The Ukrainian state just received an unexpected gift from a well-known Lviv businessman - an astonishing silver-encrusted ax with the image of the trident of Kyivan Rus Prince Volodymyr.
The businessman bought the unique artifact from the black market and donated it to the state.
According to Euromaidan Press, the ax dates back to the 10th - 11th centuries. It has the image of the trident of Prince Volodymyr, the grandson of Princess Olha, who became ruler of Kyivan Rus in 980.
The artifact will be exposed in the National Museum of History of Ukraine.
How Did the Businessman Discover the Silver Ax
Taras Khmelovskyi, the head of the Committee of Entrepreneurs of Lviv Oblast, saw an advertisement for the sale of a silver-encrusted ax with the image of a trident.
As Khmelovskyi is an archaeologist by education, this Scandinavian-type weapon immediately got his attention.
In addition, scientists have confirmed that the silver ax is an authentic ancient artifact, suggesting that it dates back to the Kyivan Rus period. Such axes can be found in Sweden and Ukraine.
"Archeology and history remain my hobbies. I supported several archeological expeditions and my thesis was related to Kyivan Rus. So I realized that this is a valuable item and we can lose it. The technology of making an ax is that it was cast, then polished, and inlaid with silver. Apparently, this ax was used by a noble warrior. He could receive it as a reward from the king," Taras Khmelovsky said.