A pristine edition of Superman's 13-page comic book debut is to be publically auctioned on eBay in mid-August.
According to the Daily Telegraph, the copy of Action Comics No. 1 being sold by collector Darren Adams is particularly special because of its "near-mint condition".
"I felt this book deserves to have as much publicity as possible because of what it is," Adams said. "This is the first time this copy's ever been publicly available for sale".
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Potential buyers will be required to "prequalify" in order to take part in the auction, to ensure all bids are serious. One per cent of the profits will also be donated to the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, which was founded by the late film actor to seek cures for spinal cord injuries.
The book, which contains the origins of Superman and the first appearance of reporter Lois Lane, was originally purchased by a fan in 1938. Afterwards, the copy was "stored in a cedar chest for 40 years ... and later sold to a dealer who kept it in a bank vault" before Adams took possession, the Telegraph says.
Upon inspection by the Certified Guaranty Company, the comic book was given a nine out of 10 quality rating.
"The quality and preservation of this Action #1 is astounding," said CGC inspector Paul Litch. "The book looks and feels like it just came off the news stand. It is supple, the colours are deep and rich and the quality of the white pages is amazing for a comic that is 76 years old".
Adams said it was difficult to estimate how much the comic might fetch, but added that due to the comic's rarity "there’s really no limit to it," the Fiscal Times reports.
In 2011, another highly rated copy of the issue was sold at a record-breaking $2.16 million. The Telegraph claims that "fewer than 50 unrestored copies" of the comic remain in existence, making it "the most valuable comic book in the world".
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