Signed and inscribed at the head of the cover at “Xmas 1947” by Oskar Morgenstern, 'What is Cantor’s Continuum Problem?', an offprint from American Mathematical Monthly, is one of a group of signed and inscribed offprints of Kurt Gödel’s works sold for $100,000 (£75,335) by Bonhams Los Angeles.

Sold at $100,000 (£75,355) and dating from the years 1944-58, they had all been given to the economist Oskar Morgenstern.

One of his closest friends at the Institute for Advance Studies at Princeton, the recipient once described Gödel as perhaps the most wondrous man one can imagine.

“Hardly anyone knows him. If I were nearer his level (and what a distance that would be to cover!) I would write his life. Perhaps even so I should record some of his thoughts and doings, since the world will know little what kind of man he is. A man whom von Neumann & Weyl have said to me more than once [is] the greatest logician since Leibniz or Aristotle.”

The sale took place on November 5.

Reaching consistency

In an October 1-16 sale held by Christie’s New York (25/20/14.5% buyer’s premium) a bid of $20,000 (£15,505) secured a 1953 first of Gödel’s The Consistency of the Continuum Hypothesis.

It was inscribed for Richard Macksey, then a Princeton undergraduate but later the founding force behind its Department of Comparative Thought and Literature.

In the Bonhams auction in California, an 1859 first of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species… made $135,000 (£103,055), but a signed autograph leaf from an early draft of another of his books, The Descent of Man, failed on an estimate of $250,000-350,000.