Burying the treasure What use were these coins to the people of Birnie? They couldn’t spend them – their economy relied on barter and exchange, not coinage. But the coins were rare and exotic objects made of valuable metal. Like other Roman finds, they were used to show off the owner’s power and influence. Above: Aerial view of the hoards area. Left: Intact quern found upside down in a pit. So why bury these valuable coins? Perhaps it was for safe-keeping. But this seems unlikely – they were buried in an open area, where they would be easily spotted. Other unusual items were also buried in this area – a decorated pot, an ornate sharpening stone, an intact quern (grinding stone). These are probably the remains of sacrifices – valued items offered to the gods to bring good luck to the people of Birnie. The coins themselves can tell us a lot - explore some of the coins in more detail. Above: Rare decorated pot buried upside down in a pit. Two of the coins discovered at Birnie.