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Shroud of Turin: Could a massive earthquake explain discrepancy in age?

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The Shroud of Turin has been a topic of debate for decades, as the shroud is thought to be a hoax by critics and yet there are those who believe that the Shroud of Turin is the real-deal. According to Fox News on Feb. 12, a new theory might explain why there is such a discrepancy in the age of the shroud.

An intricate dating of the Shroud of Turin took place in the 1980s and the carbon dating technique used at the time put the shroud at about 800-years-old. Three independent labs did the carbon dating and came up with the same results.

800-years ago is when the first records of the shroud appear in medieval sources, which critics believe is no coincidence. They believe the shroud was an elaborate hoax coming from the medieval era.

Believers in the shroud's authenticity claimed that the testing was done on a piece of fabric used to patch the shroud 800-years-ago. Although tens of thousands of visitors stop by to see the Shroud of Turin each year at the Turin Cathedral in Italy, there’s no official position on the shroud from the Catholic Church.

Today a new theory might explain why the Shroud of Turin only dated back 800 years. The theory stems from a devastating earthquake around the time that Jesus died. The earthquake hit the Old Jerusalem area.

Scientists presenting this theory believe that the earthquake manipulated the carbon, which decays in a predictable pattern overtime. The earthquake changed this pattern and that is why the Shroud of Turin was believed to date back only 800-years.

The reaction from the earthquake manipulating the carbon could have “led to a wrong radiocarbon dating,” reports Alberto Carpinteri , who was the lead scientist in this research. The scientists believe that significant neutron emissions from that devastating quake changed the carbon on the Shroud of Turin, which gave them the wrong date of the shroud’s origin.

Other scientists looking at this study were “confident” that the radiocarbon dating of the Shroud of Turin in the 1980s produced the wrong results. The debate is on once again with this new research offering more ammunition to the true believers in the Shroud of Turin.

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