Earlier this week, the Cambridge children met Sir David Attenborough at their Kensington Palace home ahead of his new documentary, A Life On Our Planet.
Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis were excited to meet the popular broadcaster – Charlotte’s reaction was so adorable and the photographs quickly went viral, and it also emerged that George had received a very special gift from his idol.
In one of the photos, George is seen looking at his historical artefact – a fossilised tooth from a Carcharocles megalodon, an extinct breed of shark, believed to have once been the most feared sea creature.
The tooth, which was found by Sir David in the late 1960s during a holiday to the European country, is thought to be 23 million years old which makes it a pretty impressive gift for the little royal.
The sweet story circulated as George is said to be thrilled with his gift, but the Cambridges have received backlash from Malta’s Culture Minister who has hinted that they want it returned.
In an interview with the Times of Malta newspaper, minister Jose Herrera said: ‘There are some artefacts that are important to Maltese natural heritage and which ended up abroad and deserve to be retrieved.
‘We rightly give a lot of attention to historical and artistic artefacts. However, it is not always the case with our natural history. I am determined to direct a change in this attitude.
‘It’s arguable that fossils such as the shark tooth in question could fall under the definition of cultural heritage as a ‘moveable or immovable object of geological importance’.’
Chris Ship, Royal Editor at ITV, wrote on Twitter: ‘I doubt this was how Kensington Palace thought the story would go.’
It is unclear whether the shark tooth will be returned, and Kensington Palace have not yet commented.