How scarce is The Alice, anyway?

j b krygier jbkrygie at cc.owu.edu
Fri Jun 22 15:24:29 EDT 2001


Sharon Biederman wrote:

> There have been at least two other copies on ebay prior to those in
> this past year.  One was in October of 1999; the date for the other
> escapes me.  That's 6 so far.

There have been several discussions on ModLib about
the relative scarcity of various ML titles, with the number
of times titles show up for sale on eBay used as evidence
for certain titles being more or less scarce than noted
by Henry's Guide or the prevailing collective wisdom of
ML collectors.

I am assuming that the value of the ML Illustrated Alice
in Wonderland (despite condition) is driven up by the
fact that it may not have been regularly available (only
as a promotional item or Book Club dividend).  I don't
know if this is an actual fact or supposition.

It does, however, seem odd that 6 copies would appear
on eBay in the last year or two - all starting at a low
price by folks who didn't seem aware that the book was
worth much.  On the other hand, Carroll is certainly
a very collectable author and eBay sellers may see an
illustrated edition of Alice as something that will sell
(more than, say, a copy of Rumer Godden or Knut
Hamsun).

So how good of a ML scarcity gage is eBay?

Are we seeing scarce MLs on eBay because it is
becoming known as a good place to sell MLs?

Or is eBay a good random 'sample' of the relative
numbers of different ML titles and editions out there?



John K.



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j   b   k r y g i e r

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