People, May 22, 1972

My letters are often sold not as literature but as the material relics of a modern saint, wrote George Bernard Shaw to a friend. "Often, some impecunious journalist asks me to refuse [his requests for material] on an insulting postcard, so that he can dispose of it to a collector for the price of a meal." That particular letter brought the price of a pretty good meal—$250—at an auction of G.B.S. letters and memorabilia at Manhattan's Parke-Bernet Galleries. A total of $41,900 was paid for the 165 lots—including $4,250 for a packet of...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!