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1st Issue of Unfinished Tales
Shirrif
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2006/6/5 22:04
From Essex, England
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I was looking at this item on Ebay

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Tolkien-J-R-R-U ... 20045QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

and wonder whether the description is accurate.

"Published in London: George Allen & Unwin. [1980]., 1980. 1st edition, (export edition), 1st state of text. Octavo, original reddish-brown cloth titled in gilt on spine panel.472 pp, index, folding map at rear.

The correct 1st issue, done for export, with no price on the dust wrapper flap. Unrecorded state with the text on page 234 printed inaccurately, with the first part of each letter on the left-hand side of the text missing.

The dust wrapper also differs in that this issue has no blue shading on the spine, and front flap. This issue is not mentioned in Hammond & Anderson's extensive bibliography of Tolkien, and as the printing on page 234 is an error and the dust wrapper is unfinished - the blue colouring is completly left out of the spine- this issue may be assumed to be the 1st state. A very good copy in a very good dust wrapper. A choice copy of a rare book. "

I know that all copies of this book had no price on the dust-wrapper, my copy has a A&U Price Sticker for £7.50 so there is no evidence that this is a special export copy and I also know that Deagol mentions the text on page 234 and the blue colour problem with the dust-wrapper on his site http://www.tolkienbooks.net/html/unfinished_tales_0.htm

So is there any evidence that this is the correct 1st issue, or could this be a pre-release issue?

Posted on: 2006/8/13 1:25


Re: Tolkien Signatures in General
Shirrif
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Shirrif
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I agree with Parmastahir's comments and that you have a real signed calendar with good provenance, but the issue is that a lot of signed items have no provenance and that Tolkien's signature is very easy to fake and adds considerable value to a signed item.

Consider this scenario, I have a early 'Fellowship of the Ring' which I could sell for about £50-100 on Ebay. If I wanted to get a lot more money for this then I could do the following.

Look for names of Professor's in Oxford who were there at the same time as Tolkien and who are no longer alive, Fake a letter from one of their relatives stating that Tolkien had signed the book for this Professor who he knew at Oxford, and insert a fake signature into my book.

If this came up for sale, how would you know if it was authentic. At the moment Forger's do not appear to go to this much trouble, witness the Seymour Hobbit Forgery, as people are still trusting when it comes to signatures and believe that they are genuine.

As well as collecting Tolkien books, I also collect Stamps. For a long time Stamps have suffered from Fakes, Forgeries, Varieties being manufactured, such as cutting out the centre of a stamp and reversing it and sticking it all back to together. I have some postally used German stamps which are probably 90% forgeries.

To get round this, if I want to sell an expensive stamp, each county in the world has an expertising service, where you can send the stamp to a committee, usually at least three recognised experts, who will check and either authenticate the Stamp or state that it as a fake, for a small fee.

This is probably the long term solution for Tolkien signatures as well.

Posted on: 2006/8/13 0:57


Tolkien Signatures in General
Home away from home
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A bit "after the fact", but still pertinent I believe.

Before any such acquisition, eBay (especially) or not, one should contact the seller and ask for a letter of provenance. If they can not or will not provide one, pass on the item. If the provenance is incomplete or suspect, pass on the item. That letter is critical to prove its authenticity and its value. When you have an authentic item, you hold something that the man held, and it doesn't matter how much you paid (at least for us Tolkien enthusiasts). When you buy a fake, it doesn't matter how little you paid for it. So be cautious and take your time. There will "always" be another such item to consider purchasing.

Here is my experience with a signed item:

I acquired a 1974 calendar signed by the professor. I know, "He passed away in September 1973". However, the calendar was issued in August 1973. I asked for and received a detailed explanation before the auction and a personalized and absolutely wonderful letter from the seller after. You may read it and check out his signature (and a short inscription) on my website:

www.angelfire.com/tn3/tolkiencalendars

Away from the Green Hill Country,

Parmastahir

Posted on: 2006/8/12 5:39


Re: Signed Hobbit?
Shirrif
Joined:
2006/6/5 22:04
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Shirrif
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Posted on: 2006/8/9 22:31


Tom Bombadil [Les Aventures de Tom Bombadil]
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Does anybody have a copy of Les Aventures de Tom Bombadil? This is the French translation of The Adventures of Tom Bombadil. It reproduces a couple of manuscript pages written by Tolkien giving variant versions of a couple of Elvish verses and an extract from the Council of Elrond.

I am trying to add details of miscellaneous writings and manuscripts by Tolkien to my bibliography and am having a little trouble getting the details of the various editions of this book straight.

Any help would be appreciated.

Deagol

Posted on: 2006/8/8 16:09

Edited by Khamul on 2011/10/1 13:58:39



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