26 September 2008
Tourist finds stone-age axe heads
"A British tourist who unearthed four Stone Age axes on a beach in Brittany has been put forward for a prize worth more than £20,000 by the Ministry of Culture for not keeping the treasure.
The axes, made from jadeite, were buried in what was then marshland, about 6,500 years ago, according to French scientists.
Mr MacHale and his French girlfriend, Sonia Hoba, 34 noticed the blades glistening in the mud at low tide. They were on holiday in Saint-Pierre-Quiberon in August 2007 with his two children.
Mr MacHale said: "I thought they were two edges of a clam shell and I was a bit nervous putting my hand down at first in case it snapped shut on me."
Researchers believe that the axes, made from a rock found in the Italian Alps, were possibly gifts given to Stone Age leaders by people from elsewhere in the world."
(the image above is not of the same axes, but of another jadeite axe-head from the Italian Alps)