Every other day, we come across explorations about human remains that let us wonder about the endless mysteries of human civilization. History carries evidence of some of the most powerful, brutal, and greatest women who ever lived on this planet. However, there are findings on women who have aroused curiosity for a variety of reasons. Here’s taking you through such intriguing pre-historic women whose names are etched in the history of human civilization.
Not to mistake for the female version of the X-Men series, but it’s a new type of woman found via DNA testing. Believed to be of Siberian origin, the X-Woman is still a mystery — scientists are still trying to join the dots if prehistoric humans and migration prevailed in Africa as her remains confirm so.
Her DNA is highly distinct from that of modern humans (third species as it is known) or from that of the Neanderthals. Now, it is still not established if the three species were linked to each other in some way for Australian Aborigines and Melanesians of New Guinea show 5% resemblance of their DNA with X-Woman.
Neither a human nor a chimpanzee, yet carrying traces of both is Ardi. Her skeleton challenges the theory if humans indeed evolved from chimps. So much so, that scientists continue with their research about both and if they had ‘split from their common ancestor’ at some time. The oldest known hominid skeleton that finds a place in the National Museum of Ethiopia at present is made of 125 pieces in total.
With a small brain, long fingers, moderate height (4 ft. tall), standard weight (50 kilos), and the trademark big toe (that helped her gain a foothold on branches of trees) as her features, she survived on a diet consisting of plants, fruits and miniature mammals (her intact teeth bearing testimony).
The Red Lady
Wondering why such a name? This lady’s bones were covered in ‘ochre’, a reddish pigment that may be a part of some ritual or a preservative used in those days, and belonged to the El Miron cave of Northern Spain.
Despite having good health and feeding on a diet of red deer, mushrooms, fish, seeds, ibex, and so on, The Red Lady actually only had a life span of 35 to 40 years of age, and scientists keep speculating why. Hers was an elaborate burial with etchings near the grave, only after her body was decomposed.
The creature that changed the very way we tend to think about human evolution is regarded as the most famous fossil of all time. Lucy had a small brain, short legs, long arms, huge belly, and walked upright on two legs (her knees and pelvis are proof). Fruits, nuts, seeds, and few eggs of termites and birds are what constituted her diet.
Researchers are, however, still struggling to find her actual gender for several other discoveries shows males of her species in larger avatars. The pioneer for changing the belief that it isn’t human intelligence that determined the ability to walk on two legs, Lucy’s remains are currently kept at the National Museum of Ethiopia.
The Arlington Springs…Woman (?)
In California’s Santa Rosa Island, back in 1959, scientists found the famous Arlington Springs Man that later became Arlington Springs Female (after the bones were so determined). Surprisingly, in 2006, scientists said that the findings were completely wrong and that fossils were 70% more prone to being male.
Regardless of the exact results, the Arlington Springs Person is a significant find of prehistoric times. Unlike big game hunters like Clovis People, this group, however, stayed confined with coastal scavengers and fishermen.
Caribbean woman Taoua might have died more than 1000 years ago on the West Indian Island of Nevis but what accounts for the fascination is that her skeleton remains complete after so many years. ‘Taoua’ meaning ‘white stone’ in Carib was excavated in 2011 on a beach near White Bay.
Her loss of few teeth points at cavities she had (high sugar content in the diet) and the dental root having been exposed leads one to conclude that blood poisoning could be a potent reason for her death. That is not all. She might have been a sufferer of osteoarthritis as her deformed spine and broken ribs caused scientists to believe so. Overall, she had a rough life despite satisfactory health.
Perhaps, research in the days to come will lead to more ‘intriguing’ discoveries and that might even alter our present mode of thinking.