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2,000 year old boomerang unearthed in France

The Gauls used boomerangs 2,000 years ago, according to archaeologists who have found a wooden curved stick on a beach in the northern French town of Cotentin.

2,000 year old boomerang unearthed in France
The Gallic "throwing stick" found at the site of Urville-Nacqueville 
[Credit: Cyril Damourette]
Boomerangs are usually associated with Australian aborigines but these amazing wooden weapons have been found in Egypt, apparently dating back 2,000 years, and in Europe - the oldest one, which was found in a cave in Poland, being 30,000 years old.

They were apparently toys but now archaelogists have found what sems to be a 2,000-year-old boomerang on the beach at Cotentin and it was not used for play, Le Monde newspaper reports.

The stick doesn't come back when you throw it, the archaeologists said, it was used as a weapon, to hunt.

The ancient Gauls probably used these boomerangs to hunt seagulls, the archaeologists believe.

The wooden stick they found, the only one so far, is made from the wood of an apple or pear tree.

Boomerangs are still made from these high-quality woods.

The Gallic stick dates from 120 to 80 years before Christ, nearly 30 years before the Roman conquest of Gaul.

It weighs 150 grammes and can be thrown 50 metres distance.

The flying weapon was found in an old ditch in a harbour facing across the Channel to England, located near the modern town of La Hague.

The archaeologists said that this discovery at the Urville-Nacqueville beach also means that a harbour that would have conducted cross-channel trade existed at the time.

Source: RFI [September 19, 2014]

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