January 21, 2019
Tokyo--The autograph manuscript of "Takekurabe" (growing up), a novella by Japanese author Ichiyo Higuchi (1872-1896), fetched 21 million yen in a Tokyo auction on Saturday.
A male collector from outside Tokyo made the successful bid, higher than the assumed price range of 10 million to 15 million yen.
The manuscript, a Japanese-style book containing 75 pages of 400-character manuscript paper, was previously shown in an exhibition.
According to Tokyo-based Mainichi Auction, which organized the latest auction, the manuscript was held by an art dealer following the female author's death before coming into the possession of another individual.
Takekurabe, a story about puppy love of a boy and a girl in Tokyo's Yoshiwara licensed quarter, was carried in a magazine series from
January 1895. The whole story was published in a separate magazine in April 1896, and the auctioned manuscript is the copy Higuchi wrote out for the magazine.
Higuchi, who died at age 24, wrote a number of masterpieces in less than five years. A portrait of her is featured in the 5,000-yen bill.Jiji Press
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