A rare 17th century book has been discovered after it was donated to a store in Melbourne.
The legal publication, titled ‘The First Book of Judgements’, was printed in 1655 and was anonymously given, according to 3AW.
While the worth of the book is unknown, it is believed it could be highly prized by law libraries across the world.
A rare 17th century book titled ‘The First Book of Judgements’ has been discovered in Melbourne after it was dropped in a charity bin
Staff sorting through donations to the Brotherhood of St Laurence in Melbourne came across the rare book, which had been wrapped in cardboard and bundled with other donations.
Staff from the book store told Daily Mail Australia the title was printed in 1655 by Thomas Roycroft in London and that the identity of the donor was a mystery.
An inscription on one of its pages says that it was intended to be sold at ‘most stationers shops in London’.
Greg Simpson, the manager of Brotherhood Books, said the book was an old title and looked to be authentic.
‘It certainly looks every bit of 362 years of age. It’s printed in very antiquated fonts, and the language used is a very old style of English,’ he said.
‘It’s bound in what appears to be sheepskin, which may be why the cover is still intact.’
Staff sorting through donations to the Brotherhood of St Laurence in Melbourne came across the rare book, which had been wrapped in cardboard and bundled with other donations
The book appears to have been printed in 1655 by Thomas Roycroft (pictured) and according to its inscription was intended to be sold at ‘most stationers shops in London’
The legal reference book appears to be a record of court cases in London prior to 1655.
Mr Simpson said Brotherhood Books had received a couple of books before that dated from the 1700s, but that this could be the oldest he has encountered so far.
‘We are now in the process of trying to find out more about it, contacting museums and antique book dealers, to determine its authenticity and true value,’ he said.
Brotherhood Books sell second-hand publications online and reinvest the profits in programs to help the disadvantaged.
The group is renowned for uncovering rare and collectable pieces, such as a 1965 first edition of the Jame Bond novel The Man With the Golden Gun.
The manager of Brotherhood Books, Greg Simpson (pictured), said the book looked to be authentic and was printed in very antiquated fonts
The title was transferred to Brotherhood Books (pictured), who sell second-hand publications online and are renowned for uncovering rare and collectable pieces