BERLIN – Swiss officials say a farmer trying to rid his cherry orchard of a molehill discovered a Roman-era hoard of more than 4,000 coins in excellent condition.
The Aargau canton, west of Zurich, said Thursday that archaeologists were able to recover 4,166 coins, the earliest from A.D. 274, dating to the rule of Emperor Aurelian. It also included coins through the time of Emperor Maximan, from 294.
The coins are primarily of bronze with a high silver content of about 5 percent. Coin expert Hugo Doppler said they are in such good condition it's clear they "were taken out of circulation right after they were minted."
Doppler says that the coins include several unknown types. More details are expected to be known in the coming months.