Rare Harry Potter books sells for £106,000 world record

A rare first edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J K Rowling has sold at auction for a world record £106,250.

This first edition of Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone has sold for a world record £106,250. Picture: SWNS
This first edition of Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone has sold for a world record £106,250. Picture: SWNS

The copy was inscribed by the author to a friend and her family: “For Meera, Donnie, Nastassia and Kai, with lots of love from Jo (also known as J.K. Rowling)”.

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One of the first supplied to Rowling by the publisher, Bloomsbury, the inscription was dated just a month and one day after the book was published on 26 June 1997.

The 20-year-old book by JK Rowling smashed its estimate of £30,000 at Bonhams' Fine Books and Manuscripts Sale in London. Picture: SWNS

The book went under the hammer at Bonhams Fine Books and Manuscripts Sale in London, where it was expected to make £30,000 and £40,000.

Matthew Haley, Bonhams’ Head of Books and Manuscripts said: “There is always a great deal of interest when first editions of Harry Potter books come to auction, especially, of course, in the very first one in the series.

“This particular example was not only in excellent condition, but it had the added attraction of a very personal inscription from the author herself.”

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was the first of Rowling’s novels about the boy wizard.

The 20-year-old book by JK Rowling smashed its estimate of £30,000 at Bonhams' Fine Books and Manuscripts Sale in London. Picture: SWNS

Written largely in cafes in Edinburgh, the book was published 20 years ago, with a first run of just 500 copies.

It introduced millions of readers to the young wizard who discovers his magical heritage after his parents were killed by the evil Lord Voldemort, and it became an instant bestseller.

Rowling has claimed the book, which scooped most children’s literature awards in the UK, “changed my life forever”.

Like the other six novels in the series, it was turned into a feature film with top British actors and made stars of its three young leads.

Experts have described the series as “the most important and influential children’s books of the late-twentieth and early-twenty-first centuries”.