Published: Wed, October 24, 2018
Science | By Cecil Little

Selection of Stephen Hawking's personal items to be sold at auction

Selection of Stephen Hawking's personal items to be sold at auction

A total of 22 personal possessions of the beloved physicist, the late Stephen Hawking, will be auctioned at Christie's by the end of October. 22, Christie's announced the online sale that will include wheelchairs, scientific papers, some of the awards received, and a few others.

In particular, one of the five copies of the doctoral thesis on "the Properties of universes expanding" of the estimated 130 thousand to $ 195 thousand dollars.

The wheelchair that will be auctioned is a red and maroon leather equipment which was used by Hawking between the late-1980s and mid-1990s.

The items are part of an online sale also featuring papers by Isaac Newton, Charles Darwin and Albert Einstein.

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The famous physicist was diagnosed at just 21 years old with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig's disease.

Thomas Venning, head of books and manuscripts at Christie's, told the Associated Press that these papers "trace the development of his thought-this brilliant, electrifying intelligence". The doctors were off by several decades; the scientist lived to age 76.

His illness left him wheelchair-bound and dependent on a computerised voice system for communication.

Christie's of London will open bidding on a trove of fascinating, historic, and just plain cool items from Hawking's private collection, including recognizable pieces of his formative past that, for longtime followers and fans, have become as much a part of his identity as his groundbreaking work in quantum mechanics. The money will go to two charities, The Stephen Hawking Foundation and The Motor Neurone Disease Association.

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One is included in the sale, with an estimated price of $18,300 to $27,500. He once ran over Prince Charles' toes - and reportedly joked that he wished he had done the same to Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher - and appeared in a "Monty Python" skit running down fellow physicist Brian Cox.

Venning told the AP that Hawking's wheelchair symbolizes the scientist's "puckish sense of humor".

A bomber jacket Hawking wore in a 2016 documentary, Stephen Hawking's Favorite Places for the video-on-demand streaming service CuriosityStream, has the lowest starting bid, at £100.

In addition, the London-based auction house will also put up a copy of "A Brief History of Time", a 1988 best-seller, that is signed with Hawking's thumbprint.

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Prof Hawking's daughter Lucy said the auction would give people the chance to "acquire a memento of our father's extraordinary life".

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