Famous Mummified Bodies
In 1971 workers in China digging an air raid shelter near the city of Changsha uncovered an enormous Han Dynasty-era tomb containing over 1,000 well-preserved artefacts, as well as the most perfectly preserved corpse ever found. The tomb belonged to Xin Zhui, wife of the Marquis of Han who died between 178145 BC, around 50 years of age. Her body is so well preserved that when found it was autopsied as if recently dead and her skin was supple, limbs could be manipulated; hair and internal organs were intact; remains of her last meal were found in her stomach and type A blood still ran red in her veins. Examinations have revealed that she suffered from parasites, lower back pain, clogged arteries, had a massively damaged heart (an indication of heart disease brought on by obesity, lack of exercise and an overly rich diet) and was overweight at the time of her death.
The mystery of Lady Daihas not yet been solved. Scientists believe contributing to her remarkable preservation was the 22 dresses of silk and hemp and 9 silk ribbons she was tightly wrapped in. Clothes filled the coffin, which was perfectly sealed, keeping air out. There were inner and outer tombs, which were more than 50 feet below the earth as well as the four coffins she was buried in, each inside the other. However, some scientists suspect the real key to her preservation lies in the mysterious unidentified reddish liquid found in the coffin she was discovered in. To intensify the mystery, two other tombs containing bodies in a similar state of preservation have been found close to Lady Dai Sui Xiaoyuan and Ling Huiping. Her 2,000-year-old body is currently housed in the Hunan Provincial Museum.