Updated date:

A King's Lost Treasure, Buried 800 Years Ago

Author:

To find a king's lost treasure would be a historical event worthy of a museum.

Crossing the Wash, U.K. 1216

Crossing the Wash, U.K. 1216

King John's Lost Treasure

King John's Lost Treasure

King John's Treasure Train, Norfolk, U.K.

Legend tells us that King John, also known as 'Bad King John', was from Lincolnshire to Bishop's Lynn, Norfolk. He was in a hurry to cross what was called the 'Wash' in Britain. The Wash was a four-mile-long tidal inlet with incoming ides covering the swamp.

On October 12, 1216, King John, who was already across and feeling ill, turned to see his treasure train sucked into the swirling whirlpool with his entourage of 3000 souls and all his horses and wagons buried beneath the water. His wagons had hoped to beat the tide but were so laden, and the wheels were sinking fast. This sight alone had to affect King John as he lost all his treasure. The treasure consisted of crown jewels, silver plates, gold goblets, gold coins, and the sword of Tristran. The sword is used for royal coronations.

King John made his way to Swineshead Abbey feeling desolate. This is where the first of theories of his lost treasure took root. It was rumored that a monk, Brother Simon poisoned John and stole the treasure. However, John made his way to Newark Castle, where he died on October 19, 1216. King John is buried in Worcester Castle.

Newark Castle

Newark Castle

King John's Royal Treasure

King John's Royal Treasure

King John's Coffin

King John's Coffin

King John, known as 'Bad King John

Born in 1166 to King Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine, he was not a lovable man. John was crowned king after his brother Richard died. He had tried to seize the crown while Richard was held in captivity. Worse, John was accused of murdering his nephew Prince Arthur throwing him in the Seine River.

King John had lost England's lands in France, leaving destruction wherever he traveled. He was incompetent, evil, sadistic, vindictive, and cruel.

His personal life was just as messed up with his having two wives and several mistresses. He had five legitimate children and many illegitimate children. John's son Henry III became king of England.

King John cared little for his people, imposing high taxes barely allowing the people to exist, forcing the Barons to make him sign the Magna Carta to restrict his authority. The Magna Carta triggered the United States Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It spelled out that "no one is above the law, including the king, that a fair trial, limits on taxation.

It's as if Karma was at work here if the legends are true that King John would have lost all his valuable treasure.

King John Signing The Magna Carta

King John Signing The Magna Carta

The Turning Point of the Magna Carta

The Turning Point of the Magna Carta

Theories of King John's Lost Treasure

As already mentioned earlier, one theory was that a monk at the Swineshead Abbey poisoned King John and stole all his treasure. But, was it a slow-acting poison since King John traveled to Newark Castle just a few days later, where he died?

Some historians believe that King John actually hid the treasure himself to further his own personal crusades for land and power. It seems to fit his selfish personality.

Another theory suggests that in the 14th century, a local Norfolk gentleman, perhaps a baron, suddenly became extremely wealthy. Did he find any of the treasure and neglect to tell authorities keeping the wealth for himself?

Is Anyone Looking For The Lost King John's Treasure

Historian and archaeologist Dr. Ben Robinson has investigated King John's lost treasure for the BBC and the documentary Series. The documentary is The Last Journey of the Magna Carta King. Robinson used LIDAR technology, a combination of light, detection, ranging, with laser images and GPS. Today Robinson works for Historic England and believes after being buried for 800 years; it would be like finding a needle in the haystack.

Raymond Koschuk believes he has found clues using his own device he created as he is both an electrical and mechanical engineer. He believes the treasure is close to the Sutton Bridge. Koschuk hopes to gain funding for his search for the treasure.

Dr. Ben Robinson Historian and Archaeologist

Dr. Ben Robinson Historian and Archaeologist

Raymond Koschuk, Treasure Hunter

Raymond Koschuk, Treasure Hunter

Sources Used

https://www.bbc.com

https://historicalragbag.com

http://norfoldtalesmyths.com

https://www.wsj.com

Comments

fran rooks (author) from Toledo, Ohio on August 25, 2021:

ravirajan01, thanks for visiting. What a historical bonanza it would be if the treasure could be found.

Ravi Rajan from Mumbai on August 25, 2021:

Interesting article Fran. With the modern equipment under the disposal of scientists and archaeologists, it would not be long before somebody actually finds the famed treasure.THanks for sharing.

Rosina S Khan on August 25, 2021:

King John seems to be notorious for his deeds, but his treasure remains a mystery. It would be interesting if someone is able to discover it. Thank you for this intriguing article, Fran.

fran rooks (author) from Toledo, Ohio on August 24, 2021:

Joanne, thanks for your visit. I figured you would know of King John with your wealth of England's history.

Joanne Hayle from Wiltshire, U.K. on August 24, 2021:

Good old King John, as unpopular as you can get! I knew the story but very much enjoyed reading this:-)

fran rooks (author) from Toledo, Ohio on August 24, 2021:

John, thank you for your kind words. I appreciate your visit.

John Hansen from Gondwana Land on August 24, 2021:

I found this a very interesting history lesson, though the question of what happened to King John’s treasure remains unsolved, Nice work, Fran.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on August 24, 2021:

This is an interesting article, Fran. This is one of those mysteries that we may never find the truth. I enjoyed reading about the bad king.

Umesh Chandra Bhatt from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India on August 24, 2021:

Very interesting. Will anyone able to search that?

Related Articles