1575 Map of Cambridge
I purchased it from a local auction house. There were three items in the group. I paid $275 for all three. And I'm just trying to figure out how old it is and what the value is. It appears to have some age to it, but I wasn't really sure if it was legitimate or not.
Okay. Well, you might be surprised that it's almost 450 years old. In fact, it is from the first collection of views of the world that was done in Europe. About 1575. It's from a book called the Civitates Orbis Terrarum, or "Cities of the World." This is, as you know, Cambridge. And you can see this is what the Elizabethan English were wearing at the time. Not only is it that old, but the color is that old. This is actually the original color, put on about 1575. Now, all that is the good news. There's some serious bad news here, which is this is mold. And mold is bad, bad, bad. If you do not treat this, this map is going to die. It's going to be eaten up and it's just going to go away. Now, in terms of the value as it is, you can sell this in a retail shop for about $1,800. So a fair bit. If it were in perfect shape, it would be worth about $2,500. Once you remove that, it would probably be about a $2,000, maybe $2,100 map.
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Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."
Note the date: Take note of the date the appraisal was recorded. This information appears in the upper left corner of the page, with the label "Appraised On." Values change over time according to market forces, so the current value of the item could be higher, lower, or the same as when our expert first appraised it.
Context is key: Listen carefully. Most of our experts will give appraisal values in context. For example, you'll often hear them say what an item is worth "at auction," or "retail," or "for insurance purposes" (replacement value). Retail prices are different from wholesale prices. Often an auctioneer will talk about what she knows best: the auction market. A shop owner will usually talk about what he knows best: the retail price he'd place on the object in his shop. And though there are no hard and fast rules, an object's auction price can often be half its retail value; yet for other objects, an auction price could be higher than retail. As a rule, however, retail and insurance/replacement values are about the same.
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