A sword almost a millennium old: it is the treasure that an amateur diver found completely at random during an excursion in the Mediterranean.

The discovery was made on Saturday near Haifa, on the northern coast of Israel, reports 

Huffpost

.

The Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) confirmed the authenticity of the object on Monday.

"The shape and, of course, the location leaves no doubt that it is of cross-provenance," said Kobi Sharvit, head of the Authority's marine archeology unit, quoted by

Sud Ouest.

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"A beautiful and rare discovery"

The weapon, which represents a "discovery both beautiful and rare", would therefore have belonged to a knight of the Crusades.

These military expeditions led by Christians to the Holy Land took place between 1095 and 1291.

Waves and sea currents moved the sand that covered the object, allowing its discovery.

Although covered with marine organisms, the one meter long blade and the handle allowed the diver to understand that he was dealing with an unusual object.

The sword has been entrusted to the Department of National Treasures and will be cleaned and studied before being on display to the public.

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