Sunday, 30 June 2013

The Fishpool Hoard

The Fishpool Hoard of 1,237 15th century gold coins, four rings and four other pieces of jewellery, and gold chain was discovered by workmen on a building site in Ravenshead, Nottinghamshire, England in 1966.

The hoard was probably buried in haste at some time between winter 1463 and summer 1464, perhaps by someone fleeing south after the Battle of Hexham in May 1464, in the first stages of England's War of the Roses.

The heart-shaped brooch is engraved with the phrase "je suys vostre sans de partier" (I am yours wholly).
The face value of the hoard when deposited was about £400, equivalent to around £300,000 today. It may have formed part of the Lancastrian royal treasury, entrusted to someone fleeing south after the Battle of Hexham (15 May 1464) and concealed by him deep inside Sherwood Forest.


http://www.britishmuseum.org/explore/online_tours/britain/our_top_ten_british_treasures/the_fishpool_hoard.aspx


Saturday, 29 June 2013

Gold still better than cocaine : Colombian Police

Colombian armed groups are reaping profits from illegal gold mining that are five times greater than returns from cocaine, according to Colonel Hector Paez, acting director of the country’s rural police division.

Cocaine typically takes six months to produce and requires considerable knowledge, while an illegal mining operation in the Colombian jungle can extract two kilograms of gold a week, Paez said in a June 19 interview in Bogota.

“Illegal mining has risen in this country” he said. “They are earning more money from gold than cocaine or kidnappings.”
Gold, which slumped below $1,300 an ounce for the first time since September 2010 in New York yesterday, has become Colombia’s biggest export after oil and coal. A kilogram of cocaine can sell for about 5 million pesos ($2,570) in the Colombian jungle while a kilogram of gold can fetch 19 times that, or similar to global market prices, Paez said.

The precious metal is also relatively easy to legalize while cocaine remains banned. “As soon as it’s excavated and away from the mine it’s legal,” said Paez.


http://www.businessweek.com/news/2013-06-21/gold-beats-cocaine-as-colombia-rebel-money-maker-police-say-1


Wednesday, 26 June 2013

The Frome Hoard

The Frome Hoard is a hoard of 52,503 Roman coins found in April 2010 by Dave Crisp near Frome in Somerset, England.

The coins were contained in a ceramic pot and date from AD 253 to 305. Most of the coins are made from debased silver or bronze. The hoard is one of the largest ever found in Britain, and is also important as it contains the largest group ever found of coins issued during the reign of Carausius, who ruled Britain independently from 286 to 293 and was the first Roman emperor to strike coins in Britain.
After being declared a treasure, the hoard was valued at £320,250 and shared equally between the finder and the land owner.



Saturday, 22 June 2013

$ 11.15m briolette is now “The Star of China”

The new owner of what Christie’s auction house called the largest and most perfect briolette diamond ever sold at auction has identified herself and picked a name for the 75.36-carat gem. Tiffany Chen, vice chairman of China Star Entertainment Ltd., has revealed herself to be the owner of the briolette diamond. She named the diamond after her company, “The Star of China.”

The 75.36-carat briolette - a gem cut into a three-dimensional waterdrop shape - is suspended on a chain of diamonds. Chen purchased the diamond May 28 at Christie’s Hong Kong Magnificent Jewels sale for more than $11.15 million, $148,000 per carat, a world record for a briolette diamond sold at auction.The briolette has been graded by the Gemological Institute of America to be of D color and type IIa.

The diamond is part of a pendant necklace that includes a marquise-cut purplish pink diamond suspended above the briolette.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/anthonydemarco/2013/06/18/world-record-75-carat-briolette-diamond-named-star-of-china/



Tuesday, 18 June 2013

US silver certificate worth plenty

The certificate was issued in 1891, at a time when silver miners, Western mining companies, and some Western banks were objecting to the government's decision to essentially adopt a gold standard.

A law passed in 1878 required the government to buy several million dollars' worth of silver bullion and mint it into coins. Because the silver was so heavy, the government decided to issue certificates like this one that could be exchanged for the same face value in silver dollar coins.
The US government no longer prints silver certificates, and it hasn't exchanged existing ones for silver since the 1960s. But even now, those that remain outstanding are still legal tender and can be spent, according to the federal Bureau of Engraving and Printing.

$ 1000 in silver is a bargain. The note is one of only 2 known in existence and sold at auction for $2.6 million.
William L. Marcy was a 19th century politician and statesman who served as secretary of war, secretary of state, a senator, and governor of New York. He is also noted for saying, during a congressional debate over a nomination, "to the victor belong the spoils."

http://www.cnbc.com/id/100809554

Monday, 17 June 2013

The San Miguel & The Lost 1715 Treasure Fleet

On July 31, 1715 eleven of the twelve Spanish ships sailing from Havana to Spain with royal treasure were wrecked by a violent hurricane on the east coast of Florida from St. Lucie to Cape Canaveral.

Seven of these Spanish Treasure laden ships were scattered over the reefs from south of Fort Pierce to the Sebastian Inlet. Spanish coins of all types (gold and silver) started to be found on the beaches in the 1950s after strong nor'easters or a violent hurricane. This part of Florida's Atlantic east coast quickly became known as the Treasure Coast.
The (El Senor) San Miguel - was a 22 gun NAO Class(Fast Carrack). It very likely contained a significant portion of the treasure. It is believed the ship separated from the fleet the day before the storm struck and the wreck has never been found.

It is believed only a small fraction of the treasure of the lost 1715 Treasure Fleet has been recovered.
1715 Fleet ships believed to have been found are:

1 - Nuestra Senora de la Regla
2 - Santo Cristo de San Roman
3 - Nuestra Senora del Carmen
4 - Nuestra Señora de La Popa
5 - Nuestra Senora del Rosario
6 - Urca de Lima
7 - Nuestra Senora de las Nieves
- Ships of the 1715 Fleet never located are the:

8 - Maria Galante
9 - El Senor San Miguel
10 - El Cievro
11 - Nuestra Senora de la Concepcion

12 - Griffon made it safely and went on to France



VERO BEACH — Bonnie Schubert couldn’t believe her eyes when, about 1,000 feet off Frederick Douglass Beach near Fort Pierce, she came face to face with a solid gold statue of a bird that had lain under the Atlantic Ocean exactly 295 years and 15 days.

“I remember asking myself, ‘Is this real?’” Schubert recalled Wednesday as the 5.5-inch-tall statue she found Aug. 15 was revealed to the public at her home in the Vero Shores neighborhood of Vero Beach.“The Bird,” as it’s come to be known, is real all right.

So is it’s $885,000 appraised value.

The statue was aboard one of 11 Spanish ships laden with treasures from the New World that were bound from Havana to the court of King Phillip V before encountering a hurricane July 31, 1715, and sinking off the Treasure Coast.



Saturday, 15 June 2013

The Jersey Hoard

A year ago news broke of a massive ancient coin hoard found in Jersey, UK.

At least 50,000 coins dating back to the time of Julius Caesar were found in a field in Jersey. The Roman and Celtic coins, which date from the 1st Century BC, were found by two metal detector enthusiasts.

The exact number of coins found has not been established, but archaeologists said the hoard weighed about three quarters of a tonne.
A large mound of clay containing the coins has now been taken to a safe location to be studied.


It is the first hoard of coins found in the island for more than 60 years. Several hoards of Celtic coins have been found in Jersey before but the largest was in 1935 at La Marquanderie when more than 11,000 were discovered.
"This is the world's biggest Celtic coin hoard ever, this was a significant part of a tribe's wealth.

"It is also one of the world's biggest coin hoards and certainly the biggest coin hoard found in Britain." The value of the hoard was estimated at up to £10m when it was first removed from the ground.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-jersey-22846664



Hoard from the Bar Kokhba revolt

Last year news broke of a hoard in the vicinity of Qiryat Gat, Israel. Archaeologists uncovered about 140 gold and silver coins along with gold jewelry in a pit in the courtyard of an exposed building dating to the Roman and Byzantine period.

A wealthy woman likely stashed the hoard of coins and jewelry in the pit due to the impending danger of the Bar Kokhba Revolt, the researchers suggest. In 132, a revolt led by Bar Kokhba quickly spread from Modi'in across the country, cutting off the Roman garrison in Jerusalem.
The outbreak took the Romans by surprise. Hadrian called his general Sextus Julius Severus from Britain, and troops were brought from as far as the Danube.

The struggle lasted for three years before the revolt was brutally crushed in the summer of 135 AD. After losing Jerusalem, Bar Kokhba and the remnants of his army withdrew to the fortress of Betar, which also subsequently came under siege. The Jerusalem Talmud relates that the numbers slain were enormous, that the Romans "went on killing until their horses were submerged in blood to their nostrils"

The coins that were discovered date to the reigns of the Roman emperors Nero, Nerva and Trajan who ruled the Roman Empire from 54-117 A.D.

“This hoard includes silver and gold coins of different denominations, most of which date to the reign of the emperor Trajan. This is probably an emergency cache that was concealed at the time of impending danger by a wealthy woman who wrapped her jewelry and money in a cloth and hid them deep in the ground prior to or during the Bar Kokhba Revolt.

It is now clear that the owner of the hoard never returned to claim it,”