The Iceman provides a unique window on the past. Never before has such an ancient and well-preserved frozen Neolithic mummy been found. Since his discovery in 1991, the Iceman has provided new data from prehistoric times for countless research disciplines around the globe, both in the natural sciences and in the humanities.
This has made the Iceman a unique example of how interdisciplinary research achieves positive results.
Experts were and still are researching various details of Ötzi’s life. In 2001, X-rays revealed the cause of death: The Iceman died from an injury caused by an arrow in his left shoulder. The arrowhead hit a main artery, so that he probably bled to death. A severe head wound, which was also discovered, could have occurred when he fell.
The scientists were able to find out a good deal about Ötzi from DNA analysis. For instance, he had a predisposition to cardiovascular disease. He was also lactose intolerant and suffered from Lyme disease. Comparisons with DNA samples from around the world provide information about his ethnic group and migration movements.
The paleo artists Adrie and Alfons Kennis from the Netherlands have completed a life-like reconstruction of the Iceman on behalf of the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology. Thanks to forensic methods and fine craftsmanship, they were able to capture Ötzi’s facial features and reconstruct his body as realistically as possible.