Part of a Forum (25/20/12% buyer’s premium) sale of April 30, this unopened copy bore the signature and bookplate of the writer’s sister Lily, who along with her sister Elizabeth had set up the press.
Only one copy has made more at auction, but that was one which Yeats inscribed for John Masefield. It reached £6000 at Sotheby’s in 2016.
A copy of TS Eliot’s Murder in the Cathedral sold at £650 was only a third edition of 1938, but it was inscribed by Eliot “In grateful memory of his years at St. Stephen’s”, a reference to his service as a churchwarden at a London church in the 1930s.
A signed 1966 first of Seamus Heaney’s Death of a Naturalist set a record at £1300, while a copy of his Eleven Poems of the previous year realised £1200. The latter, a third-issue example of his first published collection of verses, bore an inscription added at a 1968 public reading.
Published in 1947, a rare work by Evelyn Waugh called Wine in Peace and War made a record £700.
Featuring two very small decorations by Rex Whistler, who also designed the binding, it was one of 100 signed copies.
It had been commissioned to promote the business of wine merchant Saccone & Speed by Prince Vsevolode of Russia, the dedicatee and the firm’s then managing director. Preferring to avoid paying tax on his fee, Waugh apparently arranged to be paid for his work at the rate of 12 bottles of champagne per thousand words.