Cleopatra VII OD'ed...Didn't Die From Asp Bite
telegraph - The Queen of the Nile ended her life in 30BC and it has always been held that it was the bite of an asp – now called the Egyptian cobra – which caused her demise.
Now Christoph Schaefer, German historian and professor at the University of Trier, is presenting evidence that aims to prove drugs and not the reptile were the cause of death.
"Queen Cleopatra was famous for her beauty and was unlikely to have subjected herself to a long and disfiguring death," he said.
He journeyed with other experts to Alexandria, Egypt, where they consulted ancient medical texts and snake experts.
"Cleopatra wanted to remain beautiful in her death to maintain her myth," he says on the Adventure Science show screened by the German television channel ZDF.
"She probably took a cocktail of opium, hemlock and aconitum. Back then this was a well-known mixture that led to a painless death within just a few hours whereas the snake death could have taken days and been agonising."
Cleopatra reigned from 51BC to 30BC and was the last person to rule Egypt as an Egyptian pharaoh. After she died, Egypt became a Roman province.
She was an ally of the Roman emperor Julius Caesar, and established a relationship with the Roman General Mark Anthony. They had three children together and there are letters that suggest she married him, although both were already married; she to a brother and he had a wife in Rome.
In 44 BC, after the assassination of Caesar, she aligned with Antony in opposition to Caesar’s legal heir, Gaius Julius Caesar Octavian
After losing the Battle of Actium to Octavian’s forces, Antony committed suicide. Cleopatra followed suit, aged 39 on August 12, 30BC.
While We're on the Subject of Egyptian Royality...King Tut Died of a Blood Disorder
yahoo - Legendary pharaoh Tutankhamun was probably killed by the genetic blood disorder sickle cell disease, German scientists said Wednesday, rejecting earlier research that suggested he died of malaria.
The team at the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine in the northern city of Hamburg questioned the conclusions of a major Egyptian study released in February on the enigmatic boy-king's early demise.
That examination, involving DNA tests and computerised tomography (CT) scans on Tutankhamun's mummy, said he died of malaria after suffering a fall, putting to rest the theory that he was murdered.
But the German researchers said in a letter published online Wednesday by the Journal of the American Medical Association that closer scrutiny of his foot bones pointed to sickle cell disease, in which red blood cells become dangerously misshaped.
"We question the reliability of the genetic data presented in this (the Egyptian) study and therefore the validity of the authors' conclusions," the letter said.
"(The) radiological signs are compatible with osteopathologic lesions seen in sickle cell disease (SCD), a hematological disorder that occurs at gene carrier rates of nine percent to 22 percent in inhabitants of Egyptian oases."
Tutankhamun's death at about 19, after 10 years of rule between 1333 to 1324 BC, has long been a source of speculation.
One of the most common genetic disorders, sickle cell disease causes blood cells to take the shape of a crescent instead of being smooth and round, thereby blocking blood flow and leading to chronic pain, infections and tissue death.
The researchers called for further DNA tests on Tutankhamun's mummy for a definitive cause of death.
...and Missing His Mummified Penis
nydailynews - Where in the world is King Tut’s missing member?
The Egyptian boy king’s penis may have been swiped because the 19-year-old royal was less-than-endowed, raising the concept of a possible anatomical conspiracy, according to Time Magazine.
This much is certain though: that particular body part has disappeared, and it appears that the clandestine castration took place relatively recently.
What happened to a particular part of Tut’s anatomy isn’t the only mystery enshrouding the king. Scientists have debated the cause of the famed king’s death as recently as this year, when some were guessing it might be due to a bone disorder or malaria. Earlier this month German researchers overruled that theory and said the boy royal had sickle cell anemia, which can lead to organ failure.
But when journalist Jo Marchant started researching this newest diagnosis for The New Scientist, evidence surfaced to suggest that Tut may have had a genetic mutation that causes weird physical effects like elongated skulls and under developed genitals.
While Zahi Hawass, Egypt’s chief archaeologist, says that the 19-year-old king was actually well-developed, the fact remains that the king’s member is no longer attached to the mummy. Marchant confirmed that the mummy was intact at its first unwrapping in 1922. The penis was said to be missing in 1968 but a CT scan later revealed that it was hidden by sand surrounding the mummy. Now some scientists think the penis was taken at some point after the body was enbalmed, raising the possibility that it might have been a conspiracy to spare Tut, in the afterlife, the “locker room” variety of embarrassment
The Amazing Spider-Man Lives!
orange.co - A Cambridge schoolboy has converted two budget vacuum cleaners into a Spiderman gadget which helps him scale walls.
Hibiki Kono, 13, a big fan of the superhero, made the incredible climbing machine using the suction from two Tesco Value vacuum cleaners.
The schoolboy then amazed his friends by using the giant suckerpads to climb the school wall during morning assembly.
"I used to dress up as Spiderman when I was younger and I love all the films so it's great to be able to climb walls like him," said Hibiki.
Hibiki spent five months designing and making the gadget in his design technology lessons at King's College School in Cambridge.
He used two 1400 watt vacuum cleaners, bought for just £14.98 each from Tesco and attached square wooden pads to the nozzles.
Design technology teacher Angus Gent said: "I'm hugely proud of him. When he came to me with the idea at the beginning I had my doubts, but once he proved it could be done I encouraged him.
"He developed it himself which is amazing for someone of his age. He has spent two and a half hours a week creating it over the last five months."
Hibiki added: "My mum thinks it's brilliant but she won't let me us it in my bedroom as she is worried I may pull down the ceiling.
"I've climbed up the school wall but I'm not allowed too high. It's not scary and I completely trust the machine."
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Marilyn Monroe's Chest X-Ray From 1954 Sells For $45,000
Marilyn Monroe's bust has sold for a bundle. A 1954 x-ray of the stunning starlet's chest sold at auction in Las Vegas on Sunday for a sizable $45,000. This was well above the estimated $800 to $1,200 it was expected to fetch.
The bizarre medical photograph was one of several of Monroe's belongings that were up for bid at Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino via Julien's Auctions over the weekend.
"[The x-ray] was taken around the time she was believed to be pregnant, and rumour has it that she had a miscarriage," President/CEO Darren Julien said back in April.
It was captured at Cedars of Lebanon Hospital (which in 1961 merged with another hospital to become Cedars-Sinai Medical Center), and features the then 28-year-old Monroe's chest and lungs.
Colorado Woman Blames Vampire For Car Crash
FRUITA, Colo. - If a Western Slope woman is to be believed, vampires may be lurking in Colorado's Grand Valley.
The woman claims she spotted a vampire in the middle of a dirt road near Fruita, Colo. Sunday night. She told Colorado State Troopers she was startled by the undead being, threw her SUV into reverse, and crashed into a canal.
She was not injured.
State Troopers say the woman's husband arrived at the scene and took her home. The vampire, which was not seen by anyone else, apparently let her get away.
Troopers do not suspect drugs or alcohol to be factors in the crash.
Fortean / Oddball News - 6/30/2010