Criteria of Adequacy

Rate each hypotheses based on criteria of adequacy.

: The Shroud of Turin is the linen cloth placed over the body Jesus Christ at his burial and bears the likeness of his face.

Testability: This claim is testable. Carbon-14 dating can test the age of the cloth and compare it to the time of Jesus Christ. The image on the cloth can be compared to the description of Jesus Christ in biblical sources.

Fruitfulness: This hypothesis is fruitful, it can be used to create new predictions/hypotheses. For example it creates the prediction that Jesus Christ had a medium to large nose and wore facial hair.

Scope: This hypothesis does not have a great scope. It explains that Jesus had been crucified and suffered a traumatic death, that he had a burial cloth, and that he lived centuries ago. But it does not explain exactly what Jesus looked like, his skin color, what kind of blows he suffered, and more.

Simplicity: This is not the simplest of hypotheses on the Shroud of Turin. There is not exact way to prove that the blood on the Shroud belongs to Jesus Christ or to depict the actual face on the Shroud. So to believe this, you would just have to hope that the blood and the face of Jesus.

Conservatism: This hypothesis is conservative because it goes along with the beliefs in Jesus Christ. It is in line with the crucifixion that many believe in and depicts a face that is similar to that of what is illustrated as Jesus for hundreds of years.

Analyzed by: Diamond Vu

Alternative Hypothesis 1: The Shroud of Turin is a primitive photograph, the hypothetical photograph technique is the only plausible explanation for the image formation on the Shroud.

: The testability of this claim was explored by Nicholas Allen, the dean of the Faculty of Art and Design in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. He constructed a device known as a camera obscura , and used it in order to try to reproduce the photographic image of the Shroud. This method included the use of 1)rock crystal 2)silver salts and 3)salt of ammonia. This method was produced in order to try to replicate the materials and resources that would have been available to an artist back in the estimated time of production of the Shroud in the fourteenth century in order to create a photographic image without modern technology.

Fruitfulness: The fruitfulness of this claim is that Nicholas was able to produce an image that closely resembled the Shroud with help from the camera obscura that he constructed in order to replicate the subject at hand, the Shroud.

Scope: The scope of this claim is that it explains how it would be possible for an someone in the late thirteenth and fourteenth century to use materials available to them to create a photographic image such as the Shroud of Turin.

Simplicity: The simplicity of this claim isn't very great because by accepting this claim, you will assume that the medieval photographer in question would've known the properties of ultraviolet radiation and that they would've also known how to stabilize his image through the use of ammonia. Not only would the photographer have to be knowledgeable regarding this process but another fact to keep in mind is that this process is claimed to have taken place at a time when the chemical properties of silver nitrate were unknown and there was no knowledge of optics.

Conservatism: The conservatism of this claim is that all of the resources needed to produce this type of primitive photographic image were known to be available at the proposed time the Shroud was made in this claim and that Professor Allen was able to produce these type of photographic images with the camera obscura.

After examining this hypothesis through the criteria for adequacy, I give this claim a low rate for adequacy because even though there was experimentation done to prove that this type of art was able to be produced in the Middle Ages, there is still no proof of who was responsible for the creation of the Shroud and no way of proving its means of creation. In my opinion, it has about the same rate of adequacy as our original claim.

This information was retrieved from a library book entitled "The Shroud of Turin" by C. Bernard Ruffin. Containing the most up to date analysis of all the facts pertaining to the Shroud of Turin.

Analyzed by: Susan Yera

Alternative Hypothesis 2:
The Shroud of Turin is a burial cloth that was placed over a crucifixion victim and bears a likeness of Jesus Christ’s face.

Testability: This claim is testable. The blood stains on the cloth can be compared to the wounds of a person who has been crucified, and the image of the face can be compared to the historical descriptions of Jesus Christ’s face.

Fruitfulness: This claim is fruitful. It allows for predictions to be made as to who was crucified, as well as the characteristics of Jesus Christ’s face, and even predictions about how the image appeared on the cloth.

Scope: This claim does not have a large scope. There is a question of who the cloth could have covered. The image of Jesus’ face leaves many unanswered questions about his height, his skin color, and the state of his health before he died (was he healthy before he was crucified? Had he been beaten? Was he sick?).

Simplicity: I believe this claim to be simpler then our original claim. I think that it would be easier to prove that the cloth was placed over a person who was crucified then to prove that the person was Jesus Christ. Tests could be performed to determine if the stains are actually blood, and experts can verify that the placement of the blood stains are consistent with the wounds that are a result of crucifixion. Without DNA tests, however, there is no conclusive way to determine if it was really used to cover Jesus Christ. A factor that is not simple to explain is the question of the description of Jesus’ face. Yes, that is what we believe him to look like today, but is it really an image of his face? Or something that we have constructed at a later date to fit our perceptions of what he looked like?

Conservatism: This theory is conservative in that it agrees with the views largely held by Christianity. For those who hold no religious beliefs, however, it may be considered to be less conservative.

Analyzed by: Madeleine Vaughn

Best hypothesis based on criteria of adequacy:

Alternative Hypothesis # 2 is the best based on the criteria of adequacy. It is testable, fruitful, most simplistic, and conservative. This hypothesis does have a low scope but overall it is a better claim than our claim.