New test dates Turin Shroud to the time of Jesus
By T.K. Randall
April 26, 2022 · 82 comments
Is the Shroud of Turin genuine ? Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Dianelos Georgoudis
A new type of scientific testing technique has reportedly dated the iconic relic to the 1st Century.
Believed by many to be the actual burial cloth of Jesus himself, the Turin Shroud - which is today situated in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Turin, Italy - has long been the subject of intense scrutiny, controversy and debate.
One of the biggest points of contention regarding its authenticity is its age. If it were genuine, it would be expected to date back 2,000 years to the time of Jesus, however a prominent study conducted in 1988 using radiocarbon-dating seemed to suggest that it was in fact only 700 years old, leading to suggestions that it was most likely a medieval forgery.
Now, however, a new test using a technique known as Wide-Angle X-ray Scattering (WAXS) has contradicted the 1988 findings by indicating that the shroud really is 2,000 years old.
According to Italian scientist Liberato De Caro, radiocarbon-dating is not a reliable technique for dating fabric and the newer X-ray scattering method provides a more reliable result.
"Fabric samples are usually subject to all kinds of contamination, which cannot always be controlled and completely removed from the dated specimen," he told NCR
"If the cleaning procedure of the sample is not thoroughly performed, carbon-14 dating is not reliable."
In addition to dating the shroud to the time of Jesus, the scientists also discovered traces of pollen on the fabric that can be found only in the Middle-East.
If confirmed, it would add further evidence that the shroud was in fact the genuine article.
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