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Rare Shakespeare work on auction

The rare complete copy the plays will be on sale in London on July 13 at an estimated price of 2.5 million pounds.

india Updated: Mar 30, 2006 19:12 IST

A rare complete copy of the First Folio of Shakespeare's plays will be on sale in London on July 13, at an estimated price of 2.5 million pounds or more, Sotheby's auction house said on Thursday.

The compendium of 36 plays, being sold by the trustees of Dr Williams's Library in London, has the longest uninterrupted library ownership of any surviving example and is still in its 17th century calf binding, Sotheby's said.

Some 750 copies of the First Folio were printed in 1623, and about a third survive, though most are incomplete, the auctioneer said.

"Relatively complete copies of the Folio in contemporary or near contemporary bindings very rarely come to the market," said Peter Selley, English literature specialist at Sotheby's.