The Early Middle Ages weren't exactly known for their state-of-the-art medical facilities. It was a time in history when getting a splinter was enough reason to go coffin shopping. Yet somehow, in this backward age, an Italian community not only managed to keep a severely mangled man alive, but to then turn him into the Medieval Bionic Man, making him better ... stronger ... sharper.
The man, who lived somewhere between the 6th and 8th century CE, had an amputated right forearm. Nothing special, there are lots of amputees in old graves; that's typically how they wound up there. But not this berserker. On the corpse, archeologists found the remains of a buckle and a knife, which convinced them that after this guy violently lost a limb, his community then kept him alive, built a weaponized hand and strapped it on his stump for maximum badassitude.
The knife-hand wasn't just something he put on for parties, either. Dental analysis shows he used his teeth to often tighten the strap of his new anime-inspired limb. Pressure on the stump again indicates that the knife was a bona fide prosthetic which he used constantly and, seeing as the Longobards were a warrior people, probably quite violently. And that may be the most impressive thing of all -- and we are talking about a medieval warrior with a blade-arm here. The Italian Terminator wound up living a long life, only dying in his forties, which by Medieval standards practically made him an immortal.
As one archaeologist put it: "The survival of this Longobard male testifies to community care, family compassion and a high value given to human life." Human life, and making your enemies soil themselves.
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