New Historian

Ancient Celts May Have Had Gold Dental Implants

Celtic Map

<![CDATA[Mouth "bling" is a popular facet of hip hop culture. These shiny "grills" are seen being worn by men and women alike in music videos. Whether temporary or permanent, their only purpose is ornamental. Grills are a modern fad, but dental implants have been around for thousands of years, and recently archaeologists in France have discovered a dental implant in a grave that may have been used to hold a decorative screw in place. The implant was an iron pin that was retrieved from the mouth of a skeleton in a Celtic burial site in La Chene, France, and has been dated back to the third century B.C. The actual tooth in question has not been found, but Guillaume Seguin, an archaeologist at Archaeosphere in France, states that the dental implant was found where the central maxillary incisor used to be, which is very visible when a person opens his mouth, hence the purpose of the implant was probably aesthetic. The iron pin may have been inserted into the pulp canal of the root, or into the root socket. That sounds very painful, but the experts at that time who inserted the enamel may have used pain-reducing medicines such extracts from the weeping willow, which has the same compounds as aspirin. The skeleton belonged to a woman who was between the ages of 20 and 30 years old when she died. The skeleton had a lot of ornaments around it, including a bronze belt with brooches, a bronze bracelet and ring, and a pair of iron shears that may have been used to trim her hair. Seguin and other researchers believe that this woman was part of the Celtic elite as nearby graves revealed skeletons with amber and coral necklaces around them. The skull was badly preserved, but her teeth were intact, with no cavities or tartar on the enamel. Seguin and his teeth are unsure of why the woman lost her tooth in the first place. There were no visible signs of trauma on the skeleton, but they are speculating that she may have lost her tooth during a fall or from a punch. It is also unsure whether the tooth was put in when she was alive or after her death. Another unsure thing is the material that the tooth was made of. Researchers are leaning more to gold, as the elites in those times wore decorative gold teeth. Replacement teeth are nothing new. Recently in Algeria, a 7,000 year old skull was found with a tooth that was sculpted from bone. In Egypt, a 5,500 year old skeleton was found that had an incisor tooth that was sculpted from a shell. Some may have been implanted after death, more so with the Egyptians as they believed in reincarnation and a mouth with all teeth present ensured that they will have a healthy mouth in the next life.]]>

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