Does anyone buy books anymore? Apparently so, as six first editions by Jane Austen made history at a recent sale. It is always noteworthy when any of her first edition books hit the auction block, but to have all six of her major novels up for sale in the same auction, still with their period binding, is quite astonishing. The novels far exceeded their estimates as one collector managed to buy them all! Pride and Prejudice, 1813, probably her most famous novel, was estimated at $20-30K and brought $80K ($100K w/p). The rarest of the group, as there were less than 1000 first edition copies printed, was Sense and Sensibility, 1811; it was estimated at $30-40K and sold for $65K ($81,250 w/p). Emma, 1814, (now out in theatres – https://www.imdb.com/title/tt9214832/) was the only edition to have a dedication, “to the Prince Regent, the future King George IV”, was estimated at $15-20K, and earned $22K ($27.5K w/p). Mansfield Park, 1814, sold for $16K ($20K w/p – est. $8-12K); and lastly, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, both from 1818, sold together for $9,500 ($11,875 w/p – est. $3-4K). The total for the six novels was just over $240K, a really nice addition to someone’s library!
If you’re in the market for a great new addition to your library, check out “The Art of Still Life” by Todd Casey, available on Amazon.