In 1991 a perfectly preserved human body was found in the Alps near the border of Italy and Austria. The German hikers who found it figured it was the body of the victim of a climbing accident. It turns out they might have been right. But, instead of it having been a modern climbing accident is likely was an ancient climbing accident. The body turned out to be the body of a 5,300 year old “prehistoric iceman." They named him Oetzi after the valley he was found in. It was originally thought that Oetzi was a mountain warrior who was struck by an arrow and finished off with a savage club blow to the back of the head. World’s First Known Mountaineering Fatality | 5,300 Years Ago | Unofficial Networks

World’s First Known Mountaineering Fatality | 5,300 Years Ago

World’s First Known Mountaineering Fatality | 5,300 Years Ago

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World’s First Known Mountaineering Fatality | 5,300 Years Ago

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Oetzi, the iceman

In 1991, a perfectly preserved human body was found in the Alps near the border of Italy and Austria.  The German hikers who found the body figured it was the victim of a recent climbing accident.  It turns out they might have been right.  But, instead of it having been a modern accident is likely was an ancient climbing accident.

The body turned out to be the body of a 5,300 year old “prehistoric iceman.”  Scientists named him Oetzi after the valley he was found in.  It was originally thought that Oetzi was a mountain warrior who was struck by an arrow and finished off with a savage club blow to the back of the head.

How Oetzi was found

 “His death could have been a mountaineering accident rather than him being shot by an arrow as previously thought. The arrow injury could have been an old injury.” – Study head Wolfgang Recheis

A new study done by Austria’s Innsbruck University now shows that Oetzi likely fell to his death rather than having been murdered.  They discovered that the arrow wound on his back may have been an old wound.  If this is true, then Oetzi was climbing and fell to his death 5,300 years ago making him the first known mountaineering accident.

Scientist now have plans to do 3D body mapping scans of Oetzi to learn more about his injuries and exactly how he died.

Oetzi is arguably the most important anthropological find in history.  We don’t have to deduce anything, it’s all there in and on his perfectly preserved body:

Oetzi hand

Oetzi the Iceman:

– Had a bow, arrows, copper axe with him

– Ibex and venison in his stomach

– Horrible whipworm infestation in his gut

– 46 years old

– 5 foot 2.5 inches tall

– Brown hair

– Arthritis

– Only thing they couldn’t figure out was his eye color

Oetzi Iceman’s Feet

Oetzi is stored in a special chamber at the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology in Italy.  His body is kept at -6C and 98% humidity.  You can check him out through a small window.

Reconstruction of what Oetzi is thought to have looked like alive

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