There's definitely something spooky about mummies, but we can't deny how incredibly fascinating and even beautiful these preserved bodies can be. Still easily recognizable after hundreds and even thousands of years after their deaths, these are the five best-preserved bodies in the world.
Rosalia Lombardo – 92 years ago
Rosalia Lombardo was born in 1918 in Palermo, Sicily. She was only 2 years old when she succumbed to pneumonia. Her father was so grief-stricken that he had her body embalmed to preserve her. Little is known about Rosalia's short life, but in death she's known as the "sleeping beauty." The preservation is the work of a Sicilian embalmer named Alfredo Salafia, whose solution left her body almost completely intact.
La Doncella – Over 500 years ago
Sacrificed more than 500 years ago and discovered in 1999, an Incan girl nicknamed “La doncella” or “The Maiden,” has remained so remained so well preserved that she resembles more a sleeping child than an ancient victim of ritual sacrifice. She was taken to the top of the mountain and left to die of exposure after being drugged with coca leaves. No special effort had been made to preserve the body, but the cold and the dry, thin air did all the work.
The remains were found among the bodies of another two Inca children – a 6-year-old girl and a 7-year-old boy. Each froze to death as they slept, and even 500 years later still looked like sleeping children, with internal organs intact, blood still present in the heart and lungs, and skin and facial features like they’re sleeping.
Xin Zhui – 2,190 years ago
Xin Zhui was the wife of the ruler of Dai during the Han Dynasty, 2,000 years ago in China. In death, the 2,100-year-old remains are called "China's Sleeping Beauty," but in life Xin Zhui lived in luxury. When her life ended, the privileges didn't. She was wrapped in 20 layers of fine silk, unlike even the best preserved Egyptian mummies, her skin was supple, her limbs could be manipulated, her hair was still intact, and incredibly, there was red blood in her veins. All her internal organs were intact. The body of the “Lady of Dai” has been declared the best-preserved mummy ever seen.
Ukok Princess (Siberian Ice Maiden) – Over 2,500 years ago
Known as the “Princess of Altai,” this 2,500-year-old woman was discovered in Siberia in 1993. the meaning of the tattoos that stretch down her arms are uncertain but the headdress she was wearing and the grave goods entombed with her imply a high status. This daughter of the Altai was buried on the sacred mountain plateau of Ukok to ensure the peace and well-being of her people. The Russian Academy of Sciences called this as one of the greatest archeological discoveries of the century.
Xiaohe – 3,800 years ago
This woman's remains, excavated from the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region of China, are almost 3,800 years old. It is a white person with round eyes, perfect eye lashes and long hair and has features that are more similar of a European person than a Chinese person. Nobody knows anything about who she really was. All we know for sure is that she died about 3,800 years ago in what is now the Lop Nur desert of Western China. She was buried among a complex of tombs first discovered by a Swedish archeologist in 1934.