JERUSALEM — An antique sword dating back to the Crusaders has been discovered by an Israeli scuba diver off the country’s Mediterranean coast.
The man was on a weekend dive in northern Israel when he discovered a cache of ancient relics, including anchors, ceramics, and a meter-long (yard-long) sword, according to Israel’s Antiquities Authority.
When the diver discovered the find, he was around 150 meters (170 yards) off the coast in five-meter-deep (5.5-yard-deep) water.
According to experts, the region served as a safe haven for ancient ships and is home to numerous archaeological artifacts, some of which date back 4,000 years. However, because of the continuously shifting sands, such finds might be difficult to come by.
Fearing that his find would be lost, the diver brought the sword onshore and handed it over to government specialists, according to the authorities. The weapon is thought to be around 900 years old.
“It was found coated with sea creatures, but it appears to be composed of iron,” said Nir Distelfeld, a robbery prevention unit inspector. “It’s thrilling to come upon such a personal thing that transports you 900 years back in time to another age, complete with knights, armor, and swords.”
The sword will be cleaned and studied further, and the diver, Shlomi Katzin, will get a certificate of recognition for his excellent citizenship.