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More Than $70,000 Paid for Set of Books by Charles Dickens

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Autographed Inscription and Letter Verify Provenance, Increase Value
Charles Dickens Autographed Inscription Inside Book

Inscription hand-written by Charles Dickens in 1863 on the title page of Volume I, Works of Charles Dickens

- Photo Courtesy of Waverly Rare Books
Waverly Rare Books recently auctioned a collection of 30 leather-bound books comprising the "Works of Charles Dickens" selling for $70,800 (including buyer's premium), more than 17 times the high estimate for this set. The auction took place on Dec. 6, 2012.

The 1861-63 Library Edition containing well-known titles such as Oliver Twist, A Tale of Two Cities, and the holiday classic A Christmas Carol, was inscribed in blue ink on the title page of Volume I, The Pickwick Papers, by Dickens himself (as shown above).

The set was also sold with a typed letter from Boston book dealer and publisher Charles E. Lauriat & Co. dated Sept. 30, 1898 verifying the provenance of the volumes. It stated that Dickens had presented the set to a friend 25 years earlier, and it was subsequently sold after the death of the original owner.

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