• Please be advised there is a potential issue with DD collections, which may result in an excessive amount being taken. Please read the stickied thread in Fortean Times Magazine > General Discussion, Subs etc

Giant Hominid Finger Found In Egypt

blessmycottonsocks

Antediluvian
Joined
Dec 22, 2014
Messages
7,804
Location
Wessex and Mercia
This story did the rounds on Quora recently.

Supposedly a huge, mummified finger was found and studied (including x-rays) in Egypt in 1988.

At an improbable 15" / 38 cm it was far longer than the longest recorded human hands (Robert Wadlow's) or a gorilla's, and speculation exists that, if not a hoax, it could be the remains of a Gigantopithecus.

Suspiciously or conveniently, it seems to have gone missing.

Hmmm....

finger.JPG
finger3.JPGfinger2.JPG

https://archaeology-world.com/38-centimeter-long-finger-found-in-egypt-left-researchers-clueless/
 

maximus otter

Recovering policeman
Joined
Aug 9, 2001
Messages
11,532
finger-2.jpg


Egyptian £20 note, in circulation from 1978 to 2015:

20%2BEgyptian%2BPounds%2BBank%2BNote%2B1986.JPG


https://www.worldbanknotescoins.com/2015/06/20-egyptian-pounds-note-1986.html

OK so far...

However, the story has all the usual hallmarks of the fake:

a) Several "cutouts":

1. It was found by a "grave robber", so he's not going to be traceable.

2. "...the owner said that he would not sell it..."

3. "He made his way back to Egypt in 2009 and went looking for the man who owned the finger, but he could not find him..."

b) A "Certificate of authenticity" issued by whom? To whom do you go to get a scientifically-rigorous and academically-accepted form to say that your 16" long finger is "genuine"?

c) "All that remains of the giant finger are photographs that were taken of the finger along with stories..."

Fake.

maximus otter
 
Last edited:

blessmycottonsocks

Antediluvian
Joined
Dec 22, 2014
Messages
7,804
Location
Wessex and Mercia
finger-2.jpg


Egyptian £20 note, valid from 1978 to 2015:

20%2BEgyptian%2BPounds%2BBank%2BNote%2B1986.JPG


https://www.worldbanknotescoins.com/2015/06/20-egyptian-pounds-note-1986.html

OK so far...

However, the story has all the usual hallmarks of the fake:

a) Several "cutouts":

1. It was found by a "grave robber", so he's not going to be traceable.

2. "...the owner said that he would not sell it..."

3. "He made his way back to Egypt in 2009 and went looking for the man who owned the finger, but he could not find him..."

b) A "Certificate of authenticity" issued by whom? To whom do you go to get a scientifically-rigorous and academically-accepted form to say that your 16" long finger is "genuine"?

c) "All that remains of the giant finger are photographs that were taken of the finger along with stories..."

Fake.

maximus otter

I suspected that too Max, but still thought it worth posting to spark a little discussion.

As the Egyptian £20 note is 155mm in length. that suggests a finger length of nearer 32 cm than the alleged 38 cm too.
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
(ACCOUNT RETIRED)
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
29,623
Location
Out of Bounds
It would be best to check the primary source(s) on this story.

Gregor Spörri (sometimes rendered as Spoerri) is described as a Swiss entrepreneur and 'disco owner' as of 1988. His trip to Egypt in 1988 was originally intended to allow him to spend time alone inside the Great Pyramid. In other words, it was a 'paranormal investigation' from the beginning.

He refers to the finger as "The Relic of Bir Hooker."

The condensed machine-translated English version of the story can be accessed in this section of his website:

GREGOR SPÖRRI: MYSTERY RESEARCH
https://gregorspoerri.com/gregor-spoerri-mystery-research/?lang=en

The original German language (and ostensibly more substantial) version starts with:
https://gregorspoerri.com/info/das-relikt-von-bir-hooker-die-entdeckung/

One or more of the photographs presented on the website are taken from a 2015 Japanese documentary film / video on the subject.

A listing of publications about the finger is provided at:

https://gregorspoerri.com/info/the-relic-of-bir-hooker-publications/?lang=en

Spörri's website promotes a science fiction mystery novel he wrote based on (?) his encounter with the old grave robber and the giant finger.
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
(ACCOUNT RETIRED)
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
29,623
Location
Out of Bounds
Macrodactyly is localized gigantism affecting a particular body part or a set of closely colocated body parts. It can be caused by a variety of syndromes and problems, including Proteus Syndrome. It's most common in the extremities (hands; feet) and these extremities' digital extensions (fingers; toes). It is not the case that all affected digits are deformed. Some are simply oversized versions of normal digits.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Local_gigantism

A Chinese man named Liu Hua had macrodactyly affecting his left hand, resulting in a somewhat deformed left index finger measured at 30 cm in length. He underwent corrective surgery circa 2013, and I can't seem to find any follow-up reports on him.

https://www.martianherald.com/most-unusual-bodies/page/1
http://www.hoaxorfact.com/science/lui-hua-the-man-with-world-s-largest-hand-facts.html
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
(ACCOUNT RETIRED)
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
29,623
Location
Out of Bounds
Another thing worth pointing out ...

The provenance of the Bir Hooker relic is merely alleged to be ancient. Just because it was encountered in Egypt and verbally alleged to have be discovered in an ancient Egyptian tomb doesn't prove it actually dates back to ancient Egypt. Relative mummification in a desert environment doesn't necessarily take thousands of years.
 

maximus otter

Recovering policeman
Joined
Aug 9, 2001
Messages
11,532
Looking again at the photo, the size and articulation suggest that someone has found a mummified animal - a dog, perhaps? - and cut off its lower leg in such a way as to resemble a scaled-up digit.

Faking the distal phalanx and nail would not be beyond the abilities of a resourceful swindler.

maximus otter
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
(ACCOUNT RETIRED)
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
29,623
Location
Out of Bounds
Looking again at the photo, the size and articulation suggest that someone has found a mummified animal - a dog, perhaps? - and cut off its lower leg in such a way as to resemble a scaled-up digit.
Faking the distal phalanx and nail would not be beyond the abilities of a resourceful swindler.

Agreed. There's also the possibility that's it's a cleverly created simulacrum rather than a repurposed / modified animal body part. It could be a constructed artifact sheathed in skin or hide.

The exposed bone is oddly thick-walled for a finger, even in scaled-up form. This was mentioned by one of the three people whose comments Spörri included on his Analysis page - the same person who suggested this might be a macrodactyly specimen. More than anything else it's that bone that strikes me as suspicious.

There's nothing to demonstrate the object has the internal structure of a human finger except the X-ray. Save for a Polaroid(?) photo of the object paper-clipped to the X-ray there's nothing to suggest (much less verify) that the X-ray is of the same object.

I suppose we'll never know with certainty since the Bir Hooker object seems to have disappeared.
 
Top