1,000-year-old medieval gold and silver treasures found in Netherlands
A remarkable treasure of 1000-year-old gold jewelry and silver coins has been discovered, according to the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden (the National Museum of Antiquities) in the Netherlands. It will be on display as part of a new exhibition.
Found in 2021, a 1000-year-old gold treasure near Hoogwoud (municipality of Opmeer in North Holland) includes two pieces of gold leaf that fit together, 39 little silver coins, and four ornamented crescent-shaped pendants made of gold.
The date of the coins between 1200 and 1250 shows that the riches were buried around the middle of the thirteenth century. The jewelry was almost two centuries old and was a valuable and prized property.
Extremely rare in the Netherlands
Gold jewelry from the so-called "High Middle Ages" is rare in the Netherlands. In addition, significant historical occurrences occurred during the time frame covered by this treasure find.
The Dutch count Willem II passes away close to Hoogwoud during this turbulent period of conflicts between West Friesland and the county of Holland. As a result, the treasure find is significant for the archaeology and history of North Holland and West Friesland, as well as important national and global relevance.
The four eleventh-century earrings are the most significant finds from the Hoogwoud treasure hunt. It involves two pairs of pendants, each around five centimeters broad, two of which have filigree ornamentation, and two have etched scenes.
They are tiny, gold-filled, twisted threads. The necklace includes delicate suspension brackets and is embellished on one side. This implies that they were most likely not worn through the ears but rather on a hood or headband. Only one side was so discernible. German images from the same era contain examples of this.
The "Unconquered Sun"
The two interlocking gold leaf strips were formerly sewn to the edge or waistband of clothes, as shown by the finding of tiny textile fibers. One pendant was severely broken, perhaps during the plowing of the Earth, where the items had been buried for decades.
Another pendant has an engraved image of a man's head surrounded by rays. This is seen as a representation of Christ as the "Unconquered Sun," or Sol Invictus. Only three instances of such gold earrings have been discovered in the Netherlands.
You can watch the collection's video below.