9,000-Year-Old Decapitation Victim Hints at 'Sophisticated' Society

An international team of scientists says they’ve discovered the oldest known beheaded skull in the Americas – arranged in a strange, possibly symbolic pose. The skull, described in the journal PLOS ONE, was found in a rock shelter at an archaeological site in east-central Brazil known as Lapa do Santo. The skull, which appears to have belonged to a young man, was discovered in a grave nearly 22 inches beneath the surface, over which limestone slabs had been placed. It is estimated to be between 9,127 and 9,438 years old.

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