I confess to a long-standing fascination with the Shroud of Turin, and the arguments on both sides. The dating techniques, developed by one of our professors here at the University of Rochester, or so I’ve heard, certainly have something to be said for them…Now, I’m familiar with the standard line of those who claim it’s a medieval forgery: the test is science, everything else isn’t, and anyone who says that the shroud may be genuine is full of wishful thinking, to put it kindly. However, as I recall, there is much about the shroud, in particular the details of the crucifixion itself, which a medieval person would not have known; and as a medieval historian with his share of training in the subject of medieval art, I’m curious to put this to the test. Most notably, nailing through the wrists, rather than the palms of the hands, is a feature which only a handful of medieval portraits show (if I’m remembering correctly). Eh, the debate will go on, and I’m curious about this new carbon-dating technique discussed in one of the articles below. I’m also pretty sure that it’s not a coincidence that, what with the Vatican’s recent troubles, the shroud is going to be on display soon…But that’s another story.
The Face in the Shroud, http://cosmiclog.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2010/03/30/2246609.aspx?GT1=43001
Big Crowds expected for Shroud of Turin Exhibit, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/35442615/ns/world_news-europe/
Could New Test Settle Shroud of Turin Debate?, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/36027227/ns/technology_and_science-science/
And a link to the History Channel program which sparked some of these articles: http://www.history.com/shows/the-real-face-of-jesus/articles/the-technology
Finally, a short article by Larry Hurtado on the early Christians’ understanding of the Resurrection, http://www.slate.com/id/2249526/pagenum/all/#