18 – The Turin Shroud
So here we are at the end of another historical investigation, one in which we verified the existence of King Arthur, & also discovered that the legend of the Holy Grail was based, in fact, upon the burial shrouds of St Thomas of India! This artefact was also known as the Mandylion, which I believe was taken by the Knights Templars & secretly sequestered in the vaults of Rosslyn Chapel. In recent decades, a number of scholars have postulated that the Mandylion was in fact the Turin Shroud, so before I wrap up my grail quest I’m just gonna show how that particular line of investigation has no legs!
Back in 1988, after a sample of the Turin Shroud was tested for Carbon Dating, the Vatican’s Cardinal Ballestrero announced the shroud came into being at some point during the period 1260-1390 CE. In spite of this, many scholars are skeptical of the results, citing possible errors in the date springing from bad practice, a repair in the cloth, or possible corruptions in the molecules acquired during the shroud’s exposure fire & water damage… & steadfastly refuse to accept the findings.
The shroud first officially seen in the possession of the de Charneys, the founders of the church at Lirey, near Troyes, where the ‘Holy Winding Sheet,’ was first put on display. The initial reaction to the shroud,made by two local bishops, was that it was nothing but a painting, with Bishop Henri de Poitiers (1354-1370), even stating he knew “the artist who had painted it.” This notion was confirmed in a 1390 memorandum composed by Bishop Pierre d’Arcis, who declared the shroud had been ‘cunningly painted.’ These days, the paint has all but faded from the shroud, leaving a negative imprint rather like the ones pressed leaves leave behind in books as they release lactic acid.