Pawn Stars: SELLER’S MASSIVE PROFIT on Rare Expensive Poetry (Season 13) | History


RICK: Hey, how can I help you? I have a special volume
of poetry in this book, “Four Quartets” by T.S. Eliot. RICK: That’s cool. Is it a first edition
or something, or? HOLLY: It’s more
than a first edition. I think it’s the
true first edition. RICK: OK. He was the master poet of the
first half of the 20th century. He was the what poet? HOLLY: A master poet. OK, I thought you
said a different word. All right. [laughs] I hope not. [pages flipping] I bought this book in
a local thrift store. This book is special
to me because T.S. Eliot was one of
the most renowned poets of the 20th century. I’d like to sell the
book because I think it needs to be in the
hands of someone who really appreciates it. This is really neat. When he was alive, he was
considered the greatest American poet, and some
people consider him, like, the greatest American
poet we ever had. I know that he had, like, a
really eclectic education. He went to Harvard. He went to Europe. He studied Sanskrit. And this is really,
really embarrassing. I’ve never read T.S. Eliot. HOLLY: Oh. RICK: T.S. Eliot considered
“Four Quartets” his best work and his masterpiece. In the 1940s, he won the
Nobel Prize for Literature. I mean, that’s how
big this guy was. So what makes it a
true first edition? HOLLY: The true first says
first American edition. And there were only about
700 or 800 of those printed. As I understand it, Eliot didn’t
like the looks of the book or the typeset or
something, and they just stopped distributing them. So there’s only
that many that were ever issued with first
American edition written. RICK: OK. So how much do you want for it? HOLLY: $3,000. RICK: OK, I have no idea if
that’s a good price or not. And the condition of the
dust cover really worries me. But I do have a friend who will
know everything about this– Great. –and who’s probably
read everything T.S. Eliot has ever done five times. [laughs] So I’m going to give her
a call, get her down here. And she’ll help us out with it. I can’t wait. OK. [laughs] I’ll be right back. I figured you would
absolutely love this. You were right. RICK: [laughs] She says it’s a first
edition first state. REBECCA ROMNEY: I
recognize it immediately. It actually has four
different sections, and they were released
individually in the ’30s. And then this came out in
America during the war. Because it’s a
wartime publication, there are some issues with it. A lot of people who are
specialists in different jobs, they were out on the front. And they had people
working in jobs that they weren’t as familiar with. So you see a lot
of problems that show a little bit of amateurism,
and you see that here. These margins, it’s not right. So there’s faulty
printing with this. And in fact, because
of the faulty printing, they actually pulled the run. However, they had to
keep a certain amount of copies out in circulation
to preserve the copyright. RICK: OK. REBECCA ROMNEY: So
they kept 788 copies. This is one of those copies. [sparkle] So what’s it worth? If you were going
to make this sellable, you would probably need to
restore the dust jacket. You’re looking at an
investment of $300 to $600 just to restore the dust jacket. So with that in mind, a copy
of this that’s restored, I would say you’re looking
at $2,250 to $2,500. Eh. Thank you. You’re welcome. Eliot is very well-respected,
and he changed poetry. If the shop can
negotiate a deal, then I think it’s a good buy. Eliot is always going
to be important, and that’s not a bad investment. It really is a kind of one
of a kind, even with its flaws. RICK: I know that. But you also have to realize
if I buy the book off of you, I have to spend the money
to get these repaired. The best I can give
you is $1,000 for it. Condition is very,
very important. How about $1,500? I’ll tell you what. I’ll do $1,100 because
any other price makes no economic sense to me, none. All right, $1,100. RICK: OK, cool.
Thanks. Thank you. Come on over here,
and we’ll write this up. HOLLY: I bought this book
at a thrift store for $0.75, and I just sold it for $1,100. So it’s a very good day for me.

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