(adaptions by Michael Hurst)
As far as I can tell, no one who "sees" the monkey, dismisses it. In other words, it is now the consensus that there is a monkey there. And he is wearing a turban.
Robert and I were discussing this recently, and it occured to me that the style of the monkey's turban might be a clue to the dating of the sheet, if not its provenance.
The question is, can anyone find examples of this turban in the relevant period (late 15th century, presumably), anywhere in western Europe, and especially if there are any pictures of monkeys wearing them, or any kind of turban or hat?
(the possibilities remain that:
- there is no monkey at all
- there is a monkey, but he doesn't look like what we have reconstructed him as (e.g. perhaps his "eyes" are his nostrils), and he might therefore not be wearing a turban - it might be part of his actual head.
But - I think Michael's reconstruction above is the correct one, and therefore continue to look for a similar turban in the appropriate places (not in the Syrian Orthodox or Coptic churches, for example))