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Rare Harry Potter Proof Copy Sold at Auction for £14,000 After Initial Purchase for 13p

Rare Harry Potter Proof Copy Sold at Auction for £14,000 After Initial Purchase for 13p

A rare proof copy of “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” was sold for £14,000 at an auction, having originally been purchased for just 13p at a second-hand bookshop 27 years ago. The auction, conducted by Hansons Auctioneers on February 26, 2024, in Staffordshire, England, saw the book achieve a significant sum, with a hammer price of £11,000, purchased by a private UK buyer.

The book, an uncorrected proof copy, was initially bought in 1997 as part of a bundle of books for 40p. The seller, who was unaware of its value at the time, described the purchase as a fortunate coincidence. According to Jim Spencer, a Harry Potter expert at Hansons, this copy is notable for its rarity and for containing a misprint of the author’s name as ‘J A Rowling’ on the title page.

The seller, now residing in Bologna, Italy, shared that the book was an incidental find during a routine visit to a second-hand bookshop in Crystal Palace, London. Despite moving internationally several times, the book remained unnoticed until a growing interest in Harry Potter among her children led to its rediscovery.

Prompted by online articles about the value of Harry Potter books, the seller contacted Hansons Auctioneers, leading to the book’s inclusion in the Bishton Hall Library Auction. The sale highlights the ongoing interest and value attached to rare editions of the Harry Potter series, marking a significant event for collectors and fans alike.