November 17, 2008

Fantastic find - antiquity in the garden

Yesterday, hubby planted about 100 bulbs - hoping that some of them will bloom in spring ;-). He ameliorated the soil with the pickax and suddenly he had the impression he was hitting a stone. But it wasn't a stone, it was this clay bottle:

After cleaning it, we discovered a stamp saying "Herzogthum Nassau" (Duchy of Nassau), a lioncel and the word "Selters" (seltzer):

Let's sum up the information: We found a clay bottle once filled with mineral water, deriving from the former Duchy of Nassau. This Duchy was part of the German Confederation and existed barely 60 years (1806-1866). Folks, that means, our bottle is at least 150 years old, maybe even 200!! So very exciting!

But back to the information: The Duchy was situated in what is nowadays a part of the federal state of Hesse.
The mineral water originates from the well in Niederselters/Taunus Mountains:
* The following information is translated from Wikipedia*
The well was discovered in 1536 and soon the water was said to have curative effects. In the 18th century, the water was verifiably exported to Scandinavia, Russia, North America and Africa.
Between 1806 and 1866, the export of seltzer became the Duke of Nassau's most important source of income.

By the way: Niederselters is about 360 km from our little town, quite an amazing distance for a bottle of mineral water at that time! It definitely means that the owner of our house (in the first half of the 19th century) was fairly wealthy!


Larry said...

AWESOME find!!

I wish we could find interesting things like this.

I'm a huge fan of the Confederation of the Rhine in the Napoleonic period.

Here is one of my favorite kitchen items; it is a pre-war cooking pot I bought from a guy in Germany.

Notice the tusk? Looks kind of like that 'tooth' you found!

Anna said...

Hey, the tusk really looks a bit like our "tooth". Maybe the remains of a medieval feast :-) :-)

neptunetide said...

What a lucky find!

neptunetide said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Larry said...

Tag...your it!

Sandy said...

That is an awesome find.

p.s. Larry has some of the coolest stuff!

ooglebloops said...

What a great find!!! Don't you love treasures you unearth purely by chance???
Happy Holidays!!!!

Anna said...

Hello "Oogleboops" - thanks for stopping by and welcome to my blog!

Just had a look at your blog - very interesting, I'll follow!

Best, Anna

susan hunter said...

Hello fellow old house fixer-uppers! I have house in the Virgin Islands (Caribbean Sea, if yu aren't quickly familiar with the VI) and know what you're going thru - the joys and concerns. Mine was begun in 1697, and my little joke is: It's almost finished!

This week we found a whole new room! In unsealing a portion of a stone wall, for plumbing work, we found 4 of the Herzogthum Nassau Seltzer jugs, plus 20 or so bottles of varying sorts. All jugs are in remarkable condition, except for a chip in the top of one jug. We have yet to go thru all the items found in the "new" room, as the plumbing takes first priority!

But, in research for info, I found you...another treasure! Thank you and all I can say is...I understand precisely what your endeavors entail - the "Wow! Great!" and the "Oh, no! I don't think I can take any more."

St. Thomas Suz