James Bond: A Collection of Books and Manuscripts, The Property of a Gentleman

James Bond: A Collection of Books and Manuscripts, The Property of a Gentleman

View full screen - View 1 of Lot 19. FLEMING | Diamonds are Forever, [1955-56], the final revised typescript.

FLEMING | Diamonds are Forever, [1955-56], the final revised typescript

Lot Closed

November 11, 03:22 PM GMT


80,000 - 120,000 GBP

Lot Details




FINAL REVISED TYPESCRIPT WITH AUTOGRAPH REVISIONS TO ALMOST EVERY PAGE, mostly in blue ballpoint but some revisions in pencil, at least eight pages with the addition of one or more full sentences (pp. 23, 79, 111, 119, 120, 194, 221, 263 verso), marked up by the copy-editor for publication with type-sizes and similar annotations, notes on the first leaf including "To be returned to author for final revision", "?Libel" (struck through to confirm legal checks), and with the addition of copy for the back of the title-page ("by the same Author | Casino Royale | Live And Let Die | Moonraker | First Published 1956"), 277 pages, quarto, numbered to 265, with 11 supernumerary leaves (with "a" numbers), plus two preliminaries, 1955-56, in an 'Interscrew' ring binder, collector's folding box

A TYPESCRIPT THAT REVEALS FLEMING'S WORKING PRACTICES AS HE HONED THE FOURTH BOND BOOK INTO ITS FINAL SHAPE. These final changes do not alter the structure or plot of the novel, but many bring additional life and colour to Bond's world. They include Bill Tanner describing gambling as "the biggest single industry in America" (p.23), an auctioneer eking out an extra bid from the room (p.111), and additional detail in Spang's interrogation of Bond. When Bond checks himself into the Hotel Astor it was originally "in front of an elderly woman"; now it is "before a hatchet-faced woman with a bosom like a sandbag", whilst, at page 88, "too many expense-account customers" becomes "too much expense-account aristocracy". However, some of the changes are more whimsical, such as changing a Wisconsin telephone number.

This final draft was typed by Fleming's secretary Ulrica Knowles from the draft typed by Fleming at Goldeneye early in 1955. Both the top copy and carbon of the original version are now at the Lilly Library at the University of Indiana. This typescript was sent first to the publisher's reader and then to Fleming, with his revisions then being entered onto the carbon. This top-copy is marked "To be returned to author for final revision" (with this deleted to show it had been done). The carbon copy was sold by Sotheby's on 12 December 2002, lot 332. The carbon was marked up by the copy-editor, but had only two annotations in the author's own hand. Original manuscripts and typescripts of Fleming's major works are extremely rare on the market.


Bonham's, London, 10 November 2009, lot 42; Sotheby's, London, 12 December 2012, lot 111