Home / History / Otzi the 5,300 year old Iceman has 61 Tattoos

Otzi the 5,300 year old Iceman has 61 Tattoos

At the time of his death, Scientists reveal that Otzi was a 45-50 year old man, approximately 160cm (5″3) tall.

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Since Otzi’s skin has darkened over time, it wasn’t easy to detect all the tattoos. But scientists have already confirmed tattoos of at least 50 in number… some of them taking on the form of crosses & parallel lines that are all black and some were as long as 4cm. Fortunately, an Italian team led by Marco Samadelli of EURAC Research has turned to a non-invasive imaging technique which captures light at different wavelengths (from infrared to ultraviolet) which helped them reveal never-before-seen tattoos that are thousands of years older than us!!!

Unlike modern tattooing that uses electricity and needles, these were theoretically made by rubbing charcoal into fine incisions.

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