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Archive for Saturday, December 5, 2009

People in the news

December 5, 2009

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Copy of Poe’s 1st book sells for $662K

New York — A rare copy of Edgar Allan Poe’s first book has sold for $662,500, smashing the previous record price for American literature.

The copy of “Tamerlane and Other Poems” had been estimated to sell on Friday for between $500,000 and $700,000 at Christie’s auction house in New York City.

The previous record is believed to be $250,000 for a copy of the same book sold almost two decades ago.

The 40-page collection of poems was published in 1827.

Poe wrote the book shortly after moving to Boston to launch his literary career.

No more than 40 or 50 copies of “Tamerlane” were printed, and only 12 remain.

The record-breaking copy is stained and frayed and has V-shaped notches on the outer and lower margins.

Colbert’s anti-Canada feud spirals on Web

New York — Stephen Colbert has been called what his mock pundit character would deem a traitorous insult: Canadian.

The host of “The Colbert Report” is — gasp! — a Canuck, or at least has a Canadian heritage, says the genealogy Web site Ancestry.com. Colbert’s great-great-grandfather and his great-great-grandmother immigrated from Ireland to Canada, according to the site.

On his Comedy Central show, Colbert’s “U-S-A!”-chanting character has disparaged the Great White North.

Colbert’s publicist didn’t respond to requests for comment.

Recently, the Colbert Nation became the official sponsor of the U.S. speedskating team. On the show, he has joined complaints that Vancouver Olympic officials have been limiting international athletes’ access to facilities for the 2010 Winter Games.

He’s called Canadians “syrup-suckers” and has a petition on his show’s Web site urging the Vancouver Organizing Committee not to be “an ice-hole.”

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