Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0016722, Sat, 12 Jul 2008 16:33:34 -0700

Camera obscura sale prices
The (London) Times Literary Supplement of July 11 reports that a copy of the very scarce VN novel Camera Obscura published by John Lane in 1936 in Winifred Roy's translation from the French translation is again up for auction at Southby's. Only three copies with dust jackets are known to exist. Nabokov (whose name appears as Nabokoff-Sirin on the cover) was unhappy with the Roy translation and, in any event, most of the edition was destroyed in a warehouse hit by a German bomb in WWII. Before this auto-de-fé, VN undertook a rather radical revision of the Russian original that was published (improbably) in Indianapolis in 1938. This version was appeared under the title Laughter in the Dark.

The TLS reports estimated sales prices as follows:

2002 ?20,000--30,000 US$ approx: 40,000-60,000
2005 ?18--22,000 : 19,000-40,000
2008 ?9,000--12,000 : 18,000-24,000

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