London: Frogs` legs are considered a French delicacy, but new archaeological evidence suggests Britons were feasting on the meat 8,000 years before it found its way to the French cuisine.
A charred toad`s leg bone found near Stonehenge is the earliest evidence of a cooked toad or frog anywhere in the world, according to scientists from the University of Buckingham.
The leg bone was found at the Blick Mead dig site in Amesbury, Wiltshire, alongside small fish vertebrate bones of trout or salmon and burnt Aurochs bones (the predecessor of cows).
The finds date back to between 6250 BC and 7596 BC making this discovery the earliest evidence of a cooked toad or frog leg found in the world and around eight millennia before the French.
This means that Frogs` legs, long considered the preserve of the French were actually an English delicacy first in a settlement just over a mile from Stonehenge.
"It would appear that thousands of years ago people were eating a Heston Blumenthal-style menu on this site, one and a quarter miles from Stonehenge, consisting of toads` legs, aurochs, wild boar and red deer with hazelnuts for main, another course of salmon and trout and finishing off with blackberries," said David Jacques, Senior Research Fellow in Archaeology at the University of Buckingham.
The latest information is based on a report by fossil mammal specialist Simon Parfitt, of the Natural History Museum in London, who examined the discoveries from the dig which has resulted in 12,000 finds, including 650 animal bones, all from the mesolithic era.