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New Chemical Testing Points to Ancient Origin for Burial Shroud of Jesus;


Los Alamos Scientist Proves 1988 Carbon-14 Dating of the Shroud of Turin Used Invalid Rewoven Sample

Now Thomas (called Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe it.”

A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!”Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!” Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” --John 20

Would it be great if the "Shroud of Turin" proved to be genuine? Um, yes. Wouldn't it be terrible if it proved not to be? No,it wouldn't. Sure, it woud be nice for science to encounter incontrovertible proof that Jesus Christ existed or that the flood of Noah actually occurred but.. hopefully your faith is not going to be impacted either way.

Our feeling is that Christians shouldn't need any "proof" and that Atheists would largely remain Atheists. This is because the proof that God exists can be seen from the "things that have been made", i.e. the universe itself.

Wednesday January 19, 8:32 am ET

DALLAS, Jan. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Shroud of Turin Association for Research (AMSTAR), a scientific organization dedicated to research on the enigmatic Shroud of Turin, thought by many to be the burial cloth of the crucified Jesus of Nazareth, announced today that the 1988 Carbon-14 test was not done on the original burial cloth, but rather on a rewoven shroud patch creating an erroneous date for the actual age of the Shroud.

The Shroud of Turin is a large piece of linen cloth that shows the faint full-body image of a blood-covered man on its surface.

Because many believe it to be the burial cloth of Jesus, researchers have tried to determine its origin though numerous modern scientific methods, including Carbon-14 tests done at three radiocarbon labs which set the age of the artifact at between AD 1260 and 1390.

"Now conclusive evidence, gathered over the past two years, proves that the sample used to date the Shroud was actually taken from an expertly-done rewoven patch," says AMSTAR President, Tom D'Muhala.

"Chemical testing indicates that the linen Shroud is actually very old -- much older than the published 1988 radiocarbon date."

"As unlikely as it seems, the sample used to test the age of the Shroud of Turin in 1988 was taken from a rewoven area of the Shroud," reports chemist Raymond Rogers, a fellow of the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico.

Rogers' new findings are published in the current issue of Thermochimica Acta, a chemistry peer reviewed scientific journal.

"Pyrolysis-mass-spectrometry results from the sample area coupled with microscopic and microchemical observations prove that the radiocarbon sample was not part of the original cloth of the Shroud of Turin which is currently housed at The Turin Cathedral in Italy," says Rogers.

"The radiocarbon sample has completely different chemical properties than the main part of the shroud relic," explains Rogers. "The sample tested was dyed using technology that began to appear in Italy about the time the Crusaders' last bastion fell to the Mameluke Turks in AD 1291.

The radiocarbon sample cannot be older than about AD 1290, agreeing with the age determined in 1988. However, the Shroud itself is actually much older."

Rogers' new research clearly disproves the 1988 findings announced by British Museum spokesperson, Mike Tite, when he declared that the Shroud was of medieval origin and probably "a hoax." The British Museum coordinated the 1988 radiocarbon tests and acted as the official clearing house for all findings.

Almost immediately, Shroud analysts questioned the validity of the sample used for radiocarbon dating. Researchers using high-resolution photographs of the Shroud found indications of an "invisible" reweave in the area used for testing.

However, belief tilted strongly toward the more "scientific" method of radiocarbon dating. Rogers' recent analysis of an authentic sample taken from the radiocarbon sample proves that the researchers were right to question the 1988 results.

As a result of his own research and chemical tests, Rogers concluded that the radiocarbon sample was cut from a medieval patch, and is totally different in composition from the main part of the Shroud of Turin.

Contact: Michael Minor

(972) 932-5141

This release was issued through eReleases(TM). For more information, visit http://www.ereleases.com.

Source:YahooNews.com

Turin Shroud Older Than Thought

Rossella Lorenzi Discovery News

Wednesday, 26 January 2005

Chemical analysis shows the cloth that formed the Shroud of Turin is up to 3000 years old (Image: NASA) The Shroud of Turin, the piece of linen long-believed to have been wrapped around Jesus' body after the crucifixion, is much older than radiocarbon tests suggest, according to new microchemical research.

Published in the 20 January issue of Thermochimica Acta, a peer-reviewed chemistry journal, the study dismisses the results of the 1988 carbon-14 dating.

At that time, three reputable laboratories in Oxford, Zurich and Tucson, Arizona, concluded that the cloth on which the smudged outline of the body of a man is indelibly impressed was a medieval fake dating from 1260 to 1390, and not the burial cloth wrapped around the body of Christ.

"As unlikely as it seems, the sample used to test the age of the shroud in 1988 was taken from a rewoven area of the shroud. Indeed, the patch was very carefully made. The yarn has the same twist as the main part of the cloth, and it was stained to match the colour," says Raymond Rogers, a retired chemist from Los Alamos National Laboratories and former member of the STURP (Shroud of Turin Research Project) team of US scientists that examined the Shroud in 1978.

The presence of a patch on the shroud doesn't come as a surprise. The linen cloth has survived several blazes since its existence was first recorded

in France in 1357, including a church fire in 1532. Badly damaged, it was then restored by nuns who patched burn holes and stitched the shroud to a reinforcing cloth now known as the Holland cloth.

The latest research

In his study, Rogers analysed and compared the radiocarbon sample with other samples from the controversial cloth.

"As part of the STURP research project, I took 32 adhesive-tape samples from all areas of the shroud in 1978, including some patches and the Holland cloth. I also obtained the authentic samples used in the radiocarbon dating," Rogers says.

It emerged that the radiocarbon sample has completely different chemical properties than the main part of the shroud, Rogers says.

"The radiocarbon sample had been dyed, most likely to match the colour of the older, sepia-coloured cloth. The sample was dyed using a technology that began to appear in Italy about the time the Crusaders' last bastion fell to the Mameluke Turks in 1291.

"The radiocarbon sample cannot be older than about 1290, agreeing with the age determined by carbon-14 dating in 1988. However, the Shroud itself is actually much older," says Rogers.

Microchemistry reveals a different date

Evidence came from microchemical tests, tests that use small quantities of materials, often less than a milligram or a millilitre.

These revealed the presence of vanillin in the radiocarbon sample and in the Holland cloth, but not in the rest of the shroud.

Vanillin is produced by the thermal decomposition of lignin, a chemical compound of plant material including flax, and levels decrease and disappear with time. It is easily detected on medieval linens, but cannot be found in the very old ones, such as the wrappings of the Dead Sea scrolls.

"A determination of the kinetics of vanillin loss suggests that the shroud is between 1300 and 3000 years old," Rogers writes.

According to Tom D'Muhala, the president of the American Shroud of Turin Association for Research, the new chemical tests produced "conclusive evidence".

"They indicate that the linen shroud is actually very old, much older than the published 1988 radiocarbon date," D'Muhala says.

Shrouded in mystery

Scientific interest in the linen cloth began in 1898, when it was photographed by lawyer Secondo Pia. The negatives revealed the image of a bearded man with pierced wrists and feet and a bloodstained head.

In 1988, the Vatican approved carbon-dating tests. Three reputable laboratories concluded that the shroud was medieval, dating from 1260 to 1390, and not a burial cloth wrapped around the body of Christ.

But since then a growing sense that the radiocarbon dating might have had substantial flaws emerged among shroud scholars.

The history of the cloth has been steeped in mystery. It has survived several blazes since its existence was first recorded in France in 1357, including a mysterious fire at Turin Cathedral in 1997.

Kept rolled up in a silver casket, it has been on display only five times in the past century. When it last went on display in 2000, more than three million people saw it. The next display will be in 2025.

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