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  • Hubert Marlin

A Roman treasure found in Switzerland


A market gardener of Ueken Switzerland discovered buried in his orchard more than 4,000 coins dating from the third century. The inscriptions they bear are still legible.

The coins are in excellent condition; indicate the services of archeology of the Aargau cantonal Thursday.

Experts identified keystrokes related to several Roman emperors, from Aurelian (270-275) to Maximian (286-305). The most recent pieces date from 294.

Archaeologists believe that the owner withdrew them from circulation, shortly after their manufacture. For a reason that remains mysterious, the coins were buried shortly after 294 and, the owner never came looking for them.

The treasure remained underground for 1,700 years, until last July, when the farmer noticed coins at the entrance of a mole burrow. He then called the cantonal archaeologist.

A major search was organized which retrieves 4166 bronze coins with a total weight of 15 kg. They exhibit a particularly high rate of silver at 5%.

Their value of the bounty at the time represented one to two annual salaries. Its current market value was not assessed because it is not a priority, said the cantonal archaeologist Georg Matter. In Switzerland archaeological objects found in the ground belong to the public authorities, further emphasized Mr. Matter. Eventually, the treasure will be exposed at Vindonissa Museum of Brugg in Ueken.


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