Sunday, October 14, 2012

Curious History: An Inuit Child Mummy, Greenland

The haunting face of an Inuit child who died in Greenland in the 1400s. In 1972, hunters roaming near an abandoned Inuit settlement called Qilakitsoq chanced upon the graves of eight people. Six women and two children that had been buried in the mid-15th century beneath an overhanging rock that sheltered the burial site from sunlight, rain, and snow. Slowly but steadily, dry winds and subzero temperatures freeze-dried their remains as well as their sealskin and fur clothing. Museum curators today sometimes use a similar process of freeze-drying to conserve unearthed bog bodies and organic artifacts.

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