A sketch of “Rat,” “Mole” and “Mr. Toad” from the classic children’s book The Wind in the Willows has sold for £37,000 at auction. Hand drawn by illustrator Ernest Shepard when he was 90 years old, the sketch was won by a London dealer after a fierce battle in the auction room.
The drawing, which was a thank-you gift from Shepard to a friend, was sold by Ace Harrison. Harrison told HuffPost UK, “I thought the work was unmistakeably Shepard. [...] One can only imagine that it probably took only minutes to draw with his expert hand, but captivated me for hours.”
Another thank-you gift from Shepard originally drawn for actor Peter Bromilow in 1954 sold for £20,000 this past January. It was a drawing of Winnie the Pooh and Piglet, a couple of Shepard’s other famous characters.