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Details about  Rare J.R.R Tolkien, The Hobbit Book First 1st Edition, 3rd 1942 See condition!

Rare J.R.R Tolkien, The Hobbit Book First 1st Edition, 3rd 1942 See condition!

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Last updated on  23 Jul, 2014 09:17:03 BST  View all revisions
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Item specifics



Date of Publication:




Special Attributes:

1st Edition

Fiction Subject:


Place of Publication:





The Hobbit, There and Back Again by J.R.R Tolkien

First Published 1937

Second Impression 1937

Reprinted 1942


The Hobbit has sold more than 100 million copies and been translated into 50 different languages. A rare signed first edition copy sold for £60,000 in 2008. Recently the Hobbit movie has also helped generate more interest and with the 80th Anniversary due in 2017 ‘The Hobbit’ book should offer a worthwhile investment.

Tolkien books have become so popular that the Tolkien Society, are still dedicated to the cause with an excellent wealth of knowledge and information.

Dating this Book*

1937 1st/1st UK Allen & Unwin. The Hobbit was first released in 1937 and limited to 1500 copies. By December 1937 these quickly sold out.  

1937 1st/2nd UK Allen & Unwin, a further 1877 second impression copies became available.

*1942 1st/ 3rd UK Allen & Unwin, 1500 third impression became available.

Full details of this can be found from the Tolkien Library.

Book Details

This 1st Edition / 3rd Impression book is in excellent condition considering it is 72 years old. I am not sure if it has even been read as when opening the book the pages and spine do not appear to have been stretched. If it has been used then the reader must have been very careful. There is also not much in the way of discolouration apart from age which would suggest that this book was kept in a safe place away from light.


·        Original having undergone no restoration

·        There is still a natural springiness in the pages.

·        There is no ink inscriptions or previous owner marks inside the book

·        All pages are intact with no tears, marks or damage.

·        No smudges or ink stains

·        There is no foxing/spotting/tanning marks

·        Spine is not damaged and the binding is tight

·        To be picky the hardback corners are ever so slightly curved and there is no dust jacket

·        If you wish to inspect inside this book more closely then please click here

The book I have for sale was produced by Allen & Unwin whom were the original printers of the very first copy.  What makes this copy unique is its good condition considering that of the original numbers printed there cannot be that many surviving. Quite often children’s books were given as presents so to find one without any writing or marks or damage is rare. First edition copy prices have rocketed over the years and now first edition, 2nd and 3rd impression copies are also becoming more collectable where £60K -100K for a first edition copy are a little out of reach!

Editions of the ‘The Hobbit’ books were also changed by the Author to try to bring the story in line with the characters being introduced in Lord of the Rings, making each impression collectable and rare in its own right.


J.R.R Tolkien, ‘The Hobbit There and Back Again’ First edition, third impression book.  Rare to find in such exceptional condition for a 72 year old book this is sure to be a unique investment/collection opportunity.


Payment and Delivery

This book is for sale on Ebay only at a 'Buy It Now' price and I will consider 'Offers'. 

I can deliver the book worldwide - please request a quote based on your offer price and I will provide a quote.

Some Sources of Information

Daily Telegraph 20 Sep 2012: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/booknews/9555838/The-Hobbit-What-has-made-the-book-such-an-enduring-success.html

Tolkien Society: http://www.tolkiensociety.co.uk/

Similar Condition Sale Prices: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/J-R-R-Tolkien-The-Hobbit-1st-2nd-Childrens-BC-1942-/230664050428?nma=true&si=l8mlD4pi7zVuUfCWDykbjGLXETk%253D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557


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Returns accepted in original condition, however any postage/transport costs will not be refunded
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Postage and packaging

Item location: Taunton, United Kingdom
Postage to: Worldwide
Domestic dispatch time
Will usually dispatch within 1 working day of receiving cleared payment[newWindowTxt].

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