What is the Shroud of Turin evidence?

What are the Shroud of Turin facts?
Is the Shroud of Turin real?

A shroud is a piece of cloth that is used to wrap a dead body for burial. Turin is a city in north-western Italy. Thus, the Shroud of Turin is a particular burial cloth that is located in Turin, Italy. It has been in Turin since 1578, and measures 14 feet 5 inches long by 3 feet 7 inches wide. The remarkable thing about this burial shroud is that it contains a front and back (dorsal) image of a man that was crucified exactly as the New Testament says that Jesus of Nazareth was crucified, yet the image contains no pigment and is not a scorch or photograph.​

History of the Shroud

What we now call the Shroud of Turin was displayed as the burial cloth of Jesus in the small French town of Lirey in about 1355 or 1356, and again in about 1389. It was gradually taken across France and arrived in Turin, Italy, in 1578. It is now located in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Turin, Italy. Thus, the location of the Shroud of Turin from about 1355 to today is well documented, but the previous locations for the Shroud have required extensive historical research to determine. There is strong evidence found in the Hungarian Pray Manuscript that the Shroud that is currently in Turin was previously in Constantinople prior to being shown in Lirey, France. It was probably stolen from Constantinople in 1204 when the 4th crusaders sacked the city and stole everything of value. Multiple evidences indicate that it was brought to Constantinople from Edessa (now Ursa), Turkey. The early church historian Eusebius writing about 325 AD records that after the end of Jesus' ministry on earth, a disciple named Thaddaeus went to Edessa to cure King Abgar of Edessa and to preach the Gospel. This probably occurred in the first century. Other early traditions add that Thaddaeus took the burial cloth of Jesus with him from Jerusalem to Edessa in this process. So historical investigation indicates that the Shroud of Turin could very well be the authentic burial cloth of Jesus.

​​​​​What is on the Shroud?

1. ​​​​​​​​​​​Rigor mortis in feet shows that the victim was on the cross for a significant amount of time after he had died.
2. Two nails are through one foot, but only one of the nails is through the other foot. This allows one foot to rotate, so that the victim can push up and down on the cross in order to breath during crucifixion. If the victim of crucifixion is not pushing up and down, then it is clear that he is dead. The soldiers had no doubt that Jesus was dead (Mark 15:43-45, John 19:31-35).
3. In 1532, the church where the Shroud was located caught fire. This fire produced two scorch lines on either side of the front and dorsal images.​ Water stains can also be seen on the Shroud from water thrown onto the metal box containing the Shroud after it was rescued from the fire. The heat from the fire did not produce a gradation in the intensity of the image discoloration, indicating that the image is not due to application of an organic compound.
4. Shortly after the fire in 1532, charred material was removed and replaced by patches.​ The repeating pattern of patches and scorch marks that can be seen on the Shroud resulted from the way in which the cloth was folded at the time of the fire. One corner of the folded Shroud that burned resulted in the many areas that had to be patched.
5. The Shroud has four sets of burn holes in an L-shaped pattern. This same pattern of holes appears on a picture in a document known as the Hungarian Pray Manuscript, which is dated to 1192-1195 AD. This indicates that the Shroud of Turin ought to be identified as the cloth, sometimes called the Mandylion, that was in Constantinople until the city was sacked during the fourth crusade in 1204 AD. It is generally believed that this cloth was brought to Constantinople from Edessa, Turkey, in 944 AD. In Edessa, it was called the Image of Edessa. Thus, the Shroud of Turin is the same as the Image of Edessa, so it can be historically traced back prior to 944 AD. This indicates that the C-14 date range of 1260 to 1390 AD for the Shroud of Turin is erroneous. Other dating methods are consistent with a first century date for the Shroud: 1) test results of tensile strength and reflectivity of linen as it ages, 2) stitching used to sew on the 3-inch wide side piece onto the main Shroud is nearly identical to that found at Masada which was destroyed in 73-74 AD, 3) the size of the Shroud being very close to 2 by 8 cubits - the ancient unit of measurement, 4) crucifixion being outlawed after the fourth century, and 5) a possible Roman Lepton over one eye dating to 29 to 32 AD. Several hypotheses have been made to explain the erroneous C-14 date, including an invisible reweave of the sample area and neutron absorption in the trace amount of nitrogen in the linen shifting the C-14 date by the (N14 + neutron --> C14 + proton) reaction. Details of this last option are discussed further on the RESEARCH page.
6. The back (dorsal) image on the Shroud shows a separation of blood and clear blood serum that flowed from the wound in the his side that shows on the front image. This separation indicates that the victim’s heart was not beating for long enough to allow the red blood cells to settle out of the clear blood serum before the side wound was made. Compare this with the "blood and water" that is said to have exited from Jesus' side wound in John 19:34.
7. The Shroud shows 100 to 120 scourge marks from two Roman flagrum, one striking from each side, with dumbbell shaped weights on the ends of the straps. The blood marks from these wounds show blood serum rings (visible only under UV) around the dried blood exudate.
8. There are abrasions on both shoulders evidently caused by the victim carrying a heavy rough object. Compare this with Jesus carrying his own cross (John 19:17).​ This refers to the horizontal piece (patibulum) but not the vertical piece, which would have been stationary in the ground at the location of the crucifixion.
9. The front and back of the head show puncture wounds from sharp objects. Jesus had a cap of thorns beat into his scalp with rods (Matthew 27:30, Mark 15:17-19).
10. Pollen is on the Shroud that is unique to the area around Jerusalem. Pollen from a plant with long thorns was found around his head.
11. The front and back (dorsal) images of the crucified man are negative images and contain 3D or topographical information content related to the distance of the cloth from the body. Of the 100 to 200 fibers in a thread, the images result from only the top one or two layers of fibers in a thread being discolored. The thickness of discoloration in a fiber is less than 0.4 microns, which is less than a wavelength of light. There is no indication of capillarity (soaking up of a liquid) between the fibers or the threads, which means that the image could not have been made by a liquid. The discolored regions of the fibers in the image result from a change in the covalent bonding of the carbon atoms that were originally in the cellulose molecules in the linen. This change in the covalent bonding of the carbon atoms is equivalent to a dehydration and oxidation of the cellulose molecules, but how could this form the image of a naked crucified man? The conclusion is that an artist or forger could not have produced the bizarre characteristics of the images in any era, either ancient or modern. Recent research on how the image of a crucified man could have formed on the cloth was presented on July 22, 2017, at the International Conference on the Shroud of Turin (ICST-2017). (See the CONFERENCES page.)
12. The image on the Shroud has swollen cheeks and a possible broken nose from a beating (John 18:3) or a fall. Abrasions on the tip of the nose have a microscopic amount of dirt in the abrasions. Jesus probably fell while carrying his cross (Matthew 27:32, Mark 15:21).
13. The side of the front image on the Shroud shows a 2 inch wide elliptical wound - the size of a typical Roman spear (John 19:34). Post-mortem (after death) blood and watery fluid flowed down from this wound.​
14. The blood running down his arms is at the correct angles for a crucifixion victim. Two angles for the blood flow can be seen on his arms. These two angles are consistent with the crucifixion victim shifting between two positions while on the cross in order to breath. (See #2 above) What appears to be blood on the Shroud has passed 13 tests proving that it is real human blood. The presence of "X" and "Y" chromosomes indicates that the blood is from a male. The blood type is AB. And most significantly, the blood is high in bilirubin which is a compound produced by the liver when it processes damaged red blood cells, which occurs when a victim is severely beaten, as Jesus was. Normal blood turns very dark brown to black as it ages over days and weeks, but the blood marks on the Shroud show a reddish hue. There are various proposed causes for this coloration.
15. All paintings of the Middle Ages showed the nails through the center of the palms, but nails through the palms do not support sufficient weight since there is no bone structure above this location. Archeology has confirmed that during crucifixion, the nails were driven through the wrists. The Shroud shows the correct nail locations - through the wrist instead of through the palm. This indicates that the images on the Shroud are not from the Middle Ages.
16. On the Shroud, the thumbs are folded under, contrary to all paintings of the Middle Ages. Nails through the wrists automatically fold the thumbs under due to contact of the nail with the nerve that goes through the wrist.
17. Abrasions on one knee show a microscopic amount of dirt, which is evidence of a fall.
18. The three-inch wide side strip is sown on with a unique stitch nearly identical to that found only at Masada which was destroyed in 73-74 AD. This is evidence that the Shroud was made in the first century. The reason for this three-inch side piece is not certain, but the most likely explanation is that it probably was sown on in the process of originally making the Shroud.
19. Small chips of travertine aragonite limestone were found in dirt near the feet. This rare form of limestone is commonly called "Jerusalem limestone" because Jerusalem is the main location in the world where it is found. This limestone found in dirt on the Shroud had a spectral signature nearly identical to a sample of limestone taken from the Damascus Gate - the closest gate to Golgotha. No other place on earth is known to have the identical spectral image. This indicates that the victim whose image is shown on the Shroud almost certainly walked on the streets of Jerusalem before being crucified.