This Super Rare Harry Potter Book Just Sold For Nearly $500,000

Today in "Some Potterheads are rich and why am I not one of them?," a handwritten copy of Beedle the Bard sold for almost £370,000 — or nearly $500,000 USD — at auction on Tuesday. The book belonged to publisher Barry Cunningham and was one of six special editions J.K. Rowling made for the people who were "most closely connected to the Harry Potter books." Cunningham was "the man who thought an overlong novel about a boy wizard in glasses might just sell," according to Rowling's personal inscription.

This isn't the first handwritten book by J.K. Rowling to go to auction for loads of galleons, nor is it the most expensive. In 2007, the Harry Potter author created a seventh copy of The Tales of Beedle the Bard, which was sold to benefit her charity, Lumos. That copy fetched £1.95 million under the Sotheby's hammer.

Cunningham's handwritten copy of Beedle the Bard "is a cloth-wrapped, leather-bound manuscript covered in semi-precious stones and features a silver mounted skull." The stones are rhodochrosite, which, as an endnote from Rowling indicates, are "traditionally associated with love, balance and joy in daily life [sic]." Cunningham received Rowling's blessing before auctioning the book, and plans to donated part of the profits to Lumos.

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