WASHINGTON -- Jamestown's colonists resorted to cannibalism during the "starving time" winter of 1609-10, archaeologists confirmed Wednesday.
In a briefing at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History, archaeologist Doug Owsley presented the reconstructed skull of a 14-year-old English girl, named "Jane" by the researchers, discovered at the site of the fort and bearing the marks of butchery.
"The skull was split in half, most likely with a lightweight ax or quite possibly, a cleaver," Owsley said at the briefing. Cut marks crisscrossing the skull and jaw of the girl indicate her flesh, tongue and brains were removed from the skull, Owsley said. Those were traditional cuts for animal butchery of the time, "all parts of the cuisine of the 17th century," he said.
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