Lady of Bietikow: German scientists find clues about prehistoric times through skeleton

German researchers have found remains of a woman who was buried nearly 5,000 years ago in the Neolithic period. Scientists are trying to piece together information about life in prehistoric times, through the remains of the skeleton

Lady of Bietikow

The "Lady of Bietikow," was found near a village of the same name in northeastern Germany's Uckermark region and was found buried in a squatting position, which is one of the oldest forms of burial.

(Photograph:AFP)

Oetzi the Iceman

Investigations have shown that she was buried when she was between 30 and 45 years old, and had died more than 5,000 years ago. This has revealed that she lived in the same period as Oetzi the Iceman — a well preserved corpse found by a group of tourists in the Alps in 1990s.

(Photograph:AFP)

Limited remains

All that is left of Lady Bietikow are bones and some fragments of clothing, but researchers have still managed to piece together some details about her life.

(Photograph:AFP)

Jaw line

Through the study of the jaws of the remains, it has been concluded that it was during the Neolithic period that humans first introduced grains into their diet, since they could be stored more easily than meat and could also be used as a means of payment. However, this might have led to deterioration in humans' health which is evident by the condition of the teeth that were severely eroded and missing completely in some places.

(Photograph:AFP)

Hard food

Scientists also found that the humans in that period were probably having a diet rich in fiber and very hard, as the teeth were heavily worn off and chewed off, instead of presence of enamel on the surface of the teeth. It remains unclear whether the condition of Lady Bietikow's teeth indicates an illness or even the cause of her death. 

(Photograph:AFP)

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