The A to Z Challenge is on! Hello and welcome to my Main blog. My name is Rose Anderson and I’m a romance novelist. Join me and more than 2279 bloggers and authors as we blog the alphabet throughout the month of April. My daily posts will be mostly history with some science topics here and there. I’ve chosen subjects that tickle my fancy, I hope you will find them interesting too.
Keep the topic rolling! If you have comments or questions, add them at the end of the post. I may not know the answer off the top of my head but I love research and would enjoy discussing my topics further. Comments can be made just below my bio in the tag section.
*FREE* If you enjoy reading scorching romances with unique twists and characters full of personality and depth, scroll down for a free chapter sampler. Find my book trailers in the tabs above.
Today’s Calliope’s Writing Tablet post is brought to you by the letter I ~
I for iceman
Sometime in the mid-1990’s my husband and I went to a public presentation at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (a.k.a. Fermilab). Before CERN, Fermilab’s accelerator was the place to be for experiments on particle physics. (I did say I was a nerd) Researchers from around the world work there and to keep everyone happy and entertained in the off hours, they have guest speakers and concerts. This particular guest speaker was talking about something extraordinary. Climate change melting the 20-mile thick ancient ice off portions of the Alps had uncovered a prehistoric man who’d been buried in glacial ice for millennia. And he had his prehistoric clothing and tools with him!
It all started when a pair of hikers walked the Alpine Italian-Austrian border that geographically divides the Alps and got more than an outing when they stumbled upon the mummified body of an ancient man in an exposed gully bed. At first the pair didn’t know what to think. Was this a missing hiker? Ice bodies do turn up from time to time. The snowy Alps can be a rough place. Even Napoleon’s frozen soldiers turn up on occasion. When authorities were called on the scene, they knew they had something different. Recent ice bodies, those lost in the last several years or so, go through this weird process where fat from inside the body somehow ends up on the outside. This body was freeze-dried. It didn’t have that typical lumpy coating of fat found on more recent ice bodies. Sure enough, they discovered this guy was old. 5,300 years-old, in fact. He came from the late Neolithic or early Chalcolithic period (Copper Age).
Nicknamed Ötzi, he would become the most thoroughly studied mummy ever found. Through intense scrutiny, scientists have pieced together an astoundingly complete view of this man’s world and his final hours in it. The image shown here was built upon physical data collected by CT scans.
Here’s a brief idea of what they’ve learned since I first heard about him back in the 1990’s.
- Ötzi was a progressive. Rather than a life of a hunter gatherer common at this time, his clothing made of domestic animals skins reflect he was shepherd who tended cows and sheep.
- He was a pastoralist. His woven grass cape and moss-packed hide boots suggests he slept out with his flock. His tools suggest a crafty man who could make whatever he needed on the spot.
- Ötzi had Lyme Disease, whipworms, and arthritic knees. He stood 5’3″ tall and weighed approximately 110 pounds. He was in his 40’s and also had tattoos. Originally artists had given Ötzi blue eyes. His DNA says brown.
- His last meal had been cultivated wheat (possibly bread), deer and ibex meat, and plums. It also suggests he wasn’t far from home when he died. Scientists also found an herb called hop hornbeam in the undigested mix. It’s known for treating upset stomachs. He was lactose intolerant.
- Though he may have fathered children, his DNA reflects his mother’s line is now extinct. He does have distant relatives, however. 19 men alive today share a paternal ancestor.
- He was murdered by an arrow in the back. His head wound and a severe hand wound when coupled with the fact the stone arrowheads in his pouch have the blood of four different people on them, all suggest he’d been in a rather savage fight over a period of three to eight days. Perhaps he retreated to the mountains after and was followed. The fact his stomach was full shows he had time to eat well. It also suggests his death was a result of a surprise attack. Someone pulled the arrow shaft from his back, leaving the arrowhead inside. Was it his murderer? That remains a mystery.
Tomorrow ~ letter J!
**NEW THIS WEEK** on my satellite blog!
It’s Day4 in the Authors in Bloom event. It highlights those things authors do outside the fiction. We garden, we cook, we craft etc. One of the more unusual things my husband and I have done was lead wild foods programs for Chicago’s Field Museum. For this event I’ll be sharing my recipes. Do stop by. You may have delicious ingredients waiting in your backyard!
Here’s one for today:
Tragematopolist (noun 1656-1658)
~confectioner; seller of sweets
See what’s happening on the RB4U blog today
Our April contest is on. We’ll have 3 winners and a lot of prizes to split among them. http://www.romancebooks4us.com/
Love Waits in Unexpected Places –
Scorching Samplings of Unusual Love Stories
Download your copy of my free chapter sampler!