Charles Darwin manuscript page sells for $250,000
NEW YORK — A handwritten manuscript page from one of the most famous books on evolution was sold in New York on Tuesday for $250,000.
Page 270 from Charles Darwin’s manuscript of On the Origin of Species from 1858 hit the auction block at Sotheby’s.
The hammer price for the two-sided page was $200,000. The quarter-of-a-million dollar price includes the buyer’s premium.
The page was sold to Stephan Loewentheil, who is the president and founder of the 19th Century Rare Book & Photograph Shop, according to Sotheby’s.
It was estimated to sell for $200,000-$300,000.
The page contains 140 words, and includes deletions and other edits. It’s from the chapter that explores the roles of inheritance of instinct in natural selection.
The text on the page varies from the first addition of the printed version of the book, according to the auction house.
The back of the page has geometric formulas along with notes from Darwin.
The page, which is roughly eight inches by six inches, had been folded and the first words of the last line are missing from when the page was cut out.
Pages from this manuscript are rare. According to the listing, only a handful of leaves from the manuscript survived and five have been auctioned in the past 30 years.
The manuscript was formerly part of book and manuscripts collector Jacob Podell’s collection.