Mother and son mummies undergo CT scans to reveal how they died 300 years ago
A pair of ancient mummies that lay entombed beneath a Hungarian church for centuries may soon have their secrets revealed thanks to some decidedly modern technology.
The mother and one-year-old son are believed to have died around 300 years ago. While researchers have guessed that it was tuberculosis that killed them, they can't be totally sure.
So, the mother and son were recently taken to a California medical center, where experts hope a CT scan will shed some light on their age old secrets.
"Now we can find answers," anthropologist Ildiko Szikossy told KCBS.
After years of speculation, Szikossy hopes the scans, which were done at Orange County Global Medical Center in Santa Ana, will give her definitive answers.
See photos of the mummies:
While the data is still being analyzed, there are a few facts researchers already know.
The woman's name was Veronica Orlovits and her son was named Johannes. She was 38 when she died and her son was about a year old.
They were found beneath a church in Vac, Hungary in 1994. Around them were hundreds of others, including many children.
Szikossy believes the scans may help researchers understand what killed the others found in the underground crypt as well.
"How was their life," Szikossy wonders. "Why have so many children died in early childhood?"