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Treasure hunters unearth nearly 2000 Roman coins in a Cornwall field


A pair of metal detecting enthusiasts have spoken of their disbelief and joy after they unearthed nearly 2,000 Roman coins in a farmer’s field in Cornwall.

Treasure hunters unearth nearly 2000 Roman coins in a Cornwall field
Some of the 1,965 Roman coins unearthed from a field near Hayle 
[Credit: Cornwall Live]
Mixed up with the money was the remains of a pure tin container, with a handle and lead stopper, which it is believed had once contained the coins. In total there were 1,965 coins found inside a stone-lined pit and they date from 253AD to 274AD.

The hoard was discovered by Kyle Neil, 18, from Scorrier, and Darren Troon, 45, from Redruth. They are members of the metal detecting club Kernow Search and Recovery and had been working together to sweep a recently ploughed farmer’s field near Hayle.

Treasure hunters unearth nearly 2000 Roman coins in a Cornwall field
While some are badly corroded, dozens of coins are in remarkable condition (if a little dirty) 
given how long they have been under the ground [Credit: Cornwall Live]
Mr Troon said: “We arrived at this field, which had just been ploughed, and off we went in one direction. I then found a Roman coin and within 10 minutes we had over 10 more. I knew then they we were on to something. They were all in a little area so I cordoned it off and we carried on. Five minutes later – it was like, ‘bingo’. We just kept getting a signal."

"We rolled back the earth and four or five inches down we were looking at bunch of coins. They were dirty but you could clearly see a lot of them looked like the day they were cast. We were buzzing with excitement.”

Treasure hunters unearth nearly 2000 Roman coins in a Cornwall field
Some of the 1,965 Roman coins unearthed from a field near Hayle 
[Credit: Cornwall Live]
Mr Troon said they knew then that they had hit the jackpot and the group called in an archaeologist. The pair stayed there all day helping to unearth the remarkable find.

He added: “It was a day I don’t think we’ll ever forget. It took us a couple of days just to calm down. It’s amazing to think they’ve been down there just waiting to be found and there’s lot more to find out there.”

Treasure hunters unearth nearly 2000 Roman coins in a Cornwall field
Some of the 1,965 Roman coins unearthed from a field near Hayle 
[Credit: Cornwall Live]
Mr Neil added that he was looking forward to seeing the coins again, as they were taken away for inspection by Royal Cornwall Museum and the British Museum after their discovery.

Details of the find were revealed at a Cornwall Coroner's Court where coroner Emma Carlyon officially recorded that the hoard was classed as treasure.

Treasure hunters unearth nearly 2000 Roman coins in a Cornwall field
Fragments of a tin container which held 1,965 Roman coins. On the left is a curved part of a handle 
[Credit: Cornwall Live]
The coins are known as radiates and all made of bronze with one per cent silver. They were a common currency in the late Roman period. In about 260AD, Briton was part of a breakaway Gallic empire.

Perhaps of most interest is the remains of the tin vessel, although little of it has survived. Anna Tyacke, the liaison officer for the Portable Antiquities Scheme in Cornwall, which records finds, said: “This is a rare type of container for coin hoards, which are more often found in pottery.”

She said the Royal Institution of Cornwall, which runs Royal Cornwall Museum, was interested in purchasing the hoard which is now being valued by the British Museum.

Author: Graeme Wilkinson | Source: Cornwall Live [August 25, 2017]
TANN

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