In the small city of Aziziyah, 40 miles southeast of Baghdad, a team of Iraqi archaeologists unearthed a stunning cache of 66 gold coins that are at least 1,400 years old, AFP reported. The artifacts have been linked to the Sassanid era that extended from 225 BC to 640 AD.
The coins — which depict flames and the insignia of a king or a god — were sent to a lab for age analysis, which will better pinpoint their year of origin.
Amazingly, the ancient gold coins are in excellent condition even though they may have been buried for two millennia.
Iraqi officials said on Monday that they hope to put the coins on display in Baghdad’s National Museum. Iraqi archaeologists believe that many more such coins exist, but vandals had stolen them from dig sites after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq and the subsequent removal of dictator Saddam Hussein from power.
It is estimated that 32,000 artifacts were plundered from 12,000 archaeological sites across Iraq, and 15,000 historical treasures were looted from the National Museum in Baghdad.