Friday, 29 April 2022

Golden Pectoral from Tovsta Mohyla

The Golden Pectoral from Tovsta Mohyla is a Scythian treasure discovered in a kurgan near the city of Ordzonikidzhe in Ukraine. It dates to 300 B.C. The pectoral is 24k gold and weighs over a kilo. It is broken down into three sections. The top reflects daily life.
The middle section is believed to represent nature. The third section is thought to represent Scythian belief in their mythology.
The grave mound belonged to a high status Scythian aristocrat. Few objects survive due to grave robbers. The Golden Pectoral from Tovsta Mohyla remains one of the most astounding pieces of gold jewelry to ever survive from the ancient world.

Wednesday, 27 April 2022

Scythian Gold

The Scythians were Iranian equestrian tribes who inhabited large areas of the central Eurasian steppes starting from the 7th century BC through the 4th century AD. Ancient Greeks gave the name Scythia to all the lands north-east of Europe and the northern coast of the Black Sea, unknown to them in that era.

Scythian golden pectoral from the royal grave at Tolstaja Mogila kurgan, 4th century BC. It shows the three tiers of Scythian mythology: the Inner Earth, the Astral-Cosmic sphere and innermost the inhabited world.

Scythian golden sword and scabbard.

Gold Scythian belt title, Mingachevir, Azerbaijan, 7th century BC.

Scythian goddess Apa from the Kul Oba kurgan.

Scythian Gold Stag, 4th-3rd Century BC

The gold fish of Vettersfelde, Scythian, ca 500 BC

Tuesday, 26 April 2022

450 myo Tomlinsonus dimitrii

Paleontologists announced the discovery of an "exceptionally well preserved" ancient creature near the eastern shore of Lake Simcoe in southern Ontario. It was found in a stone quarry that scientists have dubbed the "Paleo Pompeii." Named Tomlinsonus dimitrii, the specimen is part of an extinct group of arthropods known as marrellomorphs that lived approximately 450 mya, during the Ordovician period. Researchers discovered the bizarre arthropod last summer during a formal excavation of an active quarry. Similar to the Burgess Shale, the Lake Simcoe quarry was once submerged and part of a shallow ancient tropical marine sea.
See ----->Theft from Burgess Shale

Monday, 25 April 2022

Ancient puppy in permafrost

This 18,000-year-old puppy, preserved in the Siberian permafrost, still has its whiskers. The puppy’s remains were identified by researchers at a site near Yakutsk in eastern Siberia in 2019. Researchers have determined that the animal is male, was 2 months old when he died and lived around 18,000 years ago. DNA testing could not determine if he was a dog or a wolf. Research suggests that dogs and wolves may have diverged from a common ancestor around 40,000 years ago, although some dog breeds may have bred with wolves after that point.

Sunday, 24 April 2022

"Ides of March" Coins

Brutus issued a silver denarius celebrating the assassination of Caesar on the Ides of March (March 15). The denarius has a portrait of Brutus on the obverse, with on the reverse a liberty cap flanked by two daggers over the inscription EID(ibus) MAR(tiis). The liberty cap was the garment given to a manumitted slave to indicate his free status, so the reverse side symbolizes Brutus and Cassius liberating Rome with their daggers. There are about 60 known copies of the silver denarius. A superb example made $332k in a 2016 auction. Silver specimens in extremely fine condition have sold at auction for $120k. Low grade silver examples will make $50k.
An ‘Ides of March’ aureus is one of three known examples. It was recently discovered hidden away in a private European collection. The coin is in mint condition and has been described as “the undisputed masterpiece of ancient coinage.” It made $3.5m.
In October of 42 B.C., months after the coins were struck, Brutus and Cassius were routed by Marc Anthony and Octavian’s forces and died in the Battles of Philippi. Their coins were outlawed and very few survived.
The famous 'Eid Mar' aureus on loan to the British Museum for the past decade has been offered for sale. It will be sold at auction on May 30 in Zurich and is expected to fetch more than £1.5 million (US$2m).

The coin was minted by Marcus Junius Brutus to commemorate the assassination of Ceasar. The coin shows an inscription that reads “EID MAR” short for Eidibus Martiis, the Ides of March, along with two daggers and a liberty cap symbolizing freedom. The other side of the coin features a portrait of Brutus with the inscription “BRVT IMP” or Brutus, Imperator.
The coin has a hole. It is believed that it could only have been worn by a senior supporter and perhaps even one of the conspirators of Caesar’s murder.

Sweden’s Sandby borg yields gold

Four miles off the Swedish coast in the Baltic Sea, the rocky island of Öland was the site of an ancient mass murder. In 2010, archaeologists uncovered scores of skeletons that had initially been left unburied. They estimate that the massacre at Sandby borg took place in the 5th century. The fort’s 15-foot-tall ramparts were no match for the attackers. A discovery of two gold rings and a coin at the site may hint at the motive. The gold gives credence to the theory that the island may have had ties to the Romans. At the site of an important house the team uncovered pieces of Roman glass.
The aureus dates to the time of the massacre and depicts Emperor Valentinian III, who ruled between 425 and 455. Mysterious is the fact the site wasn't looted.

Even the murdered inhabitants’ horses were tied up and left to starve.

Saturday, 23 April 2022

Infamous Titanic gold cigarette case

The cigarette case made $50k.
A gold cigarette case that once belonged to a controversial wealthy couple that survived the Titanic disaster was auctioned. The artifact belonged to Sir Cosmo and Lady Duff-Gordon. The couple were accused of bribing their way off the doomed liner. Sir Cosmo Duff-Gordon, his fashion designer wife, and her secretary, were among 12 who escaped the sinking ship on Titanic’s Lifeboat Number 1. The lifeboat, dubbed the 'millionaires’ boat,' had a capacity of 40.
Sir Cosmo Duff-Gordon gave each of the 7 crewmembers who had shared his lifeboat £5. Occupants of Lifeboat 1. Middle Row: Hendrickson, Lady Duff Gordon, Francatelli, Sir Duff Gordon, Taylor.

Thursday, 21 April 2022

Machu Picchu and the Golden Empires of Peru

Over 3,000 years of Peruvian civilization is on display at the Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine in Paris, France. The exhibition, which runs until Sept 4, combines virtual reality and hundreds of archaeological treasures from ancient Peru. Objects on display include ceramics, textiles, jewelry, headdresses, earrings, funerary masks, imperial dresses, silver crowns, and hundreds of gold pieces. After its stopover in Paris, the exhibition “Machu Picchu and the Golden Empires of Peru” will travel to other cities around the world.

Wednesday, 20 April 2022

Alexander the Great tetradrachms

When Philip II rose to power in 359 BCE, he recognized the importance of coinage. Philip’s coins became very popular throughout the ancient world. His son, Alexander the Great refocused the silver mintage on a tetradrachm based on the Athenian weight standard that could be used throughout Greece. For more than two hundred years, Alexander the Great tetradrachms would be minted at a prolific rate, sourced from mines in Thrace and Macedonia as well as the new bullion from the Persians.
Primary design elements remained consistent. The obverse depicts Herakles (Hercules to the Romans). Herakles was Zeus’ son and was able to attain divine status through 12 labors. The coin represents the first of those labors, the slaying of the Nemean Lion. The reverse shows Zeus wearing a crown.
A single coin represented about four day’s pay for a laborer, so Alexander also minted bronze coinage for smaller transactions.
See ----->Alexander the Great's gold distater

Largest Celtic stater hoard in UK

The UK's biggest hoard of Celtic gold coins, worth £800k, was unearthed by a birdwatcher in 2020. He saw a glint in a ploughed field, rubbed off the mud and found a 2,000-year-old gold stater. He fetched his metal detector and hours later had recovered 1,300 coins dating from 40-50 AD.
The coins may have been a deposit from Boudicca's war chest for her eastern campaigns.
During the middle of the first century the Celtic warrior Boudicca was at war with the occupying Romans.