MEDIAEVAL coins found underneath the St Nicholas Centre more than 25 years ago have gone on display at Aberdeen Art Gallery.
Also on display alongside the three silver coin hoards for the first time is a selection of artefacts from the late 12th century. Ancient textiles, animal bones, leather shoes and clothing were all found during the excavation of the Bon Accord Centre in 2007.
To mark the occasion, Aberdeen City Council’s lead curator of local history and archaeology Judith Stones and Stewart Thain, former assistant keeper of research at Aberdeen Art Gallery and Museums, teamed up yesterday to give a special tour of the exhibition, celebrating the gallery’s 125 years.
Aberdeen has five mediaeval coin hoards on record, all found within a small area of the city centre. Two were found around 1807 but are no longer part of the collections. The other three on display were found separately.
One hoard was discovered in the Upperkirkgate in 1886. The other two were found during construction of the St Nicholas Centre in 1983-84.
Mr Thain, curator of the city’s collection of coins, medals and banknotes for more than 25 years, discussed the three mediaeval coin hoards. They contain nearly 20,000 silver pennies of the reigns of Edward I, II and III between 1272 and 1377.
No other city in Europe can claim the same concentration of hoards.
Ms Stone said: “There have been many archaeological excavations in the city over the past 30 years which have produced stunning evidence of Aberdeen’s mediaeval past, but none quite as outstanding as the investigation in 2007 prior to the extension of the Bon Accord Centre.”