Not so long ago, in 2021, near the Belgium town of Erquelinnes, a farmer decided to move a big stone (300 pounds) away from his field. He said that he needed to move that stone away to make more space for his tractor. On that stone, there were big numbers 1819.

A local historian found out that the stone was not in its place and wrote about it in the local newspaper. Someone from France read the story about the stone and told the local government about it.

The poor farmer had no idea what kind of stone he moved away from his field. The stone was a historic marker of the border between Belgium and France. They put this border stone there after Napoleon’s defeat. When the farmer moved the stone, he made Belgian territory bigger by about 3,000 square metres.

Both the mayor of the French town Bousignies-sur-Roc and the mayor of the Belgium town Erquelinnes told the farmer to put the stone back to its place.

The farmer apologised and obeyed the mayors. He immediately returned the stone to its old place.

Everybody laughed about this incident and there was no new war between Belgium and France.

Mayor David Lavaux of Erquelinnes/Facebook

local /ˈləʊkl/ – miestny

border /ˈbɔːdə(r)/ – hranica

defeat /dɪˈfiːt/ – porážka

mayor /meə(r)/ – primátor

apologise /əˈpɒlədʒaɪz/ – ospravedlniť sa

obey /əˈbeɪ/ – poslúchnuť

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