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1 October 2004
40,000-year-old axes unearthed in Syria

A Syrian archaeological team has uncovered two firestone axes dating back 35,000 to 40,000 years and some 6000 BCE stone arrowheads. Mission head Bassam Jamous said he had to dig one metre deep into al-Wadi's cave in western Syria to find the two 8cm almond-shaped axes, used "by ancient Syrians to hunt their prey". Mr Jamous said the arrowheads used for river and land hunting were about 11 centimetres long.
     Bone needles used to sew leather, dating back to 6000 BCE, were also among the finds, he said. Parts of clay jars for storing liquids and wine, dating back to 5000 to 3000 BCE, were also unearthed.
     The 600m-long al-Wadi cave, which contains a Byzantine-era room carved in the rock, is some 250km northwest of the capital Damascus, near the Mediterranean port city of Tartous.

Source: Associated Press, News.com.au (30 September 2004)

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