and simple, including the 372 so-called “scourge marks”).
3. Cease claiming that the body image is ultra-superficial, e.g. confined the outermost PCW of linen fibres.
(PCW = primary cell wall)
That has never been conclusively demonstrated, and indeed may well be false. The Shroud Science Group failed to display cross-sections to back up their claim, overlooking that linen fibres might be (and probably are) highly light-reflective, concealing pigmented material within the hollow cores of individual fibres. when viewed by sindonologists from outside.
4. Cease claiming that the blood looks too red on account of it being accompanied by alleged (fanciful?) “trauma bilirubin”.
There was scarcely a shred of hard evidence from STURP’s Heller and Adler to back up that claim. There are alternative explanations for an unrealistic degree of redness for what is supposed to be genuine ancient blood (brown in colour rather than bright red!)
5. Give credit where credit is due to the pioneering work of (high-profile) Emily Craig and associates in the late 20th century, showing how powders make splendid imprinting agents that were probably deployed by medieval fabricators of the imprinted linen.
Powders, note, not liquids, which display excessive migratory spread and blurred edges
See the following link to their splendid work:
6. Reject the notion from STURP’s John Jackson and others that an imprinted image, whether natural or artificially-fabricated, would display tell-tale lateral, aka “wrap-around” distortion
The body image on the Linen is frontal/dorsal only, totally lacking sides, so any reference to “lateral distortion” becomes totally irrelevant.
7. Reject another claim from STURP’s John Jackson, namely that the image was projected across air gaps from self-generated radiation at the instant of biblical Resurrection.
There is an alternative means of accounting for the decreasing image intensity associated with regions of lower relief. It posits that manually-applied pressure to produce an imprint works best on higher relief, less so on semi- or totally-obstructed lower relief.
8. Reject claims that the negative tone-reversed body relief, first reported by Secondo Pia using 19th century silver-salt photography, implies that image itself was the product of some kind of auto-photography, whether via the Jackson model or by some other means.
But contact-imprinting ALSO generates negative tone-reversed images! Moreover, there was a rationale for medieval fabrication of the body image via simple imprinting (namely to simulate the kind of body imprint, frontal v dorsal only, no sides, that could have been deposited via sweat and blood onto Joseph of Arimathea’s cross to tomb transport (simple up-and-over sheet of “fine linen”).
9. Do we need a STURP Mark 2, over 40 years after the 78 John Jackson-led expedition?
Answer: Most definitely YES and as soon as possible, with one difference: no one should be allowed to self-appoint to a position of influence. Best to recruit scientists preeminent in their field, with no immediately-obvious in-your-face religious zeal, who will in turn approach and recruit those with relevant know how, experimental skills etc. Folk like myself with specialist knowledge (if only via model-building) should certainly be consulted, but probably not actively-involved.
10. There needs specifically to be a chemical test (using that STURP Mark2 in Point 9 above?) for Rogers’ melanoidins (regardless as to how formed) distinguishing them chemically from Adler and Heller’s chemically-dubious intrinsic-to-linen/no external additives chromophore.
Experimental details need not concern us at this point.
Expect another 10 points to appear in due course, maybe in the next week or so. One of them will propose a STURP Mk2 comparison of image versus non-image bearing threads, analysed in parallel by destructive mass spectrometry that should distinguish, at least in principle, between three competing models:
1. The Adler/Heller model, in which the colour-conferring chromophore is generated at the expense of the linen;
2. The Rogers melanoidin -generating model, in which the starting material in the non-image zone is (linen + Roman-era starch) with the starch – not linen – then chemically modified to generate melanoidin chromophore;
3. My own Model 10 melanoidin-generating model in which the non-image zone is linen only – i.e. with no additions – and the image zone the same amount of linen together with melanoidins generated from late-addition of flour imprinting agent.
Distinguishing between the three models should be feasible, at least in principle, by comparing the height of spectral peaks derived from (a) fragmented linen molecules only (Adler/Heller) versus (b) fragmented linen plus non-linen melanoidin additions whether derived from evenly-distributed starch additive (Rogers) or image-only white flour imprinting medium.)
Afterthought: all these tests can, and should, be performed first on each of the three models described (comparing image versus non-image areas) generated using MODERN-DAY linen and the different chemical mechanisms described. That gives ‘hands-on’ experience in handling and analysing single threads before requesting/taking samples from the real thing. It may also also generate handy reference data for distinguishing between the different origins (linen, semi-pure starch, white flour etc) of the various molecular-scission fragments seen on mass-spectrometry spectra.
The above chemical procedures would be combined in all cases with detailed microscopic examination of the sampled fibres, remembering to include examination of CROSS-SECTIONS (there having been a major failure on the part of STURP and its successors to include this obvious step!)
So who would I personally place in charge of STURP Mk2? Previously I suggested Nobel Prize Winner James Watson, co-discoverer of the DNA double helix, along with his partner Francis Crick (sadly no longer with us).. But Watson’s now 91, and deserves to be left to enjoy his well-earned retirement.
But there’s someone else who springs to mind, admirably well-qualified for the task AND a member of the STURP team back in 1978. To whom do I refer? Answer: Sam Pellicori.
I tried to find a wiki profile on this no-nonsense image expert, one who frankly (in my candid view) put most of the STURP team to shame with his enlightened non-blinkered approach. But guess what? Here’s what appeared on Google’s Page 1 listings under Sam Pellicori – a posting from Dan Porter’s shroudstory back in 2015 with Sam’s name in the title AND that of A.N. Other!!
So why “A.N.Other’s” reference to “capillarity”. Why introduce that aspect into a piece on Sam Pellicori’s thinking?
Answer: Here’s a verbatim transcript of Pages 209/210 from John Heller’s 1983 book: “Report on the Shroud of Turin”. I have bolded the single reference to “capillarity” (an alleged fly in the ointment where Sam’s choice of semi-authentic imprinting medium was concerned).
Sam Pellicori, a champion of the body contact hypothesis, had done some interesting experiments. In three separate experiments, he had placed oil, lemon juice, and perspiration on his fingers. Then he placed linen on top of his hand and pressed it gently to his flesh. He then placed the cloth samples in an oven at low temperature to produce an accelerated ageing effect. In each case there was indeed a yellowing of the contact area. He had brought the linen samples with him. The team examined them and, although there was a surface effect, several of us insisted that we could see some capillarity in several of the fibrils, which is not the case on the Shroud. We all agreed with Sam that the torso of the man had had to be in contact with the Shroud, or the transfer of the scourge marks would not have appeared as they did. For example, there were many such lesions that were invisible in white light and could be seen only in the UV. The hemoglobin and serum ooze could have come only from direct contact. However, the recessed areas of the face could not have been in contact with the cloth, as proved by the VP-8 images and the Shroud-body distance data. Pellicori agreed that that was still a problem for his hypothesis. It was not a problem. but rather the problem. However, as a group we raised every reasonable and even unreasonable chemical hypothesis and scenario. One by one, each was destroyed. There seemed no apparent or even remote chemical mechanism produced by a body with and without anointing oil that could explain the image formation.
What we don’t see in the Heller account is the slightest hint that Sam Pellicori may/might have had another notion at the back (or even front) of his mind. The idea above is that direct body imprinting off the crucified Jesus generated the Shroud image we see today. Who’s to say that Sam might have also considered the notion, no matter how briefly, that the Shroud image was a SIMULATED sweat imprint, obtained with artificial pseudo-sweat (less prone to spreading and smudging) plus accompanying blood “in all the right places”, and that the discrepancies alluded to by Heller were the result of the image being not just simulated but somewhat simplified, dare one say idealized too (accounting for absence of side-imaging, absence of top-of-head imprinting etc). Might Sam Pellicori as proposed team leader of a STURP Mark 2 be willing to give my Model 10 (SIMULATED sweat imprint, 14th century origin) a place on the shortlist of ignored or neglected hypotheses needing, indeed deserving, to be critically tested second time around?
Help! Does anyone have a current email address for Dr. Sam Pellicori? I tried contacting him via an address given online under the company he founded in ’86 ( “Optical Coatings Solutions”) but it was returned as “undeliverable”. If you know the current one (he’s presumably now retired) please drop me a line on sciencebod01 (at) aol (dot) com. Thanks
Here’s a late addendum (blue font) to this posting – a copy-and-paste of an article in this morning’s (UK) Sunday Times.
No prizes for spotting the parallel with STURP’s similar “conceptual bias” displayed in its 1981 Summary, to say nothing of John Heller’s blow-by-blow account of the manner in which the “key concepts” were promoted, the rival ones sidelined
Headline: Page 8 article: Sunday Times, April 5, 2020
MODELLERS BEHIND LOCKDOWN ‘NEED COMPETITION‘
(I have omitted the more personal elements in the article – personality clashes etc). The bolding of key sentences is my own.
The Royal Society is to create a network of disease modelling groups amid academic concern about the nation’s reliance on a single group of epidemiologists at Imperial College London whose predictions have dominated government policy, including the current lockdown.
It is to bring in modelling experts from fields as diverse as banking, astrophysics and the Met Office to build new mathematical representations of how the coronavirus epidemic is likely to spread across the UK – and how the lockdown can be ended.
The first public signs of academic tensions over Imperial’s domination of the debate came when Sunetra Gupta, professor of theoretical epidemiology at Oxford University, published a paper suggesting that some of Imperial’s key assumptions could be wrong.
Her decision to publish highlighted academic rivalries between the epidemiology groups at Oxford and Imperial. (section omitted).
Now other researchers have raised different concerns – saying Imperial’s modelling, while high quality, needs to be checked and replicated by others.
Mike Cates, who has succeeded Stephen Hawking as Lucasian professor of mathematics at Cambridge and is leading the Royal Society project, said his concerns were partly that the Imperial team, led by Professor Neil Ferguson, was overloaded with work, but also that its model was originally designed to tackle entirely different illnesses such as flu.
“The Imperial team are very good, but these models were optimized for a different purpose which is influenza … everyone’s conscious of the fact that it has been rapidly converted from a different purpose and wasn’t originally designed for this type of virus and this type of transmission,” Cates said.
He added: “We need some alternative models because very big decisions are being based on the [Imperial] models. And that doesn’t mean that there’s anything wrong with the Imperial model. It’s just that you can’t have one model, which has in it every possible different set of assumptions.
“With only the one model you don’t know which bits of it are less reliable – because the assumptions in it may have been made years before, in the context of a different disease.”
Such concerns echo those previously raised by Gupta. She said in an interview: “I decided to publish and speak out because the response to this pandemic is having a huge effect on the lives of vulnerable people with a profound cost and it seems irresponsible that we should proceed without considering alternative models.
(Final sentences and paragraphs of article omitted, revealing as they do the background of personal antagonisms).
I’m not the only one who’s making links (for whatever reason) between the Shroud and coronavirus. See this copy/paste of an update that appeared just a few hours ago on STERA’s Facebook site:
“An extraordinary veneration of the Shroud in the Turin Cathedral“! Might it be followed by some Divine Intervention? Let’s hope so. Maybe one further mutation that turns coronavirus into something friendlier? (There are friendly bacteria, after all, so why not an occasional friendly virus or two? Let’s see if that crucially-timed Turin “devotional” can do the trick!!!! Just don’t hold your breath …
Note btw that Pope Francis refers in the current link below to the Shroud as an ” icon”, not a relic (the Vatican, to its credit, does not promote it as authentic).
Postscript: April 6, 2020
How was that contact image of my own face (added a moment ago to top of this site’s Home Page margin today) obtained? Answer: via flour imprinting onto linen,
followed by gentle roasting, in my case in a domestic fan-oven, or ( in the medieval era) possibly over glowing red-hot charcoal embers. Oops. Faulty memory from 5 years ago. I simply took the imprint obtained with flour slurry, left it to dry, observed there was faint colour in the imprint (even white flour has coloured constituents, e.g. flavins, albeit minor), then used simple contrast/brightness controls in one or other (?) bit of photo-enhancing software to get a more pronounced image. Further colour development (using nitric acid vapour or heat) came later – they were not used on my facial imprint.
Thermal image development WAS used on the imprint of a plastic figurine:
Above is the result one obtains if one uses a plastic figurine with arguably more complex 3D relief than my own face (not bad, eh?). I posted this result more than a year ago to one of the major players in “authenticity-promoting” sindonology, naming no names. What a total waste of time! There’s science and there’s “science”!
Returning to the manner in which Sam Pellicori’s approach was briefly considered in John Heller’s book and then categorically rejected out of hand, one might ask for reasons why – boiled down to essentials. They are not hard to find. Look again at Heller’s words (my bolding) :
“However, the recessed areas of the face could not have been in contact with the cloth, as proved by the VP-8 images and the Shroud-body distance data. Pellicori agreed that that was still a problem for his hypothesis.”
3D-enhancing computer software does not PROVE anything – it merely seeks out differences in 2D image intensity, displaying the differences on an entirely artificial man-made vertical dimension (i.e. adding a z axis to the existing x and y axes). As for Shroud “body-distance” so-called data, words fail me. One of the basic underlying principles of intellectual enquiry is that correlation does not imply causation. That sacred principle got totally abandoned in the above quotation. There are alternative explanations for an APPARENT cloth-body distance relationship as I have set out elsewhere.
Let’s not mince our words: the worst enemy of science is prior conceptual bias, which we see loud and clear in the quoted passage. The worst enemy of conceptual bias is science, real science. Sindonology post-1978 (with a brief exception for the 88 radiocarbon dating) has been a display of naked conceptual bias attempting not just to ignore science – real science – but to actively suppress it. What we see is – and has been these last 40 years or so – is a major blemish on our so-called modern era. Bring on STURP Mk2. Bring on Sam Pellicori (and, dare I say, my studiously ignored and sidelined Model 10 – Dan Porter’s now shuttered shroudstory site having offered a brief window for reporting of science, albeit home as distinct from lab-based – REAL MODEL-BUILDING, MODEL-TESTING, MODEL REJECTING SCIENCE, free, or largely so, of science’s worst enemy – conceptual bias.
April 7: have just this minute googled (facebook shroud of turin). It didn’t take long to confirm my hunch as to the manner in which the sudden arrival of the vicious coronavirus was being interpreted by those of a certain Shroud-friendly religious persuasion (like, er, hints of Divine Punishment?):
Returning to topic: if I had to sum up STURP’s planning phase in the run-up to 1978, AND, indeed, way, way beyond, in just a few words , if only colloquially, what would they be?
Answer: Too clever by half.
Correction: too clever by nine-tenths… 😦
STURP tried to blind us with “science” (correction: its intensively-cultivated homegrown version thereof, based on that VP8 ‘box of tricks’, based on that spurious statistical correlation between alleged air-gap distance between cloth and body). STURP provided a signal lesson in how NOT to tackle a problem if claiming to deploy the scientific method. STURP grossly abused the objective scientific method, recasting it to suit its own narrowly focused pro-authenticity ends … STURP was little more than a propaganda exercise, dressed up as science, in reality an object lesson in agenda-pushing, mystique-mongering pseudo-science…
Late addition: Easter Saturday, 7pm, April 11, 2020
Here’s a screen grab of this sites’s recent visitor Stat’s, as supplied by its WordPress host:
(Sorry about the cut-off at the bottom, but the essential detail is there).
I’ll use the above in a Comment to my own posting. Expect it shortly (later this evening). There have been 31 visits thus far today. Nothing to write home about, but (arguably) no cause for shame either. I recently re-installed the Comments facility, btw, having shut it down for the best part of a year, as announced on the final comment to appear on Dan Porter’s now permanently closed (?) shroudstory.com site. Comments are again invited, indeed welcome. But don’t expect me to mince my words: I consider the conduct of the STURP Project to have been a clever and cunning plan to place the Shroud on a so-called “scientific footing”. Scientific my foot! Blatant pseudoscience more like it, the defects summarised by its Documenting Photographer as recent as 2013 in aTEDx address he gave at the Vatican by invitation.
That’s what I intend to address myself in a Comment, having only just seen the link on Dan’s site, and watched the 20 min video clip!