Amateur Treasure Hunter Discovers ‘Gold Find of the Century’

Amateur Treasure Hunter Discovers ‘Gold Find of the Century’

( – A doctor ordered 51-year-old Erlend Bore from Norway to get more exercise. Bore dreamed of being an archaeologist as a child, so he decided to buy a metal detector and go exploring. In August of 2023, Bore had been using his metal detector to search the island of Rennesoy for several hours and had only found some trash. He was about to call it a day and return home when the gadget started beeping as he swept it near a small hillside.

Bore unearthed nine gold medallions, ten gold pearls, and three gold rings. The treasure was hidden about 5 inches below ground. The pendants, called bracteates, are flat gold discs that were likely once part of a flashy necklace worn by society’s most elite. The one-sided bracteates are unique in that they display an intricate design of an injured horse and were obviously fashioned by a skilled artisan.

According to Sigmond Oehrl, an archaeologist at the University of Stavanger’s Museum of Archaeology, this design is important to pre-Christian symbolism in Norway. He said the horse is similar to the Christian symbol of the cross as it simultaneously represents a time of distress and hope.

The jewelry was buried around 500AD and is therefore considered state property under Norwegian law. Bore and the owner of the property where the treasure was found could be entitled to a finder’s fee. The amount is currently undecided but could be the gold’s minimum value plus 10%.

Bore lives near Stavanger in a small seaside resort called Sola. He still explores with his metal detector but claims his more recent finds of items like “sheep ear tags and a teapot lid” are not as exciting. He said he was “up for days” after the adrenaline rush of finding such a rare treasure.

The jewelry is to be displayed at the Archaeological Museum in Stavanger which is located 200 miles southwest of Oslo.

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