The coin dates back approximately 1,800 years and is considered to be so rare that it joins the group of only 11 others in its family; Ariel: All the coins were found in northern Israel, from Megiddo and Zippori to Tiberias and Arbel.
A soldier belonging to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), Ido Gardi, uncovered an extremely rare, ancient coin during a training exercise this week near the southern point of Mount Carmel in Northern Israel. The Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) has dated the coin back nearly 1,800 years (158 A.D.), emphasizing that it’s one of a select few of its kind to be found.
Dr. Donald Tzvi Ariel of the IAA said, “This coin joins only 11 such coins from known locations in the National Treasures Department collection. All the coins were found in northern Israel, from Megiddo and Zippori to Tiberias and Arbel.”
The coin contains an inscription of the head of Roman Emperor Antonius Pius. The “tails” side of the coin depicts a Syrian moon god with an inscription that reads, “of the people of Geva Phillipi,” as well as the date that the coin was minted.
Lecturer at Bar-Ilan University, Dr. Avner Ecker, explained that the minting of coins was common under the Roman Empire. He added that “The year marked on the coin is the year when the municipal council was evidently established and its citizens were allowed self-government under the Roman Empire.”
This coin is considered to be a national treasure. And while praising the integrity of Gardi, an official from the IAA stressed the importance of reporting such finds.
*The image used in this article is not the actual coin that was discovered. It is simply one of close comparison.*