Rare first edition of Winnie the Pooh novel going under the hammer

Anne Pegg, book department assistant, with the rare first edition Winnie the Pooh book, ready for au

Anne Pegg, book department assistant, with the rare first edition Winnie the Pooh book, ready for auction at Keys in Aylsham. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

A rare first edition of AA Milne’s children's story is being sold at auction in Norfolk – with an interested buyer from Japan.

The hardback book with gilt titles was published in 1926, costing 7s 6d, but experts at Keys Auctioneers in Aylsham are hoping it will fetch between £200 and £250 – but say it could sell for much more.

The first edition coming up in the auction on Friday is said to be "in stunning condition", especially considering so many children’s books become well-worn with age.

Rare edition of Winnie the Pooh coming up at auction Norfolk

A rare edition of Winnie the Pooh is coming up at auction on Friday. - Credit: Keys/Andy Newman Associates

“This is in remarkably good condition for a children’s book which is nearly 100 years old,” said Andrew Lyndsay-Bullock, head of books at Keys. 

“You would normally expect to see the gilt on the outside rubbed off, fingerprints from where children had enjoyed the book over the years, and even inscriptions inside the cover. This example has none of that – it is almost as if it has barely been read.


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“Winne The Pooh has a wide appeal right around the world, and we have already had interest in this volume from as far afield as Japan.”

Anne Pegg, book department assistant, with the rare first edition Winnie the Pooh book, ready for au

Anne Pegg, book department assistant, with the rare first edition Winnie the Pooh book, ready for auction at Keys in Aylsham. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

The book goes under the hammer as part of a 274 lot Book and Ephemera Sale. Other highlights include a  deluxe first edition of JRR Tolkein’s ‘The Hobbit’, published in 1976 and a first edition of LP Hartley’s ‘The Go Between’, published in 1953.

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Other lots include a first edition of Philip Larkin’s ‘The Whitsun Weddings', published in 1964, and a first edition of Richmal Crompton’s ‘William’s Television Show,' published in 1958.

The sale starts at 10.30am, on Keys’ live online bidding platform KeysLive. 

Winnie The Pooh

AA Milne and Christopher Robin

A.A Milne and son Christopher Robin Milne. - Credit: Archant library

‘Winnie The Pooh' was the first volume of stories about the eponymous bear, written by Alan Alexander Milne and illustrated by EH Shepard. It was an instant success, and was followed by ‘The House At Pooh Corner’ in 1928.

The books have remained in the bestseller lists ever since, and were adapted by Walt Disney into the 1966 film Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree.

The map of 100 Acre Wood in the rare first edition Winnie the Pooh book, ready for auction at Keys i

The map of 100 Acre Wood in the rare first edition Winnie the Pooh book, ready for auction at Keys in Aylsham. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021


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