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Spanish construction crew unearths 1,300 pound hoard of Roman coins

You could probably buy a lot of Togas with this haul. Credit: Twitter.Com/Adirecto

One Roman’s loss is a modern historian’s gain.

A giant trove of Roman coins dating back to the 3rd and 4th centuries B.C.E. has been unearthed in Spain by a construction crew, CNN reported Friday(Opens in a new tab).

The collection of bronze coins — weighing a staggering 1,300 pounds — was buried in 19 amphoras, a type of Roman jug, in Tomares, Andalusia, near Seville. Ditch diggers who unearthed the lot were working to install a water line to a nearby park when they noticed “irregular terrain” inside a ditch, CNN reported.

The coins’ faces show an emperor, believed to be either Constantine or Maximian, and Roman allegories. Lucky for researchers, the coins appear never to have been in circulation, meaning they are in tip-top shape compared to other monetary discoveries.

Experts told reporters that the newly-minted coins were likely meant to pay taxes or support the Roman armies in Spain. Ana Navarro, head of Seville’s Archeology Museum, couldn’t put a precise value on the coins, but she told a gaggle of reporters that they are “certainly” worth “several million euros.”

“I could not give you an economic value, because the value they really have is historical and you can’t calculate that,” The Washington Post(Opens in a new tab) quoted her as saying(Opens in a new tab).

Historians believe the Romans invaded the area around 206 B.C.E. and stayed(Opens in a new tab) for some 700 years.