On Thursday 19th September 1991, two German tourists were out hiking in the Ötztal Alps when they made a gruesome discovery.
Erika and Helmut Simon from Nuremberg were taking a shortcut on their way down from the Finail Peak near the Austrian-Italian border when they spotted something unusual.
Made of almost pure copper, Ötzi's axe would have been an impressive symbol of social status.
Was it a tragic hunting accident, or something more sinister?
Ötzi was definitely involved in a fight shortly before his death – an unhealed hand wound confirmed he had been in hand-to-hand combat in the last few days of his life.
Scientists were not only able to estimate his age, gender and height – around 45 years, male and 1.6m – but could also reveal intimate details about the Iceman's life.
DNA tests determined Ötzi had brown eyes, while human hair found at the site suggested he had shoulder-length dark hair and a beard.
His German discoverers Erika and Helmut Simons were also key to his preservation.