Rare book auctioned for Oxfam

Posted by Lindsay Clydesdale Campaigns Press Officer, Scotland

27th Aug 2012

A rare first edition collection of poems by Robert Louis Stevenson will be auctioned at Bonham's after being donated to an Oxfam shop in Glasgow. 'A Child's Garden of Verses' was written more than a century ago as a collection of poetry for children. Bonham's auction house estimate the book will sell for between £400 and £800 - enough to fund an entire library in Malawi.

The book includes some of Stevenson's most famous poems such as 'The Land of Counterpane', 'My Shadow' and 'The Lamplighter'.

The book was first published in 1885 and it was anonymously donated to the Byres Road shop from the library of Dr Adam Watson, who was the author's first cousin once removed and his contemporary at Edinburgh University.

'A Child's Garden of Verses' is also signed by Stevenson's mother, who gave the book to her niece and nephew as a gift.

Stevenson's most famous works include Treasure Island, Kidnapped and The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.

John Connolly, Byres Road shop manager, said: "First edition donations are rare so I'm delighted an Oxfam supporter has given the book to us.

"First edition donations are rare so I'm delighted an Oxfam supporter has given the book to us.

"The sale of this book will raise hundreds of pounds for Oxfam's work to fight poverty around the world. For example, £400 would pay for a community library in Malawi.

"This Robert Louis Stevenson book is a wonderful piece of literature, as well as a very collectible slice of Scottish history, so I'm hopeful it will attract lots of interest from serious bidders."

The auction will take place at Bonham's, 22 Queen Street, Edinburgh on Thursday 30 August at 11am, as part of the Scottish Sale Part 2.

Blog post written by Lindsay Clydesdale

Campaigns Press Officer, Scotland

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