Sutton Hoo Treasure: One of the Richest Treasures Ever Found in British Soil
What do you do when you have multiple Anglo-Saxon burial mounds on your property? You ask your local archaeologist to come by and check it out. And what if he happens to find one of the biggest treasures of the era?
Well, we don’t have to speculate, because this actually happened. The Hoxne Hoard might have led to a change in the British law regarding uncovered antiquities, but the Sutton Hoo Treasure changed how the British were able to understand their history. Indeed, it’s difficult to know where to even get started explaining the story of the Sutton Hoo Treasure because it is so deeply embedded into the history of the time.
The 1715 Fleet: The Archetypal Sunken Treasure
Caesarea National Park isn’t the only place where divers have found vast riches in living memory. There’s also the 1715 Treasure Fleet (also known as the 1715 Plate Fleet -- “Plata” being the Spanish word for silver), which was unearthed by an amateur diver and enterprising Florida Man, William Bartlett. He went down to do what many divers do -- check out a shipwreck that is hundreds of years old. What he found was so much gold he had to start packing it into his gloves.
The Cuerdale Hoard: The Largest Viking Hoard of Silver
From the waning days of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England comes the Cuerdale Hoard. Unlike the Hoxne Hoard, which was Romano-British, and the Staffordshire Hoard, which was from Mercian Anglo-Saxons, this Hoard came from the Vikings, who ruled over a great deal of England prior to the arrival of the Normans in 1066. More than just English treasure, there were also a lot of Carolingian objects from the Continental empire of Charlemagne.
The Staffordshire Hoard: The Largest Hoard of Anglo-Saxon Metalwork
The Anglo-Saxons were and are renowned for their metalwork. This is not the crude metallurgy of an uncultivated barbarian horde, but the beautiful design work in the noble metals of silver and gold that only a truly cultured people could produce. Nowhere is this exemplified more than with the Staffordshire Hoard, the largest hoard of Anglo-Saxon metalwork ever uncovered, even larger than the famous Sutton Hoo Hoard.
Caesarea Sunken Treasure: The Largest Discovered Treasure in the State of Israel
Most of the treasure hoards we have covered elsewhere on this site (namely the Hoxne, Staffordshire, and Cuerdale Hoards, among others) come from the West. But we will now turn our attention toward the Levant, where, in February 2015, a vast hoard was found in the Holy Land. Much like the other treasure troves we have discussed on this site, this was uncovered not by professional treasure hunters, but by hobbyists simply doing their thing who hit the proverbial lottery.
The Hoxne Hoard: The Largest Unearthed Roman Treasure Ever
The Hoxne Hoard, uncovered in Britain in 1992, stands as one of the strongest arguments in favor of what a well-trained amateur can discover using a metal detector. It is the largest find of late Roman gold and silver found on the island of Great Britain -- or, indeed, in any Roman territory. Not only were there over 14,000 gold and silver coins, but the Hoard also boasted 200 pieces of silverware, in addition to historically significant pieces such as the Empress pepper pot. And it all started as innocuous as one of your own outings with a metal detector, on a hunt for a friend’s missing object.