sábado, 30 de enero de 2010
A rare silver coin dating back to 211 BC has been unearthed at the Leicestershire village of Hallaton in the UK and is considered to be the oldest piece of Roman currency. A metal detectorist found the 2,221-year-old coin -- a denarius -- along with 5,000 other coins, a richly decorated Roman cavalry helmet and a unique decorated silver bowl. While one side of the coin depicts the goddess Roma wearing her characteristic helmet, the other side shows mythical twins Castor and Pollux sit astride galloping horses, the Daily Mail reported. David Sprason, a member of Leicestershire County Council, said: "Leicestershire boasts of the largest number of Iron Age coins ever professionally excavated in Britain. "To also have the oldest Roman coin ever found is something very special." Describing the news as 'exciting', David Mattingly of the University of Leicester said: "This hoard has changed our view of just how significant the East Midlands were in this period and this coin is a good example." "It indicates there was contact between this region and the Roman Empire despite the distance between the East Midlands and the parts of Britain the Romans arrived in, like Colchester and Chichester." The coin is considered to have been minted in Rome at the time of the Hannibalic wars and reached Britain after passing through many hands. It is preserved at the Harborough Museum in Leicestershire.