Stephen Hawking's wheelchair, thesis for sale

Documents and files by Stephen Hawking the personal and academic possessions of Stephen Hawking at the auction house Christies in London. AP

Documents and files by Stephen Hawking the personal and academic possessions of Stephen Hawking at the auction house Christies in London. AP

A total of 22 personal possessions of the beloved physicist, the late Stephen Hawking, will be auctioned at Christie's by the end of October.

Christie's, a global auctioneer headquartered in London, is selling several of Hawking's papers, including his dissertation, thesis on the origins of the universe and his spectrum of wormholes.

The auction includes one of five existing copies of Hawking's 1965 Cambridge University Ph.D. thesis, "Properties of Expanding Universes", which carries an estimated price of 100,000 pounds to 150,000 pounds ($130,000 to $195,000).

Christie's auction house is gearing up for next week's "On the Shoulders of Giants" event, highlighting the work of Sir Isaac Newton, Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein, and Stephen Hawking.

Items belonging to the late physicist Stephen Hawking, including one of his earliest motorized wheelchairs, will be put up for auction beginning on Halloween.

A motorized BEC Mobility wheelchair, now on sale on the Christie's website, was one of the many Hawking used during his life.

Thomas Venning, head of books and manuscripts at Christie's, told the Associated Press that these papers "trace the development of his thought-this brilliant, electrifying intelligence". At the time, Hawking had already been diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or colloquially known as Lou Gehrig's Disease).

Hawking, who was also a cosmologist, astronomer, mathematician and a prolific author, died last March at age 76 having survived a debilitating disease that doctors said would kill him in his 20s. Proceeds from the wheelchair will be donated to charities. So, for much of his life, Hawking used a wheelchair to move and a speech-generating device to talk.




A bomber jacket given to Stephen Hawking is one of the personal and academic possessions of Stephen Hawking at the auction house Christies in London, Friday, Oct. 19, 2018.

Frank Augstein/APA bomber jacket given to Stephen Hawking.

In addition to publishing numerous scientific papers, Hawking wrote books, and his popular "A Brief History of Time" will be at the auction.

Other Hawking items up for auction include a copy of "A Brief History of Time" signed with his thumb, expected to fetch between £2,000 and £3,000.

Also on the block is a thumbprint-autographed original copy of the 1988 book that passed from Carl Sagan to Hawking the unofficial title of the world's leading cosmic explainer.

All pieces will be on display in London, and officially for sale October 31 through November 8.

Daughter Lucy Hawking said that "through the auction, fans of the scientist will get the chance to become owners of relics, reminiscent of the extraordinary life of a theoretical physicist".

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