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Scientists find errors in dating of Shroud of Turin

New studies reveal that the 1988 carbon-14 dating analysis of the Shroud of Turin did not take into consideration the mending done to the cloth in the Middle Ages.

"The mending was medieval, not the shroud," wrote Orazio Petrosillo in Rome's Il Messaggero newspaper. Petrosillo is the author of several books on the cloth widely believed to be the burial linen of Jesus.

Petrosillo explained that during the Middle Ages it was very common to use a type of sewing - invisible to the naked eye - to reinforce fabrics of artistic or historical value.

According to Petrosillo, whose thesis is based on studies by US scientists Sue Benford and Joseph Marino, researchers from laboratories at Oxford, Tucson, Arizona and Zurich, examined the Shroud in 1988 without realising it was mended with linen in the 16th century. That study concluded the Shroud was made sometime between 1260 and 1390.

According to Beta Analytic, a radiocarbon-dating service, a mixture of 60% of 16th-century material with 40% of first-century material could lead to a dating of the 13th century.

Petrosillo concluded that the shroud continues to raise scientific questions calling for new and more adequate study.

The Holy Shroud - Official Site
Shroud of Turin website


23 Aug 2002