Tolkien Collector's Guide
Hobbit Prices 2nd/3rd
By Stu

Hobbit Prices 2nd/3rd

Jun 22 (edited)

A few years ago, I had a thread tracking Hobbit selling prices (https://www.tolkienguide.com/modules/n ... t_id=14386#forumpost14386). As I've slowly trundled through collecting 2nds, 3rds and a 1st, I didn't really keep track of prices very closely -- I just bought a book if it seemed reasonable (plus a couple where I undoubtedly paid too much). Anyhow. here is some info about the prices I have paid over the last 3.5 years or so, as selling price info continues to be hard to find unless you are committed to watching and recording. Prices below are rounded, and might be off by a couple of pounds if I have gone from memory.

Total spend is £660 at this stage for 1946 & 1959-1975

Edit 2: Note the ordering is a little off in the picture below.

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Jun 22
Nice list Stu! Always interesting to see what those 2nd/3rds are going for. Great deal on that 18th!

I often wonder about the value of the printings decreasing from the 5th to the 15th. All other things equal and excluding condition, would you (or whoever) say that the value should decrease consistently as the print year rises? Or are there other factors that might have an effect on the price?
Jun 22

Berelach wrote:
Nice list Stu! Always interesting to see what those 2nd/3rds are going for. Great deal on that 18th!

I often wonder about the value of the printings decreasing from the 5th to the 15th. All other things equal and excluding condition, would you (or whoever) say that the value should decrease consistently as the print year rises? Or are there other factors that might have an effect on the price?



From what I can see, the 1950s copies are much more expensive than the 1960s. There isn't any real logical reason 1959 (11th) copies cost so much more than 1961 (12th, 13th) copies, but they consistently do. I assume that 1970s copies were printed in much greater numbers, and are therefore more common/cheaper. 1975s are undoubtedly the most common. A key thing is that there is just no reason to buy anything from 1961 onwards without a dust-jacket. They often do seem to sell on eBay, but I have no real idea why they sell, as the price often doesn't seem to be much less than a jacketed copy.
Jun 25
Yeah, sounds about right. On the other hand the U.S. Hobbits by Houghton Mifflin are kind of nice to buy even without jackets since the color of the binding was changed with every printing up until 1963. I like them anyhow :)
Jul 4
(edited)
Thanks to Trotter disposing of copies that he has replaced in his collection with better ones, I now have 1954 (6th) and 1958 (10th) added. The '54 has a bit of loss to the head and foot of the DJ spine, but I printed off a little strip containing the missing bits to lay in behind on the jacket protector and it still looks nice on the shelf. I'm happy to be a bit more flexible on the really early copies, than on the later copies that are more readily available.

Still looking for 51, 55, 56 & 57, should anyone have copies they wish to sell.

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Jul 4
That's such a beautiful shelf Stu! Compared to yours my shelf looks like a mess! I generally don't have the resources to be too picky about condition and also I guess I collect more from a bibliographic viewpoint; just trying to get them in my hands so I can study them. I threw in a few duplicates to fill it out (my US Hobbits have DJs but I prefer them on the shelf without).

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Jul 4
That's no mess on that shelf, looks very well organized! One cannot fault the collector for the variances in the publisher's output...

I have actually pruned a few items from my collection over the years because I just cannot handle how they looked together - the deluxe black cloth slipcased 3 volumes for the History of Middle-earth for example (shudder).
Jul 4
Removed some of the books from my main Hobbit shelf, for this picture, but you can see I have items, at the back of my bookshelves, lots of mess.

So this is UK 1st-24th Impression of the GA&U hardback Hobbit, without the normal mess.

The first seven impressions are in clamshell/slipcases to try and protect the remaining green dye on the top of the books.

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Jul 4
I guess one man's mess is another man's treasure Fantastic Trotter!
Jul 4

Berelach wrote:
I guess one man's mess is another man's treasure Fantastic Trotter!


Very impressed with your collection, though in terms of what it looks like on the shelf, try out Stu's idea for your books that have spine damage, which you can see because they are on a white background, put a printout of what should be there in its place, behind the dust jacket, so you don't see the white background.

If you don't have these then please PM me or Stu for help
Jul 4

Trotter wrote:

Very impressed with your collection, though in terms of what it looks like on the shelf, try out Stu's idea for your books that have spine damage, which you can see because they are on a white background, put a printout of what should be there in its place, behind the dust jacket, so you don't see the white background.

If you don't have these then please PM me or Stu for help


Thank you Trotter, very kind offer. Despite what I said I'm actually ok with how it looks. It's a good reminder for me of which copies to replace when I have the chance.
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