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Author Topic: What was the origin of Otzi, the iceman?  (Read 1538 times)

Offline cheryl j

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What was the origin of Otzi, the iceman?
« on: 30/11/2013 16:49:35 »
I know this is something that most people have already heard about - the mummy of the man found in a glacier in the Alps who lived about 3,300 BCE. He was discovered in 1991, but I hadn't check for a long time to see what they learned about him since. The detailed knowledge about way of life, his habits, his diet and what he ate 2 hours before he died, and eight hours before that, is interesting reading.

 The variety of information gleaned from him is impressive - analyzing isotopes in tooth enamel to discover where he grew up, where he moved to, and looking at his skeletal proportions to determine what he spent most of his time doing (walking and climbing in hilly terrain.) They were able to tell what time of year he died, and what may have happened in the fight involving four other people before he died.

From Beau lines on his fingernails, they know he was very sick at least three times in the six months before he died, that he had a parasite called whip worm, and had had Lyme disease.

His tatoos are interesting as well. They are kind of boring looking (x's, lines, dots) and are in places where joint pain is likely to occur, indicating that they may not have been adornments, but an attempt to relieve the pain of arthritis. They were made by cutting the skin, and rubbing charcoal into it.

I was surprised his diet was so varied, three types of meat, ibex,chamois,  and red deer,  herb bread made of einkorn wheat bran,  and evidence of berries,  barley, and seeds of flax and poppy a small plumlike fruits of the blackthorn tree.

My daughter is a great fan of the BBC show "Sherlock." This is like the real thing. I love it went different areas of science come together to solve a problem, or paint a picture of the past. If anyone knows more good examples of this, please let me know.

http://www.radiolab.org/story/iceman-speaks/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%96tzi
« Last Edit: 03/01/2014 08:44:19 by chris »


 

Offline RD

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Re: Iceman
« Reply #1 on: 30/11/2013 18:30:19 »
I remember hearing about ancient Egyptian mummies testing positive for cocaine , if true would involve rewriting history ( it would require trade between South America and Egypt thousands of years earlier that Columbus ), but it looks like there is another explanation: false-positives ... http://www.faculty.ucr.edu/~legneref/ethnic/mummy.htm
« Last Edit: 30/11/2013 18:35:43 by RD »
 

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Re: Iceman
« Reply #1 on: 30/11/2013 18:30:19 »

 

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