Fight or Flight

     So much controversy surrounds the death of the Iceman, itís almost hilarious.  Konrad Spindler published a book called The Man in the Ice, and said that it was the only authorized book on all the findings associated with the Iceman.  Unfortunately Spindler had jumped the gun on his hypothesis of how Otzi died.   Spindler maintains what he calls the ďdisaster theoryĒ which claims that Otzi had come down from the mountains at the end of the summer and a conflict arose in his village.  He was supposedly attacked or hit and managed to escape into the mountains again with broken ribs. He then tried to fix his weapons and continue to travel farther away to safety. He then was too exhausted to continue and laid down in the snow to die.

     There are many problems with this theory of Spindlerís that had the public completely enthralled.  According to analysis of Otziís transverse colon contents, spring blooming pollen was present, but no autumn blooming pollen.  The pollen was also ingested relatively soon before his death because it still remained intact.  This meant that Otzi had died between May and June, and would have already been in the mountains with his herd.   Also, Otziís broken ribs may have occurred after death. Even if they hadnít, experts say that he would not have been able to fix weapons and climb a mountain in that condition. He would have been in excruciating pain. 

     Earlier hypotheses stated that Otzi may have just gotten lost in the mountains and died of hypothermia, but the evidence of his locality would make it hard to believe that he was lost in the first place.  Could he have fallen? It is possible, but his belongings are laid out in such a way that a sudden fall ending in death would have been unlikely. The artifacts appear to have been placed against rocks and in specific spots that could point to making camp or taking a rest.

The Latest

     The most recent evidence in the death of Otzi is the arrowhead found in his left shoulder.  The arrowhead appears to have pierced a main artery causing him to bleed to death.  Scientists first thought that the arrow could have been friendly fire, but after finding the DNA of at least two other people on his weapons, they are not sure anymore.  There is still research to be done, but at least now it is known that he was killed and that he didnít die from a fall or just plain exposure to the elements. We also know that he was not a fugitive with broken ribs.   As was explained before, because of the destroyed context, finding answers is difficult.  In the year 2007, scientists knowledge of the exact events leading up to Otziís death are very limited, but the cause of his death was blood loss due to a ripped artery from an arrowhead wound.