A rare Roman coin dating back to AD269 has been found among a private collection in Somerset.
The coin is a radiate of Gaius Marcus Aurelius Marius, an emperor believed to have reigned for only months. It was discovered in the Ilminster area of the county and is part of a collection of hundreds of coins owned by James Stevens Cox, who died in 1997.
Ben Sayers, from the Community Heritage Access Centre in Yeovil, said: “The chances of a coin minted in such a small window of opportunity surviving the best part of 2,000 years are tiny. It is an amazing discovery.”
The centre, which will house the coin, said there could be as few as 50 of the coins in existence in England.
Mr Stevens Cox was born in 1910 and spent 80 years researching the history of Ilminster, where his family home was based.
Gaius Marcus Aurelius Marius was emperor of the Gallic Empire that ended in AD274.