A thousand years ago, a community of women thrived in a monastery at Dalheim in rural Germany. Now, several centuries on, a team of researchers are hard at work examining medieval remnants at the site. But while studying the remains of one former resident, the group discover something unexpected: an incredible secret that could rewrite the history of humankind.

And for Anita Radini and her coworkers, the eye-opening moment is one that few could have predicted when their research began. Initially, the team planned to study teeth unearthed at the location, analyzing any build-up of plaque to learn more about the diet and oral hygiene of women who lived so long ago. However, the specialists ended up finding so much more.

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