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26 January 2018, 02:19 | Katrina Lee
Images via SRF and Getty Images
While that clearly did more harm than good, the high levels of mercury in her system are what caused her body to be preserved.
Now, after two years of archival and DNA investigation by a team of researchers, she not only has a name - as it turns out, she's also got a rather recognizable great-great-great-great-great-great-grandson.
There was no gravestone, to indicate identity, or the date of her passing, but initial testing of Bischoff's wooden coffin suggested it dated from the 16th Century.
The 230-year-old unknown mummy was discovered four decades ago during excavations of Barfusser church in Basel.
BORIS Johnson has revealed that he is "very proud" to be descended from an ancient mummified Swiss woman who died of syphilis, scientists say.
Unfortunately the treatment did not work and scientists believe she died from mercury poisoning in 1787 at the age of 68.
However, extensive testing of DNA extracted from the mummy's big toe points to the corpse being Anna Catharina Bischoff, the great-great-great-great-great-great grandmother of the UK Foreign Secretary.
Now the scientists and the historians were sure: the mummy was none other than Anna Catharina Bischoff.
After her husband's death, she returned to Basel and underwent treatment in a bid to cure her of her disease.
Johnson's global background is well known.
"This discovery means that Boris Johnson is not only distantly related, albeit very far removed, to the present Royal Family but also to all the royal houses of Europe, including the Swedish and Dutch royal families, as well as the Romanoffs", the BBC said at the time.
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