A ritual staff bearing two carved depictions of human faces has been found in southern Syria. The staff is about 9,000 years old and was discovered near an ancient burial ground, where archaeologists found 30 bodies, minus their heads, which were close by in a living area. "It's clearly linked to funerary rituals, but what kind of rituals, it's impossible to tell," said archaeologist Frank Braemer of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and a co-author of the report in the journal Antiquity.

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