By Jon Wilner

Mercury News


TURIN, ItalyThe name of this city’s most famous artifact works on multiple levels. It is a shroud — the supposed burial cloth of Jesus — and it’s shrouded in secrecy: housed in a locked casket in a sealed chamber in Turin’s cathedral, displayed every decade or two on order of the pope.

The Holy Shroud is said to have arrived in Turin in the 16th century, and a more fitting home it could not have. This elegant city is tucked in the northwest corner of Italy, far from the traveler’s corridor that extends from Rome to Florence to Venice.

But the veil comes off Turin in February, when the Winter Olympics — packing an estimated 1 million spectators, 10,000 media members and 2,500 athletes — descend on the land of Fiat, Tic Tacs, Nutella and Juventus, the legendary Italian soccer team.

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MercuryNews.com | 08/28/2005 | Turin’s turn: Olympics host city aims to be tourism contender