The Qilakitsoq Baby
Human Mummy
Biographical Information
Age 6 Months
Sex Male
Status N/A
Culture Inuit
Date(s) 1475 AD
Site Greenland
Current Location
Location Nuussuaq Peninsula, Greenland
Catalog #


In 1972, two brothers on a grouse hunt found 8 mummified bodies underneath an outcrop of rock in the Nuussuaq Peninsula in Greenland. The eight mummies were stacked on top of eachother, with the Qilakitsoq Baby stacked at the very top. This 6-month old baby was buried alive, most likely because there was no mother left to care for him.



The Qilakitsoq Baby, along with the 7 other mummies, was essentially freeze dried from a combination of the north-facing slope, dry air and low temperatures, leading to a fairly well-preserved state. The mummies were all covered by a rock above them as well, and fully clothed for hunting since it was a belief to be well equipped for life after death.


In 2007 through DNA testing, researchers concluded there was a close family connection between the mummies, and were also able to analyze their health at the time of death.


Although the exact cause of death is not known, the Qilakitsoq Baby was said to have Down's Syndrome, and was left to die since the Inuit could not afford to support this type of burden. Although the women had well-nourished diets of seafood and reindeer, they may have died in a boating accident.

Additional InfoEdit

Four of the mummies are on display at the Greenland National Museum, including the Qilakitsoq Baby.

External LinksEdit



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