University of Oulu

Väre, T., Tranberg, A., Lipkin, S., Kallio-Seppä, T., Väre, L., Junno, J.-A., Niinimäki, S., Nurminen, N., & Kuha, A. (2020). Temperature and Humidity in the Base-floors of Three Northern Finnish Churches Containing 17th–19th-century Burials. Acta Universitatis Lodziensis. Folia Archaeologica, (35), 189-215.

Temperature and humidity in the base-floors of three northern Finnish churches containing 17th–19th-century burials

Saved in:
Author: Väre, Tiina1; Tranberg, Annemari1; Lipkin, Sanna1;
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Faculty of Humanities, Archaeology, Finland
2Tornedalens museum, Finland
3University of Helsinki, Faculty of Science, Computer Science, Finland
4University of Oulu, Faculty of Humanities, Archaeology & University of Oulu, Faculty of Medicine, Medical Research Center Oulu, Finland
5University of Oulu, Faculty of Humanities, Archaeology & University of Oulu, Faculty of Science, Biology, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.7 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Uniwersytet Łódzki, 2020
Publish Date: 2021-04-16


Natural mummification occurs in various favorable conditions. Cold environments have produced mummified human remains in northern Finland. These remains buried under the church floors mummified naturally probably through a process resembling freeze-drying. This chapter explores the conditions that led to the mummification of dozens and potentially hundreds of human remains. To conduct our study, we installed logging temperature and humidity measuring devices under the floors of three churches located by the shore of Bothnian Bay in northern Finland. Even our preliminary results show that the humidity and temperature conditions differ between these churches. It is also clear that relative humidity remains very high under the floors of each church. It appears that mummification has occurred in almost “cellar like” conditions. The preservation process was probably aided by the loose laid constructions allowing the air to freely move in the graves carrying the moisture from the remains.

see all

Series: Acta Universitatis Lodziensis. Folia archaeologica
ISSN: 0208-6034
ISSN-E: 2449-8300
ISSN-L: 0208-6034
Volume: 35
Pages: 189 - 215
DOI: 10.18778/0208-6034.35.12
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 615 History and archaeology
Copyright information: © 2020 Acta Universitatis Lodziensis. Folia Archaeologica and the Authors. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.