Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Famous Curses Through History, Part l

Cursed Tomb of Timur

A forensic reconstruction
done in 1941.
The great, great grandfather of Genghis Khan was a ruler by the name of Timur. He gained the title of Great Khan in 1369.

A fierce warrior he is known for the bloody campaigns he launched. He had a morbid hobby of having pyramids built -- they were made from the skulls of his enemies. One estimate numbers them in the ten-thousands.

Timur died in 1405. He was buried in the Gur-e Amir complex located at Samarkand in Uzbekistan.

A sizeable green jade slab, which once was the throne for Kabek Khan, was placed over his tomb. To guarantee no one messed with his final resting place this inscription was etched upon it:

“When I arise from the grave, the world will tremble.”

Alas in 1941, Stalin sent Mikhail Mikhailovich Gerasimov, a Soviet archeologist to excavate Timur’s tomb. Some say this was to outdo the Nazis who had two archeological breakthroughs at Tanis and Iskenderun.

The Uzbek elders were upset to hear about this excavation. They pointed to a book that stated the Tomb of Timur should not be opened--“otherwise a war could be provoked.”

On June 21st the skull of Timur was removed. Just 24 hours later on June 22nd the Russian’s entered WWll fighting against the Germans.

Hitler launched Operation Barbarossa against them--the most massive and most brutal invasion of this war.

After losing millions of Soviet soldiers and civilians, Russia returned Timur to his tomb, with full Islamic burial rights, in 1942. At the same time, the German attempt to escape the destruction at Stalingrad failed miserably.

A depiction of what the
Iceman looked like.
The Cursed Iceman

In 1991 Oetzi, or as he is better known-- The Iceman was discovered in the Alps between Austria and Italy.

Over the next 13 years, seven people connected to this discovery died. Four of these deaths were violent.

The Iceman himself was a victim of murder. An arrow pierced him and then his skull was crushed.

Some people wonder if this 5,300-year old mummified hunter should have just been left undisturbed.

The first victim of this curse was taken in 1992, shortly after the discovery.

Ranier Henn, the pathologist, who put Oetzi in a body bag with his bare hands was killed in a car crash on his way to a conference to discuss the Iceman.

Next, the mountain guide who lead Henn to Oetzi and who was the first to uncover his face died in an avalanche.

The third man filmed the recovery of the body. He died of a brain tumor.

Helmut Simon and his wife were the two who initially found Oetzi. Helmut went missing in 2004, an experienced climber, he was found dead face down in a stream. He had fallen off a 300-foot cliff.

Dieter Warnecke, whose team discovered Helmut’s body, dropped dead of a heart attack at Helmut’s funeral.

Konrad Spindler was the sixth victim. He died of a disease that he had lived with for some time, after making this statement, “the curse is a load of rubbish, it is all media hype. The next thing you will be announcing is that I will be next.”

The seventh death occurred in 2005. Tom Loy, who discovered human blood on Oetz’s clothes and weapons, died of a blood disease that he was not diagnosed with until the year he began to study the Iceman.

In Part ll of Famous Curses Through History read about two more curses involving a wedding gone wrong and a club for famous musicians.

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