Things past

Random findings of tangential culture-war relevance: the Aztecs really did engage in torture, human sacrifice and cannibalism, just like the Spaniards said, and carbon-14 tests did not show the Shroud of Turin is a Medieval fake (the tests were botched, and it now appears the Shroud is between 1300 and 3000 years old.) The first finding is no surprise. The second follows the discovery last year of several documents that make it much more believable that the Shroud is identical to something known from earlier sources as as the Image of Edessa and so help fill in the troublesome issue of provenance. When the new findings are added to details of the image and fabric discovered when the backing of the Shroud was removed a couple of years ago the claim that the Shroud is the genuine thing seems to be back in play. (Wikipedia has what seems to be a good summary of the issues.)

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