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Saturday, May 11, 2013

Valuable mementos of Wilde and Yeats

The BBC reports

Poems by two of Ireland's most famous writers in their own handwriting, alongside photographs of them, have fetched more than £130,000 at auction.
The manuscript of an early poem, Heart's Yearnings, by Oscar Wilde, written at Magdalen College, Oxford, in 1874, sold for £67,250.

It had an estimate of £12,000 to £15,000.

A famous photograph of Wilde taken in New York and signed by the poet went for double the estimated price at £16,250.

It was the work of Napoleon Sarony and was taken to publicise Wilde's writer's tour of America.

Draft copies of William Butler Yeats' poems, Are You Content? and The Spirit Medium, were sold for £15,000.

The manuscript of one of Wilde's most original poems, Les Ballons, sold for £16,250. It is the only known copy of the entire poem in Wilde's hand.

The manuscript was formerly in the collection of John Stetson Jnr, whose father, also John, invented the Stetson hat.

A photograph of William Butler Yeats taken by another American photographer, Alice Boughton, in 1903, was sold for £18,750.

The picture was signed by Yeats in pen and ink and by Alice Boughton in pencil on the image and in ink on the back. It had an estimate of £4,000 to £5,000.

The items were auctioned at Bonham's in New Bond Street, London.

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