Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The "GRILL" of Ancient Hip Hop Dentistry

ancient teeth

Quite outstanding work realizing the limited ability to practice dentistry 2,500 years ago.
Maya and other ancient peoples of southern North America went to "dentists"—among the earliest known—to beautify their chompers with notches, grooves, and semi-precious stones, according to a recent analysis of thousands of teeth examined from collections in Mexico's National Institute of Anthropology and History (such as the skull, above, found in Chiapas, Mexico).

Scientists don't know the origin of most of the teeth in the collections, which belonged to people living throughout the region, called Mesoamerica, before the Spanish conquests of the 1500s.

But it's clear that people—mostly men—from nearly all walks of life opted for look, noted José Concepción Jiménez, an anthropologist at the Mexican institute that recently announced the findings.

"They were not marks of social class" but instead meant for pure decoration, he commented in an e-mail interview conducted in Spanish.
Modern day dental grills can be viewed here.

1 comment:

  1. And people think modern day cosmetic dental work is something about that! Teeth whitening is one thing, gems and jewels is another. Although I do wonder about the grooves and whatnot, not sure how that can be decorative at all...just painful.