Discovered in a field in Jersey in 2012 by armature metal detector enthusiasts, Le Catillon II is the World’s largest Celtic coin hoard; it has been estimated that it contains up to 70,000 silver alloy coins plus gold and silver jewellery.
The hoard is the centrepiece of a major exhibition which looks at the Channel Islands as part of the Celtic and Roman worlds two thousand years ago when they were at the edge of the Empire. The hoard will be in a purpose built laboratory with conservators taking it apart in public, this exhibition features major Celtic treasures from the region these include the 12,000 pieces La Marquanderie hoard from Jersey, items from the Orval Chariot burial from Normandy and the King’s Road Warrior burials in Guernsey, and material from the Gallo-Roman trading vessel from Guernsey (and for the first time two of the major timber frames).
These coins were made about 2,000 years ago – when Julius Caesar and his Roman legions were conquering and the Channel Islands were changing from a Celtic way of life to a Roman style of living.
Three hundred years before the birth of Christ, the Channel Islands were firmly in the Celtic world. Today we know these areas as Brittany and Normandy and the larger islands are Jersey, Guernsey, Alderney and Sark. The Romans referred to this region as Armorica and the people as Gauls.
Read the full history of the coins.
The coin hoard is just one of the amazing objects featured in this exhibition. Jersey Heritage have borrowed a number of ancient artefacts from our neighbours in France and Guernsey to tell the story of the regions Celtic and Roman past. Highlights include:
- Gallo-Roman Trading Vessel - Found in Guernsey harbour in 1982, this 3rd century Gallo-Roman shipwreck is the most intact seas-going vessel of its antiquity found outside the Mediterranean.
- Orval Chariot Burial items - These items, from France, include a gold ring worn by the warrior in the grave, spearheads and an amber bead from the sword chain
- Kings Road Burial items - These items from a female grave include a black shale bracelet and copper neck rings
- Iron Age Pottery - One of the items found is from an Iron Age settlement found in Broad Street St Helier and dates back to the 3rd century BC.
Find out more about the objects and the artwork we have specially commissioned for the exhibition here.
This exhibition is sponsored by Lloyds.
Source: Jersey Museum and Art Gallery [May 26, 2014]