Secondo Pia

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Secondo Pia (1855 in Asti–1941) was an Italian lawyer and amateur photographer. He is best known for taking the first photographs of the Shroud of Turin on May 28, 1898. The image he obtained from the shroud has been approved by the Roman Catholic Church as part of the devotion to the Holy Face of Jesus.

Pia was born in Asti, Piemonte, and although he was an attorney, he was interested in both art and science and as of the early 1870s began to explore the new technology of photography. In the 1890s he was a city councillor and a member of Turin's Amateur Photographers' Club.Joan Carroll Cruz, 1984, Relics OSV Press ISBN 0879737018 page 49 He can also be considered a pioneer in the field of photography for using electric lightbulbs in the 1890s, given that lightbulbs were a novelty in the late nineteenth century, with Thomas Edison's reliable incandescent light bulb having been invented only in 1879.

The accidental photographer

The circumstances under which Secondo Pia unwittingly took the first step in the field of modern sindonology were quite unusual.

In 1898 the city of Turin was celebrating the 400th anniversary of the Turin Cathedral along with the 50th...
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