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Little Miss Muffet

Gold coins

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GROOVIE MOVIES

Before 480AD is very late in the Roman empire, during a stage when it would have been on it's last legs, ravished by the barbarians of the north. If I remember the documentaries correctly the capital was moved from Rome to Milan during this period of instabilty. This pot of gold could very well have been state funds that were probably misdirected from the treasury (sound familiar? Old dog, new tricks). I recall reading the Goths sacking Rome all came down to the inability to supply a ransome, so this gold could very well have bought the empire some time, had it not been for somebody's greed, burying it instead.  

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jwither
22 hours ago, GROOVIE MOVIES said:

Before 480AD is very late in the Roman empire, during a stage when it would have been on it's last legs, ravished by the barbarians of the north. If I remember the documentaries correctly the capital was moved from Rome to Milan during this period of instabilty. This pot of gold could very well have been state funds that were probably misdirected from the treasury (sound familiar? Old dog, new tricks). I recall reading the Goths sacking Rome all came down to the inability to supply a ransome, so this gold could very well have bought the empire some time, had it not been for somebody's greed, burying it instead.  

If it was actually buried, it likely was self preservation.  There isn't anything anyone could have done that would ultimately have made any difference.

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Mike Klee

Probably more likely to be the wealth of a rich Roman, especially buried in such a manner. There were no banks those days, so private wealth was had to be buried or hidden, which often resulted in the loss of such treasure if the owner was to die. This is why treasure Greco/Roman/Ottoman "hoards" keep on being found in farmers' fields, ruins, etc. As almost everybody - rich and poor - used to hide or bury whatever wealth they had, this is why the continual discovery of Greco/Roman/Ottoman "hoards" has resulted in quite low prices for these coins.

Admittedly, most of these hoards are copper - so to find a silver hoard or a gold hoard  (as in this instance) is something quite special. But, over the centuries, certainly not unusual.

Even in modern days, I have been told of isolated farmhouses in South Africa where family history has it that gold coins were supposedly buried in the mid 1800's. You can imagine the frustration of the present-day descendants of the buriers of these gold coins when great, great, great grandad died suddenly without passing on the secret of where exactly these coins had been buried on the plaas.

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GROOVIE MOVIES
16 hours ago, Mike Klee said:

Even in modern days, I have been told of isolated farmhouses in South Africa where family history has it that gold coins were supposedly buried in the mid 1800's. You can imagine the frustration of the present-day descendants of the buriers of these gold coins when great, great, great grandad died suddenly without passing on the secret of where exactly these coins had been buried on the plaas.

I wonder what the rules around such a find would be in South Africa? Would the state try to lay claim to your find if you, say stumbled across something like the kruger millions? I had a discussion with a gold dealer about this once. I mentioned if something like that were ever found it, those coins would probably be melted. His reaction was that they would be more valuable as numismatic pieces than melted down, and he was quite correct. However more valuable for who? I can certainly picture the authorities stepping in and claiming your find as historical artifacts to be sent off to museums for prosterity, and you left with a R25000 reward. That would be bitter sweet pill to swallow...

regards Robert

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Mike Klee

If there was a proven provenance - such as valuables being buried/hidden on a farm which had been in the family for generations - the State would have no claim to such a hoard.

On State land, the hoard would be 100% claimed by the Government.

With shipwrecks and with the legislation as it is, nothing is allowed to be removed from a historical shipwreck unless there is a permit from the South African Heritage Authority. No permits are in place. Thus, any gold or silver coins recovered from a shipwreck would be deemed to be illegally removed from such a wreck and thus would be forfeit to the State.

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