Thursday, 19 August 2010

The Frome Hoard of Carausius

I was invited down to the British Museum yesterday by Sam Moorhead for lunch and to discuss the work he’s currently doing on Carausius, both with the recent Frome hoard and the older Elveden hoard.

As well as seeing the small public display I got to have a quick look at the rest of the hoard, bagged and in boxes and most of it awaiting conservation, as well as the two denarii and a handfull of already conserved coins not on public display.

The denarii are as impressive as the pictures, if not more so and far exceed the quality of the remaining Carausian denarii in the BM's collection.

What is interesting is that the hoard has been carefully excavated down through the pot and seems to have been assembled from smaller pots. The reason for this hypothesis is that it seemingly terminates with London B/E coins (c.290) yet the greatest concentration of Carausius coins by far, including these terminal coins, was in the middle layer. The denarii, struck early in the reign, were found in the upper layers.

Hopefully a small booklet will be out shortly, within a week or two, to summarise the hoard (similar to what was produced for the West Midlands Saxon gold finds) with a full academic publication in due course.