Could date back as far as 225 BC
San Francisco, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 01/15/2013 -- In Iraq, archaeologists have claimed they have found 66 gold coins that date as far back as 1,400 year. Officials reported the finding on Monday, and added that they hope to put the coins on display in the Baghdad National Museum.
The artifacts date back as far as the Sassanid era, which extended from 225 BC to 640 AD, and will be sent to the laboratory for testing so their authenticity can be confirmed.
The coins were discovered in the town of Aziziya in the Wasit province, and lies 70 kilometers from Baghdad.
The coins have drawings of a king (or possibly god) and depict flames, according to Hassanain Mohammed Ali, who works as director of the provincial antiquities department.
Archaeological sites within Iraq have been vandalized in the recent decade, following the American invasion in 2003. The capital's National Museum was also looted in the subsequent years that followed the invasion.
Nearly 32,000 pieces and artifacts were stolen from 12,000 archaeological sites across the country, while another 15,000 disappeared from the National Museum in Baghdad, according to figures released by the government.
Artifacts were also taken before the invasion by way of illegal excavation at particular sites.
During the first ruling of Saddam Hussein, Iraq enforced laws which protected historical site, but his following rule saw that protection falter. His overthrow essentially ended any reason for the laws to stay enforced. Following the toppling of Hussein's rule, the government had prioritized reconstruction of the war-battered cities and areas rural areas of the country, rather than attempt to preserve heritage sites.
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