Archaeologists may have found the nail that hung Christ from the cross while excavating the site of a Templars fort on an island off the coast of Madeira. The roman nail, believed to date back to sometime in the first or second century, was found in a grave and believed to have been some sort of relic.
The nail was found buried within the fort within a decorated box.
"It dates from the first to second centuries, “states Bryn Walters, an archaeologist at the site. The fort is believed to have been a fort for the Templar Knights, a religious order of warriors who fought during the Crusades during the 12 century.
Those who have seen it believe that the nail's strange smooth surface was caused by being handled often. That combined with the location and care in which the scientists found the artifact have led many to believe that the nail might have been believed to be a relic of some sort.
During the 12 century, the Templar Knights fought in the Crusades and were charged by the Catholic Church to defend the city of Jerusalem and protect the pilgrims within it. Their bloody actions during the wars as well as their rumored cultish behavior when they returned home caused the group to be disbanded by the Catholic Church and many of its members tried (and tortured) as heretics.In recent years the Templars have gained new interest after being a part of Dan Brown's best selling The Di Vinci Code.