“All the information obtained from the studies and research” carried out on the Shroud of Turin and the Sudarium of Oviedo “is in tune with what one would expect – from a forensic medicine point of view – to happen to cloths with these characteristics were they to cover the head of a body featuring the kind of lesions Jesus of Nazareth suffered, just as the Gospels tell us.” Alfonso Sánchez Hermosilla, Doctor in Forensic Medicine, stated this at a conference held by the International Centre of Syndonology in Turin today. The conference looked at updates to the “main themes” regarding the Shroud.
The conference was not open to the public but reserved for members of the Centre, though this year the invitation was extended to groups and organisations, based in various parts of the world, that work with the Centre in Turin. More than 300 scholars and experts came from France, England, Spain, Peru, Mexico, Brazil and Bolivia. “Once again, it is not the authenticity of the Shroud that is at the centre of the debate and various speeches,” explained Gian Maria Zaccone, scientific director of the Museum of the Holy Shroud. “The point of this meeting is to discuss updates regarding certain areas of Shroud research which require further examination. For example, the role of pollen research and the significance of historical and informatics research on the Shroud.”
Sánchez Hermosilla, director of the Research Team of the Spanish Centre for Syndonology (EDICES) was among the experts who spoke at the conference. Hermosilla is the forensic expert who took over the study of the Oviedo Sudarium from Mgr. Giulio Ricci, who began examining it in the 1960s. “The similarity in the morphology and dimension of the stains” between the Sudarium of Oviedo and “the Turin Shroud”, led Ricci to believe “that he had actually found the relic St. John speaks of” in his Gospel, when he mentions the sudarium in the tomb. “From a forensic anthropological point of view and a forensic medicine point of view,” Hermosilla continued, “all the information that emerged from the scientific investigation is compatible with the theory that the Turin Shroud and the Sudarium covered the corpse of the same person.”
The Sudarium of Oviedo is a relic that is kept in “El Salvador” Cathedral in Oviedo, Spain, in the Holy Chamber used as the building’s chapel during the reign of King Alphonse II. The Holy Chamber is adjacent to the building and was built by the king for the purpose of housing the Sudarium and various other relics. “This cloth was present in the region of northern Spain from the year 812 or 842” and “is made of linen; it measures approximately 84 x 54 centimetres.” The “composition” of the textile structure of the Shroud and the Sudarium “is the same – substantially linen – the thickness of the fibres is identical, the fabric is hand spun with a “Z” twist, although they were woven differently: the Shroud has a herring-bone weave, while the Sudarium is taffeta.”
The Sudarium has nothing of the mysterious image present on the Shroud which was produced after the body that had been wrapped in it stained the sheet with blood and other fluids. All that there is, are traces of blood and other bodily fluids “from a human corpse”, just as Professor Pierluigi Baima Bollone had stated in 1985, confirming the blood group as AB. This was later corroborated by Dr. José Delfín Villalaín Blanco.
“The morphological study of stains in both linens reveal an obvious similarity between them, due to the corpse which created them was manipulated very carefully in both cases.” The Spanish scholar admits that the morphological similarity between the blood stains do not need to be the same: different heads may produce very similar stains and the same head may produce very different stains. However, both group of stains match very well,” he reiterated, “not only in their relative position but also in their superficial size.” In addition, there is a “correspondence on the distances between the staining injuries which originated the stains”.
Hermosilla pointed out that the Sudarium of Oviedo “covered the face of the corpse” before it was wrapped in the Turin Shroud. “There are a high number of matches between the injuries which can be appreciated in the image of the Shroud of Turin, and those which can be appreciated in the criminologist research of the Sudarium of Oviedo.” Furthermore, all these lesions correspond with the discoveries previously made by STURP using VP8.
One of the pieces of evidence which the Spanish doctor considers most important, are the blood stains attributable to the crown of thorns. “The blood stains attributed to the thorns of the crown can be appreciated in both relics with a high similarity in the distance which separates them.” “The surface of the nose in both linens is very similar; in the Sudarium of Oviedo it has an area of 2.280 mm2, and in the Shroud of Turin 2.000mm2. Moreover, by the middle of the right area of the nose there is a zone which is inflamed which measures 100mm2 in the Sudarium of Oviedo and 90mm2 in the Shroud of Turin.”
One of the stains on the Sudarium of Oviedo “seems to be compatible with some of the wounds inflicted by the Flagrum Taxilatum” – the whip used to beat the man on the Shroud – “on the right hand side of the neck and also proves compatible with some of the imprints on the Turin Shroud, attributed to the same reason. In the occipital region there are stains of vital blood, that is to say blood that was shed when the convicted man was still alive, are very similar on both cloths and seem to relate to the lesions on the scalp; they also seem to correspond to the kind of lesions that a crown of thorns would cause.”
“In the area of the 7th cervical vertebra or vertebra prominens in the Sudarium of Oviedo there is a stain with the shape of a butterfly, which could have been produced as a consequence of sewing carefully the linen from Oviedo to the hair of the corpse covered with fresh blood. This way of sewing the linen to the hair made that this one adopted the shape that can be appreciated in the image of the shroud. Some authors believed it could be a kind of ponytail or braid, setting up another proof of the influence that the previous use of the Sudarium of Oviedo may have had over the Shroud of Turin. On both sides of the stain there are other ones, produced by corpse fluids, which are similar in the Sudarium and the Shroud.”
Rest of the story here.