Monday - 01 September 2014

More useful tips but still a bit patronising

20 August 2003Written by ATG Reporter

Miller’s Price Guide 2003: Antiques Under £1000, published by Miller’s. ISBN 184000603X £16.99pb

THROUGHOUT this latest price guide there are the flashed-up headings “The look without the price”, and pages 17 and 20 carry three such examples. One, an ash and elm high splat-back Windsor, Yorkshire, estimated at £270-300, comes with the comment that if this were yew and elm rather than ash and elm we would be talking £600-800. It’s all pertaining to the wood, madam, as was once said to me.

As always with Miller’s Guides, readers continue to be treated as antiques jackasses, as, and still in Windsor mode: “Some better quality Windsor chairs were stained black or japanned black or green and are more valuable in original condition... do not strip them.” Take note, Mr Consultant Editor, Leslie Gillham, now of Gorringe’s, East Sussex.

More helpfully, Mr Gillham comments in his rather perky introduction that even Georgian furniture is affordable, with late-18th century pembroke tables selling for prices that are too good to miss. He also looks at decanters; a George lV facet-cut pair on page 171 will cost approximately £170-180 and good solid Victorian rummers can be bought for less than £50 each.

This guide includes more than 1500 illustrated examples, of which more than half are under £500, and in with the usual contents list there is a five-page section on antiquities. This includes an Etruscan brooch shaped like a bow, 6th-5th century BC, estimated at £60-65. There are no pictures or prints, which is a pity but, as they say, a handy guide, even if estimates are now probably past their shelf-life date.

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ATG Reporter

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