Archaeologists have found the oldest engravings of letters ever to be discovered in central Germany, officials from the area announced on Thursday.
The ancient letters, called runes, were scratched onto a 12.5 centimetre-long comb by Germanic settlers in the second century, scientists working on the site in Saxony-Anhalt believe.
The letters spell out “Kama”, meaning comb, the president of the state Heritage and Archaeology Management Office, Sven Ostritz, said on Thursday.
It is the oldest ever example of runic writing to be found in that part of the country, he added.
Germanic languages used the runic alphabet to write before the Latin alphabet became widespread. The earliest runic engravings have been dated back to 150AD.
Engravings from a similar period have been found in the Märkische Schweiz region near Berlin, and in western Ukraine, Ostritz revealed.
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