|Huldremose dress, front/wikipedia|
|Huldremose woman, wikipedia|
She was more than 40 years old when she was placed in the bog which was a high age at that time, in fact an old woman of Iron Age. The find has brought nutrition to various discussions and interpretations during times. A possible interpretation is that she was killed and following this sacrificed in the bog.The body was found with the legs bent behind the back, with a nearly severed right arm. Supposedly the arm was damaged by a shovel during excavation. Apart from this, the corpse was well intact.The dead lay with head west. The body was identified as a grown woman, probably rather slender built. The left thighbone had been broken and grown crookedly. She must have been limping.
According to science exist many informations about what had happened to people who later became bog bodies. The stomach contents can reveal the person's meal before death. It is known from the Huldremose woman's stomach contents that her last meal was rough grinded ray with a big content of seeds from the weed spergel (spergula arvensis). In her stomach were also animal hairs and rests of animal tissue. This indicated that she also had meat in her dish.
She wore a dress with a checkered skirt and a checkered scarf in sheep wool and two skin capes. The skirt was held around the waist with a narrow leather strap woven into a waistband. The scarf was tied around her head and fastened under the left arm with a needle from a bird's bone. On the upper body she wore outermost a cape made from several dark brown sheep skin with a collar of light sheep skin, the curly fur turning out. Under this she wore another cape with the fur side inwards. This was made from 11 small dark lamb skin. The cape was well used and had 22 sewn on patches. They did not cover a hole but contained a finely made bone comb, a narrow blue hair band and a lether strap, all wrapped in a bladder. This was obviously not a pocket, since the patches had to be cut up to get out the things. The insewen things possibly functioned as amulets.
|Huldremose woman, exhibition, National Museum/ wikipedia|
|Huldremose, Djursland, photo:gb|
|Tollund man, photo: stigbachmannnielsen, Naturplan foto|
Forensic analyses have shown that the Huldremose woman had got a violent cut in her right upper arm. The theory was earlier that the cut of the arm was the reason for her death, and that she died from blood loss. Later investigations could not verify this theory, and it is possible that the damage might have happened later, fx in the turf digging of the bog. While she was alive she broke her right leg, but this fracture healed before her death. Her hair was bound with a long woolen cord laid several times around her neck. There are no marks on the neck which might indicate strangulation. Maybe the cord had a symbolic meaning. Strangulated people are known from other Danish bog bodies, like the bodies from Elling and Borremose and the famous Tollund Man.
About one hundred Danish bog bodies are preserved up till today because of the special good preservation conditions in the peat bogs. The mummified bog bodies where skin, hair and stomach contents are preserved count about a fourth, while the rest of the bog bodies are only skeletal parts. The most well preserved bodies like the Huldremose woman, the Grauballe man and the Tollund man are found in raised bogs, where the necessary sour and oxygen poor condition is present.
source: National Museum, museumsinspektør Flemming Kaul
photo: grethe bachmann/ stig bachmann nielsen, Naturplan foto.