Hoard of gold coins from Carrick-on-Suir, Co. Tipperary. On 14th January 2013, an astonishing discovery was made during works to a public house in Main Street, Carrick- on-Suir, Co. Tipperary. David Kiersey, Shane Comerford, Tom Kennedy, Shane Murray and Patrick McGrath were lifting old floorboards when something caught their eye– a line of coins lying in the earth below. They had just discovered one of the most important hoards of gold coins ever found in Ireland! There were eighty-one gold coins in the hoard: seventy-seven guineas and four half- guineas, each containing a high percentage of gold. The coins date to between 1664 and 1701.
The Power of Gold
Why was it hidden?
It is not known why the hoard was hidden but these were unsettled times, especially for Catholics following the defeat of the Irish Army in 1691 and the enforcement of the Penal Laws, which restricted their rights. It would not be surprising if a wealthy Catholic felt it prudent to hide away some of his wealth under his floorboards!
What was it worth?
The value of the hoard in today’s terms is difficult to assess. At the time the hoard was buried an agricultural labourer was paid about one shilling a day and there are twenty-one shillings in every guinea. The hoard therefore represented over 5 years’ wages for an agricultural labourer!