Founded in the seventeenth century in the village of Venzone, they are mummified bodies to natural causes, as also happened in other places in the world, even if the specific causes that have led to the conservation of the mummies of Venzone still remain a mystery. The likely outcome is that the rapid mummification of bodies has been due to a perfect combination of accidental more natural elements, including temperature and humidity, high presence of calcium sulphate in the ground and the presence of a mushroom with a large capacity dewatering pump, Hypha bombicina pers.
In 1647, during the works of enlargement of the cathedral of Venzone, came to light a score of the mummified bodies, including those of the so-called "Hunchback of Venzone". The popularity of these mummies was very high already in the past centuries, so much so that some mummies were studied at the University cabinet of Padua, in Vienna Museum, and in the Church of the invalid. Napoleon himself wanted to visit you in 1807. The Mummies of Venzone belong to an age comprised between 1348 and 1881. In 1845 the mummies were moved from the crypt of the Cathedral to the upper chapel. On the occasion of the earthquake of the Friuli of 1976 were extracted from the rubble only 15 of 21 mummies preserved. Five of them (including the noble man of Venzone Paul Marpillero) are now exhibited in the crypt of the Baptistery of San Michele and represent a cultural heritage of inestimable anthropological interest to know the way of life of the inhabitants of Friuli of past centuries.