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Lucky Couple Strike Gold

Wouldn't it be wonderful if you were renovating your home and you found some hidden treasure? Even better if it would be sufficient to pay for the building work with some cash left over!

Rare gold coins found under a kitchen floor in Yorkshire
Credit: Spink & Son

Well, that's what happened to a couple a fortunate couple when renovating their 18th century village home in Yorkshire, England. They unearthed the surprise of a lifetime: more than 260 rare gold coins dating back hundreds of years. They’re expected to fetch upwards of £250,000 ($288,000) at auction next month, says auction house Spink & Son.

As they worked to replace the home’s kitchen floor, the couple encountered what they initially thought was an electrical cable buried beneath the concrete. But when they investigated the obstruction, they realized they’d hit upon a small stoneware cup brimming with gold coins. The cup, buried six to eight inches below ground, was about the same size as a soda can.

“The remarkable trove is unlike any find in British archaeology or like any coin auction in living memory,” says Gregory Edmund, a numismatist with Spink & Son.

The coins date to between 1610 and 1727, and were originally worth somewhere in the range of £50 ($57) to £100 ($115).

The rarest and most valuable of all the coins is a misprinted George I guinea from 1720 that features two “tails” sides. The auction house estimates it to be worth around £4,000 ($4,600). Another rare misprint, a Charles II guinea that misspells his Latin name, is worth around £1,500 ($1,725).

Fortunately, the coins do not meet the specifications for “treasure” under British law, which means the couple gets to keep them!


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