Beatles' Mr Kite lyrics make $239,500 at Christie's

The original lyrics to The Beatles' Being For The Benefit of Mr Kite sold for £140,500 ($239,412) at Christie's London on June 20.

The song was written by John Lennon for the seminal 1967 album Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and was inspired by a poster advertising Pablo Fanque's Circus Royal that he'd recently bought in an antique shop.

Benefit Kite Beatles
Being for the Benefit of Mr Kite was inspired by a poster John Lennon bought from an antiques shop

The track features looping fairground organs and disembodied calliopes, with phrases from the poster (eg "The celebrated Mr. Kite Performs his feat on Saturday at Bishopsgate") appearing at random.

Handwritten lyrics by The Beatles regularly achieve significant sums at auction, particularly those that relate to their best-known songs.

The lyrics to A Day in the Life made $1.2m in 2010, while the manuscript for All You Need is Love achieved $1.25m in 2005.

Paul McCartney's handwritten breakdown of the structure of Hey Jude (1968) also sold well, achieving £62,500 ($106,500).

McCartney claims to have written the song for Julian Lennon after his parents divorced, although the lyrics appear to convey a different message.

John Lennon believed the song was written for him and others have suggested that McCartney wrote it out of frustration with his faltering relationship to Jane Asher, which ended shortly afterwards.

Julian Lennon bought a similar sheet used during the recording for £25,000 ($41,770) in 1996.

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