Treasure hunters have found the oldest set of gold jewelery in Britain dating back 2,500 years.

Friends Mark Hambleton and Joe Kania found a set of gold jewelry called the Leekfrith Iron Age Twisted Necklace in a muddy field in Staffordshire last December. The jewelry set includes three necklaces and a bracelet made from almost solid 18-carat gold, according to Sun.

Amateur metal detectorist Hambleton, 59, admits he always keeps a set of gold jewelry next to his bed to keep watch.

20 years ago, the couple searched the same field but without success. After searching all over the ground in the middle of last winter, Hambleton accepted to give up but Kania suddenly discovered traces.

The jewelry dates back 2,500 years. The reason Leekfrith’s Iron Age twisted necklaces were buried is unclear, but it may have been for safety, an offering to the gods or an act of remembrance.

The decoration on the unique bracelet model has attracted the attention of experts because it is the earliest example of Celtic art in England.

“This unique find is internationally significant. The artefacts date to around 400 – 250 BC, and may represent the earliest Iron Age gold work in Britain,” Julia Farley, PhD Julia Farley, manages the British and European Iron Age collections at the British Museum.

“The twists were probably worn by wealthy and powerful women, most likely those from the mainland who married into the local community,” Dr Farley said.

The gold content in the necklace is at least 80%, each necklace weighs from 31 to 230 g.

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