05 Jul Mysterious Temple of Gold
A treasure trove worth around fifteen billions euro has been recovered from secret underground chambers beneath the 16th century Lord Padmanabha temple in India.
The temple, which is dedicated to Lord Vishnu, is run by a trust controlled by descendants of the royal family of Travancore, who ruled an area that is now part of southern Kerala state until after the country gained independence from the British in 1947.
The dazzling hoard – which includes coins minted when the East India Company dominated trade with the sub-continent – has lain untouched for nearly 140 years.
As you would expect from a hoard valued in the billions, there are quite a lot of items described to be in the vault. Among them are reportedly
– sacks full of diamonds from Burma and Sri Lanka
– up to 1,000kg of gold coins
– a rope wound from gold
– thousands of intricate pieces of antique jewelry studded with diamonds and emeralds
– a gold sheaf weighing 500kg
– a 36kg golden veil
– pure gold human figurines
– gold and silver bullion from the napoleonic era
– precious stones wrapped in silk bundles
– a 3ft 6in idol of Lord Vishnu studded with diamonds, emeralds and rubies with an 18ft-long gold chain weighing more than 75lb to adorn it
-a diamond studded iPhone.
…ok that last one is a joke but the rest is real.
Antiquarians simply described the treasure’s worth as “astronomical”.