Relive the Past

The biggest gold treasure found in Israel

gold-treasure

The biggest gold treasure of over 2,000 ever found in Israel .That was exposed by chance off the coast of the ancient port city of Caesarea, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced Tuesday.

The gold coins dating back more than 1,000 years were found 12 meters underwater by a group of scuba divers .They reported the discovery to their the diving club manager, who then called in Israel Antiquities Authority officials. Now they look forward to to find more coins in the area.

“The gold coins are in superb condition, and despite remaining at the bottom of the sea for over 1,000 years, they did not need any preservation lab treatment,” Robert Cole, a coins specialist at the Antiquities Authority said. Some of the coins were bent and had bite marks, representing a physical authenticity check, according to Cole.

Yaakov Sharvit, head of marine archaeology at the antiquities authority, says the coins, scattered by the Fatimid Caliphate who ruled over much of the Mediterranean coast of Africa and the Middle East between the 10th and 12th centuries, were aboard a ship that sank off the Caesarean shore.
Sharvit said he hopes archaeological digs in the area will shed further light on the finding, and provide answers to the many questions about the treasure.

At least 2,000 gold coins dating back over 1,000 years were found 12 meters underwater by a group of scuba divers earlier in February, who quickly reported the discovery to their the diving club manager, who then called in Israel Antiquities Authority officials.

Antiquities Authority divers, using metal detectors, went back to the site along with the original divers, and uncovered six kilograms worth of golden coins, which had been exposed due to winter storms, according to the authority’s statement.

They expect to find more coins in the area.

Caesarea was an main port city during the Fatimid Caliphate period, serving as a key spot for maritime trade.

The coins were minted in various locations in the Fatimid kingdom, this collection included two types: a Dinar and a quarter Dinar. The oldest coin exposed was minted in the Sicilian city of Palermo, dating back to the 9th century. The latest coin was minted in 1036, confirming the ship sunk sometime after that year, though an exact date could not yet be determined.

February 19th, 2015 at 6:48 am


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