The 1,700-year-old massive cache is one of the largest discoveries of ancient coins made in Switzerland
Geneva: In one of the largest discoveries of ancient coins in Switzerland, a farmer has unearthed more than 4,100 bronze and silver Roman coins dating between 270 and 294 AD in his cherry orchard.
The farmer from Ueken village in canton of Aargau first stumbled upon the coins in July.
In total, 4,166 bronze and silver coins were collected in a find that “exceeds all expectations” something you experience as an archaeologist rarely not more than once in a career,” said archaeologist Georg Matter, who directed the search. Officials said it is one of the largest discoveries of ancient coins made in Switzerland all found within an area of a few square metres.
About the coins
Archaeologists have already started to examine the coins that date from between 270 and 294 AD. Coin expert Hugo Doppler has examined 200 of the coins. The coins bear the images of different emperors, including Aurelian (270-275 AD), Tacitus (275-276 AD), Probus (276-282 AD), Carinus (283-285 AD), Diocletian (284-305 AD) and Maximianus (286-305 AD).
The coins have a silver content of five per cent and are well preserved because they were immediately withdrawn from circulation, Doppler said.
“The owner must have deliberately chosen to hoard these coins for the silver in them guaranteed a certain value in a time of economic uncertainty,” he said.