Oftentimes I am posed with this question.
How do you classify a keris or a pusaka in accordance to its age? New – Old – Vintage – Antique – Ancient?
Whilst this may be a touchy subject to many, I feel it is best to address this subject with the standards accepted internationally in the arts and curios market.
According to Merriam Webster, an antique is defined as “a relic or object of ancient times” or “a work of art, piece of furniture, or decorative object made at an earlier period and according to various customs laws at least 100 years ago.”
A collectible is defined as “An object desired for its intrinsic, sentimental, artistry value, less than a hundred years old, often distinguished from antiques”.
Any object; verified at being at least 50 years of age but not reaching 100 years or more; desired for its artistry, function, or the likes, is deemed to be as an old collectible.
If antiques are things that are 100 years old or older, what are vintage pieces?
According to Merriam Webster, the term “vintage” was originally applied to bottles of wine. This term was then poached and used as a general term in defining collectible objects.
As a general guide, the term ‘vintage’ should not be used in reference to objects less than 25 years old.
ACCEPTED DEFINITION BY INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS
Most authorities define ‘antique’; to be an item or any piece of furniture or decorative object or the likes, produced in a former period and valuable because of its beauty or rarity; whose age is dated with clear evidence of at least at 100 years of age of more, and is collected or desired for its rarity, condition, utility, or some other unique features.
If an item is not definitively datable to 100 or more years in age, it should not be directly referred to as an antique.
To conclude, when it comes to my definition and acceptance of specific categorisation, in brief, I accept the following categorisation as an acceptable and safe reference.
Must be at proven and verified to be at least as being at minimum 100 years or more.
Must be at proven and verified to be at least as being at minimum 50 years or less but not lesser than 25 years of age.
Must be at proven and verified to be at least as being at minimum 25 years but not more than 50 years of age.
Must be proven and verified to be less than 25 years of age.
This is my personal gauge. Due dilligence is critical before finalising any purchases and it is always important to be well informed so as to add value to yourself and your collection.
But bottom line, if you like what you see and you can afford the offered price, and you feel it worth it, disregard all these factors mentioned above and just buy it.
Khairi Johari @ Pak JoFe
The Keris Collector
21 Jan 2018