The Domitianus Coin

c. AD 271

Gallery 36 Coins and Medals


The Lost Emperor

The incredible discovery in 2004 of a coin of an unknown Roman Emperor captured the public’s attention nationwide and rewrote history. Found inside a hoard in an Oxfordshire field, the coin confirmed the existence of an Emperor Domitianus in about AD 271. The coin and the hoard have recently been acquired by the Ashmolean. The coin is one of the most interesting Roman objects ever found in Britain. The Ashmolean is delighted to be able to put it on display for the public so close to where it was found.

The Chalgrove II hoard

The hoard in which the Domitianus coin was found consists of 4957 Roman coins, struck in very base silver (most look bronze), and which range in date from AD 251 to 279. The hoard was found by Mr Brian Malin with the aid of a metal detector in April 2003 on farmland at Chalgrove, south-east of Oxford. The coins were fused together and still in place in a locally-produced Roman grey ware jar.