From this decree we may glean certain historical facts, irrespective of the exact occasion for the indictment. (1)Apparently there were reports in Palestine that caused the emperor (probably Claudius) to issue this stern warning against disturbing or robbing graves. (2)Jewish burial sometimes included sealing the sepulchre, as well as the use of stones. (3)The offense of grave robbing had now become a capital offense and was punishable by death. Shroud of Turin

The Shroud of Turin, Italy, is a linen cloth measuring 14´3´´ long by 3´7´´ wide. Historically proclaimed to be the actual burial garment of Jesus, the linen contains a double, head-to-head image of a crucified man reposed in death, that reveals both the obverse and reverse of the body.

With a known history stretching back to at least the fourteenth century, there are a number of important factors that indicate that the shroud is much more ancient, including a number of historical references that extend back several centuries. In the definitive work on the possible history of the shroud, Ian Wilson postulates that the cloth left Palestine about AD 30 and proceeded to the ancient kingdom of Edessa, to Constantinople, to France, to Switzerland, and finally to Italy.^18

In addition to the historical data, there are also a number of scientific reasons indicating that the shroud could be dated very early. Samples of pollen discovered on the cloth point to an origin in Palestine possibly as far back as the first century, while analyses of the cloth and weave discovered that the shroud is compatible with first century cloth.

However, more important indicators of the age of the shroud have also emerged. Some researchers have asserted that sophisticated methods such as photographic enhancement and computer analysis are able to identify one of the coins placed over the eyes of the man in the shroud as a lepton of Pontius Pilate, minted between AD 29–32. Such an identification would be a crucial determination of age.^19