This is the heaviest gold nugget ever, and it's worth £2 million

In the 19th century, a gold nugget was found by two miners. It still has no equal in weight, and it's estimated to be worth around £2 million.

heaviest gold nugget ever discovery worth £2m
© Oat_Phawat / Getty Images
heaviest gold nugget ever discovery worth £2m

In the gold rush game, there weren't just winners. Many people traveled miles and sometimes braved oceans in the hope of unearthing the literal nugget that would make them rich. At the very end of the 1860s, Richard Oats and John Deason hit the jackpot, and their discovery earned them a small fortune.

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A golden nugget called Welcome Stranger

150 years after this lucky discovery, it's easy to imagine the look on the faces of these two gold diggers when they unearthed this rare pearl. It was February 5, 1869 in Australia when Oats and Deason stumbled upon this 61-centimetre chunk.

In fact, the nugget was so large that the two gold diggers had some difficulty putting it on the scales! Nicknamed 'Welcome Stranger', it weighed no less than 72 kilograms - the weight of an average adult.

The two gold diggers were rewarded (but poorly)

After being appraised, the nugget was split and melted down. In exchange, Oats and Deason received money. You'd think that discovering the world's biggest nugget would turn anyone into a billionaire... but the two gold diggers ended up with 'only' £10,000!

Obviously, £10,000 from 1869 was worth a lot more than it is today, but the reward seems paltry. According to the BBC:

If sold today, it is estimated that the nugget would fetch in excess of £2 million and would probably have significant prestige value.

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This article has been translated from Gentside FR.

Sources used:

BBC News: Welcome Stranger: World's largest gold nugget remembered

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