Proof of crucifixions in the ancient world? A 2,000-year-old skeleton with a hole in its foot is found

  The skeleton was found about 60 km (60 miles) from Venice in the Po Valley and had

A 2,000-year-old Roman skeleton with a hole in the foot is only the second physical remnant of the type of "torture that killed Jesus."

Found during an excavation of a tomb in northern Italy, the skeleton showed signs of "particular injuries" in the right heel suggesting that the man was crucified.

Even though the Romans practice crucifixions for almost a millennium in tens of thousands of people, including Jesus, the evidence of the technique is rare.

The only other example is a 19 cm (7.5 inch) nail found on the body of a Jewish man discovered in a tomb in Jerusalem in 1968.

The evidence of crucifixions is so rare because the wooden crosses that the Romans used for the practice quickly disintegrated.

It was also believed that nails had magical properties, so they were often taken from a victim.

The Roman orator Cicero said that "of all punishments, it is the most cruel and the most terrifying."

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The skeleton was found about 60 km (60 miles) from Venice in the Po Valley and had "particular injuries" in the right heel (in the image). Ancient literature suggests that tens of thousands of revolutionaries were crucified by the Roman Empire and until 1968 no victims had been found

The skeleton was found about 60 miles (60 miles) from Venice in the Po Valley.

"The importance of the discovery lies in the fact that it is the second documented case in the world," said co-author Ursula Thun Hohenstein of the University of Ferrara to the Italian newspaper Estense.

It was not possible to date the skeleton by radiocarbon because the surfaces of the bones have been poorly conserved.

However, the remains were found next to typical Roman brick and tiles, suggesting that it comes from the Roman period.

"Here we suggest the crucifixion as a possible cause of the injury, but this interpretation is complicated by the poor preservation of bone surfaces and damage and holes in other parts of the skeleton," the researchers wrote in the article published in the journal Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences. .

The crucified man would be between 30 and 34 years old, according to his findings.

A 2,000-year-old Roman skeleton with a hole in the foot could provide evidence of the kind of cruel capital punishment that could have killed Jesus. In the photo you can see the crucified Christ painted between 1610 and 1611 by the Flemish artist Rubens

A 2,000-year-old Roman skeleton with a hole in the foot could provide evidence of the kind of cruel capital punishment that could have killed Jesus. In the photo you can see the crucified Christ painted between 1610 and 1611 by the Flemish artist Rubens

A 2,000-year-old Roman skeleton with a hole in the foot could provide evidence of the kind of cruel capital punishment that could have killed Jesus. In the photo you can see the crucified Christ painted between 1610 and 1611 by the Flemish artist Rubens

WHAT WAS THE FIRST TRIAL OF THE ROMAN CRUCIFIXION?

Ancient literature suggests that tens of thousands of people were crucified by the Roman Empire, but until 1968 no victims had been found.

The older man had a seven-inch (18 cm) nail on his heel

The older man had a seven-inch (18 cm) nail on his heel

The older man had a seven-inch (18 cm) nail on his heel

In 1968 Vassilios Tzaferis, who received a Ph.D. from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, they excavated the body of a Jew believed to be from a wealthy family who was probably convicted of a political crime.

Man lived in Jerusalem sometime between the change of the era and 780AD.

The tombs were found in a large Jewish cemetery of the Second Temple in the neighborhood of Giv & # 39; at HaMivtar.

The researchers found the bones of two generations of men, one 20-24 years old and the other three or four.

The older man had a nail of seven inches (18 cm) in the heel.

Tied to him was a piece of olive wood that would have been the remains of the cross he was nailed to.

Dr. Tzaferis states that the Assyrians, Phoenicians and Persians practiced crucifixion at this time.

The three-dimensional images of the hole in the heel were created using a high-tech digital microscope, writes The Times of Israel.

They discovered that the lesion ran the full width of the heel bone.

"The perforation (length 24 mm) shows a round and regular hole that passes from the medial side (diameter 9 mm) to the lateral (diameter 6.5 mm)," the authors wrote.

"The pattern of the cross-sectional lesion is linear in the first part, turning slightly downward in the last part".

They say that this is evidence that the heel was nailed to a hard surface before the victim died.

The scientists suggest that the upper limbs were "fixed to the cross with nails through the wrist, according to ancient historical sources".

It was found with the upper extremities on the sides and the extended lower extremities, which was an unusual position.

The way in which the individual is buried, alone and without property, suggests that he was part of a marginalized population or in conditions of captivity.

The skeleton was found 60 km from Venice in the Po Valley and had "particular injuries" in the right heel.

The skeleton was found 60 km from Venice in the Po Valley and had "particular injuries" in the right heel.

The skeleton was found 60 km from Venice in the Po Valley and had "particular injuries" in the right heel.

WHAT IS CRUCIFIXATION AND WHY IS THERE LITTLE EVIDENCE OF IT?

What is the crucifixion?

The crucifixion was a Roman method of punishment and literally means "fixed to a cross".

A victim would eventually die of suffocation or exhaustion and was long, prolonged and painful.

The act was used to publicly humiliate slaves and criminals, as well as a method of execution usually reserved for very low status individuals or those whose crime was against the state.

This is the reason given in the Gospels for the crucifixion of Jesus

As King of the Jews, Jesus challenged Roman imperial supremacy (Matthew 27:37, Mark 15:26, Luke 23:38, John 19: 19-22).

The crucifixion could be carried out in several ways.

In the Christian tradition, it is assumed to nail the limbs in the wood of the cross, with the debate centered on whether the nails would pierce the hands or wrists structurally more solid.

But the Romans did not always nail the victims of the crucifixion in their crosses, and in their place they were sometimes tied with ropes.

In fact, until recently the only archaeological evidence for the practice of nailing victims of the crucifixion is an ankle bone from the tomb of Jehohanan, a man executed in the first century CE.

Why is there so little evidence of that?

The victims were usually criminals and their bodies were often thrown into garbage dumps, which means that archaeologists never see their bones.

Identification is made even more difficult by scratches from scavengers.

It was believed that the nails had magical properties.

This meant that they rarely remained on the victim's heel and the holes they left could be mistaken for puncture marks.

Most of the damage was due largely to the soft tissues, so the damage to the bone may not have been as significant.

Finally, wood crosses often do not survive as they degrade or end up being reused.

This also increases the likelihood that this damage is related to the crucifixion.

The first evidence of the crucifixion, which literally means "fixed to a cross", was found in 1968 by the archaeologist Vassilios Tzaferis, who received a Ph.D. from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

He dug up the body of a Jew believed to be from a wealthy family that was probably convicted of a political crime.

He lived in Jerusalem sometime between the change of the era and 780AD.

The tombs were found in a large Jewish cemetery of the Second Temple in the neighborhood of Giv & # 39; at HaMivtar.

The researchers found the bones of two generations of men, one 20-24 years old and the other three or four.

The older man had a nail of seven inches (18 cm) in the heel.

A piece of olive wood was attached to it that would have been the remains of the cross to which it was stuck, says Dr. Tzaferis.

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