What are Antiques?
To some people this may sound foolish. Nearly everyone has a vague idea that antiques are things that are old. It is necessary to be precise. “Any old thing” is not an antique within the special, accepted meaning of that term. An antiquated appearance is no guide. Something more is required. A mere hunk of wood, roughly hewn, however ancient, would not be classified as “an antique”. A good working definition is a relic of the past which enjoys general esteem, and therefore value, in the present. The keywords are “esteem” and “value” Very well then! We must define some period of the past. The usual date taken is 100 years ago, so amend our working-definition accordingly. There is nothing sacrosanct about the 100 year period, but the United States law once allowed antiques of that age and over to be imported free of duty. So it is a convenient yardstick of time, generally accepted in the antique world. “An antique is a relic of the past, 100 years old or more, that enjoys general esteem and therefore value at the present day” This is a useful practical definition and will suffice as a general guide to the subject.
-Antiques Professional secrets for the Amateur by Michel -.