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Mystery of the 'Franken-mummiesí

Posted on Monday, 24 September, 2012 | Comment icon 12 comments | News tip by: Still Waters

Image credit: CC 3.0 Hitcher

Two skeletons discovered on a remote Scottish island have been at the centre of a mystery for 10 years.

Considered to be the first evidence that the ancient Britons practiced mummification of the dead the discovery was significant in itself, but on further investigation one of the skeletons had another surprise in store - it appeared to be comprised of bones from more than one individual. Now a new study conducted using modern DNA analyzing techniques has revealed that the skeleton is in fact made up of parts from at least six individuals who died centuries apart. So why would the people of the time dissect and re-assemble the remains ?

Researchers believe that this may have been done to help demonstrate the unity between families, with people living for long periods under the same roof as the remains of their ancestors. "The merging of their identities may have been a deliberate act, perhaps designed to amalgamate different ancestries into a single lineage," said Professor Mike Parker Pearson who was involved in the discovery.

"Carbon dating of the bones in the male skeleton revealed while the jaw came from someone who had died around 1440BC-1260BC, the rest of the skull came from a man who died some 100 years earlier."

  View: Full article |  Source: Telegraph

  Discuss: View comments (12)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #3 Posted by Skeptic Chicken on 24 September, 2012, 12:32
Ewwwwwwwwwwwwww! ... or did I read it completely wrong?
Comment icon #4 Posted by Junior Chubb on 24 September, 2012, 12:53
I remember reading about this before (maybe on UM). Its an interesting situation and gives us far more questions than answers...
Comment icon #5 Posted by Eldorado on 24 September, 2012, 16:55
There was no lego etc, back in the day. People got bored. What can I say?... we are a simple people, easily amused.
Comment icon #6 Posted by Junior Chubb on 24 September, 2012, 16:59
The very first Mr potato head... Sire spud body?
Comment icon #7 Posted by Mikenator on 25 September, 2012, 19:22
Fu-sion-HA! :-D
Comment icon #8 Posted by CRIPTIC CHAMELEON on 26 September, 2012, 9:07
Its alive its alive oops sorry I saw Franken-mummies and got carried away in the moment.
Comment icon #9 Posted by Junior Chubb on 26 September, 2012, 9:55
There are some Franken Mummies in the playground when I do the school-run in the morning. Frightening, very frightening...
Comment icon #10 Posted by Eldorado on 26 September, 2012, 11:06
It coulda been "Make your own girlfriend" class. Ed Gein must have got inspiration from somewhere. I'm not joking.... lonely men do some weird, weird things.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Junior Chubb on 26 September, 2012, 11:32
Your not wrong, I remember spending a month as a lonely man, a month best forgotten...
Comment icon #12 Posted by CRIPTIC CHAMELEON on 26 September, 2012, 20:50
Hmm playground, mummies, school, very interesting indeed.

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