07 July 2016

Fonsie Mealy Auctioneers will conduct the Dr. Philip Murray Collection Of Modern First Edition’s sale, which comprises over 550 lots, in The Gresham Hotel, O’Connell Street, Dublin on Tuesday 12th July at 2pm.

Dr. Philip Murray a native from Nenagh, Co. Tipperary was an avid reader and collector from a young age which drove him to travel and frequent secondhand bookshops throughout the world. Through his travels he amassed a world class collection of signed first editions of some of the most iconic 20th century classics. Dr. Murray’s collection was assembled over half a century and includes many reputable Irish, British, American and European authors all of which adorned the shelves of his Library at his adopted Sligo home.

The collection carries over 2000 books including many interesting first editions inherited through the thrill of the chase and the delight of reading including a first edition of Ernest Hemingway’s, “For Whom The Bell Tolls”, published in 1940 (est. €350 - €450), as well as fellow American author Arthur Miller’s signed first edition of ”Death of a Salesman”, published in 1949 (est. €400 - €500).

Many items from the late Seamus Heaney, a close friend of Dr. Murray’s, are included in the sale in particular one of the 25 signed copies of Night Drive, along with one of only 10 copies of his manuscript of the poem, a very scarce item published in 1970 (est. €1250 - €1500).  Included in the sale will be a rare limited first edition of James Joyce’s Ulysses, published in 1922 (est. €6000 - €8000) and a signed Oscar Wilde poetry collection, published in 1892 (est. €1250 - €1750).

A particular book of interest is James Bond author, Ian Fleming’s “Casino Royale”. This is a very sought after first edition because of its striking black cloth and red heart design cover, published in 1953 (est. €4000 - €5000). Some other titles by Fleming also included in the sale are “Goldfinger”, “Moonraker”, “Live & Let Die”, “From Russia with Love”, “You Only Live Twice” and “Diamonds are Forever”, all of which are First Editions. A school favourite up for auction is Harper Lee’s, “To Kill a Mockingbird”. This very rare signed first edition published in 1963 (est. €3000 - €4000).

A series of first editions that should draw attention is JK Rowling’s “Harry Potter” collection. Another British author of note is Anthony Burgess and a first edition of his iconic “Clockwork Orange” signed in English and Russian, published in 1962, will also go under the hammer (est. €2000 - €2500).

Viewing will take place on Sunday 10th July from 2pm - 7pm, Monday 11th July from 10.30am - 6.30pm and Tuesday, 12th July from 10.30am - 1pm in The Gresham Hotel, O’Connell Street, Dublin. The sale will take place also in The Gresham Hotel on Tuesday, 12th July from 2pm. For more information on the items up for auction, visit www.fonsiemealy.ie