Hey goodlooking! Bronze Age hunk puts modern teeth to shame

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Hey goodlooking! Bronze Age hunk puts modern teeth to shame

The Daily Telegraph
Just look at that perfect smile.
PEARLY WHITES Just look at that perfect smile.
Image: BBC

A skeleton of a young Bronze Age man has revealed a "good-looking chap" with better teeth than many modern-day Britons, an academic has said.

The bones, found in a Northumberland field in September 2017, show remarkable "perfect smile" of a 17 to 21-year old man, who appears to have escaped the poor oral hygiene of his day.

The bones, found in a Northumberland field in September 2017, show remarkable "perfect smile" of a 17 to 21-year old man, who appears to have escaped the poor oral hygiene of his day.

Sanita Nezirovic, a lecturer in forensic science at the University of Derby who studied the skeleton, said the "absolutely stunning" remains would have belonged to no ordinary man, joking: "This would have been a catch for the ladies."


A Bronze Age axe head.
A Bronze Age axe head.
Image: 123RF/Thomas LENNE

Bronze Age

The Bronze Age was a period in history when bronze was used widely to make tools, weapons, and other implements, beginning at about 3500 BC and ending with the Kassite period around 1500 BC. 


"His teeth seem absolutely beautiful, especially for the age when you think about 3,500 years ago," she tsaid. "He has better teeth than most people nowadays, almost."

The discovery appears at odds with studies showing Bronze Age man generally had worn-down teeth in poor condition, attributed to the type of rough food they were eating and poor oral hygiene.

Nezirovic, who has worked on the remains of hundreds of people, dating from the Bronze Age to modern times, said she had been struck by the very symmetrical aspects of the Bronze Age man's face while studying his bones.

Examining the development of a flake of bone on the clavicle allowed her to determine the body was aged between 17 and 21. Measuring the tibia suggested he was between 1.72m and 1.79m tall.

There are no obvious signs of trauma to rule on how he died, though his burial - with a horsehair blanket and beaker - suggests he was a man of importance.