Loose Rock in Garden Turns Out to be Worth Thousands

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


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