Saturday, February 26, 2011

Ozti's New Face

Ozti (pronounced Ertzi), The Ice Man, has been given a new forensic face. According to experts, this is what he really looked liked:

Ozti was discovered by hikers September 19, 1991 when a glacier melt exposed his body. The hikers thought they had come upon a missing hiker or perhaps a murder but then realized the body was far older than that.

Otzi lived 5,300 years ago and is Europe's oldest natural human mummy. To put this in perspective, Otzi lived and died 3,300 years before Christ. He is near perfect condition, except for the body parts that were damaged during exhumation.

He gives an unprecedented glimpse into Copper Age Europeans. The artifacts found with Otzi are AMAZING.

From Wiki:

"Ötzi's clothes were sophisticated. He wore a cloak made of woven grass and a coat, a belt, a pair of leggings, a loincloth and shoes, all made of leather of different skins. He also wore a bearskin cap with a leather chin strap. The shoes were waterproof and wide, seemingly designed for walking across the snow; they were constructed using bearskin for the soles, deer hide for the top panels, and a netting made of tree bark. Soft grass went around the foot and in the shoe and functioned like modern socks. The coat, belt, leggings and loincloth were constructed of vertical strips of leather sewn together with sinew. His belt had a pouch sewn to it that contained a cache of useful items: a scraper, drill, flint flake, bone awl and a dried fungus.

The shoes have since been reproduced by a Czech academic, who said that "because the shoes are actually quite complex, I'm convinced that even 5,300 years ago, people had the equivalent of a cobbler who made shoes for other people".

Other items found with the Iceman were a copper axe with a yew handle, a flint-bladed knife with an ash handle and a quiver of 14 arrows with viburnum and dogwood shafts. Two of the arrows, which were broken, were tipped with flint and had fletching. while the other 12 were unfinished and untipped. The arrows were found in a quiver with what is presumed to be a bow string, an unidentified tool, and an antler tool which might have been used for sharpening arrow points. There was also an unfinished yew longbow that was 72 in long.

In addition, among Ötzi's possessions were berries, two birch bark baskets, and two species of polypore mushrooms with leather strings through them. One of these, the birch fungus, is known to have antibacterial properties, and was likely used for medicinal purposes. The other was a type of tinder fungus, included with part of what appeared to be a complex firestarting kit. The kit featured pieces of over a dozen different plants, in addition to flint and pyrite for creating sparks.

Ötzi's copper axe was of particular interest, as it is the only complete prehistoric axe so far discovered. 24 in. long, the axe's haft was made from yew tree bark, while the handle of the axe was made from yew branch and leather binding. The copper axe blade extended out of the leather binding and was 9.5 cm long. Ötzi lived 5,300 years ago, and humans were not thought to have discovered copper for another 1,000 years, forcing archaeologists to re-date the copper age."

There are all kinds of theories surrounding how Otzi died. He was shot by an arrow that was still lodged in his shoulder when found. Otzi is amazing and has been studied since his discovery.

You can visit the model March 1 through Jan. 15, 2012, at the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology in Bolzano, Italy which is his museum. The body is kept there permanently in cold storage.

News Link

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