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Otzi the Iceman Was Wearing Five Different Animals Hides When He Died

Image: Otzi the Iceman Was Wearing Five Different Animals Hides When He Died

A man takes pictures of a statue representing an iceman named Oetzi, discovered on 1991 in the Italian Schnal Valley glacier, is displayed at the Archaeological Museum of Bolzano on February 28, 2011 during an official presentation of the reconstruction. (Andrea Solero/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 19 Aug 2016 09:59 AM

Otzi the Iceman was wearing clothing made from five different animals when he died 5,300 years ago, scientists have revealed.

The iceman was discovered in 1991 in the Ötzal Italian Alps. A DNA sequencing report of his clothes and quiver published Thursday in the journal Nature Reports revealed that Otzi's leggings were made from goat, his loincloth from sheep, shoelaces from cattle, hat from brown bear, and his quiver from roe deer.

Otzi's black-and-white-striped coat included leather from at least four individual sheep and goat animals, while his shoes were made from heartier cattle leather, suggesting clothing materials weren't selected haphazardly.

"It’s not chaotic," microbiologist and study co-author Frank Maixner told Smithsonian magazine. "It’s really ordered, there’s a structure, there’s a fashion, in my eyes."

The study examined mitochondrial DNA from nine fragments of Otzi's clothing.

"To me it seems pretty sophisticated in terms of the capacities to use so many different materials from different animals," Ron Pinhasi, co-author of the research from University College, Dublin, told The Guardian.

Otzi's use of both domestic and wild animals in the making of his clothing suggests that "he was opportunistic and resourceful and used to the best of his ability the scarce resources which were available to him in a very harsh environment," study author Niall O’Sullivan told The Guardian.

Otzi is thought to have been about 45 years old when he bled to death after being hit in the shoulder with an arrow. Other studies of his mummy have revealed such details as he had Lyme disease and likely was involved in a brawl before his death.

Also known as the Tyrolean Iceman, Otzi has provided a wealth of understanding about life during that time period, CNN noted.

The mummy had 61 tattoos that researchers think may have been a treatment for pain relief. Studies suggest he was predisposed to cardiovascular diseases and suffered from hardened arteries, lactose intolerance, dental problems, ulcers, and an intestinal parasite.

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Otzi the Iceman was wearing clothing made from five different animals when he died 5,300 years ago, scientists have revealed.
otzi, iceman, pelts, hides, animal, clothing
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2016-59-19
Friday, 19 Aug 2016 09:59 AM
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