Creepy Cannibals: Bones Show Ancient Britons Ate the Dead, Used Skulls as Cups
By Madeleine Cowley | Reuters.com
Ancient Britons devoured their dead and created gruesome goblets from the skulls of their remains, according to new research published on Wednesday.
Researchers from London’s Natural History Museum discovered 15,000-year-old human bones in southern England which showed signs of cannibalism and skulls made into drinking cups.
The skulls -- found in Gough’s Cave in the Cheddar Gorge in the southwestern English county of Somerset -- had been meticulously cleaned of soft tissue, cut to remove the base and facial bones, and had their rough edges smoothed to create skull-cups or bowls, paleontologist Silvia Bello wrote in a study in the Public Library of Science journal PLoS ONE.
"All in all it was a very painstaking process given the tools available," Bello said in a statement.
The researchers said the cups may have been used as containers or for some ritualistic purpose.
Ancient Britons devoured their dead and created gruesome goblets from the skulls of their remains, according to new research.
Images: REUTERS/ Natural History Museum Media Team/Handout
"It’s impossible to know how the skull-cups were used back then, but in recent examples they may hold blood, wine or food during rituals," said Chris Stringer, who helped excavate one of the skull-cups in 1987.
At about 14,700 years old, the skull-cups from Gough’s Cave are the oldest directly dated examples in the world, the researchers said.
They said the circumstances behind the deaths of the Cro-Magnons (European early modern humans), whose bones they discovered, can only be guessed at.
They may have been killed, butchered and eaten -- with the skull-cups just the end of this event -- or may have been part of the group who died and were eaten in a crisis situation, with the skull-cups created as a tribute to the dead.
"We simply do not know," they said in a joint emailed response to questions.
The use of skulls as drinking vessels has been well-documented in historical accounts and recent ethnographic studies, the researchers explained in their study.
Ancient Greek historian Herodotus portrayed the Scythians as people who drank from the skulls of their enemies and similar practices have been recorded among Vikings, Australian Aborigines and in tantric Buddhist rituals.
A precise cast of one of the skull-cups, complete with cut marks, will go on display in the Natural History Museum in London from March 1 for three months.
Article from: reuters.com
Cannibal Restaurant Has Berliners Disgusted: Looking for Body Part Donors
Neanderthals May Have Turned to Cannibalism in Attempt to Survive
Latest News from our Front Page
Vikings Were Pioneers of Craft and International Trade
The connections between technology, urban trading, and international economics which have come to define modern living are nothing new. Back in the first millennium AD, the Vikings were expert at exploring these very issues.
While the Vikings are "gone" their legacy is remembered, such as at the annual Jorvik Viking Festival in York. The Norsemen's military prowess and exploration are more ...
Just Based on DNA, Scientists Can Construct an Image of Your Face
Putting pencil to paper has been the tried-and-true method to illustrate the faces of wanted criminals, but new technology is changing this traditional approach. DNA, rather than an artist’s skill, is an emerging tool to recreate the face behind a crime.
The new forensic technique is called DNA phenotyping. It relies on DNA, found for instance in a drop of blood, ...
FCC Votes In Favor Of Obama's Net Neutrality - Has The Slippery Slope To Web Censorship Begun?
"An open Internet is essential to the American economy, and increasingly to our very way of life," according to President Obama and it appears his perspective on the heavy hand of government regulation inserting itself into the last bastion of freedom and dynamism in the US economy, is how best to achieve "openness." Having pressured FCC's Tom Wheeler, the vote ...
The Endgame: White Genocide
Made by youtube.com/ThisisEuropa
“There is no place in modern Europe for ethnically pure states. That’s a 19th century idea and we are trying to transition into the 21st century, and we are going to do it with multi-ethnic states.”
– Wesley Clark, U.S. general, ex-NATO Supreme Commander, talking about the NATO bombing of Serbia, 1999.
What is White Genocide?
▪ Moving millions of ...
Former German Lawyer Sylvia Stolz has been jailed again
Sylvia Stolz, the former defence attorney for Ernst Zundel has been convicted today in a Munich court, once again under the tyrannical BRD laws concerning so-called “holocaust denial” and thereby “inciting racial hatred”. She was sentenced to 20 months in prison with no possibility of parole.
The case stems from her presentation at the AZK in Switzerland in 2012 where ...
|More News » |