Tolkien Collector's Guide
Ebay Signature & Sketch
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By Jlong

Ebay Signature & Sketch

Jul 7, 2009 - in Signatures and Autographs
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Here is an interesting signature with a sketch. What do you guys think?

http://cgi.ebay.com/JRR-Tolkien-Penci ... 2|39%3A1|293%3A1|294%3A50


Re: Ebay Signature & Sketch

Jul 7, 2009 - in Signatures and Autographs
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Shirrif
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This one is even more hilarious than yesterday's signature.

I love the quote "i have no idea who the portrait is of or whether it is genuine or original".

How many people in the world have not heard of J.R.R. Tolkien They do not know who the portrait is of, yet the Ebay listing is '"JRR Tolkien Pencil Portrait" Signed'. How did they come up with the listing title if they did not know who the portrait is of?

This must be in the top 10 of the worst forgeries I have ever seen, terrible!!! It is a very nice sketch that is ruined by a fake signature.


Re: Ebay Signature & Sketch

Jul 14, 2009 - in Signatures and Autographs
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I'm glad I discovered this forum as I was one of the bidders for this item and was going to try to win it in the morning. Just curious, but what is it about the signature that raises alarm bells?

Thanks, Jim.


Re: Ebay Signature & Sketch

Jul 14, 2009 - in Signatures and Autographs
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Have a look at this article on the Tolkien Library.

http://www.tolkienlibrary.com/press/fascimilesignatures.htm

This particular 'signature' has far to many problems even after the main issue which is that you should be very skeptical of any signature that has no provenance.

Here are a few, the dots under the signature are in the wrong place and the final dot after his name is missing. The dots are to signify abbreviation so Tolkien took care to put them in the right place i.e. after his initials (J.R.R.), this 'signature' has a dot after the T of Tolkien.

The flourish under the signature is not his usual style and if you look at it carefully it has gaps in it. Tolkien would have drawn it as one line (no gaps) and finally all the letters are wrong (the J is very bad, the i does not have a dot. There is no gap between the R and the T.

Andrew


Re: Ebay Signature & Sketch

Jul 14, 2009 - in Signatures and Autographs
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Thanks Andrew.
_________________


Re: Ebay Signature & Sketch

Jul 14, 2009 - in Signatures and Autographs
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Posts: 14

Here is an image of the centerpiece of my Tolkien collection. This is a letter typed and signed by Tolkien to a little girl in 1964. The little girl was Lisa Gell-mann, daughter of Murray Gell-mann (the 1969 Nobel Prize winner in physics). I contacted Dr. Gell-mann about this letter and he actually responded to me saying his daughter had lost the letter at Princeton University in the late sixties. I bought the letter from a person who found it in a box in an attic at Princeton several years ago. The letter is on Tolkien's private Basildon Bond stationary and includes the original post marked envelope.

[URL=http://img12.imageshack.us/i/letteroso.jpg/][IMG]http://img12.imageshack.us/img12/2205/letteroso.jpg[/IMG][/URL]
_________________


Re: Ebay Signature & Sketch

Jul 14, 2009 - in Signatures and Autographs
Joined:
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From Essex, England
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Shirrif
Posts: 2305

The picture did not come out very well, very small. Do you have a larger picture?

It appears someone paid US $321.99 for the fake signature.


Re: Ebay Signature & Sketch

Jul 14, 2009 - in Signatures and Autographs
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Andrew,

Email me at Gondor59@aol.com and I'll send you a clearer image.

Jim.


Re: Ebay Signature & Sketch

Jul 14, 2009 - in Signatures and Autographs
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Not me thanks to you. The sketch was cool though.


By lbdkbd

Re: Ebay Signature & Sketch

Jun 12, 2011 - in Signatures and Autographs
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I possess an orange pencil sketch that is a portrait of Tolkien. About 10" by 12". It is quite expertly done in fact, although there is a Tolkien signature in the bottom right which is naturally to be mistrusted. However, the signature is also more convincing than most of the fakes that I have seen - at least to my eyes.
I was intrigued by the thread on this site from 2009 from Gondor59, who spoke of an eBay seller who had a Tolkien pencil portrait for sale, and that he almost bid on it.
Your response to him led me to wonder whether the one I have might actually be the same portrait Jlong saw on eBay. When I clicked on the eBay link, it was of course expired and unavailable for viewing.
A few of the things you said about why the signature was fake tally with the one I have, but most things do not.
I was not the person who paid $321.99 on eBay! I did not pay a huge amount for the one I have, so I have no pressing urgency to determine the authenticity (or otherwise) of the signature. The sketch itself was well enough done to make it worth the expense.
The biggest red flag about it all for me is that the sketch is in an orange pencil, and the only signature is in a black ink pen. Why wouldn't the artist have signed it? And why WOULD Tolkien have? Unless it were a memento of an informal gathering: "you draw my portrait, and I'll provide my signature" sort of thing.
I'm quite convinced Tolkien himself didn't draw it. I know of no attempts he might have made to draw himself; and although he was an artist, this seems quite unlike the sort of drawing he was prone to do.
I have just joined the site, so I haven't figured out how to upload a photo of it - if indeed that is possible. In any event, I have misplaced my digital camera. I know you cannot say much about it without being able to see it, unless you recall specifically after all this time that the sketch was done in orange.
How might I get a copy of the picture to you? A scan? Or wait till my camera shows up?

Best,
lbdkbd



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