The peat bogs of Ireland hold many treasures and are a rich source of bog bodies. The properties of the peat preserves these ancient peoples – even the contents of their last meal.
In 2006 two bog bodies of men were found and displayed in Dublin. One, a giant of a man (6ft 6in) had manicured nails, he was called Oldcroghan (after the place he was found). The other, (Clonycavan man) measured only 5ft 2 in and had a piled up hair style (just like me – and about the same height too!). To hold this hairstyle together, he wore a kind of hair gel! And they women are vain!
Both men seem to have been part of elite, not manual labourers: both were murdered. the whole article about them, which makes interesting reading.
But it isn’t only men who are found in bogs. There is Meenybradden woman. She was found in 1978 in a peat bog. Her body was wrapped in a woollen cloak and does not appear to have met a grisly end. Her age is estimated to be between 25 and 30. She was at one time the best preserved body – until the body got damaged in the deep freeze! Unfortunately I can’t get a decent image of what is left of the woman.
Bog bodies are fascinating, they can tell us so much about ourselves and how we lived. A lot have been destroyed (unintentionally) by peat cutting machinery, but there must be lots lying silently, more just waiting to be discovered.
It looks like these bodies are still on display at the Dublin National Museum of Ireland
More bog bodies here