Earliest Known Shark Attack Victim with 790 Injuries Killed 3,000 Years Ago

Oxford researchers were investigating a skeletal remains of a prehistoric hunter gatherer at Kyoto University, Japan, when they noticed that the man was riddled with hundreds of traumatic injuries.

"We were initially flummoxed by what could have caused at least 790 deep, serrated injuries to this man. There were so many injuries and yet he was buried in the community burial ground ... the injuries were mainly confined to the arms, legs, and front of the chest and abdomen," stated researchers J. Alyssa White and Rick Schulting.

The researchers ruled out manmade weapons as well as predators and animal scavengers as the cause of the injuries, and concluded that the man died from a shark attack.

From Sky News:

Since archaeological cases of shark reports are extremely rare, they turned to forensic shark attack cases for clues and worked with expert George Burgess of the Florida Program for Shark Research.

The team concluded the man, known as No 24, died between 1370 to 1010 BC.

The distribution of wounds strongly suggest the victim was alive at the time of attack; his left hand was sheared off, possibly a defence wound.

Image: Laboratory of Physical Anthropology, Kyoto University

#shark #skeleton #archaeology #Japan

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