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Head of Sotheby’s rare books and manuscripts department since 1996, Dr David Goldthorpe is a stalwart of the auction world and a true academic to boot. An experienced generalist, he has expertise in natural history, travel books, maps and atlases, and has a PhD in the history of the early English novel. Over the last 20 years he has worked on some major single-owner book sales, including those of the Earls of Macclesfield, the late Lords Wardington and Hesketh. Clients range from ‘people with just one good item’ to those who have collected ‘massive libraries’. Sotheby’s is ‘at the heart of private collecting,’ he says. ‘We sell everything from books printed in the 1460s, the dawn of printing, to Harry Potter first editions.’

David Goldthorpe