Brazilian Mummy
Human Mummy
Biographical Information
Name(s) Brazilian Mummy
Age 500 - 600 years ago
Site Lapa do Boquete, Minas Gerais State, Brazil
Current Location
Location Brazil
Catalog #

The mummy was said to be between 500-600 years old. Dietary analysis showed that the mummified body was from a society that gathered of wild foods and had a mixed subsistence of agriculture. Coprolites from the body had helminth (parasitic worms) eggs. The eggs were demonstrated to be those of Echinostoma species and hookworm.


The body was loosely flexed, wrapped in plant leaves, and buried with baskets. The man’s head was wrapped in plant fibers. Numerous artifacts were buried with him, including a dart thrower (atlatl), containers made of gourds, a ceramic pot, and numerous tools. The arms, legs, abdominal skin, and some muscles were well preserved and he was partially mummified.


The mummy was an adult male, dated by radiocarbon method to 560±40 years ago.

Burial cross section image is redrafted from Prous and Schlobach

Hookworm infection in pre-Columbian populations was previously known, but this was the first evidence of Echinostoma species eggs found in human coprolites. The Study examined the body to discover these and realize the conclusion.


Healed fractures of the foot phalanges were identified, there were no skeletal signs of violence. Lumbar spondylosis was observed. Researchers observed pronounced dental wear, caries, and dental abscesses. A large fecal mass, illustrated via CT-scan, suggested that the individual experienced megacolon at the time of death.

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