Wednesday 2nd October 2019 - Sara Davies
A rare map of the Philippines has broken auction records and sold for 13 times its estimate at auction.
Image by: REEMAN DANSIE/PAUL CUDMAN PHOTOGRAPHY
A 300-year-old map which has been described as the ‘holy grail’ by collectors has recently broken auction house records by selling for 13 times its asking price at a sale held by Reeman Dansie in Colchester. The map was part of a collection which went under the hammer and was described as one of the finest collections ever sold. It's a very good price for a map, especially since there is no X marking a treasure spot.
The Murillo Velarde map of the Philippines was the pinnacle of the collection which was sold for just short of £500,000. FOr collector's that missed out and wanted to get in on a piece of the action there will also be another opportunity for purchase when more of the collection goes to auction in November.
Auctioneer Daniel Wright of Reeman Dansie described the map as “the jewel in the crown” for all collector enthusiasts.
The map was originally purchased by the late Christopher Beresford-Jones who paid £4,500 the map then went on to sell at the Colchester auction house for £260,000 breaking a 138-year old record.
This map was praised by auctioneers and collectors for its accuracy and detail, The auctioneer Mr.Wright stated “the majority of the maps are with private institutes such as the British Museum, so this was a really special sale” The auctioneer Mr Wright also said “ tremendous interest” had been shown from around the world, with more than 800 online bidders and a full salesroom. The map drawn on paper has also been mounted at more than a metre square making it an unusual map for its time.
Another one of these maps was previously found in the basement of an English castle. It had once been used to film the Harry Potter movies, the map has been called by collectors “the mother of all Philippine maps” this rare artefact was discovered when severe flooding forced the duke of Northumberland to sell the 1734 Murillo Velarde map.
This rare collector's item is said to also contain 12 engravings, including the various different ethnic groups who were living on the island at the time. The reason this map is of high importance to the Philippines as it supports its claims to islands in the south china sea that are at present fortified by china. These rare maps increased in value when they were realised to prove the Philippines claim to the islands. This map was used as recently as 2016 to go against China's claims to have sole historical ownership of the south china sea.