10 September 2012

Ancient dentistry

"The earliest evidence of ancient dentistry we have is an amazingly detailed dental work on a mummy from ancient Egypt that archaeologists have dated to 2000 BCE. The work shows intricate gold work around the teeth. This mummy was found with two donor teeth that had holes drilled into them. Wires were strung through the holes and then around the neighboring teeth."
Photos and text from Disturbing and Provocative Art, via Biomedical Ephemera, or: A Frog for your Boils.  Original source uncredited.

7 comments:

  1. I'll say that's the most amazing piece of information I came across today. Thanks for sharing.

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  2. I will agree with AM. I an an Egyptophile and I am frequently amazed by what I learn about the ancients.

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  3. Was this a postmortem fix for burial or was this meant as a functional way to chew for someone? Would the gums have held the replacement teeth stable since the jaw bone has deteriorated where the teeth are missing?

    I find this fascinating.

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    1. Gums don't hold teeth stable. The periodontal ligament and the bone provide stability. Crude as it may be, wiring teeth like this are a precursor to the modern day dental bridge.

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  4. Kinda scares me looking at the picture. Still really cool though. a mummy with straight teeth is a happy mummy!

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  5. Fascinating! With that being said....OUCH!

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