A trove of 175 Roman silver coins was uncovered in an Italian forest, according to a LiveScience report. The coins, which likely date back to 82 BCE, may have been buried for safekeeping during a Roman civil war.
The hoard was found by an archaeological group hiking through a newly cut forest northeast of the Tuscan city Livorno in 2021. The area has since been investigated by archaeologists, who yielded no further results.
The silver Roman denarii, found inside of a terracotta pot, are all from between 157 BCE and 82 BCE. Experts believe the hoard could have possibly belonged to a solider caught in conflicts or a merchant seeking to hide his wealth. They do know for certain that whoever buried the coins never recovered them.
Since the last of the coins date to a time of internal strife, archaeologists believe whoever buried them did so for safekeeping.
In 91 BCE, a war had broken out between Rome and its Italian allies seeking citizenship. The Roman general and statesman Sulla, who had previously been declared a public enemy of the state in 87 BCE and who had attacked the city in 88 BCE, returned with his army from Asia to confront his Roman enemies in 82 BCE. As the first man of the Republic to seize power through force, his victory paved the way for future dictators such as Julius Caesar.
After remaining hidden for 2,000 years, the coins are slated for display at the Museum of Natural History of the Mediterranean in the Province of Livorno, Il Terrino reported.