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Retired Businessman Finds Million Dollar Viking Treasure

Viking Explorers

<![CDATA[Derek McLennan, a 47 year old retired businessman, has recently discovered one of Scotland's most significant buried treasures, and one of the biggest troves of Viking items found in recent times. He made the discovery of around 100 gold and silver items last month in a field in Dumfriesshire, in southwest Scotland. McLennan made the discovery with just a metal detector, the same device he used to discover around 300 medieval coins in the same area last year. McLennan seems to have a knack for treasure-hunting, which is a hobby of his. The Vikings raided England repeatedly between the eighth and eleventh centuries, and treasure-hunters like McLennan have been aiming to find Viking treasures for years since. Experts have begun inspecting the artefacts, and state that they were buried between the mid-ninth and tenth centuries. Among the treasures is an early Christian cross made of solid silver with enamel decorations. McLennan remarked how he almost never made the discovery on the day he did, as he was feeling sick. He dragged himself out of bed because two of his friends - Rev Dr. David Bartholomew, a Church of Scotland minister, and Mike Smith, pastor of an Elim Pentecostal Church in Galloway - persuaded him to join them in the fields to do some metal-detecting. The first item he unearthed was a silver spoon that had a saltire-type design on it, which he immediately recognised as Viking. He started to get very excited about what he had found, and called his friends over to show it to them. He was yet to realise the magnitude of his discovery however. After further excavation, he found other treasures such as a gold ring that was oval-shaped. Its round shape suggesting that it had been worn. Shortly after the discovery, archaeologists went to the site and made further excavations. During the later excavations, the archaeologists unearthed even more artefacts that were worth much more than the first trove. The treasures that were unearthed include a bird pen, a pot, armbands, a silver cross, and brooches. The pot is probably the most valuable and oldest of all the items found, as it seems to have been at least a hundred years old when it was first buried. It is of a western European (Carolingian) origin, and was discovered with its lid still in place. It may have been a piece of family property that was passed down through the generations. The treasure is now housed in the Treasure Trove Unit at National Museums Scotland. The Head of the Treasure Trove Unit stated that it was a very significant find, and nothing like it had ever been found in Scotland before. Items from a wide range of countries were represented in the buried treasure, including Ireland, Scandinavia, and other places in Europe. The actual value of the treasure is yet to be determined, but experts believe that it could amount to over a million dollars. Because of Scottish law, the proceeds from the finder's fee will be split between McLennan and the Church of Scotland, along with the landowners. ]]>

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