Reg Mead And Richard Miles, Amateur English Treasure Hunters, Find $15.6 Million Of Celtic Coins In Bailiwick Of Jersey

06/27/2012 10:25 am ET | Updated Jun 28, 2012

When we were kids, searching for lost treasure was a summer pastime. It didn't matter that our most valuable find ended up being earthworms -- we were driven by the thrill of the hunt. A recent discovery in Bailiwick of Jersey, an island located off the northwest coast of France, may turn us into treasure hunters once again.

Reg Mead and Richard Miles, two English metal detector enthusiasts, have discovered a trove of approximately 50,000 coins dating back to the Iron Age (2,000 years ago). The discovery comes after 30 years of looking for the stash, a hunt that began after a woman told the duo her father came across coins in the field many years earlier, reports The Sun.

Officials estimate that the coins, which weigh three quarters of a ton, are worth around 10 million British Pounds, or $15.6 million. Mead told the BBC that "the old French law is finders keepers," indicating that the pair hope to split the bounty with the farmer who owns the land.

For the time being, however, the duo are content to let archaeologists study the rare coins. By English law, reports ITV News, the treasure technically belongs to the Queen, who may give them the value.

‘It is a very exciting piece of news and perhaps harks back to our cultural heritage in terms of finance, we are a finance center," UK Environment Minister, Deputy Rob Duhamel, told the Daily Mail. He jokingly added, "It was found under a hedge so perhaps this is an early example of hedge fund trading."

According to the Guardian, the largest previous find on the island occurred in 1935, with a discovery of 11,000 coins.

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