A shocked worker believes a book has just been returned to a library up to 100 years after it was taken out.

Staff in Ontario, Canada, did their usual morning check of their returns bin earlier this week.

But they were stunned to discover an ancient copy of Martin Chuzzlewit by Charles Dickens was sitting at the bottom.

Further investigation found that the book was last seen at the start of the century.

Library officials confirmed they don't have records of the book, but it had a Fergus Library name plate inside the cover.

That suggests it might have been from the facility's original collection, which opened back in the early 1900s.

Borrowing books has caught us all out - but this one was very overdue!

Chief librarian Rebecca Hine told CTV News: "We're guessing it was from 100 to maybe 50 years ago.

"Right on the name plate in the book, it does say 'two cents a day'.

"I did a little bit of research and it looks like probably around 1940 that was the going rate.

"If the book was checked out in 1941, it would have accrued late fees of about $580 at the two-cents-per-day rate."

The copy of Martin Chuzzlewit could have been taken out 100 years ago

They confirmed have "no intention" of trying to find the person who checked the book out to charge fees.

Branch supervisor Kirstin Maki said the book will be put on display to celebrate the library's history.

"It's really cool to have that sort of connection to the past and that connection to the community," she said.

"Lots of us book nerds think it's really neat to have an old book like that around and imagine who has read it."