Did you know that, prior to the 19th century, ancient mummies got none of the respect they have today? Rather than preserving them in museums, people would unwrap mummies and exploit their various parts. Their bones were ground up into powder and sold as medicine, and their wrappings were used to make paint. Some even say that early American paper manufacturers imported Egyptian mummies and made wrapping paper out of their bindings. Thankfully, these practices died out and mummies came to be seen as precious artifacts, which paved the way for some of the most remarkable discoveries in history.
Nicknamed for its red hair, "Ginger" is the most famous of six naturally mummified bodies excavated in the late 19th century from shallow graves in the Egyptian desert. It went on display at the British Museum in 1901, becoming the first mummy to be exhibited in public, and has stayed there ever since. Ginger and the other bodies found with it are the oldest known mummies in existence, dating back to about 3400 B.C. Artificial mummification was not yet a common practice at the time of their deaths, but their bodies were naturally dried and preserved by the warm sand in which they were buried.
Otzi The Ice Man
The oldest red blood cells ever identified have been found in the body of Ötzi the Iceman, a 5,300-year-old mummy found in the Alps in 1991.
The bloody find is a first for Ötzi's mummy, which has been under scientific scrutiny since a pair of hikers stumbled over the body frozen in ice on the Austrian-Italian border. And the new research, published today (May 1) in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface, helps confirm the story of Ötzi's death.
The Iceman was so well preserved that scientists could estimate his age (about 45), his health, his last meals (they included red deer meat with herb bread) and even his probable cause of death, an arrow wound to the shoulder that sliced an artery. But no one had ever found blood cells in the ancient man's corpse.
Archaeologists in South Uist, Scotland discovered mummified bodies buried neatly underneath a 3,000-year-old house in 2001, but recent studies show that the bodies were composed of several individuals. These Frankenstein mummies were originally found in 2001 in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland’s coast.
According to Live Science, while part of one body’s vertebrae proved signs of arthritis, the rest of the spine showed no such signs. And two individuals share the jaw of this Frankenstein mummy, with its upper jaw missing all its teeth, and its lower jaw fully equipped.
The findings provide that the lower jaw most likely belonged to a woman, the skull and neck to a man and the torso, arms and legs of another man.
Archaeologists spotted another mummy at the site, which belonged to a woman. This Frankenstein mummy was made of three different people, as well. According to Live Science, this particular Frankenstein mummy held the two missing teeth next to her front ones in her hands.
According to Live Science, carbon dating shows that bodies must have been unearthed 600 years after death, and then mummified to preserve them.
Archaeologists say the Frankenstein mummies were presumably compiled together at different times. Mike Parker-Pearson, an archaeologist at the University of Sheffield in England, said, “There is overlap, but the statistical probability is that they were assembled at different times.”
Parker-Pearson said, “Merging different body parts of ancestors into a single person could represent the merging of different families and their lines of descent," adding, "Perhaps this was a prelude to building the row of houses in which numerous different families are likely to have lived."
Parker Pearson added that Frankenstein mummies could have also played the role of legal documentation at a time when land was communal, rather than private.
Parker-Pearson said another example of Frankenstein mummies could be those mummies found in Down Farm in Dorset. Holes are drilled in the arms and legs of these Frankenstein mummies, perhaps proving that the limbs of several different individuals were strung together.
While the Frankenstein mummy stems off the traditions of Egyptian mummification, it is a European custom, as well.
Parker-Pearson said ancient Greek philosopher Poseidonius “visited Gaul and recorded that the Celts there embalmed the heads of their victims in cedar oil and kept them in chests."
On the afternoon of May 6, 1950, two brothers were working in the Bjaeldskov bog, an area about 6 miles west of the Danish town of Silkeborg. They had already planted their spring crops on their nearby farms and were taking time that afternoon to cut some peat to use for heating their houses and cooking their meals.
As their bog shovels sliced through the peat, they struck something hard. After more digging, they came upon the lifeless body of a man. He was quite dead, but his face appeared so fresh that they immediately thought he had been murdered recently and dumped in the bog. They contacted the police, and soon officers arrived at the site. But the police knew the history of the bog. They remembered that two other bodies had been found in the same bog, once in 1927 and again in 1938. Rather than start a murder investigation, they called an archaeologist at a nearby university and invited him to see the body of the man who would soon be named Tollund Man, after the village in which the brothers lived.
Late that same afternoon, archaeologist P. V. Glob got a good look at the well-preserved man in the fading light of the day. By now, the man had been uncovered from his resting place eight feet deep in the bog. Glob realized that the man had been in the bog a long time. He noted that the man’s skin was coffee brown, and his short hair was red, both colored by their contact with the water of the bog. He wore only a cap on his head (made from eight pieces of sheepskin, the wool inside) and a leather belt around his waist. Otherwise, he was naked, although any fabric clothing he wore would have dissolved over time in the bog. He looked as if he were sleeping, laying on his side.
When a small piece of peat was removed from his neck, however, the professor saw something else: a two-strand leather rope tied in a noose was tightly closed around his neck. Tollund Man, Glob realized, had been killed and buried in a grave that had been cut from the peat.
To Restoration by Jeff DiNunno study the body further, Glob would have to move Tollund Man to a museum. He had workers build a wooden box around the dead man so that he could be transported exactly as he had been discovered to Copenhagen’s National Museum. After a weeklong train ride through Denmark, Tollund Man arrived at the museum where he was eagerly examined. They quickly concluded, by analyzing the age of the peat that surrounded him, that Tollund Man had been killed some 2,000 years earlier, during the early Iron Age. Later, results from Carbon-14 dating indicated that he had died about the year 350 BC.
They examined every inch of his body, noting that his head and feet were much better preserved than the rest of his body. His legs and arms, for example, had mostly turned to skeleton; the soft tissues there had deteriorated. By studying his bones, they determined that he was about 40 years old when he died. He stood slightly over five feet tall. He walked barefoot sometimes, they decided, for there were scars on the bottom of one foot.
Scientists were particularly interested in his stomach and intestines, for they wanted to know what he had eaten before he died. They washed these organs, then removed their contents for analysis. Inside the stomach they found very little, but the large intestine contained the remains of gruel, a coarse vegetable soup made in this case from some barley, 30 types of seed, and many weeds. The fact that the meal had entered the large intestine told scientists that Tollund Man had eaten his last meal at least some 12-24 hours before he died. Later, when two archaeologists tried to use the list of ingredients and cook the same gruel in 1954, they were unpleasantly surprised by the terrible taste.
By the end of their examination, scientists were fairly certain that Tollund Man had been sacrificed to the gods for a number of reasons. First, he was buried in the type of watery place where the early people of Europe believed they could communicate with their many gods and goddesses. Second, the contents of his intestines appeared to indicate that he was killed in the winter or early spring, a time that human sacrifices were made to the goddess of spring. Finally, his body was well treated after he was hung, something that wouldn’t have happened if he were a common criminal. He was picked up and carefully placed in his grave. The people who buried him, scientists believe, also closed his eyes and mouth after he died.
Following the lengthy examination, Tollund Man’s body was in pieces and in danger of decay. Preserved in an anaerobic (that is, oxygen-free) environment for 2,000 years, he had once again been introduced to a bacteria-filled atmosphere. His body had already begun to deteriorate. Scientists decided to preserve only his head and one foot. The rest of him had become dehydrated and was sent away for further study. After a year of preservation baths, the head and foot were sent to the Silkeborg Museum where they were placed on display. In 1987, the dehydrated parts of Tollund Man were returned, restored, and reassembled once again, so that a cast could be made of the body.
In Japan, there is a legend about a mysterious alien, the creature regarded as the Devil and described as having a body half bird and half human. This creature is called by the name of Tengu. Incredibly, one mummy Tengu stored neatly in Aomori Prefecture.
Museum of Hachinohe in Aomori, northern Japan, is home to mummy Tengu who supposedly was originally owned by Nambu Nobuyori, Nambu clan leader who ruled Hachinohe in the mid-18th century.
The mummy had a human head, but has hairy legs and wings like a bird. Tengu who has become a mummy is believed to come from the city of Nobeoka (Miyazaki prefecture) in southern Japan. Some theories mention that this mummy to northern Japan after bequeathed to several members of the ruling Japanese Samurai family, until it reached the Museum of Hachinohe in Aomori.
Tengu mythology begins around the 6th century BC in line with the arrival of Buddhism to Japan from China. Tengu considered a goblin who lives in the woods and mountains. They are said to have supernatural powers such as to change shape into a human or animal, can speak to people without opening his mouth and be able to move from one place to another quickly by using its wings.
Tengu word actually means "dog heaven". In Chinese mythology, this creature also has its own place by the name of Tien Kou (Tiangou) which also means dog heaven. The name is actually not fit the description of Tengu. This creature has no way as a dog, but more like a bird.
The book Nihon Shoki, which is considered the most ancient records the first mention of Tengu, which was written in 720 AD, mentions that in the century that a meteor across the skies of Japan and the meteor was called by a Buddhist monk as Dog Heaven (Tengu). But how Tengu evolved from a meteor into flying creatures are not known with certainty.
In general, Tengu has two physical forms. The first is called Karasu mite that has a head and beak like a bird. The second was a Konoha tengu who has a shape like a human but has wings and a long nose (sometimes called Yamabushi tengu).
According to legend, when I was a kid, the legendary Japanese soldier named Minamoto no Yoshitsune who lived during the years 1159-1189 had practiced swordsmanship with the king of tengu Soujoubou near Kuramadera in the northern mountains of Kyoto.
There is no description and more information about the mummies on display at the museum Hachinohe. Is this really pure evil, Cryptozoology creature or a fake art from centuries past. Some researchers believe that the mummy is a man-made artwork, but no definite evidence provided to support the theory.
Giant Head Mummy
A very strange abnormal-looking mummy with giant head has been unearthed in Peru. The discovery was made in the Cuzco region, the heart of Incan civilization. Researchers find the mummy extremely odd. The mummy simply does not fit in with the version of history that we have all been taught.
The mummy's head is triangular and its eye cavities are very big.
"It's 20 inches tall, which doesn't coincide with the stereotypes of humans. It's head is triangular and the eye cavities are too big