antique collecting, the assembling of items of aesthetic, historical, and often monetary value from earlier eras. The term antique initially referred only to the preclassical and classical cultures of the ancient world. It is now applied to old artifacts of all cultures. Legally and traditionally, an antique is usually defined as an object that is over a hundred years old.
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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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