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Found: An 18th-Century Asian Sword Fished From a Welsh River

It’s in surprisingly good condition.

For more than 30 years, Andrew Davies, chairman of the Carmarthen Coracle and Netsman Association, has spent his time out on the water in his coracle, a type of small Welsh boat. Recently, as Wales Online reports, he dredged up a surprising object—a corroded, 18th century sword of Asian origin.

The sword emerged from the River Towy, “between the two river bridges where coracle fishing takes place,” Davies told Wales Online.

It’s likely the sword was stuck in the mud for many years, which would have helped preserve it. The blade is rusted and corroded but the sword is still largely intact. The wooden handle is ornamented with a bird made of bone.

Carmarthen is a port, which may explain how such a sword came to be in a Welsh river, but unless someone out there is keeping close information about how exactly the sword arrived in the area and why it ended up in the river, the full story of this object will remain a mystery.