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A Comparison between the Face of the Veil of Manoppello and the Face of the Shroud of Turin

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A Comparison between the Face of the Veil of Manoppello and the Face of the Shroud of Turin

Abstract

Recently we have studied the unusual optical properties of the Veil of Manoppello, a canvas representing the face of Jesus Christ, and restored digitally the face, by eliminating the distortions of the anatomic details due the yielding of the very fine structure of the fabric. The aim of the present paper is to compare the restored face of the Veil with that visible on the Turin Shroud. In particular, the paper focuses on assessing whether the two images can be superimposed, i.e., whether they are different images of the same face. Indeed, some scholars have suggested that the Veil of Manoppello and the Turin Shroud show different images of the same face. We demonstrate that the face of the Turin Shroud, after a logarithmic transformation of the intensity and the correction of the background noise, shows cheeks’ profiles, not visible before the digital processing, which overlap very well with those of the restored face of the Veil of Manoppello. These correlations between the two images of the face of Jesus raise the question of their historical relationship.
heritage
Article
A Comparison between the Face of the Veil of
Manoppello and the Face of the Shroud of Turin
Liberato De Caro 1, * , Emilio Matricciani 2and Giulio Fanti 3
1Istituto di Cristallografia, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (IC-CNR), via Amendola 122/O,
70126 Bari, Italy
2Dipartimento di Elettronica, Informazione e Bioingegneria, Politecnico di Milano, Piazza L. da Vinci, 32,
20133 Milan, Italy; emilio.matricciani@polimi.it
3Dipartimento di Ingegneria Industriale, Via Gradenigo 6/a, Universitàdi Padova, 35131 Padova, Italy;
giulio.fanti@unipd.it
*Correspondence: liberato.decaro@ic.cnr.it
Received: 31 December 2018; Accepted: 22 January 2019; Published: 24 January 2019


Abstract:
Recently we have studied the unusual optical properties of the Veil of Manoppello, a canvas
representing the face of Jesus Christ, and restored digitally the face, by eliminating the distortions of
the anatomic details due the yielding of the very fine structure of the fabric. The aim of the present
paper is to compare the restored face of the Veil with that visible on the Turin Shroud. In particular,
the paper focuses on assessing whether the two images can be superimposed, i.e., whether they are
different images of the same face. Indeed, some scholars have suggested that the Veil of Manoppello
and the Turin Shroud show different images of the same face. We demonstrate that the face of the
Turin Shroud, after a logarithmic transformation of the intensity and the correction of the background
noise, shows cheeks’ profiles, not visible before the digital processing, which overlap very well with
those of the restored face of the Veil of Manoppello. These correlations between the two images of the
face of Jesus raise the question of their historical relationship.
Keywords: Veil of Manoppello; Turin Shroud; Jesus Christ iconography
1. Introduction
Recently we have studied and discussed the unusual optical properties of the Veil of
Manoppello [
1
,
2
], on which the face of Jesus Christ (Holy Face) is impressed. Several authors [
3
10
]
have suggested that the image of the face on the Veil of Manoppello is superimposable to the image
of the face of the Man of the Turin Shroud, a linen cloth indelibly impressed by the complete front
and back images of a human body [
11
]. According to the Catholic tradition, it is the burial cloth
in which Jesus of Nazareth was wrapped after his death. The present paper focuses on assessing
whether the two images can be superimposed, i.e., whether they are different images of the same face.
Indeed, any correlation between the two images of the face of Jesus would raise the question of their
historical relationships.
The Veil of Manoppello is a rectangular canvas of 240
×
175 mm
2
. Its particular characteristic is
being semitransparent. The face is visible on both sides (front–back) and, depending on the lighting and
observation conditions, shows some differences in the anatomical details, as schematized in Figure 1.
An analysis of the Veil has allowed us to clarify some aspects of the possible physical mechanism
underlying its unusual optical behavior. It is a linen fiber fabric consisting of very thin threads, with a
thickness of about 0.1 mm, separated by distances even twice the thickness of the threads, so that about
42% of the Veil is empty space. The fibers of the linen threads have been likely cemented by an organic
substance of chemical composition similar to cellulose, presumably starch, therefore eliminating the air
Heritage 2019,2, 339–355; doi:10.3390/heritage2010023 www.mdpi.com/journal/heritage
Heritage 2019,2340
between them. Such a structure causes the optical behavior of the medium to be intermediate between
that of a translucent medium (cemented linen threads) and that of a transparent one (empty space
between the threads).
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 2 of 17
therefore eliminating the air between them. Such a structure causes the optical behavior of the
medium to be intermediate between that of a translucent medium (cemented linen threads) and that
of a transparent one (empty space between the threads).
Since the face is deformed due to distortions of the meshes of the Veil, caused by the yielding of
the very fine structure of the fabric, first we have tackled the problem of digital image restoration to
correct the face deformations which, in some regions of the image, are even about 1 cm [1].
Afterwards, we have performed a spectral analysis of the transmitted image [2]. As evidenced in the
first study, its thin linen threads are translucent, presumably because it is starched, and light passes
through them. As a result, the yellowish color of the ancient linen and starch contribute substantially
to the final hues of the face, especially when the Veil is lit from the backside with grazing light.
Spectrophotometry measurements show how the fabric absorbs the various chromatic components.
Through these quantitative evaluations, the colors of the transmitted face image have been
compensated, by subtracting the contribution due to the yellowish coloration of the thin linen
threads.
Figure 1. Image of the face visible on the Veil of Manoppello according to different lighting
conditions: green, image lit by a light source located in front of the Veil; yellow, with the source
located in the back.
Figure 1.
Image of the face visible on the Veil of Manoppello according to different lighting conditions:
green, image lit by a light source located in front of the Veil; yellow, with the source located in the back.
Since the face is deformed due to distortions of the meshes of the Veil, caused by the yielding
of the very fine structure of the fabric, first we have tackled the problem of digital image restoration
to correct the face deformations which, in some regions of the image, are even about 1 cm [
1
].
Afterwards, we have performed a spectral analysis of the transmitted image [
2
]. As evidenced
in the first study, its thin linen threads are translucent, presumably because it is starched, and light
passes through them. As a result, the yellowish color of the ancient linen and starch contribute
substantially to the final hues of the face, especially when the Veil is lit from the backside with
grazing light. Spectrophotometry measurements show how the fabric absorbs the various chromatic
Heritage 2019,2341
components. Through these quantitative evaluations, the colors of the transmitted face image have been
compensated, by subtracting the contribution due to the yellowish coloration of the thin linen threads.
Furthermore, the rotational spectrum of the image has been studied after digital restoration [
2
].
The linear fit of the power spectrum in bi-logarithmic scale with a power law
fP
provided a surprising
value for the slope parameter
P=
3.49
±
0.03. This result was unexpected because it is typical of
photographs of human faces, not of portraits of human faces painted by artists, which instead have
statistical properties of fractal type, with slope’s values P=2.0.
The Turin Shroud has been in the center of a lively scientific debate since the end of the XIX
century, when the negatives of its photographs, taken by S. Pia in 1898, clearly showed the impressed
image of a man. After carbon-14 dating [
12
] of a linen piece taken from a corner of the Turin Shroud,
the scientific controversy regarding its authenticity exploded. Indeed, the medieval date, derived
from carbon-14 analysis, is not compatible with the hundreds of data that, conversely, show the Turin
Shroud is compatible with the historical period in which Jesus of Nazareth lived in Palestine, 2000 years
ago [
13
,
14
]. Moreover, the carbon-14 dating results remain controversial [
15
,
16
], especially because
of the likely non-negligible carbon contamination of the textile. This contamination can be due to
many factors, including environmental ones [
17
,
18
]. Furthermore, a regression analysis on data of the
Shroud’s carbon dating has shown their statistical heterogeneity, together with an implausibility of
spatial allocations of some measurements’ samples [
16
]. It should be also noted, however, that five
different independent methods agree in assigning the age of the Shroud to the first century Anno
Domini (AD). Indeed, the spectrometric methods, based on FT-IR/ATR (Fourier Transform Infrared
spectroscopy/Attenuated Total Reflectance) and Raman spectroscopy, dates the Shroud to 300 Before
Christ (BC)
±
400 years and 200 BC
±
500 years, respectively [
19
]. The mechanical multi-parametric
method, based on the analysis of five parameters, including the breaking load and Young’s modulus
and the loss factor, after an adequate calibration based on the results of two dozen samples of known
age, assigns the Turin Shroud to the years 400 AD
±
400 years [
20
]. Another chemical method, based on
estimates of the kinetic constants for the loss of vanillin from lignin, attributes the Shroud an age in the
range 1300 to 3000 years [
21
]. Finally a numismatic method [
20
], based on the comparison between the
Shroud and the effigies of Christ reproduced on Byzantine coins, shows that the Relic was well known
in the Byzantine Empire since 692 AD.
Several hypotheses have been proposed regarding the formation of the body image on the Turin
Shroud, and several experiments have been performed for this purpose, but none of them has been
successful in reproducing, both at macroscopic and microscopic levels, all the characteristics of the
image. A critical compendium of the hypotheses and the experiments performed can be found in [
22
].
As already mentioned, some attempts to match the two images, namely the face visible on the Veil
of Manoppello and the face of the body visible on the Turin Shroud, have already been attempted [
3
,
10
].
In particular, it was proposed that both images were formed in the same time, when the two fabrics
were laying one upon another in the sepulcher where the body of Jesus Christ was deposed [
3
]. It is
beyond the scope of the present work to discuss the origin of the two images. In fact, we want to
assess the possible presence of correlations between the two images and realize whether they may
be related to the face of the same man. If these correlations were found, it would imply a possible
interdependence of the two images of the Holy Face, useful to reconstruct the historical route of the
iconography of the most represented face in the world, that of Jesus Christ. In none of the previous
attempts to superimpose the two images, however, the deformations of the Veil of Manoppello were
corrected before the comparison. As we have corrected them in our first work [
1
], we think that the two
faces, now, can be reliably compared with the aim of understanding whether the images are related,
whether they belong to the same man, and obtaining, if possible, some additional information about
their origin.
Heritage 2019,2342
After this Introduction, in Section 2we show that the logarithmic transformation of the intensity
of the Turin Shroud image, measured both with visible light and Ultra-Violet (UV) radiation, highlights
some interesting anatomical details, such us the cheeks’ profiles. In Section 3, after [
1
,
2
], we further
analyze the face visible on the Veil of Manoppello. In Section 4, we compare and match the two faces
and, finally, in Section 5we discuss the results and in Section 6we draw some conclusions.
2. The Face of the Turin Shroud
In a recent paper a digital restoring of the hands’ region of the Turin Shroud image visualizes
anatomic details of the ending part of the right hand’s thumb, never seen before [
23
]. This result shows
the importance of the extraction of information of weak intensity embedded in the image impressed
on the Turin Shroud. In this Section, just for this purpose, we apply the logarithm function to the
luminance intensity of the image impressed on the Shroud. Usually, the logarithmic transformation of
a variable (in other words, taking the logarithm of a positive variable) is used to compress data that
range in large intervals, but it can also be used to enhance weak signals.
Figure 2a shows the original image of the Turin Shroud face’s region, extracted from a 2002
photograph taken by the professional photographer G. C. Durante. Figure 2b shows the absolute value
of the logarithm of Figure 2a, after the conversion in grey levels. As well known, the positive image
I(x,y)
(normalized to unity) of Figure 2a shows the dark-light contrast inverted, as a function of the
pixel coordinates x and y. Indeed, as shown accidentally by S. Pia in 1898, the complementary image
1
I(x,y)
gives the right luminance levels for a human face. Moreover, it is well known that the
complementary image contains tridimensional (3D) information, in some way related to the distance
of the anatomical parts from the burial cloth [
22
]. Obviously, this 3D information is already present in
the positive image, but with inverted contrast; i.e. light and dark inverted.
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 4 of 17
and match the two faces and, finally, in Section 5 we discuss the results and in Section 6 we draw
some conclusions.
2. The Face of the Turin Shroud
In a recent paper a digital restoring of the hands’ region of the Turin Shroud image visualizes
anatomic details of the ending part of the right hand’s thumb, never seen before [23]. This result
shows the importance of the extraction of information of weak intensity embedded in the image
impressed on the Turin Shroud. In this Section, just for this purpose, we apply the logarithm
function to the luminance intensity of the image impressed on the Shroud. Usually, the logarithmic
transformation of a variable (in other words, taking the logarithm of a positive variable) is used to
compress data that range in large intervals, but it can also be used to enhance weak signals.
Figure 2a shows the original image of the Turin Shroud face’s region, extracted from a 2002
photograph taken by the professional photographer G. C. Durante. Figure 2b shows the absolute
value of the logarithm of Figure 2a, after the conversion in grey levels. As well known, the positive
image 𝐼(𝑥, 𝑦) (normalized to unity) of Figure 2a shows the dark-light contrast inverted, as a function
of the pixel coordinates x and y. Indeed, as shown accidentally by S. Pia in 1898, the complementary
image 1 − 𝐼(𝑥, 𝑦) gives the right luminance levels for a human face. Moreover, it is well known that
the complementary image contains tridimensional (3D) information, in some way related to the
distance of the anatomical parts from the burial cloth [22]. Obviously, this 3D information is already
present in the positive image, but with inverted contrast; i.e. light and dark inverted.
Figure 2. (a) Original positive image of the Turin Shroud face’s region, extracted from a 2002
photograph taken by the professional photographer G. C. Durante; (b) absolute value of the
logarithm of Figure 2a, after the conversion in grey levels.
After having converted Figure 2a in grey levels, Figure 2b shows the absolute value of the
logarithm of the intensity. Let us note how effectively the logarithmic transformation of the
intensity, by enhancing weak signals, depicts the face with the right contrast and proportions.
However, by using the logarithmic function obviously also noise is enhanced, therefore, the image
shown in Figure 2b requires some digital filtering to extract the desired information from artifacts
and noise. For example, there are several vertical stripes, white and dark lines and bands that affect
the image. To eliminate them we have used a digital restoring approach similar to that described in
[23]. The same approach can be used on what is visible on the Turin Shroud when the cloth is seen in
reflection with UV radiation. Figure 3 shows the UV image, taken by G. B. Judica Cordiglia [24],
compared with the face seen with visible light, after processing the two images with the same
Figure 2.
(
a
) Original positive image of the Turin Shroud face’s region, extracted from a 2002 photograph
taken by the professional photographer G. C. Durante; (
b
) absolute value of the logarithm of Figure 2a,
after the conversion in grey levels.
Heritage 2019,2343
After having converted Figure 2a in grey levels, Figure 2b shows the absolute value of the
logarithm of the intensity. Let us note how effectively the logarithmic transformation of the intensity,
by enhancing weak signals, depicts the face with the right contrast and proportions. However, by using
the logarithmic function obviously also noise is enhanced, therefore, the image shown in Figure 2b
requires some digital filtering to extract the desired information from artifacts and noise. For example,
there are several vertical stripes, white and dark lines and bands that affect the image. To eliminate
them we have used a digital restoring approach similar to that described in [
23
]. The same approach
can be used on what is visible on the Turin Shroud when the cloth is seen in reflection with UV
radiation. Figure 3shows the UV image, taken by G. B. Judica Cordiglia [
24
], compared with the
face seen with visible light, after processing the two images with the same procedure: logarithmic
transformation of the intensity, background stripes’ correction and partial denoising. It is interesting to
note that this technique visualizes the cheeks’ profile much better than the original version.
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 5 of 17
procedure: logarithmic transformation of the intensity, background stripes’ correction and partial
denoising. It is interesting to note that this technique visualizes the cheeks’ profile much better than
the original version.
Figure 3. In the upper panels: absolute value of the logarithm of the Turin Shroud face seen with
ultra-violet (UV) (left) and visible light (right), after the conversion in grey levels. In the lower
panels: same images after background stripes’ correction and partial denoising. The original UV
acquisitions are by G. B. Judica Cordiglia.
Judica Cordiglia lit the cloth with two mercury vapour lamps to provide ultraviolet radiation
suitable for photographic shooting. G. Enrie, in 1931 [25], used orthochromatic material that loses
anatomic details to give high-contrast images, due to the few grey levels available. Conversely,
panchromatic material used by Judica Cordiglia allowed him to record all the colors, and to
transform them into grey images, with the result of obtaining final images full with anatomic details.
In particular, Figure 3 clearly shows the importance of information about the Man’s face, such as the
cheeks’ profiles, embedded in lower intensities, which can be better visualized only after correcting
the background stripes.
3. The Face of the Manoppello Veil
Figure 3.
In the upper panels: absolute value of the logarithm of the Turin Shroud face seen with
ultra-violet (UV) (
left
) and visible light (
right
), after the conversion in grey levels. In the lower panels:
same images after background stripes’ correction and partial denoising. The original UV acquisitions
are by G. B. Judica Cordiglia.
Heritage 2019,2344
Judica Cordiglia lit the cloth with two mercury vapour lamps to provide ultraviolet radiation
suitable for photographic shooting. G. Enrie, in 1931 [
25
], used orthochromatic material that loses
anatomic details to give high-contrast images, due to the few grey levels available. Conversely,
panchromatic material used by Judica Cordiglia allowed him to record all the colors, and to transform
them into grey images, with the result of obtaining final images full with anatomic details. In particular,
Figure 3clearly shows the importance of information about the Man’s face, such as the cheeks’
profiles, embedded in lower intensities, which can be better visualized only after correcting the
background stripes.
3. The Face of the Manoppello Veil
In [
2
] we have already shown that the evaluation of the preferential absorption of the blue
chromatic component, with respect to the others, obtained from Spectrophotometry measurements,
gives the possibility to restore the colors of the face of the Manoppello Veil, when seen in transmission
in back-lighting conditions. The image, restored chromatically, presents shades more similar to the skin
color of the human face. If we extend the digital restoration to a larger part of the image, adding also
the hairs, we obtain the full image shown in Figure 4. The image shown on the right panel (Figure 4b)
has been obtained by applying the restoring procedures described in [
1
,
2
] to a larger image of the
face visible in transmission on the Veil, showing beard and hair. A contrast enhanced version of the
complete face, visible on the Veil, has been reported in the left panel (Figure 4a).
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 6 of 17
In [2] we have already shown that the evaluation of the preferential absorption of the blue
chromatic component, with respect to the others, obtained from Spectrophotometry measurements,
gives the possibility to restore the colors of the face of the Manoppello Veil, when seen in
transmission in back-lighting conditions. The image, restored chromatically, presents shades more
similar to the skin color of the human face. If we extend the digital restoration to a larger part of the
image, adding also the hairs, we obtain the full image shown in Figure 4. The image shown on the
right panel (Figure 4b) has been obtained by applying the restoring procedures described in [1,2] to a
larger image of the face visible in transmission on the Veil, showing beard and hair. A contrast
enhanced version of the complete face, visible on the Veil, has been reported in the left panel (Figure
4a).
Figure 4. (a) Contrast enhanced of the original face, and (b) digitally-restored face, visible in
transmission on the Veil of Manoppello with back-grazing illumination.
The enhancement of the contrast in Figure 4a is useful to better highlight several wounds,
visible on the face as red patches. Indeed, the history of the Veil of Manoppello could be related to
that of the Veil of Veronica, the relic of the face of Christ that the Christian tradition binds to his
Passion and death.
From the comparison between Figure 4a and Figure 4b, it is evident the effect of the distortion
of the texture in the deformation of the face of Figure 4a, as discussed in detail in [1]. The original
aspect ratio (width/height) of the face is 17.5/24.0= 0.73 (Figure 4a). After the correction of distortion
the mean aspect ratio is 0.70 (Figure 4b). The slight reduction could be related both to local distortion
and to a global tetragonal deformation of the Veil. Indeed, as already discussed in [1], the constraint
for the Veil, to remain bound to the glass reliquary’s frame, could have developed some tensions,
with horizontal and vertical components of the forces that are not necessarily equivalent, leading
to a possible global tetragonal deformation of the fabric’s mesh.
4. Comparison between the Faces of the Turin Shroud and the Manoppello Veil
As mentioned, some scholars have tried to match the face visible on the Veil of Manoppello to
the face of the Man visible on the Turin Shroud [3,10]. However, as already noted, these scholars did
not eliminate the distortions due to the yielding of the Veil fabric before doing the comparison.
Figure 4.
(
a
) Contrast enhanced of the original face, and (
b
) digitally-restored face, visible in
transmission on the Veil of Manoppello with back-grazing illumination.
Heritage 2019,2345
The enhancement of the contrast in Figure 4a is useful to better highlight several wounds,
visible on the face as red patches. Indeed, the history of the Veil of Manoppello could be related
to that of the Veil of Veronica, the relic of the face of Christ that the Christian tradition binds to his
Passion and death.
From the comparison between Figure 4a,b, it is evident the effect of the distortion of the texture
in the deformation of the face of Figure 4a, as discussed in detail in [
1
]. The original aspect ratio
(width/height) of the face is 17.5/24.0 = 0.73 (Figure 4a). After the correction of distortion the mean
aspect ratio is 0.70 (Figure 4b). The slight reduction could be related both to local distortion and to a
global tetragonal deformation of the Veil. Indeed, as already discussed in [
1
], the constraint for the Veil,
to remain bound to the glass reliquary’s frame, could have developed some tensions, with horizontal
and vertical components of the forces that are not necessarily equivalent, leading to a possible global
tetragonal deformation of the fabric’s mesh.
4. Comparison between the Faces of the Turin Shroud and the Manoppello Veil
As mentioned, some scholars have tried to match the face visible on the Veil of Manoppello to the
face of the Man visible on the Turin Shroud [
3
,
10
]. However, as already noted, these scholars did not
eliminate the distortions due to the yielding of the Veil fabric before doing the comparison. Indeed,
as shown in [
1
,
2
], it is possible to highlight a consistent yielding of the Veil fabric, up to about 1 cm in
some areas.
In Figure 5a we show the face of the Turin Shroud visible with UV, after having applied the
logarithmic transformation, corrected the stripes of the background [
23
], and de-noised the final result.
In Figure 5b the same digital restoring procedure is applied to the face of the Turin Shroud seen with
visible light. In Figure 5c we averaged Figure 5a,b, after having co-registered each other by aligning
the hematic traces and the extended tissue defects, for example the long fold on the beard present in
both images. Figure 5d shows the digitally
restored Manoppello face. Figure 5e shows the original
photograph of the region of the face of the Turin Shroud. Figure 5f shows the original photograph
of the Veil of Manoppello (back side), taken by the third author, with the contrast enhanced. In each
image the blue rectangular box defines the region of the face. The dashed horizontal and vertical red
lines are drawn, for reference, in correspondence of some main anatomical details. All the images are
shown in the same spatial relative scale, in a ratio 1:1.
From the above figures it is important to note that the Face of the Turin Shroud and the digitally
restored face of the Veil have the same proportions. Because the red dashed lines intersect the main
anatomic details, any ratio between distances in the two images is the same, within an uncertainty
related to the spatial resolution of the Turin Shroud image, equal to 4.9
±
0.5 mm [
26
]. For example,
the ratio between the distance of the eyebrows’ center to the end of the nose, and the eyes’ distance is
equal to 1.21
±
0.05 for the Turin Shroud and 1.23
±
0.05 for the face on the Veil. For the Turin Shroud
the uncertainty, due to the spatial resolution, on distances of the order of 10 cm is about 5%. For the
digitally restored face, visible on the Veil, the image is more detailed, but the Veil has a semi-transparent
structure because its threads are separated by spaces up to twice their thickness. Thus, the resolution
of the face visible on the Veil is related to its discrete structure, and can be set equal to the period
of the threads. In [
2
] we showed that, from the distance of the secondary Fast Fourier Transform
peaks from the main maximum, it is possible to obtain information about the spatial periodicity of
the weft and warp of the fabric, equal to 0.339
±
0.005 mm and 0.395
±
0.005 mm, respectively. Thus,
the best resolution of the image can be set equal to the minimum of the local periodicity of the vertical
threads, equal to 0.339
0.34 mm. Therefore, for the face, the uncertainty on distances of the order
of 10 cm is about 3.4%, due to the discrete structure of the threads. Therefore, within a maximum
uncertainty of about 5%, the face of the Turin Shroud and the digitally restored face visible on the Veil
are characterized by the same proportions and distances between the anatomical details. This finding
is particularly evident if we compare the cheeks’ profiles of Figure 5c, where both the left and the right
cheeks are well visible, with those of Figure 5d. It should be stressed that in the original Turin Shroud
Heritage 2019,2346
image, namely the image visible before the invention of photography, the face is much narrower. Thus,
if we compare Figure 5e with Figure 5f, a great difference in the face width is particularly evident,
well beyond the maximum uncertainty of 5%.
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 8 of 17
Figure 5. (a) Turin Shroud face visible with UV. (b) Turin Shroud face seen with visible light. (c)
Averaging of Figure 5a and 5b. (d) Digitally restored Manoppello face. (e) Original photo of the
Turin Shroud linen cloth, in the region of the face. (f) Original photo of the Veil of Manoppello (back
side), with the contrast enhanced.
Conversely, as it is evident by comparing the blue boxes of Figure 5c and Figure 5d, the two
faces, displayed in the same relative scale, are well proportioned regardless the slightly different
perspective of the two images. Indeed, the Turin Shroud face seems to be slightly rotated to the right,
while the Manoppello face seems to be slightly rotated to the left.
Furthermore, in Figure 6 some relief and contour plots, realized with the software Wolfram
Mathematica, allows us to visualize the well-known fact that the image of the Shroud contains 3D
features, for example with the nose in relief with respect to the other parts of the face. Before
calculating the 3D plot relief, the image has been suitably binned by a factor 10 ×10 and smoothed
with a bilateral filter of the software Wolfram Mathematica with spatial width of 10 pixels, to leave
the principal anatomic details, because the spatial resolution of the initial image is only about 0.5 cm.
Indeed, the original image was 5310 ×4744 pixels, to which corresponds an area of about 25.5 ×
23.0 cm2. Thus, any pixel corresponds to a surface of about 0.05 × 0.05 mm2. The binning 10 ×10
leads to a binned pixel 0.5 × 0.5 mm2. Thus, the smoothing due to the bilateral filter on 10 binned
pixels, i.e. on an area of 5 × 5 mm2, can be directly related to the image spatial resolution.
Figure 5.
(
a
) Turin Shroud face visible with UV. (
b
) Turin Shroud face seen with visible light.
(
c
) Averaging of Figure 5a,b. (
d
) Digitally restored Manoppello face. (
e
) Original photo of the Turin
Shroud linen cloth, in the region of the face. (
f
) Original photo of the Veil of Manoppello (back side),
with the contrast enhanced.
Conversely, as it is evident by comparing the blue boxes of Figure 5c,d, the two faces, displayed
in the same relative scale, are well proportioned regardless the slightly different perspective of the two
images. Indeed, the Turin Shroud face seems to be slightly rotated to the right, while the Manoppello
face seems to be slightly rotated to the left.
Furthermore, in Figure 6some relief and contour plots, realized with the software Wolfram
Mathematica, allows us to visualize the well-known fact that the image of the Shroud contains 3D
features, for example with the nose in relief with respect to the other parts of the face. Before calculating
the 3D plot relief, the image has been suitably binned by a factor 10
×
10 and smoothed with a bilateral
filter of the software Wolfram Mathematica with spatial width of 10 pixels, to leave the principal
anatomic details, because the spatial resolution of the initial image is only about 0.5 cm. Indeed,
the original image was 5310
×
4744 pixels, to which corresponds an area of about 25.5
×
23.0 cm
2
.
Thus, any pixel corresponds to a surface of about 0.05
×
0.05 mm
2
. The binning 10
×
10 leads to a
binned pixel 0.5
×
0.5 mm
2
. Thus, the smoothing due to the bilateral filter on 10 binned pixels, i.e.,
on an area of 5 ×5 mm2, can be directly related to the image spatial resolution.
Heritage 2019,2347
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 9 of 17
Figure 6. (a) Relief plot of the Turin Shroud face shown in the previous figure (panel 5b). (b) Relief
plot of the Manoppello face visible in the previous figure (panel 5d). See main text for more details.
(c) Contour plot of the Turin Shroud face shown in Figure 5b. (d) Contour plot of the Manoppello
face visible in Figure 5d.
Differently from the Turin Shroud, the relief plot of the face visible on the Manoppello Veil
partially lacks tri-dimensionality.
The graininess of the plot relief shown in Figure 6b could be related to the semi-transparency of
the Veil, leading to local maxima of transmitted light among the threads. It is interesting to note that
in the Turin Shroud face it is slightly visible the profile of the right cheek, highlighted by a dashed
white curve in Figure 6a, separated by the profile of the hairs, also highlighted with another dashed
white curve. The right cheek appears as it was swollen. It should be noted that also in the face of
Manoppello, shown in Figure 6b, it is visible a swollen right cheek.
In Figure 7 we superposed the digitally restored face visible on the Veil (Figure 7a) to that
visible on the Shroud, after the logarithmic transformation of the intensity, the correction of the
background stripes and de-noising the final result (Figure 7b).
Figure 6.
(
a
) Relief plot of the Turin Shroud face shown in the previous figure (panel 5b). (
b
) Relief
plot of the Manoppello face visible in the previous figure (panel 5d). See main text for more details.
(
c
) Contour plot of the Turin Shroud face shown in Figure 5b. (
d
) Contour plot of the Manoppello face
visible in Figure 5d.
Differently from the Turin Shroud, the relief plot of the face visible on the Manoppello Veil
partially lacks tri-dimensionality.
The graininess of the plot relief shown in Figure 6b could be related to the semi-transparency of
the Veil, leading to local maxima of transmitted light among the threads. It is interesting to note that
in the Turin Shroud face it is slightly visible the profile of the right cheek, highlighted by a dashed
white curve in Figure 6a, separated by the profile of the hairs, also highlighted with another dashed
white curve. The right cheek appears as it was swollen. It should be noted that also in the face of
Manoppello, shown in Figure 6b, it is visible a swollen right cheek.
In Figure 7we superposed the digitally restored face visible on the Veil (Figure 7a) to that visible
on the Shroud, after the logarithmic transformation of the intensity, the correction of the background
stripes and de-noising the final result (Figure 7b).
Heritage 2019,2348
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 10 of 17
Figure 7. (a) Digitally-restored Manoppello face. (b) Turin Shroud face seen with visible light. (c)
Averaging of 50% of Figure 7a and 50% of Figure 7b. (d) Averaging of the anatomical face profiles of
Figure 7a with Figure 7b.
The result of the superposition of 50% of Figure 7a and 50% of Figure 7b is shown in Figure 7c,
aligned with the Turin Shroud image by centering the eyes’ regions. In Figure 7d we have extracted
the face profiles from Figure 7a, by increasing 100% both the image contrast and sharpness, and by
reducing the grey levels until leaving only the most intense image variations. Then, we have added
it to Figure 7b, to further investigate and assess the matching of the two faces.
To be more detailed, in Figure 8a we show the logarithm of the intensity with removed
background stripes. In Figure 8b we report the average 𝑰 of the rows of Figure 8a in the blue box of
Figure 8a (blue profile) together with the average 𝑰 of the rows of Figure 8c in the green box (green
profile), where Figure 8c shows the intensity without removed background stripes, together with the
average 𝑰 of the rows of Figure 8d in the red box (red profile). The vertical blue lines intersect the
two minima in the blue profile corresponding to the cheeks’ width for Figure 8a. The vertical green
lines intersect the two minima in the green profile corresponding to the cheeks’ width for Figure 8c.
Let us note that the width of the cheeks is underestimated in Figure 8c by about 1.8 cm with
respect to Figure 8a, well beyond the finite image resolution of about 0.5 cm, if we do not remove the
vertical background stripes and do not calculate the logarithm of the intensity.
Figure 7.
(
a
) Digitally-restored Manoppello face. (
b
) Turin Shroud face seen with visible light.
(
c
) Averaging of 50% of Figure 7a and 50% of Figure 7b. (
d
) Averaging of the anatomical face profiles of
Figure 7a with Figure 7b.
The result of the superposition of 50% of Figure 7a and 50% of Figure 7b is shown in Figure 7c,
aligned with the Turin Shroud image by centering the eyes’ regions. In Figure 7d we have extracted
the face profiles from Figure 7a, by increasing 100% both the image contrast and sharpness, and by
reducing the grey levels until leaving only the most intense image variations. Then, we have added it
to Figure 7b, to further investigate and assess the matching of the two faces.
To be more detailed, in Figure 8a we show the logarithm of the intensity with removed background
stripes. In Figure 8b we report the average
hIi
of the rows of Figure 8a in the blue box of Figure 8a
(blue profile) together with the average
hIi
of the rows of Figure 8c in the green box (green profile),
where Figure 8c shows the intensity without removed background stripes, together with the average
hIi
of the rows of Figure 8d in the red box (red profile). The vertical blue lines intersect the two minima
in the blue profile corresponding to the cheeks’ width for Figure 8a. The vertical green lines intersect
the two minima in the green profile corresponding to the cheeks’ width for Figure 8c.
Heritage 2019,2349
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 11 of 17
Figure 8. (a) Logarithm of the intensity with removed background stripes. (b) Blue profile: average of
the rows of Figure 8a in the blue box; green profile: average of the rows of Figure 8c in the green box.
(c) Intensity without removed background stripes. (d) Digitally-restored Manoppello face. (e)
Positive image of the Turin Shroud.
By comparison, in Figure 8d we show the digitally restored face of Manoppello compared with
the positive image of the Turin Shroud (Figure 8e). The relative distance of the green and blue
vertical lines is the same of Figures 8a, 8b, 8c, obtained by the minima of the averaged profiles shown
in Figure 8b. Let us note that the face cheeks’ width of Figure 8d agrees well with the face cheeks’
width of Figure 8a, as it can be also evaluated by comparing the red average profile, measured in
Figure 8d with the blue average profile measured in Figure 8a. Conversely, by using the positive
Turin Shroud image (Figure 8e), the estimated cheeks’ width would be also smaller than what is
obtainable in Figure 8c; i.e., by the negative image. In other words, if the face size is calculated by
direct inspection of Figure 8e the underestimation of the cheeks’ width would also be more than
14%, as it can be evinced by the vertical blue and green lines used as a reference for Figures 8a, 8c,
8d, and 8e. Therefore, the digital restoration of the two faces seems to be a pre-requisite before
comparing them, otherwise systematic errors in the determination of the cheeks’ widths would be
unavoidable.
Figure 8.
(
a
) Logarithm of the intensity with removed background stripes. (
b
) Blue profile: average of
the rows of Figure 8a in the blue box; green profile: average of the rows of Figure 8c in the green box.
(
c
) Intensity without removed background stripes. (
d
) Digitally-restored Manoppello face. (
e
) Positive
image of the Turin Shroud.
Let us note that the width of the cheeks is underestimated in Figure 8c by about 1.8 cm with
respect to Figure 8a, well beyond the finite image resolution of about 0.5 cm, if we do not remove the
vertical background stripes and do not calculate the logarithm of the intensity.
By comparison, in Figure 8d we show the digitally restored face of Manoppello compared with
the positive image of the Turin Shroud (Figure 8e). The relative distance of the green and blue vertical
lines is the same of Figure 8a–c, obtained by the minima of the averaged profiles shown in Figure 8b.
Let us note that the face cheeks’ width of Figure 8d agrees well with the face cheeks’ width of Figure 8a,
as it can be also evaluated by comparing the red average profile, measured in Figure 8d with the
blue average profile measured in Figure 8a. Conversely, by using the positive Turin Shroud image
(Figure 8e), the estimated cheeks’ width would be also smaller than what is obtainable in Figure 8c; i.e.,
Heritage 2019,2350
by the negative image. In other words, if the face size is calculated by direct inspection of Figure 8e
the underestimation of the cheeks’ width would also be more than 14%, as it can be evinced by the
vertical blue and green lines used as a reference for Figure 8a,c–e. Therefore, the digital restoration of
the two faces seems to be a pre-requisite before comparing them, otherwise systematic errors in the
determination of the cheeks’ widths would be unavoidable.
As a final combination of the face of the Turin Shroud and the face of the Manoppello Veil we
can apply the Fourier synthesis. In this technique, instead of combining the two images in direct
space, they are combined in the dual space. To perform this task, it is sufficient to calculate the Fast
Fourier Transform (FFT) of the two images, each of which gives a bi-dimensional function of the
amplitude and of the phase. In their combination in the dual space we could use the amplitude of
an image and the phase of the other. However, the phase function contains much more information
than the amplitude function. Therefore, using either the phase of the FFT of the Turin Shroud face
or that of the FFT of the Manoppello face, will lead to a dominant role of one of the two images
in the final Fourier synthesis. To avoid this dominance, we can use a linear combination of phase
and amplitude of both images. Then, to obtain the final Fourier-synthesis image, it is sufficient to
calculate the inverse FFT of the combined FFT of the two initial images and keep either the real part or,
almost equivalently, the absolute value. The amplitudes have been taken by a linear combination of
the FFT of Figure 7a (Manoppello face) and Figure 7b (Turin Shroud face), with weights equal to 2/3
and 1/3, respectively; while the phase values have been taken by a linear combination of the FFT of
Figure 7a,b, but with complementary weights with respect to amplitude, thus equal to 1/3 and 2/3.
Thus, for the amplitudes the weights are (2/3, 1/3), for the phases they are (1/3, 2/3), where the first
value refers to the Manoppello Face FFT and the second to the Turin Shroud face FFT. The particular
value 2/3 has been chosen for the following reasons. As previously discussed, the spatial resolution of
the face visible on the Veil is limited by the discontinue fabric, with minimum distance between the
threads equal to about 0.34 mm. In the case of Turin Shroud image the fabric is more continue. Indeed,
although the image resolution is about 5 mm the pixel size can be chosen much smaller.
We have already verified that the Turin Shroud face image, analyzed in this work, has a pixel size
of about 0.05 mm. However, it is characterized by a spatial resolution such that also a pixel binning of
a factor of 10 does not worsen the visible anatomic details. The ratio of 0.34 mm for the Manoppello
face and the 10-binned pixel size, equal to about 0.5 mm, for the Turin Shroud face, is 0.68, i.e., close to
2/3. Therefore, this choice of the weights includes in the composite image both the higher resolution
amplitudes contained in the Manoppello face FFT, and preserves the anatomic details visible on the
Veil up to their better spatial resolution, and the 3D information contained in the Turin Shroud FFT
phases. Thus, after the linear combination of FFTs, we can calculate the inverse FFT to obtain the
composite image. The final image obtained is shown in Figure 9a. Notice that the weights (0.5, 0.5)
for both amplitudes and phases in the Fourier synthesis would have given the same final image that
is obtained directly by adding the two images without any Fourier synthesis. On the other hand,
the weights (1.0, 0.0) for amplitudes and (0.0, 1.0) for phases, or vice versa, would have given the
dominance of one image on the other.
Returning to the final image, shown in Figure 9a, Figure 9b shows its contour plot. By comparing
Figure 9b with Figure 6c,d it is evident that the new image contains 3D information and some anatomic
details of both the Turin Shroud face and the Manoppello face, but combined in a different way with
respect to Figure 7c, the latter obtained by the most common direct average of the two faces, or, which
is the same, by performing a Fourier synthesis with weights equal to (0.5, 0.5).
If we compare the average intensity profiles
hIi
of the rows of Figure 8a (Turin Shroud’s face,
blue profile) and of Figure 9a (combined image in the FFT dual space, red profile), in the regions
corresponding to the blue and red rectangular boxes of Figure 8a,d, respectively, we obtain the result
shown in Figure 10.
From the comparison between the two profiles of Figure 10b with the red one shown in Figure 8b
we can see how that corresponding to the face of Manoppello (red profile of Figure 8b) has not an
Heritage 2019,2351
evident maximum of intensity in correspondence of the nose, in the center of the plot. Conversely,
the red profile of Figure 10b, corresponding to the combined image, shows the presence of an evident
maximum in correspondence of the nose. Moreover, by comparing Figure 10c and Figure 10b it is
interesting to note that the cheeks’ profiles are more evident when we combine the UV and the visible
light measurements (Figure 10c), are even more delineated after the Fourier synthesis of the Turin
Shroud face, seen with visible light, with the digitally restored Manoppello face.
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 12 of 17
As a final combination of the face of the Turin Shroud and the face of the Manoppello Veil we
can apply the Fourier synthesis. In this technique, instead of combining the two images in direct
space, they are combined in the dual space. To perform this task, it is sufficient to calculate the Fast
Fourier Transform (FFT) of the two images, each of which gives a bi-dimensional function of the
amplitude and of the phase. In their combination in the dual space we could use the amplitude of an
image and the phase of the other. However, the phase function contains much more information
than the amplitude function. Therefore, using either the phase of the FFT of the Turin Shroud face or
that of the FFT of the Manoppello face, will lead to a dominant role of one of the two images in the
final Fourier synthesis. To avoid this dominance, we can use a linear combination of phase and
amplitude of both images. Then, to obtain the final Fourier-synthesis image, it is sufficient to
calculate the inverse FFT of the combined FFT of the two initial images and keep either the real part
or, almost equivalently, the absolute value. The amplitudes have been taken by a linear combination
of the FFT of Figure 7a (Manoppello face) and Figure 7b (Turin Shroud face), with weights equal to
2/3 and 1/3, respectively; while the phase values have been taken by a linear combination of the FFT
of Figure 7a and Figure 7b, but with complementary weights with respect to amplitude, thus equal
to 1/3 and 2/3. Thus, for the amplitudes the weights are (2/3, 1/3), for the phases they are (1/3, 2/3),
where the first value refers to the Manoppello Face FFT and the second to the Turin Shroud face FFT.
The particular value 2/3 has been chosen for the following reasons. As previously discussed, the
spatial resolution of the face visible on the Veil is limited by the discontinue fabric, with minimum
distance between the threads equal to about 0.34 mm. In the case of Turin Shroud image the fabric is
more continue. Indeed, although the image resolution is about 5 mm the pixel size can be chosen
much smaller.
Figure 9. (a) Fourier synthesis between Figure 8a and 8d. (b) Contour plot of Figure 9a. See main text
for more details.
We have already verified that the Turin Shroud face image, analyzed in this work, has a pixel
size of about 0.05 mm. However, it is characterized by a spatial resolution such that also a pixel
binning of a factor of 10 does not worsen the visible anatomic details. The ratio of 0.34 mm for the
Manoppello face and the 10-binned pixel size, equal to about 0.5 mm, for the Turin Shroud face, is
0.68, i.e., close to 2/3. Therefore, this choice of the weights includes in the composite image both the
higher resolution amplitudes contained in the Manoppello face FFT, and preserves the anatomic
details visible on the Veil up to their better spatial resolution, and the 3D information contained in
the Turin Shroud FFT phases. Thus, after the linear combination of FFTs, we can calculate the
inverse FFT to obtain the composite image. The final image obtained is shown in Figure 9a. Notice
that the weights (0.5, 0.5) for both amplitudes and phases in the Fourier synthesis would have given
the same final image that is obtained directly by adding the two images without any Fourier
Figure 9.
(
a
) Fourier synthesis between Figure 8a,d. (
b
) Contour plot of Figure 9a. See main text for
more details.
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 13 of 17
synthesis. On the other hand, the weights (1.0, 0.0) for amplitudes and (0.0, 1.0) for phases, or vice
versa, would have given the dominance of one image on the other.
Returning to the final image, shown in Figure 9a, Figure 9b shows its contour plot. By
comparing Figure 9b with Figures 6c and 6d it is evident that the new image contains 3D
information and some anatomic details of both the Turin Shroud face and the Manoppello face, but
combined in a different way with respect to Figure 7c, the latter obtained by the most common direct
average of the two faces, or, which is the same, by performing a Fourier synthesis with weights equal
to (0.5, 0.5).
If we compare the average intensity profiles 𝑰 of the rows of Figure 8a (Turin Shroud’s face,
blue profile) and of Figure 9a (combined image in the FFT dual space, red profile), in the regions
corresponding to the blue and red rectangular boxes of Figure 8a and Figure 8d, respectively, we
obtain the result shown in Figure 10.
Figure 10. (a) Logarithm of the intensity with removed background stripes. (b) Blue profile: average
of the rows of Figure 10a in the blue box; red profile: average of the grey levels of the rows in the red
box of Figure 10d, obtained by the Fourier synthesis. (c) Average of UV and visible Turin Shroud
images. (d) Figure 9a, obtained by the Fourier synthesis.
From the comparison between the two profiles of Figure 10b with the red one shown in Figure
8b we can see how that corresponding to the face of Manoppello (red profile of Figure 8b) has not an
evident maximum of intensity in correspondence of the nose, in the center of the plot. Conversely,
the red profile of Figure 10b, corresponding to the combined image, shows the presence of an
evident maximum in correspondence of the nose. Moreover, by comparing Figure 10c and 10b it is
interesting to note that the cheeks’ profiles are more evident when we combine the UV and the
Figure 10.
(
a
) Logarithm of the intensity with removed background stripes. (
b
) Blue profile: average of
the rows of Figure 10a in the blue box; red profile: average of the grey levels of the rows in the red box
of Figure 10d, obtained by the Fourier synthesis. (
c
) Average of UV and visible Turin Shroud images.
(d) Figure 9a, obtained by the Fourier synthesis.
Heritage 2019,2352
5. Discussion
We have shown that, within a maximum uncertainty of 5%, the face of the Turin Shroud and
the digitally restored face visible on the Manoppello Veil are characterized by the same proportions
and distances between their anatomical details. With this regard, it should be stressed that in the
original Turin Shroud image, namely the image visible before the invention of photography, the face is
much narrower, well beyond the maximum uncertainty of 5%. Let us remark that the face visible on
the Turin Shroud studied in this paper has been obtained by calculating the logarithm of the image
intensity and by correcting the background. This digital procedure, never done before, has allowed
seeing quite clearly the cheeks’ profiles, after the background stripes’ correction, as shown in Figure 3
for both the UV and visible light images. Now, the cheeks’ profile of the Turin Shroud face and that of
the digitally restored Manoppello face are very similar, as evidenced both by the blue rectangular box
in Figure 5and by the image average profiles shown in Figure 8. Thus, the digital restoration of the
two faces is a fundamental prerequisite before their comparison because, otherwise, systematic errors
in determining the cheeks’ widths would be unavoidable.
Further correlations between the two faces are also noticeable, such as the swelling of the right
cheek. However, there are some evident differences, for example the “epsilon” blood trace on the
forehead, visible only on the face visible on the Turin Shroud. This difference may be due to the fact
that the image of the Manoppello Veil, according to tradition, was allegedly impressed during the
uphill to Calvary when a woman, known as Veronica, offered a veil to Jesus to wipe his face, while the
Shroud image was impressed later in the sepulcher. Therefore, the typical reversed “3” wound on
the forehead may have been formed in this time interval. The moustache between the nose and the
mouth seems to be different in the two cases, also for the fluids leaked by the nasal cavities of the
corpse wrapped in the Shroud that could have affected locally the image formation process.
B. Paschalis Schlöemer has suggested that both the Turin Shroud and the Manoppello Veil images
have been formed in the same time, with the two fabrics laying one on another [
3
]. This is not our
opinion. In fact, by taking into account all the above mentioned differences, it seems more reasonable
to conclude that the two images were not impressed at the same time. Indeed, as shown in Figure 5,
the Turin Shroud face seems to be slightly rotated to the right, while the Manoppello face seems to be
slight rotated to the left. Moreover, the latter shows the mouth slightly open, while the Turin Shroud
face shows the mouth completely closed.
Differently from the Turin Shroud, the relief plot of the face visible on the Manoppello Veil
(Figure 6) shows some lacks of tri-dimensionality, in particular in correspondence of some anatomic
parts characterized by smaller intensities due to their own color, such as the pupils, hairs, and beard.
Also, the nose is flattened with respect to the cheeks. The contour plots of the Turin Shroud face drawn
in Figure 6c,d show that the maximum intensity of the nose is found at its end. Conversely, in the face
there is a region around the nose characterized by higher values of the intensity. This finding could be
related to the fact that the fabric of the Veil is semi-transparent and, very likely, in correspondence of
the central region of the face, seen in transmission, more light has gone through the Veil, leading to a
lack of correct tri-dimensionality in the region.
However, the different tri-dimensional content of the two images could be also related to the fact
that the Turin Shroud body image is not a painting, even if the chemical/physical process of image
formation is not yet assessed [
22
]. Indeed, the Turin Shroud body image color depends only on a
physical/chemical reaction of the outermost layer of the linen fibers compositing it. Traces of human
blood are also imprinted on the Turin Shroud but they are not present in the other images, indicated
by Catholic tradition as acheiropoietos, i.e., not made by human hand (Tilma of Guadalupe, Veil of
Manoppello, some handkerchiefs of St. Pio from Pietralcina, and so on), with the exception of the
Sudarium of Oviedo, which has no images [
20
]. While for the other acheiropoietos images we do not
know if they have actually been in contact with parts of a human body, for the Turin Shroud we are
sure that it was put on a corpse, in a way to touch the tip of the nose and leave a free distance between
nose and cheeks. Therefore, the image of the tip of the nose is the most clearly represented on the
Heritage 2019,2353
Shroud, leading also to tri-dimensional information embedded. Instead, even if we assumed that also
the image on the Manoppello Veil was formed by contact, we should consider that its fabric is much
softer, so that, if it was used to wipe the face of Jesus Christ during his Calvary, it touched his eyes
and mouth for a moment and must have rubbed both sides of the nose. Therefore, differently from
the Turin Shroud image, on the Veil one should expect clearer and sharper images of the eyes and
mouth, and a more diffuse and large image of the nose. Nevertheless, tri-dimensional information can
be transferred from the Turin Shroud face to that visible on the Manoppello Veil, through the Fourier
synthesis approach, as shown in the Figures 9and 10.
Finally, under the hypothesis that both the Turin Shroud and the Manoppello Veil are related
to the same man, Jesus Christ, we can further compare the two images by considering the red
stains that should be related to his Passion, described in the Gospels. In comparing them, however,
we must remember that our analyses indicates that the two images correspond to different times
of his Passion. The Shroud image formed in the sepulcher when the linen sheet wrapped a bloody
dead man, whose blood crusts were transposing on the fabric during a fibrinolysis process. The face
on the Manoppello Veil formed when Veronica used her veil to clean Jesus’ face, just before the
crucifixion. Nevertheless, even if the two images correspond to different moments, we can find many
similar details, especially those relative to the bloodstains. With reference to Figure 11, we can find,
among others, several congruence points between the two images.
Heritage 2018, 2, x FOR PEER REVIEW 15 of 17
free distance between nose and cheeks. Therefore, the image of the tip of the nose is the most clearly
represented on the Shroud, leading also to tri-dimensional information embedded. Instead, even if
we assumed that also the image on the Manoppello Veil was formed by contact, we should consider
that its fabric is much softer, so that, if it was used to wipe the face of Jesus Christ during his Calvary,
it touched his eyes and mouth for a moment and must have rubbed both sides of the nose. Therefore,
differently from the Turin Shroud image, on the Veil one should expect clearer and sharper images
of the eyes and mouth, and a more diffuse and large image of the nose. Nevertheless, tri-dimensional
information can be transferred from the Turin Shroud face to that visible on the Manoppello Veil,
through the Fourier synthesis approach, as shown in the Figures 9 and 10.
Finally, under the hypothesis that both the Turin Shroud and the Manoppello Veil are related to
the same man, Jesus Christ, we can further compare the two images by considering the red stains
that should be related to his Passion, described in the Gospels. In comparing them, however, we
must remember that our analyses indicates that the two images correspond to different times of his
Passion. The Shroud image formed in the sepulcher when the linen sheet wrapped a bloody dead
man, whose blood crusts were transposing on the fabric during a fibrinolysis process. The face on
the Manoppello Veil formed when Veronica used her veil to clean Jesus face, just before the
crucifixion. Nevertheless, even if the two images correspond to different moments, we can find
many similar details, especially those relative to the bloodstains. With reference to Figure 11, we can
find, among others, several congruence points between the two images.
Figure 11. Some congruence points detected between the Shroud face (left) and the Manoppello Veil
(right). Legend: 1. Blood leakage probably due to a thorn of the crown; 2. Blood leakage probably
due to a wound on the left eyebrow; 3. Blood leakage probably due to a thorn of the crown; 4. Blood
leakage probably due to a wound on the left temple; 5. Blood on the left moustache probably due to a
blow; 6. Swollen right cheek probably due to a club; 7. Bipartite beard.
6. Conclusions
All the above results have shown that the face of the Turin Shroud and the digitally−restored
face of the Manoppello Veil overlap very well. Thus, in our opinion, it is possible to conclude that
Figure 11.
Some congruence points detected between the Shroud face (
left
) and the Manoppello Veil
(
right
). Legend: 1. Blood leakage probably due to a thorn of the crown; 2. Blood leakage probably
due to a wound on the left eyebrow; 3. Blood leakage probably due to a thorn of the crown; 4. Blood
leakage probably due to a wound on the left temple; 5. Blood on the left moustache probably due to a
blow; 6. Swollen right cheek probably due to a club; 7. Bipartite beard.
Heritage 2019,2354
6. Conclusions
All the above results have shown that the face of the Turin Shroud and the digitally
restored face
of the Manoppello Veil overlap very well. Thus, in our opinion, it is possible to conclude that the two
images are related. In particular the right cheek’s profile of the two faces is very similar, although the
one visible on the Turin Shroud is evidenced only by the logarithmic transformation of the intensity,
and after the background correction of the vertical stripes. Without these steps, the cheeks’ profiles
of Turin Shroud Man appear much more elongated, as confirmed by the analysis shown in Section 4.
Their correct width is, in fact, not directly visible on the positive image of the Turin Shroud, and can be
established only after an articulated and complex digital analysis. This is one of the main results of our
study. The correlations between the two images implies an interdependence. This finding could be
useful to reconstruct the historical route of the iconography of Jesus Christ. We will address this topic
in a forthcoming work.
It still remains unsolved how the faces of both the Shroud and the Veil were impressed on the
fabric. In the case of Manoppello Veil, we still do not know the nature of its original colors and
technique used to realize the image. While the Shroud has been studied more in depth, the Veil of
Manoppello has still much information to be discovered and discussed, including the striking fact that
its proportions are so similar to those of the Turin Shroud face, such as the detailed digital analysis on
the cheeks’ width has shown. To find possible and convincing answers to all the above open questions,
further characterizations of the Veil of Manoppello are desirable and necessary. They could help also
to clarify the history of the face most represented in the History of Art, that of Jesus Christ.
Author Contributions:
All authors have contributed to write the paper and discuss the results. L.D.C. performed
the image analyses.
Funding: This research received no external funding.
Acknowledgments:
Paul Badde took the original photographs of the Manoppello face shown in Figure 1;
G. B. Judica Cordiglia took the UV original photo and G. C. Durante took the visible light photograph of the Turin
Shroud Man’s face analyzed in the paper.
Conflicts of Interest: The authors declare no conflict of interest.
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article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution
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... The Veil of Manoppello, kept in a sanctuary of the Italian town of Manoppello in Central Italy, is a rectangular canvas of 240 175 mm 2 , representing the face of Christ (Holy Face). Recently, we have studied its unusual optical properties [1,2] and have compared it with the Turin Shroud Face [3], to figure out something more about the origin of the Veil. Its peculiar characteristic is being semitransparent. ...
... In a third paper [3] we have compared the restored face of the Manoppello Veil with the face visible on the Turin Shroud, a linen cloth indelibly impressed by the front and back images of a complete human body, which, according to the Catholic tradition, is the burial cloth of Jesus of Nazareth. We showed that the face of the Turin Shroud, after a logarithmic transformation of the intensity, and a background correction of the vertical stripes, which affect the image, shows different cheeks' profiles, which well overlap with those of the restored face of the Manoppello Veil [3]. ...
... In a third paper [3] we have compared the restored face of the Manoppello Veil with the face visible on the Turin Shroud, a linen cloth indelibly impressed by the front and back images of a complete human body, which, according to the Catholic tradition, is the burial cloth of Jesus of Nazareth. We showed that the face of the Turin Shroud, after a logarithmic transformation of the intensity, and a background correction of the vertical stripes, which affect the image, shows different cheeks' profiles, which well overlap with those of the restored face of the Manoppello Veil [3]. In particular, the cheeks' profiles of the two faces are similar, although the profile on the Turin Shroud appears only after the digital processing [3]. ...
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