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Archaeology & History

Egyptian pharaoh may be first known 'giant'

By T.K. Randall
August 7, 2017 · Comment icon 10 comments

Sa-Nakht was a prominent figure during the Third Dynasty. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Jerzy Strzelecki
The well-preserved skeleton of Sa-Nakht, an ancient Egyptian pharaoh, shows clear evidence of gigantism.
Tales of giants have been cropping up in cultures all across the world for thousands of years, but now a new study has revealed what is perhaps the earliest known true giant - a pharaoh in ancient Egypt known as Sa-Nakht who stood 6ft tall, a size that at the time would have been truly monstrous.

First discovered at a tomb in Beit Khallaf in 1901, the skeleton of this ancient ruler has since been dated back around 4,700 years to the Third Dynasty of Egypt.
A recent analysis of his bones has revealed evidence of gigantism - a condition responsible for abnormal, runaway growth, most often caused by a tumor on the pituitary gland.

This makes Sa-Nakht the earliest known case of this disease and the first known true 'giant'.

"Studying the evolutionary development of diseases is of importance for today's medicine," said study co-author Michael Habicht from the University of Zurich's Institute of Evolutionary Medicine.

Source: Live Science | Comments (10)

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Ashotep 6 years ago
Wow the average male was 5'6", I would have had a hard time finding a male taller than me.  
Comment icon #2 Posted by DebDandelion 6 years ago
What an interesting read! 
Comment icon #3 Posted by Tatetopa 6 years ago
You would have been a goddess to be sure.
Comment icon #4 Posted by godnodog 6 years ago
Great article
Comment icon #5 Posted by jarjarbinks 6 years ago
average male were 5'6 and you would have been like 4'11 lol  
Comment icon #6 Posted by Ashotep 6 years ago
Most women probably were that short back then.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Jaded1 6 years ago
Quoting the article... "Prior work suggested that the skeleton of the man — who would have stood at up to 6 feet 1.6 inches (1.987 meters) tall — may have belonged to Sa-Nakht, a pharaoh during the Third Dynasty. Previous research on ancient Egyptian mummies suggested the average height for men around this time was about 5 feet 6 inches (1.7 m), said study co-author Michael Habicht, an Egyptologist at the University of Zurich's Institute of Evolutionary Medicine." I hate to be pedantic (again) but 6ft 1.6 inches is roughly 1.87m and 1.987m is roughly 6ft 6.23 inches. I suspect a typo! Any chan... [More]
Comment icon #8 Posted by jarjarbinks 6 years ago
not sure if the guy was supposed to be 6'1.6 or like 6'11.6  
Comment icon #9 Posted by Claire. 6 years ago
The first one. 6 feet and 1.6 inches.
Comment icon #10 Posted by MissJatti 6 years ago
Sha'Nakht was no Goliath then

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