I have some exciting news for you avid Potter book collectors out there. Sotheby’s will be auctioning off a very rare edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone at their English Literature, History Private Press, Children’s Books & Illustrations on Thursday, 15 December 2011.  Peter Selley, Sotheby’s Senior Director and Senior Specialist in the Books and Manuscripts Department said: “Another imaginary realm which has captivated millions of readers is that of J.K. Rowling, and the sale features perhaps the ultimate bespoke Harry Potter novel. The unique copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone includes 10 wonderfully fresh illustrations, offered with the original watercolours, by Thomas Taylor, who created the first ever depiction of the young wizard.” Details on the book are as follows:

Offered for sale for the first time, a unique copy of the first 1999 deluxe edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowling, is estimated at £30,000-50,000. The bespoke, extra-illustrated edition is not only signed by the author but also includes 10 specially commissioned full-colour plates by the original Harry Potter illustrator, Thomas Taylor. The consignor asked Taylor to create the images in 2002 for his own library. The scenes were chosen for their significance and to provide an even spread of illustrations throughout the narrative. They were originally intended to be bound into a copy of the book, but proving too thick, were instead reproduced on fine wove paper and sumptuously bound by Asprey. Thomas Taylor provided the first-ever depiction of Harry Potter for the cover of Rowling’s debut novel in 1997. After it was published the image achieved world-wide fame and Taylor’s original watercolour was sold at Sotheby’s London in July 2001 for £85,750.

If I were rich I would definitely bid on this amazing piece of Potter history, for those of you that don’t know I love collecting the Potter books (US and UK editions for now…and a few French from when I visited Paris). My Harry Potter collection is even featured in a book, The Harry Potter Collector’s Handbook. Photos of my collection can be seen in the gallery.

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