An ancient gold coin proves that a third century Roman emperor written out of history as a fictional character really did exist, scientists have said.
The coin bearing the name of Sponsian and his portrait was found more than 300 years ago in Transylvania, once a far-flung outpost of the Roman empire.
Believed to be a fake, it had been locked away in a museum cupboard.
Now scientists have said scratch marks visible under a microscope prove that it was in circulation 2,000 years ago.
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