First edition 'Emma' sold for $355,000

June 25, 2008 at 11:00 AM
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LONDON, June 25 (UPI) -- A rare first edition, three-volume copy of Jane Austen's 19th century novel "Emma" has sold for $355,000 at a London auction.

The Times of London said the sale through Bonhams auction house set a record for the highest price ever paid for an Austen novel.

Both the seller and the buyer's identities were kept secret.

"The novel had been sitting in my family library for at least three generations, and it remains a mystery as to how it first got there," the anonymous seller of "Emma" told The Times.

The book about an irrepressible matchmaker was one of 12 copies sent by Austen's publishers to her friends and family, the newspaper said.

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