23 June 2024 The Future is the Product of the Past

Rare gold gifts 2300 years old discovered in the famous Phoenician city of Carthage

Archaeologists excavating the sanctuary of Tophet, Carthage uncovered a collection of offerings, Tunisia’s Ministry of Cultural Affairs announced in a news release. They found five gold coins from the 3rd century BC, tombstones, and several urns with the remains of animals, infants, and premature babies.

Founded by about 2,900 years Phoenicians, Carthage is an extensive archaeological site, located on a hill dominating the Gulf of Tunis and the surrounding plain.  Metropolis of Punic civilization in Africa and the capital of the province of Africa in Roman times, Carthage has played a central role in Antiquity as a great commercial empire.

The Sanctuary Tophet in Carthage had a “shrine area” for the sacrificial offerings and a cemetery area where the deceased was then buried.

Archaeologists excavating the sacred tophet site in Carthage, a place of child sacrifice, found gold coins left as offerings 2,300 years ago. Photo: Tunisia Ministry of Cultural Affairs/Facebook
Archaeologists excavating the sacred tophet site in Carthage, a place of child sacrifice, found gold coins left as offerings 2,300 years ago. Photo: Tunisia Ministry of Cultural Affairs/Facebook

When a French team of archaeologists excavated the site in 1921, they discovered over 20,000 urns, each containing the ashes of a child (mostly newborns, but also children up to the age of four). While ancient sources are unequivocal about the Carthaginians’ practice of child sacrifice, there are various other interpretations as to what may have actually taken place.

The rare gold coins are about an inch in size and have a design showing the face of Tanit, an ancient goddess of fertility and motherhood, the Tunisian outlet Shems FM reported.

The coins were left as offerings to the Tophet’s main deities, the god Hammon and the goddess Tanit, by wealthy worshippers, Arabic RT reported.

Several urns found at the sacred site. Photo: Tunisia Ministry of Cultural Affairs/Facebook
Several urns found at the sacred site. Photo: Tunisia Ministry of Cultural Affairs/Facebook

Professor Syed Imad bin Jarbaniyah, Archaeological and Historical Research and Director of the National Institute of Heritage’s Department of Programming, Cooperation, Publishing, and Training, “These gold coins, which were recently discovered, reflect the wealth of that historical period and confirm Carthage’s cultural value,” he said.

The Sanctuary of Tophet of Carthage is classified among the most important Punic monuments at the site of Carthage and in the western basin of the Mediterranean Sea as a sacred space dedicated to the gods Tanit and Baal Hammon.

Google Translate was used to translate.

Related Articles

Paleontologists have discovered a new species of giant rhino

18 June 2021

18 June 2021

Paleontologists studying in China have found a new species of gigantic rhinoceros, the world’s biggest land animal. According to a...

DNA from 20,000-year-old deer-tooth pendant reveals woman who wore it

4 May 2023

4 May 2023

A pendant made of a deer tooth that was exposed to DNA about 20,000 years ago has yielded clues about...

The first analysis results confirm that the grave in Tiarp is one of the oldest stone burial chambers in Scandinavia

31 January 2024

31 January 2024

In Tiarp, close to Falköping, Sweden, archaeologists from Gothenburg University and Kiel University have discovered a dolmen that dates back...

In Medieval burial ground, a rare embroidered Deisis depicting Jesus Christ was discovered

26 February 2023

26 February 2023

Russian archaeologists have uncovered a rare embroidered Deisis depicting Jesus Christ in a medieval burial ground. 46 graves have been...

The oldest grave in northern Germany 10,500 years old

14 October 2022

14 October 2022

Archaeologists have discovered the oldest known human remains in northern Germany in a 10,500-year-old cremation grave in Lüchow, Schleswig-Holstein. The...

First direct evidence of drug use as part of Bronze Age ritual ceremonies in Europe

6 April 2023

6 April 2023

An analysis of human hair strands recovered from a burial site in Menorca, Spain, reveals that ancient human civilizations used...

A previously unknown subterranean tract of an Augustan-era aqueduct has been rediscovered in Naples

4 February 2023

4 February 2023

A previously unknown subterranean tract nearly half a mile long of an Augustan-era aqueduct has been rediscovered in Naples, southern...

In the excavations at Tepecik Mound in Aydın, Türkiye, a palace-like structure dating back to the 13th century BCE was discovered

13 August 2023

13 August 2023

Excavations at Tepecik Mound in the Çine district of Aydın province, located in the western part of Turkey, revealed a...

Scientists Ancient Landscape Not Seen For 14 Million Years Discovered Beneath Antarctic Ice

26 October 2023

26 October 2023

Researchers have uncovered an ancient landscape that remained hidden beneath the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) for at least 14...

A rare 6,000-year-old elephant ivory vessel was unearthed near Beersheba

9 April 2024

9 April 2024

A recent excavation near Beersheba in southern Israel uncovered an ivory vessel crafted of elephant tusks dating to the Chalcolithic...

Google Earth Helped Archaeologists Make İmportant Discoveries in Leicestershire

26 April 2021

26 April 2021

After Google Earth revealed traces of underground structures, archaeologists digging at a Roman settlement in Leicestershire say they have made...

Zeugma of the Black Sea to be will Restore

8 February 2021

8 February 2021

Hadrianaupolis Antique City is located 3 km west of Eskiyapar district of Karabük. This ancient city has been known as...

Ancient Mythical Castle “Sörby Borg” Discovered on Swedish Island Creates Archaeological Sensation

4 August 2021

4 August 2021

A text from the early 18th century mentions the castle, which has become a bit of a legend. It has...

Archaeologists find rare treasure in Suzdal of Russia

15 August 2021

15 August 2021

The twentieth season of fieldwork brought an unexpected discovery to the Institute of Archeology of the Russian Academy of Sciences....

The Anahita Temple in western Iran is Being Restored

11 June 2021

11 June 2021

A restoration project has been commenced on the ancient temple of Anahita, which is located in the city of Kangavar,...