An incredible 2,400-year-old female “Amazon warrior” was found buried in the “riding position” as she journeyed to the supposed afterlife.
She and three other women – ranging in age between 12 and 50 – were discovered in Russia’s Voronezh region.
The woman in question – aged between 20 and 35 – had her tendons cut off after death to allow her legs to be apart as if on a horse, archeologists claim.
Two spears were buried with and she wore a bracelet of precious glass beads.
All of the women died at the same time, but the scientists cannot work out why.
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Another was aged between 45 and 50, and buried with an iron knife wrapped in a piece of cloth, and a rare type of iron arrow-head with a forked end.
In the burial mound the remains of a much younger female child Amazon warrior were found, aged between 12 or 13.
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“This is the first time that we see a burial of four Amazon warriors together, and of such different ages,” said Valery Gulyaev, head of the Donskaya archeological expedition which made the discovery.
All four females were buried at the same time, he said.
The tombs were partly plundered between 100 and 200 years after the mound was made.
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This damaged the graves of the girl warrior and a second woman aged between 20 and 35.
Multiple weaponry in the burials makes clear these females were legendary Amazon warriors, the researchers say.
Female fighters were a phenomenon among nomadic and semi-nomadic tribes that lived in Eastern Europe during the Scythian era.
Gulyaev said: “We came across a riddle as we see two women in their prime, one teenager, and one woman who was relatively old by Scythian standards.
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“How could they all die at the same time?
“There are no traces of trauma on their bones.
“Two women whose bones were scattered (by grave robbers) show signs of tuberculosis and brucellosis on their bones.
“But these illnesses do not cause simultaneous deaths.
“Therefore we cannot yet understand the reason for their deaths, and why as many as four women of different ages were buried simultaneously.”
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