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Buried This Way


Placing a sexual orientation on a skeleton is certainly very presumptuous (and trendy media spin), but the circumstances regarding a burial unearthed near Prague are interesting from an anthropological perspective:

The male body – said to date back to between 2900-2500BC – was discovered buried in a way normally reserved only for women of the Corded Ware culture in the Copper Age.


"From history and ethnology, we know that people from this period took funeral rites very seriously so it is highly unlikely that this positioning was a mistake," said lead archaeologist Kamila Remisova Vesinova.

"Far more likely is that he was a man with a different sexual orientation, homosexual or transsexual," she added.

According to Corded Ware culture which began in the late Stone Age and culminated in the Bronze Age, men were traditionally buried lying on their right side with their heads pointing towards the west, and women on their left sides with their heads pointing towards the east. Both sexes would be put into a crouching position.


"We believe this is one of the earliest cases of what could be described as a 'transsexual' or 'third gender grave' in the Czech Republic," archaeologist Katerina Semradova told a press conference on Tuesday.

First Homosexual Caveman Found [telegraph]

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  1. I'm no anthropologist, but this hypothetical explanation sounds only just as plausible as a thousand others would be.

    Posted by: GregV | Apr 7, 2011 11:49:32 AM

  2. GREAT post title! We clearly have a long way to go if an anthropologist calls "transsexual" a sexual orientation. Transsexuality is a gender orientation, not a sexual orientation.

    Posted by: olen | Apr 7, 2011 1:05:07 PM

  3. oops - I misunderstood the anthropologist, due to confusion from British grammatical rules regarding the comma.

    Posted by: olen | Apr 7, 2011 1:14:39 PM

  4. Oh relax: this is actually quite awesome.

    Posted by: Michael in Toronto | Apr 7, 2011 1:18:33 PM

  5. I love commas. They are so spermy-looking. Did you know that if you leave your estate to "Tom, Dick and Harry," then Tom will get half and Dick and Harry will get half. If you leave it to "Tom, Dick, and Harry," then each one gets a third. Commas count!

    Posted by: lewlew | Apr 7, 2011 2:01:35 PM

  6. Why, LEWLEW, you believe in writing "stream of consciousness" comments too. I've gotten "read" viciously over the years for communicating my thoughts like that on the blogs. Self-indulgent--they call it. Screw them. We're soul mates, LEWLEW.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Apr 7, 2011 2:14:52 PM

  7. She had me until she used the term "third gender." Reminds me a revolting homo scare book from the mid-20th century called The Third Sex---my mother's aunt gave it to her so she'd be informed about the coming gay revolution! My young, rural mother had never even heard of gays before that.

    @LewLew, that's not true. The comma before "and" is called a serial comma. Its use is purely a style issue---many newspapers and magazines don't use it to save space. In any case, legal documents are written very carefully, so your example would almost certainly be written as, "I leave my estate to be split in equal thirds between Tom, Dick and Harry." The only way Tom would get half were if such language were missing and it said "to Tom and to Dick and Harry." But I agree, commas count, and everyone should use serial commas!

    Posted by: Paul R | Apr 7, 2011 10:50:28 PM

  8. Do pandas in China eat, shoots and leaves or do they eat shoots and leaves?

    Posted by: commapolice | Apr 8, 2011 8:59:15 AM

  9. Sorry Paul R, but LewLew is right on this one.

    Posted by: aj | Apr 8, 2011 10:32:13 AM

  10. So, you can either focus on the meat of the story, or have a dick measuring contest about who can be more pc/ who took the most gender studies classes. Third gender is often used in a number of feilds, so educate yourselves before missing the hell out of the point and reminding people why they find said behavior so obnoxious. My ex was constantly interrupting our conversational flow to show off what she'd heard in a particular class on a particular day, while i was smart enough to know that the language surrounding gender is ambiguous, faulty, and constantly shifting. Guess why she's my ex....

    Posted by: Ahley | Apr 8, 2011 11:57:26 AM

  11. Why would they assume a man doing 'women's work' would be gay?
    That seems pretty short-sighted to me... and playing to a specific (and relatively modern) stereotype.

    What about a man who was just unable (physically or mentally) to be a hunter and was allowed to stay in the village to help the women.
    Transgendered would be a normal guess (I guess) if a man identified as a woman.

    Either way, their respect of their fellow tribesperson is such a cool discovery.

    Posted by: lookyloo | Apr 9, 2011 3:29:46 AM

  12. People also need to understand the difference between gender and biological sex. One is socially-constructed while the other is how you are created.

    Posted by: FatGayVegan | Apr 9, 2011 5:21:38 AM

  13. Maybe it was a practical caveman joke, a hermaphrodite, a guy who accidently lost his dick, a single father who was forced to be a "mother", an enemy of the people, an overly decomposed body that was gender unidentifiable, any exception could be used as an explanation, that being gay wouldn't stand out as an obvious answer.

    Posted by: david | Apr 9, 2011 1:20:58 PM

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