Qilakitsoq is an archaeological site on Nuussuaq Peninsula. Formally a settlement, it is famous for the discovery of eight mummified bodies in 1972. Four of the mummies are currently on display in the Greenland National Museum.

The remains that were found in an icy tomb dated to 1460 CE. Four of these bodies were preserved well due to being buried under a rock in cold temperatures. In essence, they were freeze dried.

The mummies in the first grave included 3 women stacked on top of each other with a boy on top and a very-well preserved baby on top of them all. A nearby grave contained three more women piled on top of each other. Both pits were covered in stones, the placement of which alerted a pair of brothers who were out hunting in 1972. After turning over a few stones, the brothers found the mummies, re-closed the grave and alerted authorities. However, it took until 1977 before the authorities investigated the find.

Along with the mummies in the graves were 78 pieces of clothing made from seal, reindeer and other skins, some of which displayed a sense of fashion. The boy had features which may have been symptoms of down syndrome, and five of the six adult females bore faint facial tattoos. The baby is the now famous representative of the group, and may have been placed alive into the grave if its mother had died, as was customary in Eskimo culture. DNA test showed relative close family connection of all the mummies.

References:

Comments

Your name



Address

Siaqqissoq, Greenland
See all sites in Siaqqissoq

Details

Founded: 1460
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in Greenland

Interesting Sites Nearby

User Reviews

Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Kastelholma Castle

First record of Kastelholma (or Kastelholm) castle is from the year 1388 in the contract of Queen Margaret I of Denmark, where a large portion of the inheritance of Bo Jonsson Grip was given to the queen. The heyday of the castle was in the 15th and 16th centuries when it was administrated by Danish and Swedish kings and stewards of the realms. Kastelhoma was expanded and enhanced several times.

In the end of 16th century castle was owned by the previous queen Catherine Jagellon (Stenbock), an enemy of the King of Sweden Eric XIV. King Eric conquered Kastelholma in 1599 and all defending officers were taken to Turku and executed. The castle was damaged under the siege and it took 30 years to renovate it.

In 1634 Åland was joined with the County of Åbo and Björneborg and Kastelholma lost its administrative status.