Seven years ago, not far from Dublin in the town of Clonycavan, County Meath, and near Croghan Hill, County Offaly, two bog bodies were found within three months of each other. Clonycavan Man had been severed in half by a peat-cutting machine, but scientists from Archaeological Development Services, who were hired by the peat company, were able to recover his body from the torso up. His skull had been split open, likely by a stone ax, and the bridge of his nose was also struck, probably with the same weapon...More details at Archaeology (May/June 2010). That particular issue has seven additional articles about bog bodies.
Examining the details of both men’s lives and deaths has led Kelly to suggest a new way of looking at the meaning of eight well-preserved Irish bog bodies. “I believe these men were failed kings or failed candidates for kingship who were killed and placed in bogs that formed important tribal boundaries. Both Clonycavan and Old Croghan men’s nipples were pinched and cut. “Sucking a king’s nipples was a gesture of submission in ancient Ireland,” says Kelly. “Cutting them would have made him incapable of kingship.”