The Shroud of Turin is stained with the blood of a torture victim, scientists have claimed.
Researchers in Italy said the linen cloth, which is believed to have been wrapped around Christ’s body after he was crucified, contains ‘nanoparticles’ of blood that are typical of someone who has experienced violent trauma.
Elvio Carlino, a researcher at the Institute of Crystallography in Bari, Italy says the particles suggest “great suffering”.
Professor Giulio Fanti of the University of Padua added that the particles have a “peculiar structure, size and distribution” and the blood contains high levels of creatinine and ferritin, typically found in patients who have suffered traumas such as torture.
“Hence, the presence of these biological nanoparticles found during our experiments point to a violent death for the man wrapped in the Turin Shroud,” Professor Fanti said.
The particles “cannot be artefacts made over the centuries on the fabric of the Shroud,” he added.
The findings appear in an article titled ‘New Biological Evidence from Atomic Resolution Studies on the Turin Shroud’, published in American scientific journal PlosOne.
The researchers used methods recently developed in the field of electron microscopy to analyse the Shroud.
Carlino said this was the first study of “the nanoscale properties of a pristine fibre taken from the Turin Shroud.”