Rare book found in Oxfam shop

First published in News York Press: Photograph of the Author by

A RARE book from 1903 has been found in York’s Low Petergate Oxfam shop.

The book, based on archaeological and geographical exploration in Chinese Turkestan, has been valued at between £300 and £500 and will be auctioned at Bonham’s of Oxford.

The author, Mark Stein Aurel, was a famous Hungarian explorer of central Asia in the early 1900s and the book was only his third publication.

Luke Batterham, manager of the Bonham’s book department, said: “It is a first edition so it’s a very rare book. Exploration of that period does especially boom in the auctions and it’s an area that continues to be popular.”

John McKay, who runs the Oxfam shop where the book was discovered, said: “I just think it’s really great that people are happy to give us books like that.”

“The fact that it’s in a high profile auction and that anything it makes will go to Oxfam is really good for us.”

Oxfam is Europe’s biggest seller of secondhand books, with about £1.7 million worth selling every month.

The charity says this helps it to buy 50,000 emergency shelters and build over 100,000 classrooms and some of the neediest areas of the world.

Meanwhile, a vintage railway poster of York will go under the hammer at Bloomsbury’s Auctions in London later this month. The poster, by artist Fred Taylor, shows Micklegate Bar, although some artistic licence has been used in the position of the Minster.

It is expected to fetch between £150 and £250. For information on this and other railway posters visit bloomsburyauctions.com The sale of the Mark Stein Aurel book takes place on June 28. Visit bonhams.com/eur/home and search for Lot 32.

Comments (4)

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5:04pm Tue 14 Jun 11

hula says...

Oxfam obviously make most of their income now from auctioning the 'better' items that are donated because none of it seems to appear in the Oxfam shop at the end of Goodramgate.The few times i have been in nobody seems to be spending.I remember going to look at some vinyl records in the one up Micklegate a number of years ago and laughed at the vastly over priced run of the mill records..I spoke to the 'Manager' or record adviser about this and found him totally out of touch with the real world regarding vinyl.I came away thinking the better more desirable records were going elswhere? I know a number of people who used to go in the Oxfam shops looking for bargains of all kind of things but no longer do because there ar'nt any anymore is what they tell me??
Oxfam obviously make most of their income now from auctioning the 'better' items that are donated because none of it seems to appear in the Oxfam shop at the end of Goodramgate.The few times i have been in nobody seems to be spending.I remember going to look at some vinyl records in the one up Micklegate a number of years ago and laughed at the vastly over priced run of the mill records..I spoke to the 'Manager' or record adviser about this and found him totally out of touch with the real world regarding vinyl.I came away thinking the better more desirable records were going elswhere? I know a number of people who used to go in the Oxfam shops looking for bargains of all kind of things but no longer do because there ar'nt any anymore is what they tell me?? hula
  • Score: 0

6:38pm Tue 14 Jun 11

old_geezer says...

They aren't "bargain" shops (though there are plenty of bargains), they are there to raise money for charity. Presumably they charge, by and large, what the market will bear.
They aren't "bargain" shops (though there are plenty of bargains), they are there to raise money for charity. Presumably they charge, by and large, what the market will bear. old_geezer
  • Score: 0

12:42pm Wed 15 Jun 11

was york now rotherham says...

at times i have found it cheaper in high street store's and shops than going in to a so called charity shop they do love to over price sertain items
at times i have found it cheaper in high street store's and shops than going in to a so called charity shop they do love to over price sertain items was york now rotherham
  • Score: 0

6:41am Fri 17 Jun 11

HenryRivers says...

This is all very well but I wonder if the person who donated the book knew its value? One of the benefits of taking books to a reputable dealer (and York has several) is s/he will tell you if you own a valuable item. The donor of this book could very well have needed the money. My advice: before giving your possessions to charity, get them valued first. You can always give the cash to charity if you feel inclined.
This is all very well but I wonder if the person who donated the book knew its value? One of the benefits of taking books to a reputable dealer (and York has several) is s/he will tell you if you own a valuable item. The donor of this book could very well have needed the money. My advice: before giving your possessions to charity, get them valued first. You can always give the cash to charity if you feel inclined. HenryRivers
  • Score: 0

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