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I found this at my local beach in Cyprus - it's about 11cm long and hollow, made of a brittle, transparent material.
This is Pinna nobilis, the noble pen shell.
Image on its own - http://www.idscaro.net/sci/01_coll/pics/bival/pinnidae/pinna_nobilis2a.jpg
That is from http://www.idscaro.net/sci/01_coll/plates/bival/pl_pinnidae_1.htm (search the page for 'nobilis' to see the image with annotation).
Many related species come from various corners of the globe, but this one is Mediterranean.
In fact it is 'the largest shellfish living only in the Mediterranean'.
It has been under EU protection since 1992.
It is the source of 'sea silk'
Thank you - yes I am very pleased with my find - I hadn't thought for a minute that it was a shell as it's so unusual and transparent. Thank you for your reply!
Here's another strikingly similar photo http://www.biolib.cz/IMG/GAL/BIG/10101.jpg from http://www.biolib.cz/en/image/id10101/ in support of Mike's ID