Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Inca in Norway An alert reader sent in this link: Archaeological sensation in Oestfold
The remains of two elderly men and a baby were discovered during work in a garden, and one of the skulls indicates that the man was an Inca Indian.

- There is a genetic flaw in the neck, which is believed to be limited to the Incas in Peru, says arahaeologist Mona Beate Buckholm.

The Norway Post suggests that maybe the Vikings travelled even more widely than hitherto believed? Why could not the Viking settlers in New Foundland have strayed further down the coast on one of their fishing trips?

That's practically the whole thing. I can't imagine what "genetic flaw in the neck" they're referring to. And the chronology is all wrong.

Aha, but wait! I found this:
And it was the skull of one of the men that puzzled the forensic archaeologists. "A particular bone at the back of the head was not fused. This is an inherited trait found almost exclusively among the Incas of Peru," Buckholm added. To this day, no other example of this trait has been found in Norway.

I did a little searching and it seems there are "Wormian" bones which are "extra-sutural" in that they are bone that grows between sutures such as those in the skull. A couple of sources also referred to them a "Inca bones":

No indications that they're found only among the Inca though. Maybe they were initially defined as such based on a somewhat higher prevalence among the Inca?