Monday, June 16, 2008

Bog Bodies

This is creepy, but interesting!

Bog bodies have been found throughout north-west Europe. These bodies, which are both male and have been dated to more than 2,000 years ago, probably belong to the victims of a ritual sacrifice. They were found in the Republic of Ireland.

In common with other bog bodies, they show signs of having been tortured before their deaths. "My belief is that these burials are offerings to the gods of fertility by kings to ensure a successful reign." reports Ned Kelly, National Museum of Ireland

This body dropped off a peat cutting machine in February 2003 in Clonycavan, near Dublin. The forearms, hands and lower abdomen are missing, believed to have been hacked off by the machine.

Clonycavan man was a young male no more than 5ft 2in tall. Beneath his hair, which retains its unusual "raised" style, was a massive wound caused by heavy cutting object that smashed open his skull.

Chemical analysis of the hair revealed that he had been using a type of Iron Age hair gel; a vegetable plant oil mixed with a resin that had probably come from south-western France or Spain.

Red Franz

This bog body is known as "Red Franz", and was found in 1900 in a bog near Neu Versen (Germany). Found lying on his back, the man lived sometime between A.D. 200 and 400. How Red Franz looked during his life can, for the moment, only be imagined.

Yde Girl

Young female bog body, dubbed "Yde Girl", from the Netherlands. The remains of this 16-year old child, who lived in the first century A.D., were discovered in a small bog in 1896, along with remnants of woollen clothing. The remains of the woollen cord with which she was strangled can still be seen around her neck.


In 1993, professor Richard Neave of Manchester University made a facial reconstruction of Yde Girl. By means of CT-scans at the University Hospital of Groningen, a reconstruction of her skull was modelled into the appearance she would have had when alive.

Nederfrederiksmose Body

This body, called The Nederfrederiksmose Body, discovered in 1898, is the first such body to have been photographed at the site where it was found.


Hanged with a leather cord and cast into a Danish bog 2,300 years ago, Tollund Man was probably a sacrifice.

Tollund Man

Like other bodies found preserved in Europe's peat bogs, he poses haunting questions. How was he chosen? Who closed his eyes after death? And what god demanded his life?

bog bodies

Hundreds of bodies have been recovered from peat wetlands across Northern Europe. The earliest accounts date back to the 18th Century. The unique chemistry of peat bogs essentially mummifies bodies.