Mortsafe For Zombies? It Was Used To Protect The Dead From The Living

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mortsafe zombies

Have you ever seen a cage looking device over a grave? In very old cemeteries around the world you may see these hard prisons placed over grave sites. So, is a mortsafe for zombies, or a zombie apocalypse? Not at all.

A mortsafe was a contraption developed at the beginning of the 19th century to contain a coffin of a deceased person. But a mortsafe wasn’t for zombies. A mortsafe was made to protect the dead from the living.

At the beginning of the 19th century medical science was beginning to make significant advances. One of the major problems that medical institutions and students faced was a lack of ready and willing specimens to train on. When we say specimens we mean deceased people. So what could the medical schools of the day do to solve the shortage? The same thing many thieves do today when they need something but can’t legally get a hold of it. They take what they need, in other, words they steal. They stole bodies, and to combat this people developed and began using the mortsafe.

The problem was that the authorities turned a blind eye to medical schools stealing corpses. The thought among the authorities was that the work they were doing was furthering medical knowledge and was for the good of society. They tried to keep public awareness of this practice to a minimum, but occasionally some cases came to light that would cause riots, damage to property and even fatal attacks. It reached a point where there were so many students that some people were employed to rob graves for the bodies and sell them to medical schools. This presented many problems for the general population, especially in Scotland where there was a great reverence for the deceased and a devout belief in resurrection. To be resurrected people believed that you had to remain in a complete state.

Enter the mortsafe. Developed in Scotland in 1816 the sole purpose was to protect the dead from the living. Made from iron, or iron and stone, they were extremely heavy and encased the coffin of the deceased securely. A mortsafe was secured with the use of two heavy metal plates that were locked together for six weeks. After six weeks, when the body was sufficiently decayed, the plates would be removed and reused on another mortsafe.

While a mortsafe would provide adequate protection from a zombies rampage, we all know that zombies are not real. The only beings looking for brains are our politicians.


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