LONDON – Christie’s auction house in London previewed on Tuesday a number of items and publications of the late British scientist Stephen Hawking as part of a collection set to go under the hammer from the end of the month.
The Hawking lots, which include medals, a bomber jacket, his wheelchair and original PhD thesis, is part of a wider sale of manuscripts, letters, postcards and awards from four of science’s great minds: Isaac Newton, Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein and Hawking.
Christie’s describes the objects and documents up for auction as items from minds “whose discoveries definitively shaped our understanding of the universe.”
The star item, Hawking’s PhD thesis entitled “Properties of Expanding Universes,” which he wrote at the age of 24 and is signed twice by him, is expected to fetch between 100,000-150,000 pounds sterling ($129,849-194,773).
As well as Hawking’s thesis, a signed copy with a thumb print of “A Brief History of Time,” which is considered a masterpiece that delves into the main questions of the cosmos and the script of his appearance in an episode of “The Simpsons” would also be included in the sale.
Hawking’s daughter Lucy said in a statement that the Hawking family were very happy to have the help of the London auction house to organize their father’s extensive archive and collection of both personal and professional belongings.
The funds raised in the final lot, which features a wheelchair used by Hawking in 1988, will be donated to the Stephen Hawking Foundation, which fosters research into Cosmology, Astrophysics and Fundamental Particle Physics, and to the Motor Neurone Disease Association, a charity focused on the research of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis which Hawking suffered from.
“On the Shoulders of Giants: Newton, Darwin, Einstein, Hawking” is set for auction at Christie’s between Oct. 31-Nov. 6.