Various scholars have suggested that the ‘from the life’ image of Christ imprinted on coins from the reign of Justinian II was copied from the Shroud. A close examination of these coin images reveals a remarkable level of detail upon the face of Christ, including several features that replicate markings seen on the face of the Man of the Shroud. These include:
The portrait of Christ appeared on numerous Byzantine coins until the thirteenth century demise of the empire. Most of these contained features that appeared to have been copied directly from the Shroud image. For example, the coin opposite displays some of the irregular features seen on coins minted under Emperor Justinian II, but has a different marking on the forehead. In this instance, the engraver has reproduced the epsilon-shaped bloodstain with astonishing accuracy.
The close-up of this uniquely distinctive feature highlights the precision with which the shape of this bloodstain was replicated on the coin.
It is implausible that it could be purely by chance that we find such a close match between the features depicted on Byzantines coins and the Shroud face. Instead, these extraordinary similarites provide compelling evidence that the engravers had examined the Shroud face. This implies that the Shroud already existed when the Justinian II Solidus was minted in the period 692 to 695 AD.
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