Would you pay $394,000 for the chair where Harry Potter was born? This undated file photo provided by Heritage Auctions shows details of the chair that J.K. Rowling sat on while writing the first two books of the Harry Potter series. (Joseph Schroeder/Heritage Auctions via AP, File/AP Photo/John Raoux)
Would you pay $394,000 for the chair where Harry Potter was born?
Lexile

It is a humble chair.  J.K. Rowling sat on it while she wrote the first two books of the Harry Potter series. Now the chair has been auctioned in New York City. The price was $394,000. The sale was announced April 6.
 
An anonymous private collector made the winning bid. This is according to Heritage Auctions.
 
The chair is one of four mismatched chairs. They were given to the then little-known writer for her apartment in Edinburgh, Scotland. She used the chair while writing "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" and "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets."
 
The seller was Gerald Gray of Worsley, England. He said the winning bid far exceeded his expectations.
 
It is an unassuming 1930s-era oak chair. It has a replacement burlap seat. The chair was decorated with a red thistle. The chair sat in front of Rowling's typewriter when she was "writing two of the most important books of the modern era." This is according to James Gannon. He is director of rare books at Heritage Auctions.
 
The chair has been auctioned before. Rowling sold it herself to benefit a charity in 2002. She got $21,000. Then it was sold on eBay in 2009. It brought $29,000.
 
"I plan to donate 10 percent to J.K. Rowling's charity, Lumos. Because that's what she did in the first place," said Gray. He runs an automobile speed control equipment company in Manchester, England. He also has one in Sarasota, Florida. It is called AutoKontrol.
 
He said he would like to see the new buyer display it somewhere where children could see it, perhaps in a museum or theme park.
 
He bought the chair in 2009. His daughter is a Harry Potter fan. She spotted it on eBay.
 
Before Rowling donated the chair to the "Chair-rish a Child" auction in support of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children in 2002, she painted the words, "You may not/find me pretty/but don't judge/on what you see" on the stiles and splats. She also signed the backrest in gold and rose colors. There, she wrote, "I wrote/Harry Potter/while sitting/on this chair" on the seat.
 
The word "Gryffindor," the Hogwarts house of Harry, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley, is spelled out on a cross stretcher.
 
The chair came with an original typed and signed letter. Rowling wrote it prior to the first auction.
 
It reads: "Dear new-owner-of-my-chair. I was given four mismatched dining room chairs in 1995 and this was the comfiest one, which is why it ended up stationed permanently in front of my typewriter, supporting me while I typed out 'Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone' and 'Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets'. My nostalgic side is quite sad to see it go, but my back isn't. J. K. Rowling."
 
The first book was released in the United States in 1998. It was "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone."
 
"The characters that Rowling created are the superheroes of the millennials as Batman and Superman were for the Sixties," said Rick Rounick. He is owner of the Soho Contemporary Art gallery. It specializes in pop culture. "The chair that Rowling claims gave her the magic to create the world of Harry Potter is a singularly significant object of her art and creative energy."

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why wasn't J.K. Rowling’s back sorry to see the chair go?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (12)
  • gavind-kut
    4/20/2016 - 03:30 p.m.

    I loved this story, I use to be a big harry potter fan I read some of the books. I honestly thought the first 2 books were better than the movies but the other in my opinion weren't so good. I think that it should be a good idea to read them again because I've heard lots of good things about the last ones.

  • williaml-hei
    4/26/2016 - 03:19 p.m.

    He wrote the first two books in it. So when he sold it it made him feel empty inside.

  • elliew-bel
    4/27/2016 - 09:35 a.m.

    Because she had some chairs that weren't comfy and thay was the comfiest but it was still not really comfy.

  • rachela-bel
    4/27/2016 - 09:38 a.m.

    Because her back was probebly soar from the chair and jk was sad to see it go

  • jenniek-bel
    4/28/2016 - 02:05 p.m.

    Jk was sad to see it go and that chair probably hurt her back too.

  • jacksons2014-
    8/30/2016 - 03:28 p.m.

    I bet that the back of the chair was not comfy so her back wanted a more comfy seat.

  • camilat-
    8/30/2016 - 03:33 p.m.

    that is really exspensive for a chair but all though harry potter sat on it.

  • jackg1005-
    8/30/2016 - 03:33 p.m.

    because it hurt her back.

  • wyattm163529-
    8/30/2016 - 03:34 p.m.

    she knew the chair would be good to raise money with.

  • kadenw531-
    8/30/2016 - 03:36 p.m.

    I like the Harry Potter movies.

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