The oldest terrestrial globe known was created in 1492, when Spaniards and Portuguese began their voyages to the Indian and discovered new territories, with their navigation routes.
For years they were valuable objects only within the reach of kings and nobles. They were elaborate and expensive to produce and held in high esteem. It is necessary to take into account then that to possess one of these balloons had to have “possibles” in addition to the sufficient knowledge on all the known territories, reason why it became to all a symbol of status.
Over time, they became more affordable although they remained precious pieces. Today the old earth globes are pieces coveted by their beauty and are a window to the world as it was conceived in those times.
The best specimens are very rare to find in the market.¨
Does the Condition matter?
As we have said with all the antiques, the condition in which a piece is found is very important. Small defects like a small scratch or repairs on paper are assumed in all ancient balloons as they are extremely fragile, Look for any dents, bumps or signs that you have suffered a fall or any damage other than the mere passage of time. Make sure that the base on which it is seated is stable and presents no appreciably significant damage. A quality base in good condition can make the difference between a good piece and an extraordinary piece. Many of these bases also incorporate a compass so that, if it is the case, it must be taken into account that it does not lack and that it works.
The Date, is it important?
The date of manufacture of a piece is very important? And so, globes before the first world war are ideal for most collectors, those belonging to the seventeenth century are among the rarest and most expensive, also decorative. Every globe also has associated socio-political knowledge of the time when it was made with territories yet to be discovered or a division of changing borders. It is curious to see how in the earth globes of a late eighteenth century, North America is simply a vast unexplored territory.
The World’s Oldest Surviving Terrestrial Globe exist in Germany. The globe shows the world as it was known in 1492 when it was created by Martin Behaim. The Erdapfel, or ‘earth apple’ in German, shows what people in the 1400s knew and thought of the world around them. Here you can see the globe below: