Stephen Hawking Thesis And Wheelchair Fetch Millions In Auction

Stephen Hawking Thesis And Wheelchair Fetch Millions In Auction

Stephen Hawking Thesis And Wheelchair Fetch Millions In Auction

A motorised wheelchair used by the late British physicist Stephen Hawking sold at auction on Thursday for nearly £300,000 with the proceeds going to charity.

Medals and awards sold for 296,750 pounds ($387,708), compared with an estimate of 15,000 pounds, while the red motorised wheelchair sold for 296,750 pounds ($387,708), also compared with an estimate of 15,000 pounds.

Proceeds from the wheelchair sale will go to benefit the Stephen Hawking Foundation and the Motor Neurone Disease Association; proceeds from Prof Hawking's other items will go to his estate.

A signed copy of his 117-page dissertation - one of only five - titled Properties of Expanding Universes from 1965 secured the top price of £584,750.

The history-making PhD thesis is signed twice by Prof Hawking and was inscribed by the scientist in the year he was diagnosed with motor neurone disease. All of those were sold, and the total, about US$1.8 million, was seven times more than had been predicted. His doctors gave him just two years to live, and the devastating news led him to lose hope and quit his studies.

A total of 22 items were sold during the online auction.


"Hawking initially resisted the idea of using a wheelchair in the late 1960s; by the late 1970s, he was using motorized models like the present example, and was even renowned for being a rather wild driver", said Christie's.

The Simpsons script, meanwhile, was sold for around $8,100.

There was also a collection of his medals and awards available to prospective buyers, and they went for £296,750.

Prof Hawking's book, A Brief History of Time, which he signed with a thumbprint in 1988, sold for £68,750, way above the £3,000 guide price.

According to the Guardian, the esteemed physicist's daughter Lucy Hawking said the auction was an opportunity for his admirers to "acquire a memento of our father's extraordinary life in the shape of a small selection of evocative and fascinating items".

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