Shroud of Turin Facts

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As reported in Melanoidins (EU, Volume 4, 2003)

As reported in the secular, peer-reviewed scientific journal Melanoidins (EU, Volume 4, 2003), the images are formed of conjugated, complex carbon-carbon double bonds within a carbohydrate layer of starch fractions and some saccharides. In many places this layer is clear. It is only in some places that complex carbon structures have formed; structures that absorb the right spectrums of the colors of light so they appear straw-yellow. Spectra analysis confirms this. Microchemical tests with iodine also detected the presence of starch impurities on the surfaces of linen fibers from the Shroud.

The impurity layer can be seen by phase-contrast microscopy. And with a scanning electron microscope the fine crystalline structure of the coating can be discerned. The image resists normal bleaching by chemicals or by sunlight, as is expected. But it can be reduced with diimide, also as expected.

The images are not paint, stain, dye or any form of pigment applied to the cloth by hand or mechanical means. They are a pattern of melanoidins, the same chemical products that give beer its color, toasted bread its brown, and bodies their tan from sunless tanning lotions.

The layer in which the color resides is as thin as the wall of a soap bubble. It is as thin in places as 180 nanometers and as thick in other places as 600 nanometers, and it coats only the extreme outermost fibers. By comparison, the average diameter of a linen fiber is 15,000 nanometers. The average human hair is 100,000 nanometers thick.  

  The scientific study of the Turin shroud is like a microcosm of the scientific search for God: it does more to inflame any debate than settle it.”

  And yet, the shroud is a remarkable artefact, one of the few religious relics to have a justifiably mythical status.

  It is simply not known how the ghostly image of a serene, bearded man was made.”

Scientist-Journalist Philip Ball
Nature, January 2005

Nature, that most prestigious of scientific journals, that once had bragging rights to claim that the Shroud was fake, responding to new, peer-reviewed studies that discredit the carbon 14 dating and show that the Shroud could be authentic.


  1. The Shroud of Turin is certainly much older than the now discredited radiocarbon date of 1260-1390. It is at least twice as old and it could be 2000 years old.  FACTS
  2. Though no one knows how it was made, the image is a selective caramel-like darkening of an otherwise clear coating of starch fractions and various saccharides.  FACTS
  3. The blood is real blood.  FACTS
  4. Much of what we think we see in the image is an optical illusion FACTS

Shroud of Turin Facts Check: 2005 Facts