Science Questions

Have there been conjoined twins in the past?

Sun, 11th Apr 2010

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Alan Scahill asked:

Have archaeologists found evidence of conjoined twins in the past?


Diana -   Well, as far as I'm aware, no, and I think it would be quite big news if they had.  But there are all sorts of historical examples, and there was one example in some art made by the Moche, which was a group of people living in coastal Peru in South America around the turn of the first millennium. But basically about 300 A.D., they made some pretty pictures of them.  But there are also some examples about  I think it was 965 AD, there were some European Siamese twins were recorded in history, but as I said, as far as I know, no skeletal evidence.

Chris -   Presumably, because it would have been so hard to give birth to a Siamese twin.

Diana -   Yeah.

Chris -   Probably many perished and so did many mothers, and it would have just been the end of story.

Diana -   That's the thing.  And, also, neonatal bones of these  bones of babies really don't survive very well at all.


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Allan Scahill asked the Naked Scientists: I was listening today to Dr. Chris Smith answer a question using the anatomy of conjoined twins to help us understand his answer. It got me wondering if Archaeologists have ever found evidence of ancient conjoined twins or would no evidence remain for them to identify as such? Thank you Allan Scahill What do you think? Allan Scahill, Tue, 2nd Feb 2010

i think the would not be much on the record for conjoined twins, cant work, takes alot of feeding no return, buried and gone. geo driver, Thu, 4th Feb 2010

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