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Archaeologists find silver treasure on German Baltic island

17 April 2018

When amateur archaeologist Rene Schön and his 13-year-old sidekick Luca Malaschnitschenko found a shiny piece of metal on a treasure hunt near Schaprode on the German Baltic Sea island of Rügen three months ago, they initially thought they had merely spotted a piece of tinfoil.

The archaeologists excavated numerous necklaces, bracelets, rings, coins and a hammer on the island of Rügen near the village of Schaprode.

Archaeologists said about 100 of the silver coins are probably from the reign of Harald Gormsson, better known as "Harald Bluetooth", who lived in the 10th century and introduced Christianity to Denmark.

When they washed their find, they realised it was a piece of silver, according to local media.

"It's the biggest trove of such coins in the southeastern Baltic region", Mecklenburg-West Pomerania state archaeology office said in a statement. They reported their find to the office and later contributed to the larger sweep conducted by the entire team of experts. Back in 2015, a man discovered Roman-era coins, mosaic glassware, and hobnails from a pair of shoes and last year, four 2,000 year gold torques were unearthed in England. The oldest coin, a Damascus dirham, dates to 714 CE, and the newest is a penny from 983 CE.

The find suggests that the treasure may have been buried in the 980s, the same time Harald fled Denmark after losing a sea battle against forces loyal to his son Sweyn Forkbeard.

Picture: Part of the treasure trove found in northern Germany.

His nickname came from the fact he had a dead tooth that looked bluish. The company named the technology, developed to wirelessly unite computers with cellular devices, after him for his ability to unite ancient Scandinavia.

"We have here the rare case of a discovery that appears to corroborate historical sources", archaeologist Detlef Jantzen told The Guardian.

The technology logo carries the runic letters for his initials HB.

Archaeologists find silver treasure on German Baltic island