Not very long after the birth of the false religion of Islam, the militant Muslims had overtaken Christian Armenia. In the 10th century the Byzantine Emperor Romanus Lecapenus took up the cause of the resisting Christian Armenians and gave them his best general, John Gourgen [a.k.a. Courcouas], to aid them. Courcouas was tremendously successful in retaking Armenia from the Muslims.
“In the spring of 943 Courcouas reached the walls of the still Christian, but long Muslim-ruled city of Edessa, where the Holy Shroud of Christ (then called the ‘Mandylion’)… was preserved in a sanctuary in the domed cathedral, famed throughout the East for its beauty… To the Muslim rulers of Edessa John Courcouas, the conqueror who was carrying all before him, stated his terms: They could keep the city, intact and undamaged – and he would pledge that the Byzantine empire would never attack Edessa again. He would release to them two hundred of their highest ranking captives in his hands. He would pay them 12,000 silver crowns. All this was his price – for the Shroud.” (Warren H. Carroll, A History of Christendom, Vol. 2, p. 414.)The Muslims finally agreed to give up the Shroud (now known as the Shroud of Turin).
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