The world's most famous piece of cloth, the Shroud of Turin, alleged to have wrapped the body of Jesus after his crucification, has been proclaimed a medieval fake by an Italian scientist.
Luigi Garlaschellisaid that he managed to replicate the shroud and will reveal how he did it at a paranormal conference coming up this weekend in Italy. Garlaschelli is a professor of organic chemistry at the University of Pavia, and he shared his findings with Reuters. Garlaschelli said in a statement "The result obtained clearly indicates that this could be done with the use of inexpensive materials and with a quite simple procedure." Garlaschelli used materials that would have been available in medieval times to come up with his version of the shroud.
A side-line for Garlaschelli is to find reasons and explanations for alleged miracles, such as statues that weep tears of blood. He does this work for the Italian Committee for the Investigation of the Paranormal (CICAP). CICAP had funded Garlaschelli's research on the shroud.
The shroud has always been controversial, with carbon dating showing the shroud is from 1260-1390. Some people have claimed the shroud was a hoax, while others insisted it was authentic. The Catholic Church has never said the shroud was authentic, although it keeps the shroud at the Vatican. The shroud has not been shown since 2000, but there will be viewings for the public from April 10 to May 23, 2010.
The Shroud of Turin has been studied extensively, as well as having undergone a restoration process.
Garlaschelli does not expect his findings to sway those who believe the Shroud of Turin once covered Jesus.