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How big should the treasure be?

Treasure stories always catch my attention.

The latest one that I spotted has a twist to it that you might not expect.

What might the twist be?

Well, there is no wildly inflated value associated with the coins that have been found.

In fact, there is no value given at all for artifacts uncovered in the River Danube not far from Budapest, Hungary.

Will anyone read this news story without someone claiming the treasure is worth billions and billions of dollars?

I hope so.

I will do my best to put the spotlight on it.

A drought and low water levels resulting from it have exposed items that were previously covered by river.

The wreck is speculated to be an unidentified merchant vessel that sank in the 18th century.

Some 2,000 coins are reported to have been recovered.

Issuers include Pope Clement XII (1730-1740) and French King Louis XIV (1643-1715).

The only coin where a date was mentioned was a 1743 piece from the reign of Maria Theresa (yes, the Austrian monarch of Maria Theresa taler fame).

Because she also ruled Hungary, that is probably the reason there is a bit more information about this coin provided by the Hungarian source.

Other coins date back to the 16th century.

Unfortunately, descriptions are thin.

You can drive yourself crazy looking at the handful of coins in the two photographs.

See how you do in identifying them.

A gold coin was mentioned but not shown.

Perhaps lack of gold kept the urge to assign fantasy numbers at bay.

Even if all 2,000 silver coins were taler sized, that would be about 1,500 ounces of silver worth about $22,000.

The photos show many coins that clearly are not that large.

Collector value will depend upon condition and rarity once the coins are properly conserved.

The coins will probably end up in a museum.

But we will have a long wait.

They will not be displayed until after 2020.

Buzz blogger Dave Harper won the Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog for the third time in 2017. He is editor of the weekly newspaper “Numismatic News.”

 

 

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