The Guardian has some news for British bibliophiles: On December 14, the literary collection of the late and very great Richard Adams will be going on sale. For anybody who wants to see where the author of Watership Down and Plague Dogs got his inspiration, here’s your chance.
According to the auction house:
The library which Richard Adams built up at Benwells, his 18th century home in Hampshire, was housed in a vast cube-shaped room. Here several thousand books lined each wall from floor to high ceiling. Valuable first editions jostled with paperbacks, piles of books were stacked next to comfy armchairs, rabbit figurines took their place on shelves next to family photographs, and the author’s desk was at the hub of it all. The overwhelming impression was of a place where books were read and enjoyed, rather than treated as mere commodities.
That collection includes “Milton’s Lycidas, a complete set of Jane Austen first editions uniformly bound, and a Bible that once belonged to Charles II.” There’s also a copy of Lord of the Flies signed by William Golding for Adams. If you’ve got about £60,000 on hand, there’s also a Second Folio of Shakespeare.