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900 year old African coins were found of the coast of Australia, making them the oldest foreign artefacts found on the continent, predating the Europeans by centuries.

Unravelling the mystery of Arnhem Land’s ancient African coins

An AG Society-sponsored expedition set out in July 2013 to solve the mystery of 12th Century coins found in the NT.

Image credit: Courtesy Powerhouse Museum

MYSTERY AND MAGIC still inhabit the wild places. Few are wilder than the Northern Territory’s Wessel Islands, which arch out into the Arafura Sea like a reaper’s scythe, harvesting flotsam from Indonesia’s fabled Maluku, or ‘Spice’, Islands, just a few days’ sail to the north-west. And no mystery is more beguiling than the 900-year-old coins from a medieval African sultanate, found on one of the archipelago’s beaches during WWII by RAAF serviceman Morry Isenberg.

By far the oldest foreign artefacts ever found in Australia, the Kilwa sultanate coins are now held at the Powerh… Continue Reading (11 minute read)

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