Italian Archaeologists Discover World’s Oldest Dentures
Stumbling across used dentures isn’t normally a celebratory event, but a group of archaeologists in Lucca are doing just that after discovering dentures that date back hundreds of years. The team of paleo-pathologists (scientists specializing in the study of historical diseases) from the University of Pisa, discovered the dentures in an ancient family tomb. The dating of the choppers hasn’t been finalized yet, but they may go back as far as to the 14th century. The Etruscans and Romans are known to have made dentures out of human and animal teeth as early as 7 BC, but no physical evidence has ever been discovered. The recent finding is therefore the oldest set of dentures ever discovered. A scan revealed that there is a metal coating on the teeth, made up primarily of gold. The find was unearthed in a tomb belonging to the ancient Giunigi family in Lucca, where the scientists have been studying the remains of more than 200 skeletons buried in a chapel of the San Francesco convent.