Vale of York Hoard

06.21.2010 - By A History of the World in 100 Objects

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The history of the world as told through objects that history has left behind. This week Neil MacGregor, the director of the British Museum, has chosen objects that bring life to the traders, pilgrims and raiders who swept across the vast expanse of Europe and Asia between the 9th and 13th centuries.
Today he is with a great Viking treasure hoard that was discovered by metal detectors in a field in North Yorkshire. This dramatic, recent discovery, consisting of over 600 coins buried in a silver cup, dates back to the 10th century and reveals the astonishing range of Viking activity. There are coins here minted as far away as Afghanistan and Iraq! Neil describes what the England of the early 900's was really like. He unravels the clichés that abound about the Vikings. The historian Michael Wood helps set the scene and the father and son team who found the hoard, David and Andrew Whelan, recall the excitement of the discovery.

Producer: Anthony Denselow

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