A UK couple stumbled upon an unexpected collection of rare gold coins under their kitchen floor. Credit: Spink & Son / Gregory Edmund
While renovating their home, a couple from the United Kingdom discovered an unexpected cache of rare gold coins.
The couple found an unusual cup under the kitchen floor, hidden between old floorboards. Initially thought to be a trivial find, it turned out to be a pot of unimaginable value. The hoard consisted of about 260 gold coins dating from 1610 to 1727, with an estimated value of more than $800,000.
The couple, choosing to remain anonymous, had lived in this home in Ellerby, North Yorkshire for a decade unaware of the hidden treasure beneath their kitchen floor until it was discovered in the summer of 2019. The find prompted them to seek professional advice, leading the couple to contact a London-based company. It wasn’t until recently that they became available at an auction.
Experts confirmed the coins’ authenticity and traced their origins to a family that lived there almost three centuries ago. According to experts, it was the Fernley-Maisters, a prominent and wealthy family from Hull, England, known for their involvement in Baltic trading. The Fernley-Maisters had left a mark on history, with later generations serving as members of Parliament and Whig politicians in the early 1700s, the New York Post noted.
Initially appraised at $231,390, the true worth of the gold coins transcended expectations, valued at a staggering $852,380 at auction. The auctioneer, Gregory Edmund, expressed the uniqueness of the sale, citing the captivating narrative of the coins, unexpected method of discovery, and rare opportunity for collectors in acquiring them.
Emphasizing the value of the discovery, he added: “I will never see an auction like this again,” BBC reported. The auction marked a momentous occasion, heralding the sale of one of the largest hoards of eighteenth-century English gold coins ever unearthed in Britain.
Describing the reaction of a couple, Edmund noted that “the anonymous finders were absolutely staggered by the result. It dwarfed any pre-conceived expectations and set dozens of world records along the way.”
What added even more value to the coins in the eyes of collectors were the unusual errors that made them unique. Thus, among the coins, a Charles II guinea stood out with a mint error, in which “CRAOLVS” replaced the expected “CAROLVS.”
In addition, another rare Scottish coin added to the uniqueness of the collection. The sheer variety and historical significance of the coins contributed to the excitement surrounding the auction, attracting interest from private collectors around the world, including in the U.S., Europe, Australia, China, and Japan.