Lovers of Valdaro
The Lovers of Valdaro, also known as the "Valdaro Lovers," are a pair of human skeletons dated as approximately 6,000 years old. They were discovered by archaeologists at a Neolithic tomb in San Giorgio near Mantua, Italy, in 2007. The two skeletons appear to have died or were interred facing each other with arms around each other, thus reminiscent of a "lovers' embrace".
Archaeologist Elena Maria Menotti led the excavation. It is speculated that the pair are a male and female no older than 20 years old at death and approximately 1.57 m (5 ft 2 in) in height.
The male skeleton was found with a flint arrowhead near the neck. The female had a long flint blade along the thigh, plus two flint knives under the pelvis. Osteological examination found no evidence of violent death, no fractures, and no microtrauma, so the most likely explanation is the flint tools were buried along with the people as grave goods. Seven years after their discovery, on 11 April 2014 they were permanently displayed inside a glass case in the National Archaeological Museum of Mantua, museum within the perimeter of the Ducal palace of Mantova.
The skeletons were displayed briefly in public for the first time in September 2011 at the entrance of National Archaeological Museum of Mantua, thanks to the effort of the association Lovers in Mantua which is seeking a permanent home for the ancient couple.
Professor Silvia Bagnoli, the president of Lovers in Mantua, has been campaigning for their right to have a permanent exhibit of their own.
- La Stampa / Worldcrunch (September 13, 2011). "6,000 Years Later, the 'Lovers of Valdaro' Need a New Home". Time. Retrieved 2013-04-29.
- Phil Stewart (February 12, 2007). "Scientists to save 5,000-year-old embrace". Reuters. Retrieved 2007-02-13.
- "Prehistoric skeletons found locked in eternal embrace". www.stonepages.com. February 11, 2007. Retrieved 2007-02-13.
- "Locked in an eternal embrace". Daily Mail. February 8, 2007. Retrieved 2008-07-23.
- "Neolithic lovers seek new home". September 13, 2011. Retrieved 2015-02-11.
- "6,000-Year-Old Lovers Make Debut In Italy". September 13, 2011. Retrieved 2015-02-11.
- "Locked in Eternal Embrace – The Lovers of Valdaro". November 28, 2014. Retrieved 2015-02-11.
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