Saturday, 21 November 2015

Trove of Antique Roman Coins Found in Swiss Orchard without a Metal Detector

'' Discovery News

A Swiss fruit-and-vegetable farmer in Ueken, in the northern canton of Aargau, Switzerland spotted some corroded green coins in a molehill in his orchard in July while inspecting his cherry orchard. He reported the find and after months of discreet excavations, archaeologists were able to document a hoard of 4166 bronze and silver coins (total weight 15 kilos), one of the biggest such treasures ever found in Switzerland. The coins date from the reign of Emperor Aurelian (year 270-275) to that of Maximilian (286-305), with the most recent coins dated to year 294. Because the land had been farmed, and despite all the rubbish collectors try to foist off on you about fertilisers, the coins were in good condition. Because the hoard had not been found by metal detectorists, it could be excavated properly (unlike hords in Britain hoiked out roughly like the Lenborough Hoard) and it was found that "some of the coins, made mainly of bronze but with an unusually high silver content of five percent, were buried in small leather pouches".
How much the coins are worth today is beside the point, Matter said, pointing out that the farmer would not be allowed to keep his treasure. “He will likely get a finders fee,” he said, “but the objects found belong to the public, in accordance with Swiss law.” The Ueken treasure is set to go on display at the Vindonissa de Brugg Museum in Aargau.
So, why does Britain "need" artefact hunters?

1 comment:

Brian Curtiss said...

Shows things can be done right with the right system in place. I'll have to become more familiar with Swiss law. Nice to see it presumably done right.

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