In a few months, gardeners will be grabbing shovels and digging in their spring gardens. Most will simply be unearthing worms and more dirt. In Whiteparish, a village in southern England, a slab was discovered 20 years ago by the owner of a house among the rocks of her garden. It was used for nearly a decade as a horse mounting block.  Recently she discovered her rock is actually an ancient Roman marble slab dated to the second century AD. The question is: How did it end up in the garden of an English bungalow?  The owner noticed a laurel wreath and inscription carved into its surface. The inscription reads: “The people (and) the Young Men (honor) Demetrios (son) of Metrodoros (the son) of Leukios.” The slab is set to be sold in February by Woolley and Wallis, with a pre-sale estimate of up $20,300.  Auctioneers are looking for someone who lived in the area in recent decades who might have information on construction done at the home. The theory is the rubble found in the garden was re-used from other projects.  

Moral of the story? Look for inscriptions if you find an unusual rock in your garden. You never know . . .


roman marble slab

An ancient Roman marble slab found in an English garden
Photo: CNN / Wooley & Wallis


3 responses to “Loose Rock in Garden Turns Out to be Worth Thousands”

  1. Markdegler says:

    Well, as long as England has been populated by so many different tribes and races from all corners of the world for several thousand years, you never know what you’re going to find in your garden in that place.
    I’m very envious of the people who get to go walk up and down to Thames River finding amazing pieces of History from hardware off of ships from the Viking age to glass marbles from the 19th century laying on a beach.
    I’m from Idaho and I forget the name of the town or which reservoir, but there’s a old mining town in a valley that was flooded when I guess a damn was built and the town sits at the bottom of a reservoir or a lake now. I would love to go diving there as the things that would survive a hundred years at the bottom of the lake would be glass and brass and God knows what you’d find laying down there.
    This thing looks like some kind of a monument, but the Romans like to curve and decorate everything around them so it could have been the threshold for somebody’s house or something. Very cool.

  2. Hoggerx1 says:

    I would think it to be a tombstone. Dig a little deeper in your garden.

  3. EJC says:

    Interesting story about the marble slab found in an English Garden being used as a “horse mounting block” causes me to wonder if the garden property had been used as a stud farm?!

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