What many adventurers can only dream of, happened to a group of teenagers last week. During an expedition in Israel, they dug up a thousand-year-old treasure. The clay pot containing hundreds of gold coins was found in a site where construction work will soon take place.
The teens volunteered to participate in a dig in central Israel. “The person who buried this 1,100 years ago must have thought that they could retrieve the pot again,” the leader of the excavation, Liat Nadav-Ziv, told Reuters news agency. “The person even secured the pot with a nail so that it wouldn’t move. We can only guess why he couldn’t come back.”
Who owns the pot remains a mystery. At the time of its burial, the Abbasid dynasty ruled the Middle East. This period is also referred to as the Golden Age of Islam, in which art, architecture, and literature flourished. At that time, more than a thousand years ago, many workshops could be found in the vicinity of the excavation.
“It was great,” said one of the finders, Oz Cohen. “I was digging in the ground and saw what looked like very thin leaves. When I took a closer look, I saw that they were gold coins. It was very exciting to find such a special and ancient treasure.”
The owner of the pot of gold could have done great things with his fortune in his days, says an expert from the Israel Antiques Authority. “For example, with such a sum of money, you could have bought a luxury home in one of the best areas of Fustat, the large, wealthy capital of Egypt at the time.”