The man from the early Bronze Age died while crossing the glacier on the Tisenjoch in the Ötztal Alps. His corpse was quickly covered in snow and ice and consequently preserved for millennia.
The German couple Erike and Helmut Simon discovered the mummy at an altitude of 3,210 m (10,531 ft). The team recovering him found his complete clothing and belongings. A journalist dubbed him "Ötzi" after the Ötztal Alps and the name stuck. Countless teams of experts have examined him, making him the most intensively studied person worldwide. At the time of his death he was around 45 years old, 1.60 m (5' 3'') tall and weighed 50 kg. The cause of death was established when an X-ray revealed a stone arrowhead embedded in his shoulder. Obviously he had been hit in the back while attempting to flee from his killer(s).A further surprise was the discovery of 50 tattoos which must have served a medicinal purpose.
Ötzi's clothing and belongings give us a detailed snapshot of life in the Chalcolithic period (the time straddling the end of the Stone Age and the beginning of the Bronze Age). His clothing made of goat, deer and bear skin provided him with ideal protection against the hostile elements of the high mountains. He carried a copper axe, dagger as well as a bow and arrows and even a rucksack and countless implements, a tinder fungus, a net for catching hares, containers made from birch bark, and flint stone tools. Today Ötzi can be marvelled at together with the objects found with him in a special department in the Bolzano/Bozen Archaeological Museum.
Ötzi's life and times are brought to life in the Archeoparc in Val Senales/Schnalstal valley near Merano/Meran. It features Bronze Age agriculture and dwellings, and visitors can learn how to cook and craft things just like 5000 years ago.
The Iceman Photo Scan is an innovative project which records the complete photographic documentation of the body of the Iceman mummy. Thanks to 12 differing angle-shots it is possible to see the whole body of the mummy.
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