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John Lennon manuscripts, drawings sell for $2.9 million at auction

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NEW YORK (Reuters) – Original manuscripts and drawings by former Beatle John Lennon, produced for two acclaimed books he wrote in the mid-1960s, sold for $2.9 million on Wednesday, more than double the pre-sale estimate, Sotheby’s auction house said.

All of the 89 lots in the sale, from Lennon’s 1964 book “In His Own Write” and 1965’s “A Spaniard in the Works,” were snapped up by buyers.

The highlight of the sale was “The Singularge Experience of Miss Anne Duffield,” the manuscript for Lennon’s parody of Sherlock Holmes from “A Spaniard in the Works” which fetched $209,000.

“The outstanding result, the first white glove sale of 2014 at Sotheby’s New York, shows that Lennon’s nonsense verse, puns, wicked humor and comic drawings continue to resonate 50 years after the publication of ‘In His Own Write’ and “A Spaniard in the Works,'” Gabriel Heaton, the deputy director of Sotheby’s books and manuscripts department, said in a statement.

A white glove sale is an auction in which every lot is sold.

Other top items in the auction, just over 50 years after the Beatles’ first appearance in America on the Ed Sullivan Show, included “The Fat Budgie” manuscript, which sold for $143,000, and an ink drawing of a guitar player that went for $137,000.

Heaton, who described the items as the most substantial collection of original artwork and manuscripts by Lennon, said all the lots in the sale were produced at the height of Beatlemania.

Lennon died in 1980, at the age of 40, after he was shot in New York.

The collection was sold by Lennon’s British publisher Tom Maschler, who persuaded him to write the books.


(Reporting by Patricia Reaney; Editing by Piya Sinha-Roy and Tom Brown)

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