Canadian researchers have discovered a technique that enables them to link silver and gold found in ancient Greek and Roman coins back to the Mediterranean locations where the source metal was mined.
Researchers at McMaster University in Ontario are mapping the “metallic DNA” of ancient Greek and Roman coins, according to CTV.
“They have developed a technique that makes it possible to determine the precise metal content of ancient coins by bouncing subatomic particles off their surface. Repeated thousands of times over the course of weeks, the process begins to reveal exactly what the coin is made of,” CTV reported.
Once the “metallic fingerprint” is complete, researchers can begin to link the coins back to the Mediterranean locations where the metal was mined, said Spencer Pope, one of the researchers leading the project.