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Basel mummified body related to Boris Johnson

National News // Jan. 26, 2018

A mummified body discovered in Basel’s Barfüsser Church in 1975 has finally been identified – and the woman is related to the UK Foreign Secretary and arch Brexiteer – Boris Johnson.

Chatham House Basel mummified body related to Boris Johnson

The body has been a mystery to researchers for many years – but newly discovered archives gave a new lead.

Historians are sure the body is Anna Catharina Bischoff. Born into a wealthy Strasbourg family in 1719. She moved with her husband to Basel in 1782.

One of the reasons the body is so well preserved is that she was poisoned by mercury. The heavy metal was considered to be an effective treatment of syphilis at the time. But the treatment itself killed most of the patients.

Her family tree has been tracked to the present day and it finds Johnson is her grandson, eight generations distant. 

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