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Would you buy Hergé autographs on eBay?

#1 · Posted: 27 Oct 2014 12:03 · Edited by: Moderator
Hi all,

I'm wondering what the general feeling about Hergé autographs on eBay is? I've got my eye on a few but the pricing varies. Overall, is buying on eBay "not advised"?
Any guidelines on what to look for? Advice, etc.?

I'm not looking for links or anything just curious how people here recommend buying from eBay.
It seems the most accessible way to buy.


#2 · Posted: 28 Oct 2014 10:29
It's not possible to make a generalization about that, as there are so many variables.

For a start, you aren't really buying from eBay, are you? You are buying from someone selling on that site. Using eBay has lots of advantages - you should be able to get a dispute resolved if an item doesn't turn up, or hasn't been described properly, and get your money back in the event that there is a serious problem.

What it doesn't guarantee is that the item is genuine.

You then have to balance a variety of factors. What is the provenance of the item? Have they provided anything to authenticate the signature? Does it look significantly like other signatures you have seen? Does the background of the seller offer any other clues? Does the seller have any credentials as a dealer in Hergé/ comics/ art/ author signatures? Does the information seem reasonable, and does the person seem to know what they are selling?
None of these is a guarantee, but they all help establish a picture of the seller, the item and how likely it is to be real.

Autographs are a very simple thing to fake, and even experts get fooled (a large auction house had to withdraw a beautifully signed Jimi Hendrix album cover which they had inspected, examined and believed to be real, and had expected to sell for a large sum of money, when it was pointed out that the album in question hadn't been released until 1972, and Hendrix died in 1970...).

So buying from eBay is not the issue; it would be, as ever, who are you buying from and what are you buying?
#3 · Posted: 28 Oct 2014 11:51 · Edited by: Moderator
This is really a good viewpoint jock123 - a good, solid reminder to look at the craft behind collecting autographs, doing one's homework about the piece and being informed about the market!

I was getting caught up in the surface stuff - forgetting to be a detective and well-informed.

With Hergé autographs there do seem to be a lot of "proven" examples available for comparison... and of course a strong community like this to help as well.

Thanks for this great response, it's helpful!

#4 · Posted: 1 Nov 2014 11:03
Try the eBay shop "bdcomics1", based in Belgium, run by a member of the Van Houte family (the late Thibaut Van Houte was a true Tintin expert, in contact with many collectors and supervising a few Herge auctions). Alas, signed items (and occasionally sketches, dedications with drawings, etc.) are a little on the expensive side.
#5 · Posted: 1 Nov 2014 12:46 · Edited by: Moderator
Ah cool, I'll check that seller out.

I recently was eyeing a Hergé dedication with a drawing for about USD1700. It seems genuine but it's hard to say if that's a "good" price. No real provenance offered.

I'd say it's a little overpriced, but not many seem to come up.

Is there anywhere in Brussels, perhaps a bookstore, antique gallery or dealer that sells Hergé autographs?

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