June 2014 | Nate Pedersen

Samuel Beckett Manuscript to be Displayed for One Day

The manuscript of Murphy - the first novel published by Samuel Beckett in 1938 - will be on display for one day - and one day only - at the University of Reading. If you are near Reading this Wednesday, June 11th, stop by the Museum of English Rural Life between 12:30 and 7:00 p.m. to see the manuscript.  

The six dark blue ledgers that comprise the Murphy manuscript attracted a lot of attention last year when they sold for £962,500 at Sotheby's to the University of Reading. After lingering in private hands for the last 50 years, the Murphy manuscript was viewed by collectors and scholars as one of the last great 20th-century literary manuscripts not yet owned by an institution. When the manuscript came up for auction last year, a fierce bidding war ensued, with the University eventually winning over an anonymous phone bidder for £962,500. With that winning bid, the University of Reading brought home a crowning piece for its first-class Beckett collection, the best in the world.

The Murphy manuscript is on display for one day only because it's in the middle of being carefully transcribed by a Beckett scholar. Starting in October the manuscript will be available to scholars and students for further study. The university also plans to digitize the manuscript and make a facsimile available for sale.

Image via Wikipedia.