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Thursday, 11 July, 2002, 21:12 GMT 22:12 UK
Windfall as Peter Rabbit turns 100
Beatrix Potter book
Beatrix Potter originally published her own works
Peter Rabbit could be celebrating his 100th birthday with a 45,000 cash windfall.

That is the price which is likely to be paid for a single copy of The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Cumbrian writer Beatrix Potter.

The book is part of one of the best collections of Potter material ever to come to auction.

The collection is expected to raise hundreds of thousands of pounds at a Sotheby's sale in London on 12 July.

Beatrix Potter
Beatrix Potter marketed Peter Rabbit in 1902

The writer, who lived at Near Sawrey, near Hawkshead, in the Lake District, first created the character of Peter Rabbit in a picture letter in 1893 to Noel Moore, the son of her former governess.

Her attempts to put Peter Rabbit into print met with numerous rejections from publishers, so she decided to print the book herself and ordered 250 copies.

It is one of this first batch of books which could fetch an estimated 45,000.

The venture encouraged Beatrix to print another 200 copies, and a book from this second run is rated at 10,000 in the sale.

First book

Publisher Frederick Warne finally marketed their version of Peter Rabbit in 1902.

A first edition of Appley Dapply's Nursery Rhymes, signed by Beatrix Potter with three ink rabbit drawings is rated at 8,000.

While a Christmas card from the author with animal drawings could fetch up to 3,000.

Other first edition books such as The Tale of Tom Kitten and The tale of Jemima Puddle-Duck are priced at 6,000 each.

The best-preserved copy of the first ever book containing Beatrix Potter's work sold for 23,250 when it went under the hammer in December 2001.

The book, called A Happy Pair, was Potter's first break in publishing in 1893 and included her Christmas card illustrations alongside poetry by a different author.


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See also:

14 Dec 01 | Entertainment
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