African Coins Found in Australia Are 1,000 Years Old: Researchers

May 20, 2013 Updated: July 18, 2015

African coins found in Australia? Researchers found five African coins dating back around 1,000 years in Australia’s Northern Territory, which could potentially force historians to come up with a new narrative as to who first discovered Australia.

The coins were found in 1944, but new research found they were that old, reported the Australian Associated Press. They were discovered by an Australian soldier stationed on the Wessel Islands during World War II.

Ian McIntosh, professor of anthropology at Indiana University, said in a statement: “Multiple theses have been put forward by noted scholars, and the major goal is to piece together more of the puzzle. Is a shipwreck involved? Are there more coins?”

Researchers said the coins dated back to 900 and the 1300s, and were from Kilwa Sultanate, located in Tanzania.

“All options are on the table,” he continued, “but only the proposed expedition can help us answer some of these perplexing questions.”

Indiana University researchers suggest the coins could be remnants of an early shipping network that linked East Africa, India, and the Spice Islands.