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Illustrated love letter by Little Prince author is auctioned

A staff member of the auction house Artcurial displays a watercolor illustration by Antoine de Saint-Exupery, done around 1942, in Paris, France, Friday, June 15, 2018. The illustration showing a likeness of Saint-Exupery's renowned Little Prince atop a globe, adorning an anguished love letter, has sold at auction for $289,460. (Michel Euler / Associated Press)
A staff member of the auction house Artcurial displays a watercolor illustration by Antoine de Saint-Exupery, done around 1942, in Paris, France, Friday, June 15, 2018. The illustration showing a likeness of Saint-Exupery's renowned Little Prince atop a globe, adorning an anguished love letter, has sold at auction for $289,460. (Michel Euler / Associated Press)

PARIS – An illustration by Antoine de Saint-Exupery showing a likeness of his renowned little prince atop a globe, adorning an anguished love letter, has sold at auction for $289,460.

Auction house Artcurial said the offering topped the sale Saturday of 49 autographed works by Saint-Exupery.

The watercolor, done around 1942, shows the likeness of the beloved character the author created for the 1943 book “The Little Prince” sitting at a desk with a long scroll of writing tumbling down the globe – representing an 11-page letter to a woman.

Artcurial says it was likely that it was Saint-Exupery’s last correspondence before his plane disappeared in 1944 on a mission in World War II.

“The Little Prince” is one of the most translated books in history, according to the Paris-based Saint-Exupery Foundation.


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