Thursday, 22 December 2016

Gold coins discovered in Germany mark site of Roman Massacre

Eight gold coins discovered during an archaeological excavation in Germany could confirm the site of the legendary Battle of Teutoburg Forest. Such a find is extremely rare and this recent discovery at Kalkriese expands the number of gold coins collected at the site by more than double the previous amount.

The coins featured images of the Emperor Augustus, with the imperial princes Gaius and Lucius Caesar on the back, and date between 2BCE and 5CE. The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest took place in 9 CE, when an alliance of Germanic tribes ambushed and decisively destroyed three legions of the Roman commander Publius Quintilius Varus.
As a result of the battle Germania remained independent from Roman rule.

Roughly 18,000 men were killed during the slaughter in Teutoburg Forest.
An aureus from the reign of Emperor Augustus would have been enough to feed an entire family in Rome for a month.

Archaeologists speculate they once belonged to a high-ranking Roman officer.