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40,000 DC Comics Spanning 80 Years Going Up for Auction

Over the past few years, we’ve read about some historic comics selling for crazy amounts of money at auction. Superman’s first appearance in Action Comics #1 went for $3 million recently, and Batman’s first ever comic also sold for a cool million. But this latest auction simply dwarfs anything we have ever heard of before in regards to DC Comics…or any comics.

We’ve learned, via Newsarama, that Sotheby’s will auction off the entire DC Comics library–some 40,000 comics spanning eight decades–starting March 30. This date coincides with the 81st anniversary of the first Batman comic ever, Detective Comics #27. The collection spans the decades, from the birth of DC Comics in 1934, all the way to 2014.

All Star Comics No. 36 cover featuring Superman, Wonder Woman, and Batman.DC Comics

The historic library comes from the private collection of Ian Levine, a British DJ and record producer. Levine produced a ton of Hi-NRG dance hits in the ‘80s for bands like Erasure and Pet Shop Boys, and used his wealth to fund a collection of every DC comic every printed.

Doctor Who fans might also recognize his name for something else. Levine is an uber Whovian, and helped the BBC secure many lost episodes and return them to the archives. Much of Levine’s DC Comics collection was already used to chronicle DC’s history, for deluxe coffee table books like 75 Years of DC Comics: The Art of Modern Mythmaking.

40,000 DC Comics Spanning 80 Years Going Up for Auction_1DC Comics

Sotheby’s Richard Austin said, “The Ian Levine collection is the holy grail for comics collectors.” We can assure you that is something of an understatement. It’s impossible to say just how much this collection will be worth. With individual early issues of Superman and Batman alone going for millions, what could the entire DC library go for? I imagine this will be bought by a well-known billionaire nerd. But it’s also possible that Warner Bros. themselves buy it. Why have one DC Comics library, when you can have a back-up as well?

Hopefully the winning bidder won’t be kept a secret. It would be fascinating to know who the world’s biggest (and richest) DC Universe fan is.

Featured Image: DC Comics