New research indicates that the Shroud of Turin shows signs of blood from a torture victim, undermining arguments that the image was painted, CNA reports.
Very small particles attached to the linen fibres of the shroud “have recorded a scenario of great suffering, whose victim was wrapped up in the funeral cloth,” said Elvio Carlino, a researcher at the Institute of Crystallography in Bari, Italy.
These particles, called “nanoparticles,” had a “peculiar structure, size and distribution,” said University of Padua professor Giulio Fanti.
And the nanoparticles are not typical of the blood of a healthy person. Rather, they show high levels of substances called creatinine and ferritin, found in patients who suffer forceful multiple traumas such as torture.
￼“Hence, the presence of these biological nanoparticles found during our experiments point to a violent death for the man wrapped in the Turin Shroud,” Professor Fanti said.
The shroud’s latest researchers published their findings and measurements in the US open-access peer-reviewed journal PlosOne, in an article titled New Biological Evidence from Atomic Resolution Studies on the Turin Shroud, the Turin-based newspaper La Stampa’s Vatican Insider reports.
The findings contradict claims that the shroud is a painted object – claims which are common among those who suggest it is a medieval forgery. The characteristics of these particles “cannot be artefacts made over the centuries on the fabric of the shroud,” Professor Fanti said.
Among the most well-known relics believed to be connected with Jesus Christ’s Passion, the Shroud of Turin has been venerated for centuries by Christians as the burial shroud of Jesus. It has been subject to intense scientific study to ascertain its authenticity, and the origins of the image.
Appearing on the four-metre long, one-metre wide cloth a faintly stained postmortem image of a man – front and back – who has been brutally tortured and crucified. The image becomes clear in a haunting photo negative.
The Catholic Church has not taken an official position on the relic’s authenticity. The shroud is presently housed at Turin’s St John the Baptist Cathedral.