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First Mummies May Have Been Inspired by Field of Corpses 78

sciencehabit writes with a story about a field strewn with corpses in shallow graves. From the article: "Trekking through Chile's Atacama Desert 7000 years ago, hunter-gatherers known as the Chinchorro walked in the land of the dead. Thousands of shallowly buried human bodies littered the earth, their leathery corpses pockmarking the desolate surroundings. According to new research, the scene inspired the Chinchorro to begin mummifying their dead, a practice they adopted roughly 3000 years before the Egyptians embraced it."
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First Mummies May Have Been Inspired by Field of Corpses

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  • ok sure but.. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 13, 2012 @07:29PM (#40978925)

    where are these 1,000s of naturally occuring mummies now? if they really had enough dead to "pock mark the landscape" like they say then there must be a lot of at least partially intact left?

  • Re:ok sure but.. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Penguinisto ( 415985 ) on Monday August 13, 2012 @07:41PM (#40979041) Journal

    Hard to say, really. They may still be out there, or they may have been rounded up and (mostly) buried when the region was converted to Christianity back in the 16th-17th century or so. Probably a bit of both, considering that scientists are still stumbling across the things.

    Hell, for all we know, they may have suffered the same fate as all too many Egyptian mummies, which were used as literal firewood and train boiler fuel [], among other things.

  • by Kittenman ( 971447 ) on Monday August 13, 2012 @09:06PM (#40979907)
    "First Mummies may have been inspired by bad night's sleep"
    "First Mummies may have been inspired by bird song heard by someone"
    "First Mummies may have been inspired by Shakespeare's MacBeth"

    Isn't there a journalistic law that covers this sort of thing, when the answer is ' but probably not'?

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