What the 5,300-year-old Iceman wore

[Science ★★]


(P1) We know what people wore 5,000 years ago. Scientists studied material from a man who died 5,300 years ago. He was frozen under ice until 1991. They called him Otzi. Scientists studied him to understand how early humans lived. He gave useful information about how humans used animals.

(P2) Otzi’s clothes were from goat leather, bear fur, and other animals. His shoes were made from grass. He had 61 tattoos. These were to make the pain go away. The tattoos were not for beauty. He had problems with his heart and with his teeth. Otzi was 45 when he died. Someone killed him with an arrow. It hit him in the head.

WORDS: 111

SOURCE: http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/1608/160822-iceman-0.html

VOCABULARY: wore, material, useful, leather, fur, grass, arrow


If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly, summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. If you found an iceman, what would you do?
  3. Why do scientists want to know how people lived 5300 years ago?
  4. Do you think tattoos can make a pain go away? Why or why not?


  1. When was the iceman discovered?
  2. What name was given to the iceman by scientists?
  3. Studying the iceman allowed scientists to understand how people slept 5300 years ago. (T or F)
  4. What were the iceman’s clothes made of?
  5. How did Otzi die?


What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • frozen under ice (P1)
  • how humans used animals (P1)
  • made from grass (P2)
  • go away (P2)

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Image source: by “unknown” https://localtvwtkr.files.wordpress.com/2016/08/capture4.png?w=370&h=204&crop=1

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