Lost Portuguese Ship “Bom Jesus” Found with Gold Coins
In 1533 the Portuguese ship Bom Jesus set sail for India from Lisbon carrying gold coins, ivory and copper ingots amongst its cargo. The ship disappeared without trace during the voyage but the final resting place of the Bom Jesus has now been discovered by diamond miners on the Namibian ‘Skeleton Coast’ in South West Africa.
The wreck was discovered in 2008 when a man-made lagoon was drained towards the end of a diamond mining operation in the area. Rare wooden and leather artefacts were recovered, along with 16th Century weapons. Weather and sea conditions in the region tend to obliterate the remains of wooden ships and archaeologists were excited by the discovery of wooden items dating back almost 500 years.
Six days into the examination of the site Gold coins were found in the remains of a wooden treasure chest.
It is believed that the presence of a quantity of German Copper ingots in the ship’s cargo deterred marine organisms from the area, resulting in the preservation of many artefacts, including the wooden treasure chest which would probably have rotted and spread its contents along the shore in normal circumstances.
As the Bom Jesus belonged to the King of Portugal, the Portuguese Government is still entitled to reclaim the contents of the wreck, valued at up to £9 million but has handed all rights to Namibia.
Why not own a piece of history and buy up the only ancient coin in stock at UK Bullion, the Byzantine 5th Officina coin. This coin actually dates back 900 years before the cargo of the Bom Jesus!