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Kicker: A real relic


WORLD Radio - Kicker: A real relic

A museum in Chicago discovered it received probably made in the Middle Ages


MARY REICHARD, HOST: Talk about mislabeling!

Consider the Field Museum in Chicago. Back in the ‘30s it received a sword pulled out of the Danube River in Hungary. It looked like a weapon from the bronze age—3,000 years ago!— but all things considered, curators assumed it was a replica.

until a Hungarian scholar visited the museum last year.

William Parkinson is curator of anthropology at the Field Museum. Here’s Parkinson on television station FOX 32:

PARKINSON: So I pull it out. He looks at it for half a minute and says this isn't a replica. This is a real sword.

Metallurgy analysis confirmed it.

PARKINSON: ...usually it goes the other way. It's seldom that you've got something in your collection that's said, in the collection records for 100 years. This is a replica that you find out no, it's actually the real deal.

Scholars suggest the sword may have been tossed into the river in a ritual to commemorate those who died in battle. A literal “burying of the hatchet.”

You can see the sword this spring at the Field Museum’s “First Kings of Europe” exhibition.

BROWN: Field trip!

REICHARD: It’s The World and Everything in It.

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