1,000-year-old weapon — the first of its kind — found sticking out of grave in Spain

The mysterious sword seemed to just appear from the ground.

Archaeologists found the sword sticking out of an ancient grave when they excavated a house in Valencia, Spain, in 1994. The weapon was dubbed ”Excalibur” after the mythical sword King Arthur pulled from a stone.

For the past 30 years, the sword’s origin and age have remained a point of confusion — until now.

Valencia’s archaeology department decided to catalog and review the artifacts in its collection ahead of its 75th anniversary, the City Council of Valencia said in an April 22 news release. One of those artifacts was the Excalibur sword.

Archaeologist José Miguel Osuna did a detailed analysis of the weapon and identified it as a 1,000-year-old Islamic sword.

The 1,000-year-old Islamic sword found in a grave in Valencia.
The 1,000-year-old Islamic sword found in a grave in Valencia.

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The city council shared photos of the first-of-its-kind weapon on X, formerly Twitter. The sword measures about 18 inches long and has a slightly curved blade. Its hilt has several bronze plates designed to be easy to handle.

An archaeologist analyzes the 1,000-year-old weapon.
An archaeologist analyzes the 1,000-year-old weapon.

The sword dates to the 10th century when Valencia and surrounding regions of Spain were part of a Muslim kingdom known as Al-Andalus, city officials said.

The Al-Andalus kingdom, whose name later inspired that of Andalusia, thrived in modern-day Spain and Portugal from 711 until the early 1000s, according to Britannica.

A close-up photo shows the hilt of the 1,000-year-old sword.
A close-up photo shows the hilt of the 1,000-year-old sword.

The Excalibur sword is the first Islamic sword found in Valencia, archaeologists said. The rarity of these artifacts is partly due to the make-up of the soil in Spain, which impairs their preservation.

Archaeologists identified the Excalibur sword based on the size and shape of its blade, the handle design and the material that surrounded it in the grave, city officials said.

Valencia is along the eastern coast of Spain and a roughly 230-mile drive southeast from Madrid.

Google Translate was used to translate the news release and X, formerly Twitter, post from the City Council of Valencia.

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