The Borremose Man was one of three bodies found in Borremose in Himmerland, Denmark, between the years 1946 and 1948 . He is an example of a 'bog body', a human that has been mummified naturally in a peat bog .
The Borremose Man was found in 1946 by peat diggers in the southernmost point of Borremose. Was first thought to be a recent murder at the time until the facts were later presented to the public. The body was found half a meter into the bog under a layer of birch sticks. The Borremose Man was found naked, with a woven hat and two sheepskin coats discovered beside him.
The body was found with a crushing blow to the back of the head and a broken right femur. A rope noose was wrapped around its neck.
The victim was found with two other women.
The Borremose Man was mummified naturally in a peat bog. Several factors influence body preservation in peat bogs, including salinity, pH, anaerobic conditions, and water temperature at time of burial.
Peat that is buried by new growth decomposes, and in the process releases humic acid. This acid has a pH similar to vinegar and is responsible for the acidic conditions in which the bodies are buried. The acidity preserves soft tissue in the same way that pickling preserves fruit.
Peat bogs in areas with few drainage routes are almost completely anaerobic. This, combined with the acidic conditions, inhibits the growth of aerobic surface organisms that would otherwise initiate decomposition .
It is believed that the Borremose Man died from either a blow to the back of the head, or from being hanged .
At the time of the discovery, the Borremose Man was thought to be a recent murder victim. However, after the involvement of the superintendant of police and district medical examiner, the Borremose Man was identified as a bog body .
The Borremose Man is not currently on display to the public .
Scientists speculate that most of the broken bones on the skeleton of the Borremose Man was from the weight/impact of the peat.
Keith, C. (2011, September 18). Mummies of the world:Bog Bodies of Northern Europe. Retrieved December 3, 2015, from http://www.examiner.com/article/mummies-of-the-world-bog-bodies-of-northern-europe
Two Bog Bodies (Copenhagen, Denmark). (n.d.). Retrieved December 3, 2015, from http://www.mummytombs.com/bog/borremose.html
Published: October 24, 2011
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