Since Gutenberg first printed it, there have been hundreds of millions of copies of The Bible sold. The exact numbers are impossible to tell, but, it may very well be the most popular book in the history of humanity. So how much could one copy possibly be worth? That depends on who it belonged to, and this copy was the property of one of the leading minds in modern history; Albert Einstein.
A man of science, the German-born Nobel Prize-winning physicist wasn’t much for religion. But, he was schooled in biblical lore. A gift from his wife Elsa and himself to their American friend Harriett Hamilton, in 1932 Einstein inscribed the notable Bible as an "inexhaustible source of worldly wisdom and solace."
Because of its inscription and history, the Bible recently sold for a remarkable $68,500 at auction. The sale was undertaken by the Fine Books & Manuscripts division of Bonhams New York, the world-famous auction house.
“Einstein didn't identify with organized religion as an adult, so the inscription is an extraordinary insight into his sentiments in the early 1930s," said Christina Geiger, the Director of the Fine Books & Manuscripts Department at Bonhams.
The final price was reached after lengthy bidding, well exceeding its pre-sale estimates.
"We are very pleased with the price realized for the Einstein Bible,” says Geiger. Ennobled by its notable inscription, for an otherwise ordinary Bible, the price for which it was sold makes it a noteworthy sale indeed.