Tolkien Collector's Guide
By Stu
Shirrif (Moderator)

Picked this up locally

Aug 2
2020/8/2 23:51:47 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

I already have a near fine copy in near fine slipcase (which I paid £109 for a couple of years ago in what I think was a pretty good deal given the condition), but this one came up last week for £90 locally (NZD 175). This one's slipcase has the usual rubbing and the book's spine is quite sunned, but otherwise appears unread. Not sure what I'm going to with two (maybe wait until the TV series comes out and flog it on eBay).

Does anyone know what the print-run for the 1969 LoTR was -- I've never seen it mentioned anywhere, but my gut feel is that it was probably quite considerable (i.e. they aren't especially uncommon and seem to be coming out of the woodwork a lot more these days).

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Aug 10
2020/8/10 11:47:11 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
No idea how many there were in the print run, but these prices seem pretty crazy to me.

I've paid mine (which I don't know if I'd define near fine) way more than 109 pounds. Shouldn't near fine copies command a much higher price?

I'm still trying to understand how to evaluate reasonable prices from inflated ones...
Aug 11
2020/8/11 12:38:01 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
I have two, both are "boxed" and one is from 1976 and the other is from the 80's. I bought the older one online in fine condition for about $150, from a bookstore in Miami Florida, which I thought was a really good deal at the time. Then some time later, I found the newer one in a local bookstore, not fine, but still pretty good condition and got it out of there for $80. I've seen sellers online asking for as much as $1000 for the 69 edition but for the most part I see sellers asking in the $100 to $400 range. I see lots of copies without the box or slipcase, those can typically be bought for under $100.
Aug 11
2020/8/11 16:27:23 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Max wrote:

I'm still trying to understand how to evaluate reasonable prices from inflated ones...

A fair question. It mostly takes experience, patience, and note-taking. A point to keep in mind, people who share things like "look what I scored" are proud because they got a great price (with patience and a keen eye), and not necessarily indicating that you should never pay more than what they just did. They got a good deal.

Conversely, when the regulars here share something to the "wonders" thread or similar, that's the opposite end of the spectrum.
Aug 11
2020/8/11 19:49:56 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Indeed, both of my 1969 finds I would consider to be good prices. The reason I bought that second copy was simply because it seemed like a good price - and if I left it on the table someone else would have just picked it up to flip.

That said, getting good prices is to a large extent just a patience thing. If you don't care what order you collect in and don't care how long it takes, you can obviously build your collection much more cheaply than otherwise might be the case.

I think I'm on year 6 of 7 of collecting standard edition Hobbits and I still don't have all of 'em.
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