Celtic coin hoard found in Slovakia


Slovakian archaeologists have found a treasure of Celtic coins in Mošovce near Turčianske Teplice. The finding of 40 coins contains the most precious coins that Celts minted in this era, the so-called tetradrachms.

Celtic coin hoard found in Slovakia
Credit: Karol Pieta

“The Celts had a highly-developed coin system; tetradrachms have four times the value of other nominals,” explains Karol Pieta, deputy of director from Archaeological Institute of Slovak Academy of Sciences (SAV) in Nitra, as quoted by the SITA newswire.

Tetradrachms are about nine to ten grams in weight, as if they have four drachmas inside, which were the smallest coins at that time, Pieta explains.

It is highly probable that they are minted from silver originating from a Carpathian deposit. The economic power of Celts in the Slovak area was to a considerable extent based on using natural resources, especially gold, silver and iron. The Turiec region belonged among the key economic and cultural centres of Celts in Slovakia, Pieta added.

Archaeologists are carrying out a systematic research in the cadastre of Mošovce village as well as in the cadastres of other villages in connection to wood mining, due to the bark beetle calamity.

Celtic coin hoard found in Slovakia
Credit: Karol Pieta

“An archaeologist does not find only precious and expensive objects, he/she looks for a connection and thanks to detail work, he/she may interpret the finding further,” said Pieta, as quoted by SITA.

The coins were scattered in a steep slope. Archaeologists found a place where they were packed in a small knot of organic substance and thanks to soil erosion, they scattered on the slope. They also found out that Celts put them into soil in times of battles at the start of the Common Era. It is already the second large-scale finding of coins in this area, the first being in 2008.

The finding proves that Slovakia is full of significant archaeological discoveries still hidden under the ground, notes Matej Ruttkay, director of Archaeological Institute of SAV in Nitra.

“We have to make a maximum effort to beat looters because everywhere we research we find tracks after people who were there before us,” he said, adding that many significant finds have unfortunately already been lost. He is hopeful for an amendment that would allow the cooperation of professionals with amateur finders, as it works in many other countries.

Source: The Slovak Spectator [November 25, 2018]