Salvador Dali's Divine Comedy woodcuts sell for $31,000

A set of 100 woodcut prints by Salvador Dali, illustrating Dante's Divine Comedy, realised $30,626 at RR Auction on October 12.

The set, which dates to the late 1960s, was originally owned by a Dr Antonio Farlese, who acquired them from a gallery in Merano, Italy.

Dante Divine Comedy
The Italian government commissioned Dali to produce the work in 1957

In a letter of provenance accompanying the lot, he explains how he met Dali at the Hotel Meurice in Paris and the artist signed each of the 100 prints.

The auction house comments: "This remarkable suite was purchased from Dr. Farlese in 1981 and has remained in the same collection for the past 35 years.

"These are some of the finest quality prints of Dali's vivid paintings that have ever been produced, and the sheer number of authentically signed pieces here offered is truly impressive."

An eclectic range of pieces were offered in the sale, including a handwritten letter by Mary Todd Lincoln - wife of Abraham Lincoln.

It's dated September 28, 1868 - three years after the president's death - and is addressed to reverend James Smith. Smith was the pastor at the Lincolns' local church in Springfield, Illinois and they attended his services between 1849 and 1856.

He left for Scotland that year to take up a position as the US consul to Dundee.

Mary writes: "Such a long time has elapsed since I last wrote you & I am sure you must have wondered at my long silence!

"…Next spring, I hope to see you in Scotland…I have passed the summer in the Allegheny mountains. I tremble lest we may have a rough voyage, yet we are all in the hands of that great Being, who rules over the Universe & has our lives in His hands."

It realised $17,876.

We have a stunning piece of Lincoln memorabilia for sale.

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