Rosalia Lombardo in Italy
Rosalia Lombardo was only a few years old when she died of pneumonia in 1920 in Italy. Her father, Mario Lombardo, had her body embalmed and she was the last person to be admitted into the Capuchin Catacombs of Palermo in Sicily. What makes Rosalia Lombardo so creepy is the quality of the embalming—in fact, the young child looks like she is peacefully sleeping and could wake up at any moment. The body was recently moved to a hermetically sealed glass case with nitrogen gas to keep it preserved for years to come.
Qilakitsoq Baby Mummy
When researchers first found this Inuit baby, they thought it was a doll. However, they quickly found out it was a mummified six-month-old baby boy. The baby was buried alive with his dead mother because there was no one left to care for him. The small baby was also buried with another two-year-old boy and six women that were all different ages. They were naturally mummified in a shallow cave that had sub-zero temperatures and dry winds.
The bodies date back to 1475 AD and were found in Greenland by two brothers from an Inuit settlement called Qilakitsoq. The bodies were divided into two graves, one with three women, the little boy, and the baby; and another with just three women. DNA testing revealed some of the women were related, and it’s suspected the other women were married into the family. Why the women and children died in the cave is a mystery, but it is clear that the baby was buried alive and the two-year-old boy had down syndrome.
1,000 year old Buddha Statue
In 2014, a private collector obtained a 1,000-year-old Buddha statue from a temple in China. The collector took the statue to an expert to have it restored, and the expert discovered there was a mummified body inside of the statue. Eventually, the statue was loaned to the Drents Museum in the Netherlands, and was displayed with 60 other human and animal mummies from around the world.
Ultimately the researchers at Drents Musuem wanted to know more about the mummy inside the statue, so they took it to a medical center in the Dutch town of Amersfoort to have it examined. When the hospital performed a CT scan, they discovered the mummy was missing all of its internal organs. Additionally, they found the organs had been replaced with papers containing ancient Chinese characters and rotten material that couldn’t be identified. Researchers believe the sculpture is an example of self-mummification.
The Ukok Princess
The Ukok Princess, otherwise known as the Siberian Ice Maiden, was found in the already mysterious Altai Mountains. The princess was covered in stunning tattoos that are some of the most elaborate ever seen on a person. The mummy is nearly 2,500 years old, and although she is now kept on display at an institute in Novosibirsk, some Altai locals believe the woman was a shaman and there will be dire consequences for removing the body from its resting place. Just some of the disasters predicted to occur are earthquakes, mass illness, suicides, and devastating forest fires.
Screaming Mummies of Guanajuato, Mexico
The screaming mummies from Guanajuato, Mexico are some of the strangest and most frightening mummies ever found. The mummies were thought to be people who contracted cholera in 1833. One mummy in particular captured a lot attention because she appeared to have been buried alive. The woman, named Ignacia Alguilar, was likely sick with the disease, but not fully dead at the time of her burial. When her body was discovered, she had scratch marks all over her face and her mouth was full of blood from biting her own arms.
Screaming man found with Kings and Queens, in Egypt
Another case of a screaming mummy was found in Egypt in 1886. Researchers from the Egyptian Antiquities Service were uncovering mummies of 40 kings and queens found near the Valley of the Kings. The discovery was monumental, and the excavation included famous leaders like Ramses the Great and Seti I. However, beside their bodies was a different unmarked coffin with a frightening man inside. His face was twisted into a blood-curdling scream and an autopsy revealed he had been poisoned. While his identity remains a mystery, it is clear he was buried with no identification, which would have ensured eternal damnation according to Egyptian belief.
San Pedro Mountain Mummies
In 1932, two gold diggers were exploring the San Pedro Mountains when they burst through a thick wall of rock that contained a vein of gold. The rock wall gave way to a small 4 foot by 4 foot room that was 15 feet deep and contained the mummy of a tiny person. All in all the explorers found two tiny mummified people who were thought to be either infants or tiny people. Some local Native American tribes had legends about little spirit people who had magical healing powers. The mummies were preserved with a gelatinous substance, and had strange facial features. Some suspected the mummies were a hoax, but researchers weren’t able to confirm it either way.
Curious Cursed Mummy
The only thing freakier than a mummy with its face frozen in a scream is one with a face covered in sinister tattoos. When this mummy was discovered in Egypt around the 19th century, it was during a time when British stage shows were fascinated by the concept of the pharaoh’s curse. London performers would unravel real mummies in front of audiences, and the act was considered a defamation of the dignity of the dead. As a result, mummies like this with odd drawn on faces became the symbol for mummy curses everywhere—a mummy curse has even been cited as a reason for the Titanic’s sinking.
Christian Friedrich von Kahlbutz in Germany
This frightening mummy was once a German knight known as Christian Friedrich von Kahlbutz, and he was the exact opposite of a white knight that saved princesses. In fact, he was known for being a pretty dirty fellow who forcibly deflowered new brides and virgins in his city. When a shepherd had the nerve to stand up to him, he was killed and the widow took him to court for murder. In court, the knight had to swear that if he didn’t do it, his body would not decay when he died. It’s unclear whether his naturally preserved (yet mostly decayed) body proves him innocent or guilty.
Ramses II of Egypt
Aside from being one of the best-known Egyptian pharaohs, Ramses II is also one of the most well-preserved mummies ever found. However, his body did not always get to lay in peace. He was originally buried in the Valley of the Kings, but his body had to be moved several times because of looting. Additionally, the linen covering his body was covered in hieroglyphics, which suggests looters had access to his tomb. Also, he was re-wrapped a few times and had to bunk up with a few different dead royal and high priests. One of the most curious things about Ramses II is that he had red hair, and in Egyptian culture redheads were connected to the god who killed Osiris.
The Skrydstrup Woman of Denmark
The Skrydstrup Woman in Denmark is a very curious mummy who was found with a big, mischievous grin on her face. The woman was thought to be a member of an elite family because she was adorned in expensive jewels and clothing. She was around 18 or 19 when she died, and was placed on a bed of chervil inside an oak coffin. The coffin and herbs decayed, but her body and clothing were nearly perfectly preserved.
Ginger the Mummy
Perhaps the creepiest thing about Ginger the mummy is the way he was posed after he died. Ginger was an adult man who died 5,000 years ago in the dry desert of Egypt. Ginger died long before the Egyptians intentionally mummified their dead, and his corpse was only preserved because it had so much contact with the dry desert sand. He is the oldest mummy to have been preserved in that way. To make matters a little stranger, the mummy was originally purchased by a British museum from a private collector. The collector apparently had a relative of the same size and stature who disappeared around the same time as the exchange.