24 Dec '11, 2am

Ethicist: 18th century 'giant' should be buried - Yahoo! via @yahoosg

LONDON (AP) — The skeleton of an 18th-century celebrity nicknamed the 'Irish Giant' should be removed from a museum and buried at sea in keeping with his last wishes, two experts have argued, reviving a debate about the ethics of handling human remains. Writing in the British Medical Journal, medical ethicist Len Doyal and legal researcher Thomas Muinzer said there is no good scientific reason to display the skeleton of Charles Byrne, who died in 1783, and a strong moral case against it. "What has been done cannot be undone but it can be morally rectified," the two men wrote. "Surely it is time to respect the memory and reputation of Byrne." Byrne stood about 7 feet, 7 inches (2.3 meters) tall as a result of acromegaly, a condition caused when a tumor on the pituitary gland stimulates an excess of growth hormone. He became a celebrity in 18th-century London as the star tur...

Full article: http://sg.news.yahoo.com/ethicist-18th-century-giant-buri...

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