Ancient Siberian Mummies Found Wrapped In Copper and Fur

[DIGEST: The Siberian Times, IFLS, Express.co.uk]

An ancient mummy wrapped in a cocoon of copper, bark and fur was recently found in the Siberian Arctic. Alongside the mummy were the remains of a baby, in similar wrappings. These latest discoveries at the Zeleniy Yar burial site–where dozens of graves have been found over the past 20 years--may shed light on the early human exploration of northern Russia.


The mummies were discovered near a centuries-old monument in a remote corner of Siberia outside of Salekhard. The average yearly temperature in this town, which crosses the Polar circle, is a freezing 21.7 degrees Celsius, which helps to preserve the corpses.

In addition to cold temperatures, copper—a preservative—may have helped to mummify the bodies. “The adult’s cocoon was covered from head to toe with copper plates,” said Alexander Gusev, a senior researcher from Russia’s Center for Arctic Studies. The baby, whom researchers believe to have been no older than six months old upon burial, was wrapped in small fragments of a copper cauldron.

The mummies appear to have been buried according to a ritual. “The mummified remains were found lying next to each other, buried strictly along a north to south line,” said Gusev. In addition, their feet were turned toward a nearby river—the Gorny Poluy. This orientation of the bodies was consistent with that of the other corpses found on the site.

Experts from Russia and South Korea are now opening the adult burial cocoon at a laboratory in Tyumen, Russia. “Once we realized that the adult’s cocoon was really well-preserved, we didn’t risk opening it at the site,” said anthropologist Yevgenia Svyatova from the Center for the Protection and Use of Monuments of History and Culture. “We extracted it with soil to protect it as much as possible.”

Credit: Source.

The researchers will then attempt to determine the age and sex of the corpses, the type of fur used, and the approximate date of death. Researchers believe they may be up to 1,300 years old.

It is believed that the adult human was exceptionally tall for this era—between 165 and 170 centimeters, or about 5 feet, 7 inches.

These two mummies are not the first to be discovered at this burial site. Since 1997, when the site was unearthed, several dozen graves have been found—47 between 2013 and 2017 alone, their feet also positioned toward the river. Except for one female child, and the recent discovery of a near-perfectly preserved woman, all bodies discovered have been male. In many instances, the skulls were smashed.

In addition to bodies, researchers uncovered artifacts, including bronze bowls from the 10th century that originated in Persia—about 3,700 miles away. But the connection between this civilization and Persia is unknown.

Indeed, very little about this mysterious population is known, although researchers hope this recent discovery will change that. They plan to present their findings from this recent discovery at a conference in Salekhard later this year.

Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Questions continue to be raised about the mental and physical health of President Donald Trump.

Slurred or rambling speech has been caught on camera at MAGA rallies and other presidential events.

Keep reading... Show less
Fox News

The House Judiciary Committee voted Friday morning to bring abuse of power and obstruction of Congress articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump to the House floor for a full vote.

The Democratic House is expected to vote in favor of the articles as well, officially impeaching Trump and putting him on trial in the Republican Senate.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is already sparking concerns about the trial's fairness with comments he made Thursday night on far-Right Fox News host Sean Hannity's show.

Keep reading... Show less
MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images // Win McNamee/Getty Images

South Bend Mayor and 2020 presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg got an awkward shoutout from President Donald Trump, who's nicknamed the candidate "Alfred E. Neuman" after the Mad Magazine character.

It happened at the President's recent rally in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

Keep reading... Show less
Mark Wilson/Getty Images // DC Comics

"Introduce a little anarchy. Upset the established order, and everything becomes chaos. I'm an agent of chaos..."

Heath Ledger's Joker says this in 2008's The Dark Knight but it could also apply to the presidency of Donald Trump. From defying subpoenas, introducing sweeping policy changes to his own staff through tweets, fostering a revolving-door administration, abruptly deserting allies, and, of course, the ceaseless bullying.

The President and the Clown Prince of Crime have both been agents of some degree of chaos.

So it may not come as a surprise that the Joker joins the campaign of a Trump-like character in the latest issue of Dark Knight Returns: The Golden Child.

Keep reading... Show less
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The House Judiciary Committee is expected to vote in favor of articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump on Friday, teeing up a full House vote for next week.

The move comes after weeks of hearings with Republicans shouting in defense of the President and against the efforts to hold him accountable for soliciting foreign assistance in an election.

Keep reading... Show less
Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images; Matthew Horwood/Getty Images

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has some experience with impeachment. While her husband Bill was President, the Independent Counsel investigation led by Ken Starr probed every aspect of her life before and during her time in the White House as well as her husbands.

While Starr failed to find any criminal wrongdoing by the First Lady, he did after his four year investigation discover her husband's extramarital affair with a White House intern.

Keep reading... Show less