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Handwritten poem by Anne Frank auctioned for $148,000

The single-sheet poem was sold to an anonymous online bidder.

By
Ed Adamczyk
The 12-line poem written by Anne Frank shortly before her family went into hiding is a rare example of her handwriting, and is one of only a handful of items signed by Frank that have gone up for auction. Photo courtesy of Collectie Anne Frank Stichting Amsterdam/Wikipedia
The 12-line poem written by Anne Frank shortly before her family went into hiding is a rare example of her handwriting, and is one of only a handful of items signed by Frank that have gone up for auction. Photo courtesy of Collectie Anne Frank Stichting Amsterdam/Wikipedia

HAARLEM , Netherlands, Nov. 23 (UPI) -- A poem, handwritten in 1942 by diarist Anne Frank before her family went into hiding, sold at auction Wednesday for $148,000, the Haarlem, Netherlands, auction house said.

The signed, 12-line poem in free verse, written in Dutch, was sent to a friend of Frank's in 1942, four months before she and her family moved to a secret hiding place to avoid capture by the Nazis. She is best remembered for a two-year diary she kept while in hiding, regarded as an important document from the Holocaust and among the world's best-known books. She was 15 when she died in a concentration camp in 1945.

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"Over the last 40 years, only four or five documents signed by the teenager have gone under the hammer," Thijs Blankevoort, co-director of the auction house Bubb Kuyper said. The text is a rare example of Anne's handwriting, and was sold to an anonymous online bidder after a two-minute auction.

The poem was sent to Christiana van Maarsen, identified as "Dear Cri-Cri" at the top of the single-page artifact. She was the older sister of Jacqueline van Maarsen, a friend of Anne's. The auction house said Jacqueline van Maarsen put the poem up for auction because her sister, who died in 2006, did not value it as a prized possession, although it was common at the time for girls to collect poems from friends to compile in what were called poezie albums.

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"My sister (nicknamed Cri-Cri) tore this page out of her poezie album and gave it to me around 1970. I know that my sister was not as attached to this verse from Anne to her as I am to the verse Anne addressed to me," Jacqueline van Maarsen wrote in a note published on the auction house website.

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