A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

Special Introductory Offer!
online features
Violence in the Bogs "Bodies of the Bogs"
Worsley Man was garroted and then beheaded. His left temple had been hit with a blunt object, causing bone splinters to enter his brain. It is possible that he was already dead when decapitated. The head was found in 1958 in Great Britain. What the executioners did with the rest of the body is unknown. (The Manchester Museum) [image]
[image] In 1984 the body of a man was found in Lindow Moss, near Manchester. Well-built and in his twenties when he died, Lindow Man had rather small ears and a full head of dark hair, a short beard, mustache, and side burns. His death was extremely violent. He received blows on the head and in the back, was garroted with a thin cord, and had his throat cut. He was then dropped face downwards into a pool in the bog. This happened between A.D. 20 and 130. (The British Museum)
Gallagh Man was found in 1821 by workmen in a bog near Castleblakeney, County Galway in Ireland. The body of the adult man was clothed in a deerskin cape which extended as far as the knees. The cape was said to have been tied at the neck with a band of willow rods. This might well have been a strangling device. A pointed wooden post was placed at each side of the body. Gallagh Man was dug up several times to be shown to visitors before being removed from the bog in 1829. Gallagh Man died between 470 and 120 B.C. (National Museum of Ireland) [image]
[image] The naked body of an adult man--Neu Versen Man, also known as "Red Franz" for his striking red hair--was found in 1900 lying on his back in Bourtangermoor, a large raised bog on the border between Holland and Germany. He lived in the Roman Iron Age, dying between 220 and A.D 430. He broke his right clavicle at some stage in his life. The healed fracture remains visible because the two parts grew together at an abnormally sharp angle. It is not known how he met his end. (left photo: Niedersächsisches Landesmuseum of Germany, Hannover; right photo: Silkeborg Museum of Denmark) [image]
[image] Windeby Girl is one of two bodies found in 1952 in the small Domlandsmoor near Windeby, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. The girl was only 14 years old when she died. During her life she suffered several growth arrests. The cause of her death is unknown; no trace was found of violence. She was buried in a pit in the bog next to a large stone with a large birch branch in her right arm and a band tied over her eyes. Windeby Girl lived in the Roman Iron Age, the first centuries A.D. (Archäologisches Landesmuseum of Germany, Schleswig)

Share