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An Illustrated Tolkien Bibliography Original Retail Prices

Hardback copies
The price for each volume doubled over the course of the publication of The History of Middle- earth, from 12.50 in 1983 to 25.00 in 1996. Stocks of hardback copies were exhausted by 1997/98.  The prices changed in the following years:

  • 1983 - 12.50
  • 1985 - 14.95
  • 1987 - 16.95
  • 1988 - 17.95 - except for The Lays of Beleriand, which was priced at 18.95
  • 1992 (early) - 20.00
  • 1992 (late) - 25.00

Sauron Defeated, 1993 PB - New price added on labelSome HarperCollins copies, that appear to be first Impressions of the 1991 edition, are priced at 25.00 rather than at 20.00.  This suggests that that were actually printed after the price rise in late 1992.

Paperback copies
The price for each volume more than tripled over the course of the publication of the series, from 2.95 in 1983 to 9.99 by 1993, but prices have remained stable ever since.  The prices changed in the following years:

  • 1985 - 2.95
  • 1986 - 3.50
  • 1987 - 3.95
  • 1988 - 4.95
  • 1989 - 4.99, then 5.50
  • 1991 - 5.99
  • 1992 - 6.99, then 7.99
  • 1993 - 9.99

Due to the rapid escalation of prices in the early 90s there are a significant number of copies to be found with new prices and barcodes added on labels - one variant is shown here.  These were probably applied fairly soon after the price rise in late 1993.

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