In the Bronze Age, our ancestors calmed their pain thanks to science. Remains of preparations, similar to our modern painkillers, were found at an archaeological site.
How did our distant ancestors cope with a severe migraine or the pain of an injury? Like us, they turned to science and took painkillers. So no, they weren’t rushing to the nearest pharmacy to buy boxes of paracetamol, but were nevertheless able to concoct drugs that did more or less the same effects. And this, from the Bronze Age.
It is in Eskisehir, a city located in the west of Turkey, that these remains of medicines were discovered. Archaeologists were carrying out excavations on a site dating from the Bronze Age when they came across “depas”, containers typical of the region, in which were prepared and preserved ancient analgesics. According to Newsbreak:
“The depas were most likely made of ceramic. The ceramic has a porous structure which was able to retain the products stored in the container. Thus, the molecular residues of the painkillers remained behind for researchers to discover many years later..”
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A preparation based on plants, flowers and acid
4500 years later, archaeologists have succeeded in identifying the contents of these vases. A feat made possible thanks to technology: “Thanks to the biochemical techniques we have, we can analyze the molecules trapped in these ceramic objects and interpret what is happening.”, explains Pr. İsmail Tarhan, who participated in these excavations.
According to the researchers, the depas contained remains of green leafy plants, poppy, olive oil and salicylic acid, a substance also known as… aspirin !
The next time you swallow a tablet of aspirin or paracetamol to ease the effects of a hangover, a bad fall or a huge headache, know that this reflex will have nothing to do with it. modern !
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