A three-man team from Reading University’s Beckett International Foundation, led by the late author’s friend and biographer James Knowlson, put down £962,500 at London’s Sotheby’s for the six-notebook draft of Beckett’s 1938 novel Murphy, owned by private collector since 1968. “It’s so different to the final edition,” rare book dealer Rick Gekoski said of the manuscript. “It has a third more material.” This includes several doodles of vaudeville legend Charlie Chaplin, who would later inspire the protagonists of Beckett’s 1953 masterpiece Waiting for Godot. (Photo credit: Sotheby’s).
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This article originally appeared on Zola Books.