A man who bought an oyster to cure his hangover was delighted to find a very rare pearl inside.

''My dad has been in the business even longer and he's never heard of it either.''

James Humphries, from Cornwall, south west England, beat odds of one million to one when he discovered the item, which he found when he started eating one of the molluscs and felt a lump in his mouth.

Fishmonger Gareth Horner - whose grandfather set up E Rawle & Co fishmongers, where James bought the oyster, in 1936 - said: ''I've been here for 30 years and sold thousands of oysters -- but I've never seen a pearl come out of one.

''My dad has been in the business even longer and he's never heard of it either.''

And James insists he has no plans to sell the priceless pearl.

He added: ''I'm thinking of getting the pearl made into a piece of jewellery - possibly a little silver fish with the pearl for its eye.''