In Spain’s Tomares this week, construction companies stumbled upon a cache of bronze Roman coins hidden within jugs. When the workers were digging ditches, 19 pottery jugs were found at Zaudin Park.
According to the Spanish daily El Pais, the urns were filled with coins that featured varied renderings of Roman legends on the reverse and an emperor on one side.
The coins, which weighed more than 1,300 pounds and were transported to the Seville Archeological Museum, were believed to be from the third or fourth century.
The old-looking pots were discovered by the workers while they dug a ditch to run electricity to a park. These containers, which are known as amphoras, were created when Rome dominated much of Europe.
The coins weighed a total of roughly 1,300 pounds. These goods were present in great quantity.
The museum’s director, Ana Navarro Ortega, said that 10 of the jugs broke during the excavation.
Because of their weight and the number of coins within, she assured them that they couldn’t be lifted by one person. Therefore, the next step is to start comprehending the historical and archaeological background of this discovery.
For archaeologists and historians, the reason why so many coins would be stashed away in jugs poses interesting questions.
According to El Pais, investigators have put up the theory that the funds were placed aside to cover imperial taxes or army levies. According to the Andalusian department of culture, the jugs appeared to have been placed underground and covered with a few bricks and ceramic fillers on purpose.
The coins were probably buried during a time of “great unrest in the Roman empire,” according to Richard Weigel, a professor of ancient Greece and Rome at Western Kentucky University, who was speaking to the PBS NewsHour.
He said that around the middle of the third century, Rome’s central government collapsed. Invasion by Germanic tribes occurred occasionally, along with other threats to the various emperors.
The coins will be displayed in the Seville Archeological Museum for public viewing after careful examination by academics.
It’s incredible that these amphoras and coins endured for so long underground.
Before it became a regular region of the Roman Empire, the area in southern Spain where the coins were found would have been regarded as a faraway realm by emperors, according to Weigel.
It’s very conceivable, he continued, that they were gathered to pay taxes to the Roman Empire. But I have a suspicion that they might have been kept there in order to pay one of the local Roman legions and conceal the cash from nearby attackers.
It should be simpler to date the coins and place them in the context of military operations and invasions once the emperors shown on the coins are identified, he continued.