Image Gallery: Ancient Buried Treasure Eluded Romans

Black Sea Treasure

buried black sea treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition )

Researchers working at the site of Artezian in the Crimea (Ukraine) have discovered two hoards of buried treasure (one hoard shown here) dating to A.D. 45, a time when the people of the citadel were under siege by the Roman army. Here, two silver anklets, beads, numerous coins and a white, glass flask with a two-headed face, one side serious and the other happy.

Funerary Practices

buried black sea treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition)

The hoards were discovered beneath the torched citadel. In A.D. 45 the people of the town were trapped by the Roman army and knew they were likely going to die. Archaeologists believe the hoards may have been "funeral sacrifices" of sorts to prepare their owners for what was to come.

Gemstones

buried black sea treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition)

Among the discoveries from the hoards were gold rings with carved gemstones. They've been buried for nearly 2,000 years and a coin has apparently become stuck to this piece.

Goddess of Love

buried black sea treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition)

More treasures from the hoards: a silver brooch (left) depicting Aphrodite, goddess of love, alongside a pair of winged deities known as Erotes.

Hidden Treasure

buried black sea treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition)

One of the hoards shown from a distance. Originally the treasures would have been inside wooden caskets that have since decomposed.

People of Artezian

buried black sea treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition)

Work at Artezian has been ongoing since 1989 thanks in large part to the efforts of volunteers. There are other treasures the team has unearthed at the citadel that, while not part of the hoards, shed light on the people who lived there.

Graffiti

buried black sea treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition)

The people at Artezian had a fondness for sketching what we might consider "graffiti," as seen here.

Terracotta Figurines

buried black sea treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition)

Researchers also found numerous terracotta figures at the citadel, including this depiction of Demeter, Greek goddess of the harvest.

Spindles

buried black sea treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition)

These ancient decorated spindles were also found on site.

Torched Citadel

ancient citadel with buried treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition)

The citadel was torched by the Roman army in A.D. 45, with many of its inhabitants likely killed. Some time afterward Artezian was rebuilt with stronger fortifications although it, along with the rest of the Bosporan Kingdom, was under the sway of Rome.

Citadel

ancient citadel with buried treasure

(Image credit: Photo courtesy Russian-Ukrainian Archaeological Artezian Expedition)

Another image of the citadel.