Auction of Fine Literature September 30, 2020
Rare First Edition of Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass, 1855, achieved $175,000
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NEW YORK, NY -- Doyle continued the strong success of its rare books auctions with a sale of Fine Literature on September 30, 2020. Featured in the sale was property from The Library of Duncan Cranford, a remarkable collection formed in the late 1930s-40s.
With competitive bidding, the sale totaled a successful $465,431, surpassing the estimate of $272,470-439,780, with an exceptional 96% sold by lot and 100% sold by value.
Highlighting the sale was a fine example of the first edition of Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass, 1855, the very rare English issue which achieved $175,000 against an estimate of $150,000-$250,000. Watch a video and read an essay by Peter Costanzo profiling this monumental work of 19th century American literature. Read More
Also noteworthy was a copy of the first American edition of Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita that soared past its estimate of $5,000-8,000 to realize $55,625. The book was inscribed to celebrated Doubleday editor Jason Epstein by the author with a characteristic butterfly drawing, which excited great collector enthusiasm.
A Rudyard Kipling manuscript for a tale from the second Jungle Book is a very desirable desideratum, with few offered at auction in the last quarter-century or more, and determined bidders drove The Miracle of Purun Bhagat to $23,750, many times its estimate of $4,000-6,000.
Highlighting a choice group of works by A.A. Milne were When We Were Very Young, inscribed to his literary agent, which sold for $13,750, far over its estimate of $4,000-6,000, and Now We Are Six, one of 20 copies on Japan vellum signed by author and illustrator, which fetched $15,625 at the high end of its $10,000-15,000 estimate.
All prices include the Buyer's Premium.
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