Category Archives: EUROPE

Dated to c. 1600 BC, the Nebra sky disk is one of the most important archaeological finds in the 20th century

Dated to c. 1600 BC, the Nebra sky disk is one of the most important archaeological finds in the 20th century

In the eastern German town of Halle, the 3,600-year-old Sky Disk of Nebra, the world’s oldest image of the cosmos, is the centerpiece of Europe’s greatest Bronze Age exhibition. When it was brought to the German public’s notice in 2002, having been found in the state of Saxony-Anhalt two years earlier, it caused a worldwide sensation.

Now the Sky Disc of Nebra — a bronze disc with gold-leaf appliques representing the sun, moon, stars, and a ship — is back in the limelight, at the opening of a blockbuster show entitled “The Forged Sky: The Wide World in the Heart of Europe 3,600 Years Ago.”

For the first time the disc, which is around 32 centimeters (12 inches) in diameter and weighs about 2 kilos (1 pound), will be on public view in its fully restored state.

Dated to c. 1600 BC, the Nebra sky disk is one of the most important archaeological finds in the 20th century
Archeologists have dated the disc to 1600 B.C.

1,600 artifacts

In addition to the oldest concrete representation of the cosmos known to date, the Forged Sky exhibit, at the State Museum of Prehistory in the town of Halle, will feature the Sun Chariot of Trundholm (Denmark) and 1,600 more of the most important archeological finds representing Europe in the Bronze Age.

When it was discovered, the Sky Disc was considered a key find not only for archaeology but also for astronomy and the history of religion. Deposited some 3,600 years ago, it was found on the summit of the Mittelberg hill, near the wooded area of Nebra in eastern Germany, together with valuable swords, jewelry, and tools.

The find initiated a new presentation of the Bronze Age world in Central Germany. The natural riches of this region — copper, salt, and fertile soils — formed the power basis for the resident Early Bronze Age princes, who exchanged goods from all regions of Europe. Mighty tombs, extensive bronze treasures, gold jewelry, and unique display weapons survive as their status symbols, and a representative sample of them is pulled together for the current blockbuster show.

Crowds expected

“Peoples’ interest in the disc since it was unearthed two years ago has not let up,” Saxony-Anhalt state archeologist Harald Meller told the DPA news agency. He explained: “We put the show together in record time, 18 months.”

Meller said he expects 100,000 people to visit the exhibit. If there is enough interest, he said, the show will be extended. The objects on view have been donated by 68 museums in 18 countries.

“Most of the objects, like burial offerings, cult objects, gold jewelry, and various decorated armaments, have never before been out on loan, and they will only be gathered together like this for the show in Halle,” Meller told DPA. Aside from European countries, Lebanon also loaned some pieces to the show.

Sun chariots and golden boats

For example, the organizers got special permission to borrow the 3,400-year-old Sun Chariot of Trundholm from its home at the National Museum in Copenhagen, for the duration of the Halle show.

Sun Chariot of Trundholm, Denmark

The National Museum had previously decided that, for security reasons, the 50 centimeters long, 30 centimeters high Sun Chariot should never again leave Denmark. Similarly, the 88 super thin golden ships from Nors, Denmark, are so brittle that they hardly ever leave the National Museum, according to museum director Flemming Kaul.

But having a group of artifacts from around Europe is important, because “We show that … there is a long process of developing knowledge about religion and astronomy in Europe, which is part of the history of mankind,” Meller said.

The disc itself was a cult object and describes the world view during the Bronze Age. People imagined the earth as a disc, with a dome-shaped sky covering it. A cluster of seven dots has been interpreted as the Pleiades constellation as it appeared 3,600 years ago.

A Nebra baker made this reproduction of the sun disc out of butter cream and marzipan.

At the same time, the piece is thought to be related to primitive observatories, one of which is the “German Stonehenge” in the nearby town of Goseck.

Archeologists believe the disc may have been used in the pre-calendar Bronze Age as an instrument for determining seasonal changes.

The popularity of the disc has led to a boom in reproductions. Demand for €800 ($990) copies of the disc is booming: “There are already 50 on order, and the fabricator can barely keep up with production,” Meller said.

On the other hand, the disc’s popularity can’t stanch the flood of lawsuits that followed its discovery. Although the copyright case was decided in favor of the state of Saxony-Anhalt, there is still a suit before the Halle appeals courts against two suspected fencers from North-Rhine Westphalia who claim the Sky Disc is a fake that was found outside of Germany.

The disc was found on July 4, 1999, by two convicted grave robbers. In February 2002 it was bought along with other Bronze objects from art fencers in a police operation in Switzerland.

Bulgarian Gangsters Busted for Looting 4,600 Ancient Artifacts from Historical sites

Bulgarian Gangsters Busted for Looting 4,600 Ancient Artifacts from Historical sites

After two years of investigation by Bulgarian, British, and German authorities, an international crime ring planning to smuggle thousands of ancient artifacts into England has been caught. According to The Times, the 4,600 items ranged from spears and coins to funeral urns, ceramics, and arrowheads.

The artifacts span from the Bronze and Iron Age to the Middle Ages. Some of the relics were illegally excavated from Roman-era military camps in Bulgaria. They were then smuggled into Germany, with the ultimate goal being legitimate sales in the London art market.

According to Heritage Daily, the gang chose Germany as its transit country and hired private U.K. transportation companies to bring the goods into England. Little did they know that Bulgarian police received a tip-off in March 2018 — after which surveillance on the group began in earnest.

Were it not for the successful sting operation on behalf of authorities from three different countries, the eight individuals now under arrest would’ve made several millions of euros. The remarkable goods, meanwhile, would have been likely been dispersed across private homes around the world.

A task force came together to stop the smugglers, coordinated by Europol and conducted by the General Directorate for the Fight against Organized Crime of the Bulgarian Ministry of Internal Affairs.

EuropolThe trove of looted artifacts contained arrowheads, ceramics, spears, funeral urns, ancient coins, and more.

They worked for hand in hand with the British Metropolitan Police, as well as the German State Criminal Police of Bavaria, under an umbrella operation called MEDICUS.

As the existence of the looted goods wasn’t officially known, proving their illicit origin is difficult to do. With forged provenance and documentation on top, the legal ownership of these artifacts would appear entirely legitimate to auction houses or interested parties.

Only diligent surveillance and monitoring of the group allowed authorities to confirm their suspicions. Five of the eight gang members were arrested before leaving Bulgaria. Three of them were permitted to enter the U.K., thus committing the crime of smuggling goods across, before being arrested.

The group of three was detained after entering the U.K. in Dover. Two men aged 19 and 55 and one 67-year-old women were arrested. According to The Southend Standard, the charge was suspicion of handling stolen goods, and the artifacts concealed in the suspects’ vehicle quickly confirmed as much.

EuropolThree of the smugglers were caught entering the U.K. in Dover, with the other five apprehended in Bulgaria.

“The arrests were made as part of an ongoing investigation into the theft of cultural artifacts in Europe which is being led by detectives from the Met’s art and the antique unit,” the Metropolitan Police said.

This sting operation dates to October 2019, but Europol has only now felt assured enough that publishing any details won’t jeopardize other operations nor the trials of these eight individuals. Europol explained in a statement that auction houses are commonly part of such illegal sales.

“This case confirms that the most common way to dispose of archaeological goods illegally excavated is by entering the legitimate art market,” the agency said.

Last month, the arts and crafts chain Hobby Lobby was caught having illegally purchased an ancient tablet inscribed with part of the Epic of Gilgamesh.

On top of that, the $1.6 million artifacts were only one of the thousands of relics looted and smuggled from Iraq that the company had illegally bought.

Hopefully, more time and effort is spent on preventing this seemingly ubiquitous practice. Cultural artifacts belong to the people of their countries — and should be displayed for them to cherish and learn from. At least in this latest case, it appears that this kind of justice is being fought for.

2,000-year-old remains of infant and pet dog uncovered in France

2,000-year-old remains of infant and pet dog uncovered in France

Excavations in France revealed an apparently well-off child and their pet dog that had been buried in the 2,000s BCE making this find over 2,000 years ago. The infant, believed to be a year old, was found in Aulnat in the Auvergne region of central France by a team surveying for a planned airport expansion.

The remains date back to the first century AD when France would have been under Roman rule.

They were accompanied by numerous objects — including clay jars, animal parts, and a small toy — as well as a puppy wearing a decorative collar.

2,000-year-old remains of infant and pet dog uncovered in France
The 2,000-year-old remains of an infant, estimated to be about a year old, were found in Aulnat in the Auvergne region of central France. The body was surrounded by a plethora of animal offerings and objects, suggesting they were of high social standing

‘Such a profusion of crockery and butchered items, as well as the personal effects that followed the child to his grave, underline the privileged rank to which his family belonged,’ according to the National Institute for Preventative Archaeological Research (INRAP).

This gravesite was discovered in December as part of preventive excavations carried out by INRAP before construction at Clermont-Ferrand airport.

Evidence of a wooden coffin was uncovered in the grave, surrounded by animal sacrifices including half of a pig, different cuts of pork and two headless chickens.

Twenty terra cotta vases and assorted glass pots in the grave may have contained medicine, cosmetics, or the child’s portion of the funereal banquet, while researchers believe a foot-long iron hoop attached to a bent metal rod was a toy or part of a game.

Archaeologists uncovered the burial site while surveying the area for a planned expansion at Clermont-Ferrand airport.

A baby tooth belonging to an older child was also found, possibly belonging to an older sibling.

The skeleton of a puppy was found at what would have been the base of the coffin, wearing a collar with bronze decorations and a small bell.

‘A dog’s association with a young child is well documented in a funeral context, but here it is the collar and bell that are unusual,’ according to archaeologists.

They call the discovery ‘exceptional’ and believe it’s the oldest child’s burial site discovered in France.

A wider view of the excavation site

It dates to the reigns of either Emperor Augustus (27 BC – 14 AD ) or Tiberius (14 -37 AD), just decades after the birth of Jesus.

In Roman-era Gaul — modern-day France, Belgium, and parts of western Germany — adults would have been cremated, but children were often buried on family lands.

Head archaeologist Laurence Lautier said the sheer number of offerings buried with the child was unusual.

‘In this type of tomb we often find one or two pots placed at the foot,’ Lautier told AFP. ‘Here there are around 20 as well as many food offerings.’

That denotes a high social class, Lautier said, ‘ a family that was clearly very rich.’

Since November, surveys of the area have turned up items from the Iron Age, High Middle Ages, and other eras. The digs are expected to end next month.

6,500-Year-Old Oven With Heating, Hot Water System Is Similar to Modern Technology

6,500-Year-Old Oven With Heating, Hot Water System Is Similar to Modern Technology

The 6,500-year-old oven was unearthed in an ancient home during an archeological dig at a Neolithic site in Bapska, a village in eastern Croatia, which experts say is one of the most important in Europe.

6,500-year-old oven with heating and hot water system in Croatia
The 6,500-year-old oven unearthed during an archaeological dig at a Neolithic site in Bapska, Croatia.

Experts say the oven provided cooked food, hot water, and central heating for their dwelling, just like a modern-day Aga.

Marcel Buric – from the Department of Prehistoric Archaeology at Zagreb’s Faculty of Philosophy – said the find was significant because the kiln was covered to protect the rest of the building from fire.

Mr. Buric said: ‘This discovery is important. Because the houses of this period are made of wattle and daubed with a roof made of hay using an open fireplace was dangerous. But a roofed fireplace, like the one in Bapska, besides being safer, also had other advantages.

‘It was permanently heated all day long and as the residents came home after a day in the fields they ate hot food cooked by the oven, washed in warm water, and went to sleep in a room heated by the same kiln. Just like some kitchen ovens today.’

Archaeologists also found a smelted piece of iron ore by the kiln, thought to date back thousands of years before man learned to smelt and work iron.

Mr. Buric said: ‘It’s not possible to say what it was used for but it is a significant find.’

The 6,500-year-old oven had a covered stone frame and worked in a similar way to an AGA.

But elsewhere in the same prehistoric house, scientists found the scene of a more sinister fire.

The cremated remains of a baby aged around 15 months are believed to be the result of a human sacrifice.

Mr. Buric said: ‘We know that such sacrifices were made to ensure the growth of crops by giving life and putting it back into the earth. The more treasured the life, say a baby, the better the result, or so they thought.’

Earlier excavations on the site had revealed a set of deer antlers on the walls of one home, believed to be the world’s first known hunting trophy.

Mr. Buric said: ‘This whole area was a melting point where different cultures from across Europe met and exchanged ideas.’

Elk Teeth Offer Clues to Prehistoric Clothing in Russia

Elk Teeth Offer Clues to Prehistoric Clothing in Russia

According to a statement released by the University of Helsinki, archaeologist Kristiina Mannermaa and her colleagues analyzed more than 4,000 elk incisors recovered from 8,200-year-old graves on an island in northwestern Russia’s Lake Onega.

Many of the graves contain an abundance of objects and red ochre, signifying the wish to ensure the comfort of the buried also after death.

Pendants made of elk incisors were apparently attached to clothing and accessories, such as dresses, coats, cloaks, headdresses, and belts. Although no clothing material has been preserved, the location of the elk teeth sheds light on the possible type of these outfits.

Elk teeth, thousands of them, were used by the YOO people to make their unique elk teeth pendants.

A people of grooved elk tooth pendants

A study headed by archaeologist Kristiina Mannermaa aimed to determine who the people buried in outfits decorated with elk tooth ornaments were, and what the pendants meant to them.

The study analyzed the manufacturing technique of a total of more than 4,000 tooth ornaments or the way in which the teeth had been processed for attachment or suspension.

Elk Teeth Offer Clues to Prehistoric Clothing in Russia
Stone Age People’s Fascination With Elk Teeth Pendants Examined

The results were surprising, as practically all of the teeth had been processed identically by making one or more small grooves at the tip of the root, which made tying the pendants easier.

Only in two instances had a small hole been made in the tooth for threading, both of which were found in the grave of the same woman.

The tooth pendants found in graves located in the Baltic area and Scandinavia from the same period as the Yuzhniy Oleniy Ostrov graves are almost exclusively perforated. Perforation is the surest way of fastening the pendant, but making holes in the narrow tip of a tooth is more laborious than grooving.

The oldest artifact ever found in Eurasia is an elk tooth pendant. It was discovered in the Altai region of Russia in an Denisovan cave.

Archaeological and ethnographic research has shown that humans have been using decorations almost always and everywhere in the world, for several different purposes. To many indigenous peoples in Eurasia, including the Sámi communities, decorations have been and still are an important way of describing a person’s identity and origin.

They are not only aesthetic details but also connected to inter-community communication and the strengthening of intracommunity uniformity.

External elements such as ornaments can also influence the names which neighbouring groups use to refer to a community. In fact, Kristiina Mannermaa calls the people found in the burial site the people of grooved elk tooth pendants.

“Even though there are pendants made of beaver and bear teeth in the graves, the share of elk teeth in them is overwhelming,” Mannermaa says.

The highest number of elk teeth were found in the graves of young adult women and men, the lowest in those of children and elderly people. In other words, elk tooth ornaments were in one way or another linked to age, possibly specifically to the peak reproductive years.

Elk was the most important animal in the ideology and beliefs of the prehistorical hunter-gatherers of the Eurasian forest zone, and their limited availability made elk teeth a valuable material to ancient hunters.

Elks were not brought down very often, and not all members of the community contributed to hunting. It may be that a single individual was given all of the incisors of a caught elk.

Elks have a total of eight incisors, six permanent ones in the lower jaw, and two permanent canines in the shape of incisors. At times, corresponding deciduous teeth were also processed into ornaments.

The largest ornaments required the teeth of at least 8 to 18 elks.

The study was published in the Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences series. In addition to Mannermaa, Riitta Rainio from the University of Helsinki as well as Evgeniy Yurievich Girya, and Dmitriy Gerasimov from Peter the Great’s Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography contributed to the study.

Inside the Mysterious Underground City, That’s 5,000 Years Old

Inside the Mysterious Underground City, That’s 5,000 Years Old

Underground city partly submerged underwater and estimated to be around 5,000 years old was discovered by municipality crews trying to determine the cause of flooding in several houses in the Avanos district of Turkey’s central Nevşehir province, located at the heart of the historic Cappadocia region.

Inside the Mysterious Underground City, That's 5,000 Years Old
Researchers discovered these ruins from an underground city in Turkey’s Central Anatolian region

Owners of some 15 houses in the Çalış township of Avanos, which is inhabited by 2,200 people, informed the local municipality that their houses were filling up with water and they could not figure out why or where the water was coming from.

Municipality crews started discharging water from the homes while searching for the cause of the flooding, using heavy-duty machines to open the entrances of a tunnel closed for safety decades ago and long forgotten by locals.

A view of the underground city newly discovered in Turkey’s Central Anatolian province of Nevsehir, Turkey
A view of the underground city newly discovered in Turkey’s Central Anatolian province of Nevsehir, Turkey
A view of the underground city newly discovered in Turkey’s Central Anatolian province of Nevsehir, Turkey

After making more way into the tunnel, crews and locals found an underground city partially covered in clear water, which had caused the flooding, and saw that the houses were situated right on top of the flooded city’s rooms and tunnels.

Initial examinations revealed that the underground city had three floors and comprised of homes, tunnels and places of worship stretching for five kilometres, in addition to a small human figurine believed to be an icon.

The parts of the underground city closer to the surface was being used by locals as an animal shelter until the beginning of the 20th century but later abandoned by them. Alaaddin Sarıtaş, a local from Çalış, told Demirören News Agency that the underground city was actually rediscovered 25 years ago when a child fell inside the tunnel but its entrances were later covered with soil to prevent further accidents.

Local tales referred to the underground city as Gir-Gör, which translates into English as “Enter and See.”

The underground city is located some 80 kilometres away from Cappadocia’s famous underground cities Derinkuyu and Kaymaklı.

The mayor of Çalış Kazım Yılmaz told Anadolu Agency that the underground city covers some 1.2 million square meters. “Those who had been there in the past say it is some 600 meters by 2 kilometres in size,” he said, adding that technical analysis by archaeologists is needed to reveal its origins and exact dimensions.

A view of the underground city newly discovered in Turkey’s Central Anatolian province of Nevsehir, Turkey

It is impossible to clear the rubble and empty the water through municipality means, Yılmaz said, adding that they will apply to the cultural property protection board for the site to be registered as a historical site and ask for the Ministry of Culture’s help to open the underground city to tourism.

The mayor noted that the ground level of the underground city was full of soil that came through the main entrance, and about two meters in length.

Yılmaz added that there were two other sites near the township, which are believed to be large underground cities.

Sarıtaş said that there were foreigners who had arrived in the township with maps trying to find the lost underground city, mentioning a source of “healing water” and “Ceasar’s bath.”

Ahmet Yılmaz, a local, also said that he used to crawl through the tunnels as a child and reach an area containing rooms.

The core of the historic Cappadocia region, currently falling under Ürgüp, Göreme and Avanos districts of Nevşehir and the Güzelyurt district of Aksaray, is located in the middle of a once-active volcanic area in central Anatolia. In addition to its iconic fairy chimneys and other natural rock formations over the course of millions of years, the soft volcanic rocks in the area enabled humans to carve out homes, places of worship, commercial buildings and even cities, thus making the region one of the earliest continuously inhabited sites in the world.

The region, famous for its wineries in its semi-arid climate and on volcanic soil, had lured the greatest states of the time, including the Hittites, Phrygians, Persians, Romans, Byzantines, Seljuks and Ottomans. It was also one of the earliest regions to adopt Christianity and survive from prosecution by building underground cities and settlements.

Despite existing historic settlements and continuous archaeological interest in the region, Cappadocia is believed to contain countless historical sites and artefacts yet to be discovered.

The region is a tourism hotspot with boutique hotels and hot air balloon tours and has seen a significant rise in the number of tourists in recent years, especially from Japan and China.

‘Sunken Atlantis Pyramid’ Discovered off Azores Coast in Portugal

‘Sunken Atlantis Pyramid’ Discovered off Azores Coast in Portugal

According to an official Portuguese news article, the Portuguese Navy is exploring a massive underwater pyramid close to the Azores. If this is the abandoned city of Atlantis or whether the pyramid is of extra-terrestrial origin is still debated by some people.

Some other more grounded scholars claim this may be part of a larger map incorporating the pyramids found at Giza in Egypt.

A pyramid was accidentally found under the water, close to the Azores when a local sailor was looking for good fishing grounds. He used digital scanning devices to help him locate the Pyramid.

A huge pyramid had been discovered off the Azores islands by Portuguese amateur sailor Diocletian Silva.

The 9 islands that make up the Azorean archipelago we now know as the Azores were discovered uninhabited by the Portuguese in 1427. In recent years archaeologists have discovered ancient rock art on the island of Terceira, which they believe to be many thousands of years old.

They have also discovered a  variety of ancient archaeological remains on all nine islands. They have been identified as an epigraph from Roman times, Carthaginian sanctuaries, cave art, and megalithic structures. It would seem there is a lot more history to these islands that pre-date 1427.

The underwater pyramid was discovered by Diocleciano Silva between the islands of Terceira and São Miguel. It is said that the structure is perfectly square and oriented by the cardinal points.

Using current GPS digital technology it is estimated that the pyramid is around 60 meters high and has a base of nearly 8,000 square meters. That is pretty big!

The Portuguese Hydrographic Institute of the Navy is studying the pyramid data to determine whether it is man-made, naturally occurring, or even something more interesting. Extra-terrestrial perhaps? I wonder if Mulder and Scully are investigating!

The pyramid is found in an area of the Atlantic that has been covered by water for around 20,000 years. That time coincides with the last great ice age of the northern hemisphere where the glaciers started melting 2,000 years earlier. Whoever was living there before the ice age, human or not was probably responsible for building the pyramid.

So far the Portuguese Navy has not determined the origins of the pyramid. It is surprising that this has not been reported before or even discovered before. Was it kept secret or had it sat there for years unnoticed?

What is hard to believe is that the area is heavily studied for its volcanic activity by the NOAA, which studies volcanic behavior. You would have thought that they would have found the pyramid through sonar imaging.  So was it kept secret until Diocleciano Silva found it and went public or is he the first person to actually find this incredible mystery?

Some people even think it might not be real and is instead a hoax but that theory seems unlikely especially as pyramids are evident all across the globe with new ones been discovered every now and then.

This is the actual pyramid as shown as reading from a high-tech scanning device.

Archaeologists from the Portuguese Association of Archaeological Research have found evidence on Pico Island that suggests humans did live in the area many thousands of years before the Portuguese discovered the uninhabited Azores.

This adds support to the idea that an ancient civilization was there at the time to build the huge pyramid. There is still no explanation as to who created the rock art found on the islands or why.

So who did build the underwater pyramid? Was it built by a great ancient civilization that spanned the globe from South America to Africa and the East?

Pyramids are found across many continents, was this one giant civilization? Is this the fabled lost continent of Atlantis that connected the distant civilizations together? Or is it not man-made and perhaps Extra-terrestrial in origin?

'Sunken Atlantis Pyramid' Discovered off Azores Coast in Portugal
Here is the original Portuguese news report along with English subtitles (Not the best I may add) for those who wish to check the validity of the claims and the story.

The Azores themselves are a chain of 9 volcanic islands in three main groups situated 930 miles west of Lisbon. They sit around the fault lines between the tectonic plates of the North American, Eurasian and African continents. The energetic qualities of that area are a great place to have a pyramid. Pyramids are supposed to collect and concentrate energy in positive ways.

This video shows the spot where the pyramid might be along with some discussion about the validity of the claims.

The coordinates of the pyramid have not been released to the public, why? We are not sure maybe it is to prevent tomb robbers and Lara Croft from visiting or maybe there are other important secrets that they need to keep quiet for now. What is believed is that there could be two more pyramids in the area and that there could be a design link with those found in Egypt which forms a land based representation of a star constellation.

Adding to the theory that these pyramids were created by people from the stars or that our ancients knew we were created by aliens in ‘their image’ and not native to this planet. These giant star maps could be the real clue to the history of mankind’s origin.

A interesting video about the underwater pyramid and other possible structures in and around the Azores, the Canary Islands, Antarctica, and the Atlantic sea.

Hoard of silver and gold coins unearthed in central Hungary

Hoard of silver and gold coins unearthed in central Hungary

An attack by the Ottoman Army in the 16th century may have caused panicked Hungarians to bury a stash of precious silver and gold coins. Today, on a modern-day farm in Hungary, archaeologists have discovered this buried treasure.

In 2019, archaeologists discovered 150 ancient coins in Újlengyel, a Hungarian village that’s about 31 miles (50 kilometers) southeast of Budapest.

Spurred by this discovery and equipped with metal detectors, the archaeologists returned to the site at the end of December 2020 to look for other treasures, according to a Facebook post from the Ferenczy Museum in Hungary.

Hoard of silver and gold coins unearthed in central Hungary
Archaeologists discovered thousands of ancient coins buried on a Hungarian farm.

Balázs Nagy, the museum’s numismatist, or coin expert, led the two-day expedition, with help from volunteers with the Community Archaeological Association.

On a nearby hill, the archaeologists dug through a small shaft and unearthed a vessel that was broken in half, likely due to plowing, according to a statement. The vessel had originally held thousands of ancient coins that were found strewn about the shaft.

The newly discovered coin collection consisted of nearly 7,000 silver coins and four gold coins, according to the post.

The discovery in Újlengyel of hidden coins is a spectacular find, comprising seven thousand silver and four gold medieval coins in Hungary.

At the time the coins were probably buried, around 1520, they would have been worth enough to buy seven horses; and by today’s standards, they would be enough to buy a luxury car, according to the post.

The oldest coin is a silver denarius, or a Roman silver coin of Roman emperor Lucius Verus, who ruled from A.D.161 to A.D. 169. The newest coins in the hoard date to the time of Louis II, who ruled Hungary and Bohemia from 1516 to 1526.

The four gold coins, which were issued during the reign of Matthias I, the king of Hungary from 1458 to 1490, were hidden under a piece of fabric in the lining of the vessel, according to the statement.

Other finds included a rare coin issued by Pope Pius who ruled from 1458 to 1464 and silver coins issued during the reigns of several other 15th and 16th century rulers.

It’s unknown why people buried these coins, but the archaeologists hypothesize that Hungarians may have buried them during an attack from the Ottoman Empire in 1526.

“Treasures of this magnitude related to the Turkish devastation following the battle of Mohács are rare in Hungary,” according to a Facebook post.

(The Ottoman Empire, led by Suleiman the Magnificent, defeated Hungary and its allies in the Battle of Mohács on Aug. 29, 1526; this battle marked the end of the Hungarian monarchy and opened the way for Turkish and Habsburg rule of the region, according to Britannica.)

The museum is planning to continue to explore this site in search of other historical treasures.