A retired research scientist from the United Kingdom’s north Norfolk has unearthed an extremely rare gold “leopard” coin, dating back to the reign of Edward III.
The Guardian has reported the rare coin is expected to fetch up to £140,000 ($237,000 Canadian) at auction. “I just felt numb when I found it,” Carter told the newspaper. “And then I did the gold dance.” Carter made the discovery while metal detecting.
According to The Guardian, the leopard florin dates from January 1344 and was minted in 23-carat gold at the Tower of London. It had a face value of three shillings or 36 silver pennies and was in circulation for only seven months before it was withdrawn.
“It is in very fine condition and retains light surface marks consistent with a field find,” Nigel Mills, of the auction firm Dix Noonan Webb, told the newspaper “Only five are known to still exist and this is by far the finer of the two known specimens that have come to auction.” Two of the coins are now in the British Museum and a third is at the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford.