Otzi Had Dark Skin

Otzi Had Dark Skin
Otzi the Iceman

“Otzi” was the name given to a frozen mummy found on the border between Austria and Italy in 1991. The mummy, also known as “the iceman,” was in such good condition that researchers could complete a DNA analysis of his genome in 2012. Recently, more advanced studies of that DNA show that the earlier sample was contaminated by modern DNA, and Otzi had dark skin.

The Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, compiled a new genome for Otzi. Johannes Krause, writing for the Institute in the August 16, 2023, issue of “Cell Genomics,” reported that there is no connection between Otzi and modern residents of Austria or Italy. The revised genome shows that Otzi had dark skin and was related to Neolithic farmers.

Modern genomes of ancient humans show that dark skin has been the norm for humans until relatively recently in human history. Light skin tones only appeared in the genomes 3 to 4,000 years ago, showing once again the foolishness of racism. The ancient humans described in the Old Testament were undoubtedly dark-skinned.

You cannot use the Bible to justify racial prejudice. The statement that God “has made of one blood all nations of men to dwell upon the face of the earth” (Acts 17:26) is absolutely true. The name “Eve” in the Hebrew of Genesis means “life-giving,” and she would have had dark skin. Genetic studies have shown that all humans have a common DNA fragment indicating a common origin. Those who have viewed Otzi as proof that ancient humans were Caucasians have no scientific support for that claim and now have to admit that Otzi had dark skin.

There is too much scientific support for the biblical account of early humans to write it off as a fantasy or a myth. Science and the Christian faith are symbiotic – they support each other. Let us put racial prejudice to rest and embrace the claim of Galatians 3:28 that we “are all one.”

— John N. Clayton © 2023

Reference: Science News September 23, 2023, page 5.