United Kingdom & Ireland

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Bogbodies have been found in the United Kingdom and Ireland, but most of them have not been preserved. Of some bogbodies that were lost, we do have a description. We start with the bogbodies from the UK and finish with the bogbodies from Ireland.


lindow1De man van Lindow

In august 1984 peatdiggers in Cheshire found the torso of a male bogbody. His head and his right foot were found later that year. In 1988 parts of his legs were found as well. The body is approximately 2300 years old. He was named Pete Marsh, but he is best known as the Lindow man. This man was probably sacrificed to the gods. He had a rope made of tendons around his neck that was most likely used to strangle him. He had also been stuck on the head three times and was stabbed in the neck. After that he was placed in the bog face down.

lindow2His teeth show that he was 20 to 30 years old when he died. He had a beard and moustache, something we don’t see often on a bogbodies, most men are shaven. He suffered from arthritis and he hd very neat fingernails..
Besides some worms in his intestines he was in pretty good health. His stomach was filled with a mixture of grain, bran and some burnt bread.
Lindow man has been lyophilized and is now on display at the British Museum.
Volg het bord Lindow Man van DenBlauwen op Pinterest.

De vrouw van Lindow

On may 13th 1983 two peatdiggers noticed a part of a womans head in the bog near Lindow Moss, in Cheshire, where later Lindow man was found. A local resident, Peter Reyn-Bardt confessed that 23 years before, he had murdered his wife. He had thrown her body in the bog. After analysis using the C-14-method the head turned out to be approximately 1770 years old. Peter Reyn-Bardt was still convicted for murdering his wife.
I’m still searching for a good image of the Lindow woman.


Cladh-HallanCladh Hallan bodies

The four of Cladh Hallan bodies were discovered underneath the floors of two round houses from 3000 years ago at the famous archaeological site at Cladh Hallan on the Hebrides island South Uist. The oldest body is that of a man who lived about 3500 years ago, the others are a few centuries younger. They are probably a middle aged man and woman and a three year old girl. After Cardon dating the bodies it turned out that the four bodies from South Uist were burried about 6 canturies after their death. Maybe the peaty water was used to preserve the bodies. The internal organs had been removed and they were probably bandaged because their limbs were very close to their bodies. Bandages have not been found, they were not preserved. The BBC made a television program about the archaeological research on these bodies named: “Meet The Ancestors”. “We are talking about artificial preservation of the soft tissue after death. It is something that is deliberate. The flesh after a certain space of time will rot away from even a preserved body. We didn’t dig them up, then say ‘Ah, mummies!’, but we thought there was something strange. They were very tightly crunched up and had to have been bound for some time.” Mike Parker-Pearson, expert in prehistoric funeral rites.

Volg het bord Cladh Hallan van DenBlauwen op Pinterest.

De verdwenen vrouw van Amcottsmoor

In 1747 the remains of the Amcotts Moor woman were found, unfortunatly the only thing left of Amcotts Moor Woman is her left shoe. This kind of leather shoe was worn in the late Roman Period, about 200 to 400 A.D. Her right shoe as well as her hand were sent to the Royal Society in London shortly after the woman had been found but like many other early finds the bogbody has disappeared.

Volg het bord Amcotts moor woman van DenBlauwen op Pinterest.

De verdwenen man van Mulkeeragh

Taken from Lindow Man –The Body in the Bog by I.M Stead, J.B Bourke, Don Brothwell.
In a bog near the farm of Jacob Smith in Mulkeeragh, an ordinary gravestone. This was raised over the remains of a human body found there dressed in a tartan military uniform as worn in the year 1753. This Highland soldier was found by the late Josiah Smith, the father of Jacob Smith, while working in the bog of Mulkeeragh. He found him stretched wearing a long tartan cloak over his uniform dress and both the body and the clothes were in an really good state of preservation. It was decided to rebury the body in the same spot were it was found where it stil rests today.

De verdwenen vrouw en kind van Ballgudden

Taken from Lindow Man –The Body in the Bog by I.M Stead, J.B Bourke, Don Brothwell. In 1831 in a bog near Ballgudden, the bodies a woman and a small child were discovered. The woman’s yellow hair seemed to suffered little damage from the long time in the bog. The body remained in its natural shape but parts of the flesh were hardened like cement, much like the fat of an animal. The infants flesh disappeared completely. The child wore round its neck a leather strap, with a small buckle attached.

De verdwenen vrouw van Terrydremount

Taken from Lindow Man –The Body in the Bog by I.M Stead, J.B Bourke, Don Brothwell.
A James Thompson discovered a female skeleton and a shoe in a bog near Terrydremount South in 1832. A wooden crutch was also found, excavated with help from a wheelwright . The woman had yellow blond hair. No flesh was left on the bones, only the skeleton remained. After inspection, the skeleton was buried very deep in the same place were it was found.

Other lost bodies

Taken from Lindow Man –The Body in the Bog by I.M Stead, J.B Bourke, Don Brothwell.
In the book Lindow Man –The Body in the Bog, there is mention of other bodies from the bog, like the Camnish woman (found 1834) and the Ballygrollchild (found 1835). The Ballygrollchild was coffined. The inside covering was a sheet of paper instead of the usual linen. The well shaped grave of the Camnish woman had a stone placed at the head and a foot of the grave, which stands in the interior of the above bog.


grewelthorpheGrewelthorphe Moor body

A well-preserved body was found on Grewelthorphe Moor, North Yorkshire in 1850. Dressed in bright woolen garments and a pair of shoes, it was reburied in the churchyard of Kirkby Mazeard. Fortunately a policeman managed to secure some bits and pieces: a nailed sole of the left shoe, a woolen insole, and a textile fragment of irregular shape which may have been part of a stocking. The unusual shoe sole is typical for the Roman period. (Yorkshire Museum, H 2053.1, H 2053.2)

Bog bodies in Ireland
In Ireland there have also been discoveries of bogbodies. Most of these were found much more recently then the Dutch bogbodies because in Ireland peatdigging is still done unlike in the Netherlands. Peatdigging is no longer done by hand but with big diggingmachines. This means that the bodies found are usually severly damaged.


gallagh1De man van Gallagh

In 1821 Gallagh man was found by peatdiggers in the bog near Castleblakeney. His body was resting on the leftside of the body and was covered with a cape made of deerskin. The cape was fastened at the neck by means of a piece of willowwood, also used to strangle the man. His body had been pinned down in the bog with two wooden pins. The man was reburied and with some regularity re-excavated when people wanted to have a look. According to R. C. Turner the body was finaly taken to the Royal Dublin Society and later to the Royal Irish Academy where it eas put on display. It was the first bogbody ever to be on display. During the dryingproces the well prederved body was distorted and the man’s hair lost. From the cape only small pieces have been saved. The body has been dated and was found to be about 2300 years old, the man lived during the Iron Age. and can be seen at the National Museum of Ireland in Dublin.

Volg het bord Gallagh Man van DenBlauwen op Pinterest.


ClonycavanDe man van Clonycavan

Clonycavan man was found March 2003 in the bog by Clonycavan, near Dublin. A very recent find! Again people thought this was a modern body, a murder victim, maybe killed by the members of the I.R.A. but the body turned out to be 2300 years old, Clonycavan man lived between 392 and 201 B.C., another Iron Age man. The body was found inside a peatdigging machine. Only his torso and abdomen were saved, the machine cut the body in half. The hight of the man has been astimated to be about 1.57 metres tall.

His skull had been split open by a sharp object. In the deep wound braintissue was found. He was had a wound on his chest and his intestines had been removed, just like with one of the Dutch men of Nieuw-Weerdinge. There is a cut running from his nose to his right eye. This was probably caused by the same sharp object, maybe an axe. His nose was also broken. He had very bad teeth and had a thin beard. The University of Dundee made a reconstuction of his face. Analysis of his hair shows that he ate a lot of vegetables shortly before he died. Maybe this means he died during the summertime?.
Clonycavan3He was relitively young when he died, most likely between 20 and 25 years old.His hair style is very striking: a kind of Mohawk that was held up by hairgel made of plantoil and pineresin. This had probably imported from Spain and France, that also proves trade between these areas and Ireland. It can also mean that he was a member of the elite since only richer members of his society people could afford these expensive products. Because of his hairstyly he has been nicknamed the Iron Age David Beckham. The university of Dundee has made a facial reconstruction. The body of Clonycavan man is on display at the National Museum of Ireland in Dublin.

Volg het bord Clonycavan man van DenBlauwen op Pinterest.


Oldcroghan2De man van Old Croghan

He was stabbed in the chest several times, decapitated and his body cut in half. A cut on his arm could be a defensive wound. He was tortured before he was killed. Underneath both nipples is a deep cut. The body was found naked with only a braided leather band on his left wrist. Old Croghan man was foun only 3 months after Clonycavan man in june 2003. He was named afer a local hill, near the site where he was found; Croghan Hill north of Daingean.

OldcroghanThe man lived between 362 and 175 B.C., he is an Iron Age man and was 20 to 25 years old when he died. He must have been a very tall man for his time. Judging from the lenght of his upper arm, he must have been about 1.98 metre, the tallest of all the bogbodies. Old Croghan man probably had a high status in his society, his hand were well tended to and not workers hands. These hand were very large and peautifully preserved, including his fingerprints. Analysis of his nails show he had a very healthy diet with plenty of meat and vegetables.
Oldcroghan1His stomachcontents consisted of grain and buttermilk. But he wasn’t completly healthy, there was scartissue in his lungs: He suffered from pleurisy. The body of Old Croghan man is on display at the National Museum of Ireland in Dublin.
Volg het bord Old Croghan Man van DenBlauwen op Pinterest.


meenybraddanDe vrouw van Meenybradden

On may 3th 1978 peatdiggers in the Meenybradden bog near Ardara found t he body of a 25 to 30 year old woman. She was covered by a woolen mantle. This mantle caused a big stir when it turned out to be 5 centuries younger then the body? The body has now been dated around 1570 A. D. which fitts with the medieval style of the mantle. There were no visible wounds and nothing else was found. We have no clear idea of her cause of death. She was found laying on her back in an east-west direction. The body was very well preserved, only her feet show some damage. She had short hair that had also been beautifully preserved, just like her eyelashes. The body was taken to Dublin and kept in a freezer at the citymortuary. It stayed there for 7 years, wich serieusly damaged the body. In july 1985 the body was taken to the British Museum gebracht fot further preservation. Her lyophilized body is kept at the National Museum of Ireland in Dublin but is not on display.

Volg het bord Old Croghan Man van DenBlauwen op Pinterest.

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