A portrait of Ivan the Terrible.
Discovered buried deep beneath a tree back in 1975, the sword is the only one of its kind ever found in Siberia. It was believed to have been originally created in Germany before being taken to Sweden where it was adorned with a silver handle.
The story of the blade after this however remains something of a mystery and nobody has been able to determine who it had belonged to or how it had ended up in Siberia.
Runic inscriptions on the sword are believed to translate to “In the name of the mother of our saviour eternal, eternal Lord and Saviour. Christ Jesus Christ.”
Now a new theory has emerged that suggests that the sword may have been dropped at the site during a battle between the Cossacks and the Tatar forces in the 16th century.
“Imagine the last battle of the Cossack detachment headed by Ivan Koltso,” said archaeologist Vyacheslav Molodin. “They are unequal forces and the Cossacks are trying to break through. Ivan strikes not one opponent. In his hands, the glittering giant sword, a gift from the Russian Tsar.”
“Ivan’s leg is already in the stirrup and he is racing on the steppe… and then, suddenly, the sword falls out of the hands of the hero and drops to the ground under a young birch tree.”