Last Updated By Bill's Bible Basics :
February 16, 2017
In addition to reading and studying all of the information which is available in this section of the Bill's Bible Basics website regarding the Shroud of Turin, and the Sudarium of Oviedo, please also consider reading my article entitled "Faith and the Shroud of Turin
" in order to gain a full perspective regarding this issue.
By Lynn Crombie, CNN.com writer
August 12, 2000
TURIN, Italy (CNN) -- The mysterious and controversial Turin Shroud has gone on public display in Italy in what is only the fifth such exhibition in more than 100 years.
Thousands are expected to flock to Turin Cathedral to see what many believe was the cloth used to wrap the body of Jesus Christ after he was taken down from the cross.
The cloth, with its reverse image of a body, including hands, wrists, hollowed eyes and traces of blood, has been the source of centuries-long discussions by scientists and historians.
It was brought to Europe by a 14th-century crusader and has been enshrined in the Italian cathedral since 1578.
The latest exhibition, which opened on Saturday, comes as Shroud experts present what they say are astonishing new discoveries.
Ian Wilson and Barrie Schwortz outline the latest findings in their new book, The Turin Shroud: The Illustrated Evidence, to be published at the end of August.
Although Wilson has written a number of books on the subject, he said the latest contains new evidence which appears to answer many of the sceptics.
"There have been quite a lot of developments since 1998 -- one of the most important has been the examination by an Israeli botanist of pollen taken from the cloth," Wilson told CNN.com.
"His evidence showed that the pollen must have been from a plant called Gundelia which is found in the Middle East and Turkey."
Wilson also puts forwards theories for the results of radiocarbon dating tests by experts in Zurich and Arizona in 1988, which apparently dated the cloth between 1260 and 1390 -- more than 700 years after the crucifixion.
He lists what he says are a number of other radiocarbon dating anomalies, adding that such tests can only be considered reliable once the technology is available to eliminate the microbiological biofilm which can influence the results.
Wilson says the findings of a Swiss specialist in textiles are also remarkable.
"She was able to show that the edges on the shroud had invisible stitching which was identical to the unusual stitching found on fabrics in Masada," he said. Masada was a Jewish fortress during the 1st Century A.D.
As the argument is guaranteed to continue for a long time to come, Wilson admits that while technology could one day show the shroud to be fake, it will never be able to prove that it is genuine.
"Perhaps someone was crucified in the same way, as people were at the time," he said.
"But what is remarkable is that something happened to produce an image on the cloth -- dead bodies do not usually produce imprints like this. It is most extraordinary.