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Imagine all the artwork: Lennon trove auctioned

NEW YORK - The whimsical drawings and manuscripts John Lennon produced for his two critically acclaimed books are skyrocketing past their pre-sale auction estimates.

Sotheby's is selling the 89-lot collection from Lennon's "In His Own Write" and "A Spaniard in the Works."

"The Fat Budgie," a beloved nonsensical poem with the title written on the margin, went for $143,000 on Wednesday. It had been estimated to bring up to $35,000. A handwritten manuscript called "I Sat Belonely" went for $137,000. It was expected to fetch up to $35,000.

A corrected typescript titled "Neville Club" sold for $10,000, within its presale estimate.

Sotheby's says it's the largest private collection of Lennon's work to come to market. The books' British publisher, Tom Maschler, has owned the material for a half-century.

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