LONDON – Harry Potter fans were thrilled this autumn when Bloomsbury published a limited illustrated edition of the first book in the series, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Even more covetable is this deluxe version, which is not only the first printed copy of the full-colour illustrated book but is also signed by both author and illustrator. The inscription by J.K. Rowling reads: “The book that changed my life,” while award-winning artist Jim Kay adds "Mine too! Thank you Jo.” Kay also added an original drawing of a baby dragon to the title page.



HARRY POTTER AND THE PHILOSOPHER'S STONE, 2015, FIRST DELUXE ILLUSTRATED EDITION INSCRIBED BY J.K. ROWLING AND JIM KAY, WITH AN ORIGINAL DRAWING BY THE ILLUSTRATOR OF A BABY DRAGON OPPOSITE THE TITLE-PAGE.


This edition also has a very personal connection to J. K. Rowling herself, as its sale at Sotheby’s on 15 December benefits the charity Lumos. This international non-profit organisation was founded by Rowling to support children in institutions worldwide and aims to end the institutionalisation of children globally by 2050. As any Potter fan knows, Lumos is the light-giving spell that the boy wizard uses to bring illuminate desperately dark and frightening places.

J.K. ROWLING IN 2007, WHEN ONE OF SEVEN COPIES OF BEEDLE THE BARD SOLD FOR £1.95 MILLION, THE HIGHEST PRICE ACHIEVED AT AUCTION FOR A MODERN LITERARY MANUSCRIPT. IMAGE © AP PHOTO/LEFTERIS PITARAKIS.


This is not the first time Sotheby’s has partnered with Rowling; two years ago the auction house sold the “Lumos Maxima” bracelet, a bespoke sterling silver bracelet with Harry Potter inspired charms, which raised £20,000 for Lumos.

The lot, including the first deluxe illustrated edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone will be offered with an estimate of £2,000–3,000.
A letter of provenance from Publishing Director of Bloomsbury Children’s Books, that notes “this is the first advance copy of the Deluxe Edition.”
The publisher’s pictorial purple cloth gilt slipcase for Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Bloomsbury, 2015.
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Bloomsbury, 2015.

English Literature, History, Children's Books and Illustrations

15 December 2015 | London