Last month, we reported the news that a rare first edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone that had been originally purchased for £1 would be going under the hammer at an auction house, and it was expected to sell for over £20,000. The auction has since taken place and the book has exceeded expectations, selling for a whopping £28,500.
Given the overwhelming success of the Harry Potter franchise, it may surprise you to learn that the publisher didn’t have very high hopes for The Boy Who Lived’s first outing. In fact, only 500 copies of the hardback version were printed and the book features a number of typos and errors. Since J.K. Rowling’s books exploded in popularity, this strange first edition has since become highly sought after by collectors and, as the recent auction proves, sells at a very high price.
As the BBC reports, the auction took place at Bishton Hall, Staffordshire, and saw bids coming in from across the globe. The buyer nor the seller wished to be identified, but it is known that the seller originally picked up the book for a mere £1 years ago from a library sale. Jill Gladstone, who works at thew auction house, said that “when the gavel went down there was a round of applause, it was very exciting.”
The errors found on the first edition include a typo on the book’s blurb which reads “Philospher’s” rather than “Philosopher’s.” One chapter, which lists the items Harry needs to bring to Hogwarts features “1 wand” twice on the list.
The auction took place on July 31st, an auspicious date, as it marks the birthday of both J.K. Rowling and her character Harry Potter. No doubt the original owner will be feeling pretty pleased he managed to buy such a rare book at such a reasonable price.