2021 was a bumper year for the discovery of obscure, odd and unexpected artifacts all around the world – and even beyond! From the golden tongued mummies of Egypt, a bullet-shaped metal anomaly in a 4.5-billion-year-old meteorite, a Fenris runestone, Roman battering rams dragged from the Med, intact 2,400-year-old fruit baskets and more…
Here is our list of popular artifact finds from 2021. This is our top ten from 2021, but there are plenty more extraordinary artifact stories to be found in our Artifacts Category page.
Mummy With Golden Tongue Found At Possible Site Of Cleopatra’s Tomb
During recent explorations at an ancient Egyptian temple near Alexandria, archaeologists found something startling and unique. While searching inside a newly discovered burial shaft, they found a 2,000-year-old mummy with a golden tongue. This isn’t to suggest that the mummy suddenly came to life and began impressing them with its powers of oratory persuasion.
It means that the mummy had an actual golden tongue – a replica made from precisely shaped, shiny golden ғoιʟ. This glittering discovery was made by a joint team of archaeologists from the Dominican Republic and Egypt, headed by trailblazing archaeologist Kathleen Martinez.
Long-Lost Runestone From Viking Monument Recovered In Sweden
Performing excavations in an area where new sewer lines were being installed, Swedish archaeologists announced a remarkable and borderline miraculous find. While digging in half-frozen soil near the city of Ystad in December 2020, they unearthed a large oblong-shaped runestone that featured an intricate carving of a powerful, ferocious wolf, which is known as Fenris (or Fenrir) in Norse mythology.
1300-year-old Prehistoric Ski Found in Norway Completes a Pair!
After several years on the hunt, a team in Norway finally found another prehistoric ski on Mount Digervarden. Whilst not the oldest ski ever found, it is still prehistoric and certainly the best-preserved of its kind.
What makes the find even more exciting is the prehistoric ski is one of a pair. The first half of the pair of ancient skis was discovered near the same spot in 2014! Other super-old ski pairs have been found elsewhere but none in such a high state of preservation.
Divers Find Four Naval Roman Battering Rams From the 241 BC Punic wᴀʀ
Four ancient bronze Roman battering rams, the kind used at the front of a battleship, were discovered by divers near Ustica Island, north of Palermo, Italy. These rare artifacts of ancient naval warfare are perfect examples of Roman engineering skills and one of the reasons why they beat the Carthaginians in 3rd century BC battles.
8 Jars Of Colombian Emeralds, Gold, and Silver Unearthed Near Bogotá
And finally, who doesn’t love a treasure find? There were plenty in 2021. One of the most interesting was this vast treasure hoard discovered by archaeologists in Colombia. Although it was inevitably related to El Dorado by reporters, these offerings of gold, silver and Colombian emeralds have nothing to do with the legendary City of Gold, which was a creation of 16th-century conquistador folklore.