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German archeologists find Bronze Age sword so well-preserved it ‘almost shines’


BERLIN (AP) — A bronze sword made more than 3,000 years ago that is so well-preserved it “almost still shines” has been unearthed in Germany, officials say.

Bavaria’s state office for the preservation of historical monuments says the sword, which is believed to date back to the end of the 14th century B.C. — the middle of the Bronze Age — was found during excavations last week in Noerdlingen, between Nuremberg and Stuttgart in southern Germany.

It has a bronze octagonal hilt and comes from a grave in which three people — a man, a woman and a boy — were buried in quick succession with bronze objects, the Bavarian office said in a statement this week. It is not yet clear whether the three were related to each other and, if so, how.

“The sword and the burial still need to be examined so that our archeologists can categorize this find more precisely,” said the head of the office, Mathias Pfeil. “But we can already say that the state of preservation is extraordinary. A find like this is very rare.”

It’s unusual to find swords from the period, but they have emerged from burial mounds that were opened in the 19th century or as individual finds, the office said.

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