Thursday, December 20, 2012

Most Expensive Books of 2012

While the lists of best and favorite and bestselling books of 2012 are popping up just about everywhere, Abe Books has gone ahead and compiled their list of most expensive books of the year, from the standpoint of book collectors.

Our top 25 sales from 2012 illustrate the broad nature of rare books. There are modern first editions of iconic books, significant religious and theological works, and pioneering books of science and discovery. 

The top ten are listed below. For the full list of 25, you can see the full piece here. You can also check out Abe Books’ book collecting guide here.

AbeBooks' 10 Most Expensive Sales in 2012

1. Uranometria, Omnium Asterismorum Continens Schemata, Nova Methodo Delineata, Sereis Laminis Expressa by Johann Bayer - $47,729
From 1603, a first edition of the most famous celestial atlas of all.

2. Casino Royale by Ian Fleming - $46,453
A signed first edition of the 1953 Jonathan Cape publication.

3. Die Verwandlung by Franz Kafka - $30,000
A first edition, published 1915 by Kurt Wolff.

4. A Latin bible from 1491 - $26,200
A copy of a “Poor Man’s Bible” (so-called because of its smaller size) printed by Johann Froben in Basel.

5. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak - $25,000
First edition published in 1963.

5. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott - $25,000
A true first edition, in two volumes, from 1868.

5. A Polyglot bible from 1599-1602 edited by Elisa Hutter - $25,000
A folio bible in six volumes bound in blind-stamped tooled leather.

8. Livre d’Heures (book of hours) - $24,680
A book of hours in Latin and French once owned by Etienne de Poncher, archbishop of Tours, in central France, from 1551-1552.

9. Cosmographia by Petrus Apianus - $23,681
Printed in Paris, this is a pioneering book on astronomy and geography from 1551.

10. Les Ruines de les Splus Beaux Monuments de la Grece by Julien David Le Roy - $23,530
A second edition of Ruins of the Most Beautiful Monuments of Greece, two volumes bound together as a single large folio in 1758.


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