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World's oldest axe found in Western Australia
A tiny stone flake found in Western Australia is a remnant of the earliest known axe with a handle, archaeologists have claimed.
Perth: A tiny stone flake found in Western Australia is a remnant of the earliest known axe with a handle, archaeologists have claimed.
The discovery pushes back the technological advance to between 45,000 to 49,000 years ago, and coincides with the arrival of people in Australia, ABC Australia reported on Wednesday.
The fragment is 10,000 years older than the previous oldest known fragments found in northern Australia in 2010. Although much older "hand axes", usually made of flint, have been found across Europe and Africa - one well-known example found on a Norfolk beach is thought to be 700,000 years old - those were very different tools.
Archaeologists said the original axe would have been hafted - meaning it was made with a handle attached.