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The Haunting Face of a Man Who Lived 700 Years Ago

Meet Context 958. That's just his scientific designation. We don't know his name, but we have some idea of what the man looked like when he was alive during the 13th century, thanks to a facial reconstruction done on a skeleton excavated from a medieval cemetery at St. John’s College in Cambridge, England.    

He was just slightly over 40 years old when he died. His skeleton showed signs of considerable wear-and-tear, so he likely lead a tough and hard working life. His tooth enamel stopped growing during two occasions in his youth, suggesting he likely lived through bouts of famine or sickness when he was young. The archaeologists found traces of blunt force trauma inflicted to the back of his head, which healed over before he died. The researchers aren’t sure what he did for a living, but they think he was a working-class person who specialized in some kind of trade.

There's more to learn about Context 958 at Gizmodo, and also about the project that brought him to us in almost photographic detail.    

(Image credit: Dr. Chris Rynn, University of Dundee)

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