Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Roman treasure found in pond dig: A man unearthed a priceless hoard of 20,000 Roman coins...
BBC News ^ | 3.11.04

Posted on 03/11/2004 6:24:10 PM PST by ambrose

Roman treasure found in pond dig

A man unearthed a priceless hoard of 20,000 Roman coins as he dug a new fishpond in his back garden.

Experts say the money may date from the 4th Century and could be the biggest find of its kind in Britain.

The coins were crammed into a ceramic pot which broke up as it was dug out of the ground at Thornbury, Gloucestershire.

Now a coroner must decide if Ken Allen, who made the discovery, can keep the treasure.

Gail Boyle, from Bristol Museum, said: "This is the most amazing find of treasure to come out of this area for 30 years."

Mr Allen said: "It was a great surprise and at first I didn't realise what we had found.

"The pot was perfectly upright, I can't believe that this discovery was only 20ft from our house."

I can't believe that this discovery was only 20ft from our house.

Ken Allen Kurt Adams, the Finds Liaison Officer for Gloucestershire and Avon, said: "The coins identified so far can be attributed to Constantine the Great.

"The mint marks - a letter or symbol used to indicate the mint which produced the coin - suggest Trier, Germany and Constantinople as possible places of origin."

Treasure trove

The coins are in the care of Bristol City Museum & Art Gallery where they are being cleaned in a special laboratory.

They will then be taken to the British Museum in London for further examination.

A spokeswoman for Bristol Coroner's Court said that even though the coins were found on Mr Allen's property they could still be ruled as being property of the state.

"What determines this is if the coins were buried there intentionally or lost.

"It is possible somebody put them there and forgot about them, or never intended for them to be found.

"The coroner can rule whether they are the finder's treasure or not."


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: archaeology; coins; epigraphyandlanguage; ggg; godsgravesglyphs; history; romanempire
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-54 next last

1 posted on 03/11/2004 6:24:12 PM PST by ambrose
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: ambrose; *Gods, Graves, Glyphs; A.J.Armitage; abner; adam_az; AdmSmith; Alas Babylon!; ...
Gods, Graves, Glyphs
List for articles regarding early civilizations , life of all forms, - dinosaurs - etc.
Let me know if you wish to be added or removed from this ping list.
2 posted on 03/11/2004 6:27:33 PM PST by farmfriend ( Isaiah 55:10,11)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
Now a coroner must decide if Ken Allen, who made the discovery, can keep the treasure.

Ahhh... it was on HIS LAND.

3 posted on 03/11/2004 6:28:53 PM PST by BikePacker
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
Now a coroner must decide if Ken Allen, who made the discovery, can keep the treasure.

When the state brings in a coroner to decide if you can keep something, take that as a signal to let them have it.
4 posted on 03/11/2004 6:29:07 PM PST by lelio
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
Wow!
5 posted on 03/11/2004 6:29:16 PM PST by Bigg Red (Never again trust Democrats with national security!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
He should have never reported it.
6 posted on 03/11/2004 6:30:51 PM PST by CindyDawg
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
This is an interesting one.
7 posted on 03/11/2004 6:31:53 PM PST by Bahbah
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
a coroner must decide if Ken Allen, who made the discovery, can keep the treasure

The coroner?

How about a second opinion from a pathologist?

8 posted on 03/11/2004 6:33:10 PM PST by 11th Earl of Mar
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
Seems these kinds of laws caused the rise of the US of A. Is there hope for Thornbury, Gloucestershire to rise? Ain't Socialism Grand, just ask a Democrat.
9 posted on 03/11/2004 6:35:59 PM PST by Henchman (I Hench, therefore I am!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: farmfriend
This list is one of the most exciting and informative out there. Thank you again.
10 posted on 03/11/2004 6:36:43 PM PST by BlessedByLiberty (Respectfully submitted,)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
A spokeswoman for Bristol Coroner's Court said that even though the coins were found on Mr Allen's property they could still be ruled as being property of the state.

Oh reeeeeallly

11 posted on 03/11/2004 6:37:32 PM PST by Gunslingr3
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: CindyDawg
He should have never reported it.

Especially in socialist Britian.

Me? I would have sold them to a reputable coin dealer.

12 posted on 03/11/2004 6:39:41 PM PST by Extremely Extreme Extremist (EEE)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Gunslingr3
Pretty much the same type of crap they are trying to implement here in the US as well as anything found in the sea.
13 posted on 03/11/2004 6:39:52 PM PST by CJ Wolf
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Extremely Extreme Extremist
I would have sold them on eBay.
One at a time.
14 posted on 03/11/2004 6:41:18 PM PST by mabelkitty (A tuning, a Vote in the topic package to the starting US presidency election fight)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: 11th Earl of Mar
"How about a second opinion from a pathologist?"

Probably in this case a proctologist opinion would be more appropriate!

15 posted on 03/11/2004 6:42:57 PM PST by fuzzthatwuz (I really dislike Kerry and what he represents)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: ambrose; Bahbah; farmfriend
UK: While Digging In Backyard Man Unearths A Hoard Of 20,000 Roman Coins
16 posted on 03/11/2004 6:43:19 PM PST by blam
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: Extremely Extreme Extremist
I think I would have had an auction somewhere neutral (off shore?) by invitation only to sell rare coins that had been in the family for a long time. (technically they were) Probably should stop by an island bank somewhere and make a deposit before going home too:')
17 posted on 03/11/2004 6:44:18 PM PST by CindyDawg
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: CindyDawg
He should have never reported it

The Brits pay a good and fair price to the finder in "Treasure Trove" cases. Fourth Century Roman coins are the Ford Pintos of Roman numismatics. You can buy 'em by the hundreds on eBay. The historical value may be greater than the collector's value and the finder will benefit as a result.

18 posted on 03/11/2004 6:46:39 PM PST by Polybius
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
It amazes me why we even find coins at all from antiquity much less 20,000 of them in ne spot. What do you suppose the story behind this cache is? A wealthy merchant hiding money from the tax man but whose was killed or died suddenly without revealing this fortune? Or had inflation made the money worthless in the late 4th century in Britain? Was Rome's influence so weak that it's currency meant little and only those things that kept you alive mattered?
19 posted on 03/11/2004 6:46:41 PM PST by Burkeman1
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BlessedByLiberty
You are most welcome.
20 posted on 03/11/2004 6:47:57 PM PST by farmfriend ( Isaiah 55:10,11)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
"The pot was perfectly upright, I can't believe that this discovery was only 20ft from our house."

Alright!! I'm digging up an ancient pot!... ah its breaking... its full of coins!!!!!! "Honey!!"

21 posted on 03/11/2004 6:48:13 PM PST by GeronL (http://www.ArmorforCongress.com......................Send a Freeper to Congress!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: CindyDawg
"He should have never reported it."

They actually have a pretty good law that rewards the finder of treasure.

Treasure Trove Law In England And Wales

22 posted on 03/11/2004 6:48:59 PM PST by blam
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: BikePacker
Its the UK not the US. Government is government and government looks out for government. They'll want at LEAST half.
23 posted on 03/11/2004 6:49:03 PM PST by GeronL (http://www.ArmorforCongress.com......................Send a Freeper to Congress!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
There was a pretty interesting article posted on FreeRep in the last couple weeks on Britian's treasure troves. Since people have been living there so long, its not uncommon for someone to stumble across a stash that someone hid and couldn't retreive. Since the land may have changed hands a 100 times since the stash was hidden it is not always awarded to the property owner. In one case, an electrician working in an attic found an stash and told the homeowner. The homeowner told the treasure trove committee who ruled that the electrican was now the owner of the find, since it had been hidden before the current owner bought the home.
24 posted on 03/11/2004 6:49:40 PM PST by ibbryn (this tag intentionally left blank)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: CindyDawg
It might be kind of hard to keep secret. I doubt ancient Roman coins are used in daily commerce anymore.
25 posted on 03/11/2004 6:49:56 PM PST by GeronL (http://www.ArmorforCongress.com......................Send a Freeper to Congress!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: 11th Earl of Mar
How about a second opinion from a pathologist?


He needs a proctologist, the state is going to ream him.
26 posted on 03/11/2004 6:52:08 PM PST by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: Burkeman1
The tax man had collected the local taxes and was transporting them by wagon to the coast where a ship would haul them to Rome. The locals didn't like this "outsourcing" and they blew up a nearby dam which flooded the area and buried the treasure.
27 posted on 03/11/2004 6:52:48 PM PST by GeronL (http://www.ArmorforCongress.com......................Send a Freeper to Congress!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: GeronL
Yeah that might be a problem with reputable dealers.lol I saw this on some movie. Can't rember which one. It was art though. In the end he got caught:')
28 posted on 03/11/2004 6:58:11 PM PST by CindyDawg
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: blam
Really? I was thinking of that guy in Arizona(?) that found the bag with 500000 and the cops took it away and claimed it for some drug enforcement fund.
29 posted on 03/11/2004 7:00:44 PM PST by CindyDawg
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: Burkeman1
It amazes me why we even find coins at all from antiquity much less 20,000 of them in one spot. What do you suppose the story behind this cache is? A wealthy merchant hiding money from the tax man but whose was killed or died suddenly without revealing this fortune? Or had inflation made the money worthless in the late 4th century in Britain? Was Rome's influence so weak that it's currency meant little and only those things that kept you alive mattered?

Caches were the ancient world's version of a Swiss bank account.

When there was civil war or when the barbarians were coming, you gathered up your wealth, put it in a pot and buried it in your super-secret hiding place.......Maybe by the big oak tree that, 1,700 years later, is no longer there. After the bad guys went away, you dug it back up. If the bad guys got you, some fellow in the 21st Century ended up with your 401 K.

This cache was probably buried in the troubled times when Roman civilization in Britain was under attack by the barbarian invasions.

Caches are important in ancient numismatics because they give a time capsule snap shot of which coins circulated with other coins at a certain time. This is not as important in Roman Imperial coinage that can be dated by the Emperor but it has allowed the dating of Roman Republican coinage that had generic designs with no associated Imperial ruler.

30 posted on 03/11/2004 7:01:58 PM PST by Polybius
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: Polybius
LOL. Makes sense. There were no banks back then. Bury the treasure and run away and hope you are able to return another day.
31 posted on 03/11/2004 7:05:11 PM PST by Burkeman1
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: 11th Earl of Mar
The coroner? How about a second opinion from a pathologist?

Stand back! Let a Notary Public handle this!

32 posted on 03/11/2004 7:05:35 PM PST by VadeRetro
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: Burkeman1
What do you suppose the story behind this cache is?

Just speculating (my guess is as good as any else's): Rich man/family buried the loot to hide it from the invading barbarians (Anglo-Saxons). Lots of families in the South did the same thing to hide their money from the thieving Yankees during the War of Northern Aggression. Some of it is still dug up occasionally

33 posted on 03/11/2004 7:11:33 PM PST by Martin Tell (I will not be terrified or Kerrified.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: PayNoAttentionManBehindCurtain; SoothingDave; OLD REGGIE; Quester; malakhi
Finders, keepers? :')
34 posted on 03/11/2004 7:15:28 PM PST by CindyDawg
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: Polybius
They found similar 'stashes' at Thera/Akatori.
35 posted on 03/11/2004 7:16:43 PM PST by blam
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
Lets see.

The State gets to decide if the State or the individual gets to keep the stash. Hmmmm.

If the individual got to decide if the State or the individual got to keep the stash, it'd be a foregone conclusion.

But we all know that the State - ANY State - is emminently fair in these matters!

Yeah, this guys screwed!

36 posted on 03/11/2004 7:27:55 PM PST by America's Resolve (All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing (hint FRA GER RUS CA UN))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: America's Resolve
The original owner was a tax dodger. Not only does the state get the coins, but the finder owes the state 2,000 years in interest penalties and fees for past taxes. Maybe if he enters a plea bargain he can get out of serving jail time.
37 posted on 03/11/2004 7:37:22 PM PST by AndyJackson
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
A spokeswoman for Bristol Coroner's Court said that even though the coins were found on Mr Allen's property they could still be ruled as being property of the state.
"What determines this is if the coins were buried there intentionally or lost.
"It is possible somebody put them there and forgot about them, or never intended for them to be found.


This sounds like a job for the Florida Election Commission:

"We must determine the intent of the potter." (who died 1600 years ago before Britain was a country, like it matters)
38 posted on 03/11/2004 7:43:48 PM PST by UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide (Rumble Thee Forth...)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Martin Tell
Makes sense. But wouldn't the Patrician or head of such a wealthy family make such caches known to a first born? I know I know- life was short back then and people most likely dropped dead from their first mild heart attack that we could easily save now when they were 45.
39 posted on 03/11/2004 7:54:55 PM PST by Burkeman1
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: Extremely Extreme Extremist
"Me? I would have sold them to a reputable coin dealer."

No such thing. I'd have sold them on eBay, saying that an old widow woman brought them in to me.
40 posted on 03/11/2004 7:57:05 PM PST by Indrid Cold (He thrusts his fists against the posts and still insists he sees the ghosts.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Burkeman1
Maybe he thought Rome was gonna take his spear away, and he was saving up to skip the country.
41 posted on 03/11/2004 7:58:39 PM PST by Indrid Cold (He thrusts his fists against the posts and still insists he sees the ghosts.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: Indrid Cold
The Romans did confiscate arms when they first conquered the Celtic Brit tribes. But they stashed them and made them in secret anyway and had more than enough when Boudica rouse up.
42 posted on 03/11/2004 8:04:06 PM PST by Burkeman1
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 41 | View Replies]

To: Axiom Nine; Flyer; humblegunner; Xenalyte
ping!
43 posted on 03/11/2004 8:08:18 PM PST by pax_et_bonum (Always finish what you st)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 42 | View Replies]

To: Gunslingr3
Once again, the Crown screws another serf. He is going to need a coroner after he finds out they intend to take all of his newly found treasure.

Ain't too hard to figure out why all those royal citizens sailed off to the American colonies, and they just keep on coming. And in return, we send them Madonna and Gwyneth. Don't you just love it?
44 posted on 03/11/2004 8:08:50 PM PST by CdMGuy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Burkeman1
Was Rome's influence so weak that it's currency meant little and only those things that kept you alive mattered?

Bingo! 4th Century Britain was the time of the first of the invasions of the the Angles, Saxons, and Jutes. Rome had withdrawn their legions from Britain, and the empire in rapid decline. Swords, more than coin reigned in Britain of the late 4th century, as it was the time of "Arthur", if such a personage ever existed (and he may well have been a composite of several strong leaders, slowing, but never succeeding in stemming the tide which turned Roman-Celtic Britain into Anglo-Saxon Britain)...

the infowarrior

45 posted on 03/12/2004 2:28:39 AM PST by infowarrior (TANSTAAFL)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: blam
I read your link and I don't believe that the law is fair in many cases. I am glad that I am an American but of course that means that I will not find a treasure trove of Roman coins in my yard. :o)
46 posted on 03/12/2004 2:48:07 PM PST by ruoflaw
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

Just updating the GGG information, not sending a general distribution.
Please FREEPMAIL me if you want on, off, or alter the "Gods, Graves, Glyphs" PING list --
Archaeology/Anthropology/Ancient Cultures/Artifacts/Antiquities, etc.
The GGG Digest
-- Gods, Graves, Glyphs (alpha order)

47 posted on 05/18/2005 11:35:23 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (FR profiled updated Tuesday, May 10, 2005. Fewer graphics, faster loading.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: ambrose
A man unearthed a priceless hoard of 20,000 Roman coins as he dug a new fishpond in his back garden.

This happens all the time in Britain. These'll be selling for $2 a piece in a year.

48 posted on 05/18/2005 11:38:11 AM PDT by <1/1,000,000th%
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Gunslingr3

Even if "they" rule he can keep it, will "they" then tell him to pay the back taxes on it. Back taxes and penalties from the 4th century may be worth more to "them" than if "they" just took it.


49 posted on 05/18/2005 12:02:25 PM PDT by fella
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: fella
Even if "they" rule he can keep it, will "they" then tell him to pay the back taxes on it. Back taxes and penalties from the 4th century may be worth more to "them" than if "they" just took it.

Fair is only fair. He should be happy to pay the back taxes. Just make the check out to Emperor Constantine!

50 posted on 05/18/2005 12:13:13 PM PDT by tarheelswamprat (This tagline space for rent - cheap!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 49 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-54 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson