JA Rowling? Rare Proof Copy of Harry Potter, With Author Typo, Sold for £14,000

A rare proof copy of the first Harry Potter book, bought for 13 pence (16 cents) in 1997, has sold for £14,432 ($18,312) at auction.

The uncorrected proof copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was sold by Hansons Auctioneers to what they said was a “private UK buyer.”

Jim Spencer, a Harry Potter expert with Hansons, said: “This book so deserved to do well […] This is the very first appearance in print of the first Potter novel. The title page mistakenly states the author’s name as as ‘J A Rowling’ instead of ‘J K Rowling’ and, on the other side, ‘Joanne Rowling.’”

The seller, a 52-year-old from London, said she found the book in 1997 at a secondhand shop in Crystal Palace among "piles of books […] all jumbled up in baskets on the floor with a maximum price of 40p […] I bought it as a throw-in with a couple of other titles – 40p for all three.

“I was bored one night and scrolling on the internet when a story popped up about the incredible prices achieved for Potter books, so I decided to contact Jim Spencer to see whether my book might be valuable," she said. Credit: Hansons Auctioneers via Storyful

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