Johannes Brahms and Johan Strauss’ Teeth Stolen

Who would want a 19th Century classical composer's teeth remains unclear.

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Amy T. Zielinski/Getty

The grave of Austrian composer Johannes Brahms (1833 - 1897) in the Zentralfriedhof cemetery in the Musiker area of Vienna, 17th November 2010.

The teeth of classical composers Johannes Brahms and Johan Strauss Jr. have been stolen from their graves.

The bizarre whodunit began in 2008, when the remains of the two 19th century composers in Vienna’s Zentralfriedhof — one of the world’s largest cemeteries — were first found to have been disturbed. Now, Austrian officials are close to filing charges and consider a Slovakian man as a “person of interest,” reports the L.A. Times.

Why anyone with any interest in the two musicians would want to yank out their teeth is a mystery.

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Brahms and Strauss are not the first celebrities to have their graves disturbed. In 1978, Charlie Chaplin’s body and coffin were dug up in Switzerland and disappeared for 11 weeks, according to the BBC. His widow refused to pay the £400,000 ransom demanded, but a police sting operation involving surveillance on 200 phone boxes nabbed the culprits. Chaplin’s body was recovered and reburied in a cement grave. A century before, a plot to snatch President Abraham Lincoln’s body from a white marble sarcophagus in his Springfield, Ill. tomb was foiled by a secret service double agent, reports U.S. News. To prevent future body snatchers, Lincoln’s body was reburied first in a shallow, unmarked grave, and then in a steel cage protected in a vault under 10 feet of concrete.

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