Burns, marks and gaps
In 1532 a fire burst in the chapel of the Chambéry ducal castle where the Shroud was folded in a silver case. A melted metal drop went clean through the Cloth destroying the tissue. This is why the typical triangular lacuna are symmetric. The two scorched black lines on the image right-hand and left-hand side are caused by the contact with the overheated case. In 1534 the Chambéry Poor Clares restored it applying patches on it. To strengthen the cloth structure damaged by the fire they sewed the Cloth and the patches on a linen cloth called Lining of Holland. For conservation reasons, these patches were then removed in 2002 and the Lining of Holland taken off and substituted with a new tissue that can be identified today under the bruises by its different color and weave.
The rhomb in shape stains, recurring in the centre and along the cloth borders, are caused by some water that wet the tissue some time ago. Once again, the imprints repeat symmetrically due to the way the Cloth was folded. The mark saw-toothed side is caused by the substances on the Cloth carried by the water.
Marks of the fire previous to Chambéry
On the Shroud there are further round and symmetric lacuna. However, the different disposition of the Chambéry bruises suggests a different kind of folding. No doubt these bruises are previous to the 1532 fire, since already documented in a 1516 Shroud pictorial copy today in Lierre, Belgium.
The upper corners lacuna and the strip
Along the conventionally called upper border (as a matter of fact, the Shroud was exposed with its front imprint on the left of the audience) a strip of the same Shroud tissue was sewed in ancient times. We do not know the reason but a lot was speculated about it. This strip has two clear lacuna at the extreme borders under which the support tissue can be easily seen. Once again, we do not know when and why this certainly ancient mutilation occured. Along the lower lacuna border, on the left top of anyone who looks at it, there is the area from which two tissue samples were taken: for product analysis on the tissue in 1973 and for carbon dating in 1988.