Achaeologists Recover 5,000 Year Old Dagger With Crystal Blade in Spanish Tomb
The discovery of a 5,000 year old dagger in Spain with a hilt made of rock crystal has continued to attract interest, with researchers pointing to the item as one of the most remarkable archaeological finds of its time period.
The blade is more than 8 inches long. A team of researchers affiliated with the University of Granada and the University of Seville recovered the remarkable find during a period of research between 2007 and 2010. New details regarding the blade were published in research journals late last year.
More than ten arrowheads and crafting tools for weapons were also discovered at the site- made of rock crystal as well. As no crystal mines existed in prehistoric Spain at the time of the tomb’s creation, it’s thought the item was brought from distant lands well before the historical record began in Europe.
Researchers who have worked at the site conclusively date the blade’s latest creation as 3000 BC.
The item was found at the Montelirio tholos megalithic site, which also contains remains of more than 20 humans who buried near when the dagger was placed. The tomb, which is located in the lower Guadalquivir valley near the city of Seville, has served as one of the most revealing dig sites pertaining to the Neolithic period in the Iberian peninsula. (Iberia is a geographic term that encompasses both Spain and Portugal.)
The dagger wasn’t the only valuable item to be discovered in the tomb. Also found were elephant tusks, the egg of an ostrich, and jewelry. The tomb in question contains corridors more than a hundred feet long and several chambers, in a manner of sophistication highly unusual for the time period.
Notably, the tomb contained the remains of one man surrounded by several females, suggesting the owner of the dagger may have been a neolithic king of sorts. Researchers believe that the individuals found within the Montelirio tholos site died of poisoning, with the details of those found at the larger-than-life grave positively lost to the annals of time.