A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America
Evidence of Egyptian Punishment Found in Skeletal Remains
Tuesday, October 13, 2015
CARBONDALE, ILLINOIS—Wounds have been found in the shoulder blades of five men buried in Amarna’s cemetery for commoners. Amarna, a city dedicated to the sun god Aten, was built of stone some 3,300 years ago by Akhenaten. Gretchen Dabbs of Southern Illinois University thinks that the wounds may have been inflicted with a spear from behind as part of a physical punishment of 100 lashes and five wounds that is described in an ancient wall carving and other texts. The skeletons also show signs of joint disease and malnutrition. “We know that life in this place was physically taxing. This is another example of that,” she told USA Today. There is a chance that the 100 lashes and five wounds punishment was only carried out in Amarna, but Dabbs suggests that Egyptologists look for evidence of similar corporal punishment in their skeletal collections. To read about the search for Nefertiti's tomb, go to "In Search of History's Lost Rulers."
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