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Auction: Hergé sketches and signed books, Hawley's Auctioneers, Beverley May 21st 2023

#1 · Posted: 21 May 2023 17:13
An amazing lot of previously unpublished sketches, heavily annotated by Hergé,together with a quartet of books, went under the hammer at Hawley's, an auction house in Beverley, Yorkshire today.
Dating from 1953, and apparently done as a guide for the creation of figurines, the four pages of sketches show multiple views of Tintin, Haddock, Professor Calculus (as Tournesol) and the Thom(p)sons (as Dupont and Dupond).
They are replete with annotations and point out details such as the differences in the moustaches of the detectives (more on which in a moment!)
The books included were a gift from Hergé to the recipient, and are Objectif Lune, On a marché sur la Lune and Le tresor de Rackham le Rouge , all in French, plus a mint copy of the very scarce The Secret of 'The Unicorn' in the Casterman English language edition of 1952. The Unicorn/ Rackham pair are dedicated, signed, and dated by Hergé.

As mentioned, Hergé included a note, with sketches to show that the detectives can be separated by the look of their moustaches - however, although it's a little difficult to read the writing on the drawings, it's just possible that Hergé has actually confused the names himself!

As he did exactly the same thing in the original version of Objectif Lune, p.24, frame 7, - where Dupond is made to say his own name, when it should be Dupont he is talking about - it would be ironic if he'd done it again here (the error was corrected in the English translation of Destination Moon).

You can see pictures of the lots on our Facebook page.
#2 · Posted: 21 Jul 2023 10:25
Should have updated this before (I thought I had!) to say that the lot sold for £22,500, which is something of a bargain, if truth be told!

Perhaps even more interestingly, I came across a photo that someone had posted which appears to show what could be Hergé with some of the figurines arising from the sketches - the Captain Haddock one is especially clear, and shows the capstan which is behind him (acting as a support for the model), and the whisky bottle in his pocket.

Now all we need to find are some surviving figurines!

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