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Discovered Cache of Rare Ancient Bronze Coins Date to Early Roman Empire

The College of Liberal Artsí Professor of Classics Paul Scotton, along with an excavation team, has unearthed a significant cache of bronze Roman coins buried under a collapsed building about 1,500 years ago in the ancient Greek city of Corinth during an earthquake and tsunami, which also destroyed a once bustling harbor. Also discovered were two large Roman civic basilicas, popular public buildings at that time.

Example of discovered bronze coins

Examples of newly discovered bronze coins

Some of the 115 coins are estimated to date from the time during the reign of Roman Emperor Constantine the Great (A.D.306-A.D.337), and the more recent coins likely date to the Byzantine Emperor Anastasius (A.D.491-A.D.518). The archaeological site has been the focus of the Lechaion Harbor and Settlement Land Project, where Dr. Scotton has been digging since the summer of 2016. The coins were found about a foot below the surface of the ground.

Lechaionís Inner Harbor

Lechaionís Inner Harbor

Dr. Scotton, and a team of American and Greek scholars and students, began excavations and a complete geophysical survey of the site in 2016. Roughly, one-third of the site was surveyed via ground penetrating radar, magnetometry, and other methods. The geophysical team has found that the area surveyed is rich in numerous buildings and streets, which would be expected in a harbor town.

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