This article will highlight the numerous gems that have been discovered while posing no risk to the finders or those still at large.
Humans have long been attracted by the idea of precious objects hidden in various parts of the world waiting to be found by the right person, from ancient mythology like Jason’s quest for the Golden Fleece to literary tales like Treasure Island. The success of the Indiana Jones films in the 1980s and subsequently National Treasure in the early 2000s contributed to this sense of adventure. Although though the majority of these treasures are made up, individuals have nonetheless searched for what they believe to be real-life treasures, including the infamous Lost Dutchman’s Gold Mine and the magnificent Seven Cities of Gold. Many people have dedicated their entire lives to looking for these, with some even dying in the process.
The Lake Toplitz treasure in Austria is an example of this. The Third Reich is said to have dropped a large amount of money there around the conclusion of World War II, but all that has been discovered so far is a collection of fake British currency. The Austrian authorities restricted further exploration of the area as a result of treasure hunters risking their lives by diving deeper into the lake in search of the “Real treasure.” Yet in this post, we’ll highlight some of the undiscovered jewels while also showcasing the different finds that have been made without causing harm to the discoverers.
25 Found: The Ophel Treasure
On September 9th, 2013, a respectable-sized treasure was discovered in Jerusalem during an archaeological dig. The Ophel treasure, so named because it was discovered near the famed Temple Mount hill, was made up of 36 gold pieces, including a medallion with a menorah image on it (as seen above), two additional medallions, a coil, and a few pendants that may have been decorations for a Torah scroll.
Collectively, these artifacts are from the late Byzantine era and may have been left behind when the Persians captured Jerusalem in 614 CE (or AD).
24 Still Searching: El Dorado
Spanish for “Golden One,” it was initially made known to Europeans in the 1500s as they traveled across Central America in search of Lake Guatavita, the claimed source of this fabled riches.
El Dorado turned out to be a religious ritual carried out by the leader of the local Muisca tribe, who covered himself in gold and tossed various gold objects into the lake to thank the Gods.
The Spaniards then attempted to drain the lake in 1545, during which time they retrieved some gold, and again in 1911, many centuries later.
23 Found: The Saddle Ridge Hoard
According to Dan Whitcomb of Reuters, a California couple was walking their dog one day in April 2014 when they discovered a metal can coming out of the ground. After digging out the can, which was rusted from age and contained a sizable hoard of gold coins, they were able to open it.
Soon after, the couple discovered comparable cans on their land that contained coins from the 19th century; however, it is unknown why they were buried there or who was responsible.
In any case, the coins were then given the moniker “Saddle Ridge Hoard” and taken to Kagin’s currency firm.
22 Found: The Frome Hoard
This extensive collection of Roman coins, which is named after a town in Somerset County, England, was unearthed in 2010 by a man by the name of David Crisp. He was a metal detectorist by trade, and when his detector went off, he discovered this hoard.
He dug up 21 coins, then went further and discovered a two-foot-tall pot before contacting the authorities.
The collection, with an estimated worth of 320,250 pounds, was eventually handed to the Museum of Somerset after it was discovered that the pot included additional coins, increasing the total number to 52,503. (or about 409,797 dollars).
21 Still Searching: The Florentine Diamond
This Pink Panther diamond is a real-world example (from the original film with Peter Sellers and not the Steve Martin remake). According to Reader’s Digest, this unique diamond, which weighs 137.27 carats, was originated from India and eventually passed via the Medici family before being acquired by the Imperial House of Austria.
But after World War I broke out, the Imperial Family was had to flee, and they took the diamond with them to Switzerland, where they never again heard of it.
As a result, there were many different explanations on how it vanished, including theft and fracture.
20 Found: The Harrogate Hoard
This hoard was also uncovered with metal detectors near the English town of Harrogate, in the county of North Yorkshire, three years before the Frome Hoard. David and Andrew Whelan, a semi-retired businessman and his son, were the two who discovered it.
In addition to the 617 silver coins, the trove also included different ornaments and jewelry, including necklaces, one of which was made entirely of pure gold.
The treasure is thought to have belonged to a wealthy Viking who resided in the Kingdom of Northumbria during the tenth century because the coins originate from several locations.
19 Found: The Ringlemere Hoard
This group of Anglo-Saxon artifacts was discovered around the turn of the century, specifically in the year 2001, at a farm near Kent County in England by amateur archaeologist Cliff Bradshaw, who discovered them using a metal detector.
He found a brooch and a cup with a height of fourteen centimeters among the things.
Unfortunately, it appears that a plough severely crushed its sides. Bradshaw notified the authorities, and the trove was then transported to the British Museum. A burial site from the Early Bronze Age was discovered once the region had been fully excavated.
18 Still Searching: The Max Valentin Owl
A man who went by the nickname “Max Valentin” produced a treasure-hunt book in the early 1990s called Sur la trace de la chouette d’or (or On The Trail Of The Golden Owl in English).
He promised to offer the finder of a golden owl statue concealed in the French countryside one million Francs, or roughly $992,216, as a reward.
Even though the book offered a number of hints as to the owl’s whereabouts, no one has been able to determine its exact location to this day, which was made more difficult by the author’s demise in 2009.
17 Found: The Cuerdale Hoard
There were some bridge builders working close to the river that flows through the Cuerdale region, which is home to the titular Cuerdale Hall and no other communities at the time, around 1840. (though back then it was a small town).
They discovered a lead box here, and when they opened it, they discovered a significant Viking treasure that contained, according to BBC History, some 8,600 pieces, including silver coins, jewelry, and ingots.
Following their discovery, the men stole one coin each for themselves before giving Queen Victoria the remainder, which eventually led to some of the coins ending up at the British Museum.
16 Found: The Hoxne Hoard
A hammer was misplaced by a British farmer named Peter Whatling in the early 1990s. This prompted him to invite a friend over, whose metal detector turned up more than just the hammer.
The two men discovered a variety of silverware, jewelry, and coins made of silver and gold within an oak-wood trunk.
These artifacts are listed in the Ancient History Encyclopedia as being from between the Fourth and Fifth Centuries, which suggests that they are Roman in origin. As archaeologists conducted additional excavation in the region and discovered Roman bowls and ladles, this was further supported.
15 Some found: The Confederate Gold
There was unaccounted gold worth millions of dollars after the Civil War ended. Though a few facts have emerged, numerous historians and treasure hunters have conjectured about the reason why.
For instance, when the Confederacy’s president was compelled to leave Richmond, Virginia, in April 1865, he boarded two trains bound for the south, one of which was carrying the Confederate States’ entire treasury.
The rest of the gold was supposedly lost after being placed in various locations for storage, leading some to believe that it eventually ended up in Lake Michigan.
14 Found: The Staffordshire Treasure
This treasure trove, which is thought to be worth 4.1 million dollars, was discovered in 2009 by a man by the name of Terry Herbert using a metal detector in a plowed field close to Hammerwich Village in Staffordshire County, England.
Here, he discovered a variety of Anglo-Saxon-made objects, from weapons to religious artifacts.
They are believed to date from the eighth century and possibly earlier, when England was divided into various tiny kingdoms, including Mercia, Kent, and Northumbria, to mention a few, though archaeologists have not been able to determine a precise date of inception.
13 Found: The Środa Treasure
A few structures in the Polish town of Roda lska were going to be demolished in the middle of the 1980s when some intriguing items were discovered. The first gift was a silver vase containing 3,000 coins; other items included a golden crown (as seen above), a ring with an insignia in the form of a dragon head, and several others.
Several archeologists have conjectured about the origins of these artifacts and their true worth going back to the Fourteenth Century. Yet, the most widely accepted theory is that Charles IV of Bohemia used them as pawns.
12 Still Searching: The Awa Maru Treasure
When America attempted to send supplies to its POWs in Japan toward the conclusion of World War Two, this ship found itself in the midst of a complicated scenario. Yet, in return, they were required to permit Japanese ships to get past American naval defenses without bombing them.
Thus, they made attempts to smuggle out a number of items to win the war, including its smartest individuals historical treasures and other assets that are today valued at 5–10 billion dollars.
However, the Awa Maru was torpedoed and sank into the water close to China as a result of a communication blunder.
11 Found: The Sree Padmanabhaswamy Treasure
Get a load of this if you think that name is a mouthful! The archeologists and firefighters who were hired to inspect this holy temple found across several underground rooms that contained valuable objects that were estimated to be worth billions of dollars during the inspection that the Supreme Court of India had ordered in 2011.
They can include gold coins from the East India Company, bags of diamonds, and more.
Notwithstanding some claims to the contrary, it is highly disputed that the worth of this treasure exceeds that of the riches in the Tirumala Venkateswara Temple to the north.
10 Found: The Caesarea Treasure
There have been numerous jewels found in the harbor of this location, which bears the name of an ancient city on the Israeli coast that is now a national park.
The first significant one occurred in 2015 when two divers found about 2,000 gold coins from the tenth to the twelfth centuries.
Then, a year later, two more divers discovered the wreckage of a sunken ship and unearthed numerous bronze statues and other what look to be Roman artifacts (as shown above). Nevertheless, in particular, the reign of Emperor Constantine, for whom the city of Constantinople was called (306-337 AD).
9 Found: The Panagyurishte Treasure
At the titular town in Bulgaria, three brothers were looking for clay in 1949 when they discovered various items made of pure gold. These artifacts, which total more than 13 pounds in weight and date to the Fourth Century BC, were carved into drinking horns (like the one shown above), unique vases, and decanters.
Whilst the title “Thracian” was a designation that the Ancient Greeks applied to these people, it is thought that these objects were utilized for religious purposes, particularly by the Thracians who were in the region that would become Bulgaria at the time.
8 Found: The Bactrian Gold
This collection, which was discovered during the excavation of the Tillya Tepe site in Afghanistan, also known as the Bactrian Gold site, includes more than 200,000 gold jewelry that were retrieved from burial mounds that date from the First Century BC to the First Century AD.
Also, the products were made in a variety of nations, including India, China, and Greece.
The collection was discovered in 1978, but after multiple instances of looting at Afghanistan’s National Museum during the Afghan-Russian conflicts, it was assumed to be gone. Since then, the majority of the artefacts have been found and are now housed in different museums.
7 Still Searching: The Oak Island Money Pit
This elusive treasure off the coast of Nova Scotia, Canada, was first found in 1795, according to the Huffington Post, and it has captured the interest of treasure hunters for generations.
It all started when Daniel McGuinness, a teenage guy, was enticed to the island after he allegedly saw lights and fell into a hole.
He and his companions began exploring it in the hopes of unearthing hidden wealth but ultimately came up empty-handed. Yet, this didn’t stop others from trying to pick up where they left off, digging a bigger hole in the process and making the original essentially disappear.
6 Found: The Siebenberg House Artifacts
This home, which is in Israel’s Jewish Quarter, has been converted into a sort of museum after its owner, Theo Siebenberg, discovered a cache of numerous artifacts with important archeological significance. Following the infamous Six Day fight, Siebenberg purchased the home in 1970. During the next 18 years, he dug beneath it to disprove the doubters’ claims that valuable ancient relics were hidden there.
He discovered burial vaults that date back to King Solomon’s reign, 3,000-year-old ritual baths called Mikvahs (or Mikvehs), and several apartments carved into the rock.
5 Found: The Hanuman Dhoka Palace Treasure
This historic palace was being renovated in Kathmandu, Nepal, in 2011 when the workers unearthed a remarkable find. Three boxes hidden in a storage that hadn’t been opened in many centuries contained 80 kilos of silver decorations and three kilograms of gold jewelry, respectively.
These jewels reportedly date back to the Malla Kings’ control over Nepal beginning in 1200 AD.
Their reign came to an end in the late 1700s when King Prithvi Narayan Shah assumed control and founded the Kingdom of Nepal, which was followed by a time of prosperity and turbulence.
4 Still Searching: The Monterrey Loot
The Peloncillo Mountains and Skeleton Canyon are located on the border of Arizona and New Mexico. There are allegedly many hidden treasures here, but the Monterrey Loot is one of the most well-known.
According to Listverse, it was named after a Mexican city that a band of robbers raided towards the close of the nineteenth century.
The robbers returned to the United States, carrying 39 gold bars, one million dollars’ worth of coins and gems, as well as a number of Catholic antiques.
3 Still Searching: The Lima Treasure
The wealth the Spaniards had amassed after conquering the Incan Empire in the sixteenth century was taken and kept in the Peruvian capital of Lima. According to NOVA Online, this comprised a wide range of gems, religious sculptures, gold bars, and silver bars, all of which were worth at between 12 and 60 million dollars at the time.
Sadly, the most of it was taken by British pirates who allegedly buried it at Cocos Island before being captured by the Spaniards, while the captain and first mate who were still alive disappeared on the island.
2 Still Searching: The Poverty Island Treasure
In addition to the Confederate Gold, Lake Michigan is the location of another ostensible treasure that is close to Poverty Island, which has a depressing lighthouse. However, there are several tales about the origin of this treasure, ranging from a French ship carrying gold that may have belonged to Napoleon Bonaparte the Third being scuttled by pirates to belonging to James Strang, who may have lost a lot of gold in the lake after his religious colony on Beaver Island failed.
Regardless of where it came from, the stated value of this gold has been calculated to be 400 million dollars.
1 Still Searching: The Forrest Fenn Treasure
This treasure, which bears the name of the man who hid it after beating a terminal disease, is said to be hidden someplace in the Rocky Mountains. The contents of the chest, which is locked inside, are unknown. According to Forrest Fenn’s acquaintance, it contains a variety of gold artifacts, including coins and nuggets, which were among the millionaire and art collector’s prized treasures.
Despite being constructed by Fenn and his friend in the late 1980s and being buried in 2010, many individuals have been looking for the chest using the hints offered in books that Fenn has published.