Zombie tales: The strange and mysterious mummies of Venzone in Italy

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For hundreds of years, a mystery surrounded the cathedral of Venzone, a small city in the province of Udine, Italy.

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A woman with a mummy of Venzone in Italy. Photo: Unautre.com

Instead of decomposing normally, bodies buried in the tombs beneath the cathedral were perfectly preserved and still recognizable decades later.

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Some skeletons of the Venzonea mummies in Italy. Photo: Unautre.com

This led the townspeople to periodically retrieve and commune with their dead loved ones.

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A priest playing with a mummified skeleton around Venzone in Italy. Photo: Unautre.com

In modern times, scientists finally traced the source of this wonder to Hypha tombicina, a microscopic, parasitic fungus that rapidly dehydrates the bodies before decomposition can even begin. Another explanation links this incredible body conservation to flooding with alkaline groundwater and subsequent rapid drying.

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