A 400-Year-Old Severed Head
Cleaning out the attic is like banging a geriatric: It's dank, it's dusty, and there are probably spiders hiding somewhere in there. But as with all unpleasant chores, the shock fades with exposure. Stay in there a few hours and you'll no longer care when you move those curtains aside and find the corpse of a rat king (we're, uh ... we're no longer talking about boning geriatrics here). Then, just as you get into a no-longer-caring-if-spiders-touch-my-hands attic-cleaning groove, you find something a bit unexpected:
"Oh no, Avery! I just thought you were really good at hide-and-seek."
Stephane Gabet, a TV production company journalist, went fishing around the attic of retired tax collector Jacques Bellanger and pulled out the 400-year-old head of a French monarch. That's right: Where us common folk might stash the occasional broken vacuum cleaner or embarrassing Beanie Baby collection up our house's shame-hole, Jacques haphazardly stowed and then promptly forgot about the head of King Henry IV, who ruled France until his death in 1610.
As unbelievable as that sounds, scientists were able to verify that the skull belonged to King Henry IV based on a dark lesion above the right nostril, a healed bone fracture above the jaw that matched a stab wound he received during an assassination attempt in 1594, and the fact that the entire skull was wrapped in a breakfast croissant and an indefinable air of haughtiness.
"Why did I eat the croissant?"