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Rare first-edition copy of US Constitution fetches $43.2 million, crypto investors lose the bid

According to Sotheby's, the winning offer was $41 million, and the ultimate price of $43.2 million includes overheads and other fees. 

Rare first-edition copy of US Constitution fetches $43 million crypto investors lose the bid gcw
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Washington D.C., First Published Nov 19, 2021, 1:13 PM IST
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A cryptocurrency enthusiast's crowd-funded effort to acquire a rare copy of the US constitution fell short on Thursday, when the document went to another buyer for $43.2 million, a record price for a printed book, according to auction house Sotheby's. The victorious bidder's name was not immediately revealed, nor was it apparent why the cryptocurrency organisation known as "ConstitutionDAO" was outbid at that amount, even though their crowd-funding website had raised more than $47 million.

"Community: We did not win the auction," ConstitutionDAO said on Twitter, guaranteeing a refund minus transaction costs to its 17,437 donors. According to Sotheby's, it was the most extensive crowdsourcing campaign in history.  Sotheby's believes that the very rare original first-edition printed copy of the United States Constitution, authorised by America's founding fathers in Philadelphia in 1787, is worth $15 million to $20 million.

According to Sotheby's, the winning offer was $41 million, and the ultimate price of $43.2 million includes overheads and other fees. According to Sotheby's, the sale revenues will benefit a philanthropic organisation named after his wife, Dorothy Tapper Goldman, to improve the public's knowledge of democracy.

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According to the ConstitutionDAO website, contributors would become members of the Decentralised Autonomous Organisation, or DAO, but would have no say over the wording. A decentralised autonomous organisation (DAO) is an online community that uses blockchain technology to allow members to make and vote on operational decisions.

According to Sotheby's, the document they missed out on is one of 11 known existing copies — the only one now in private hands — of the official first printing of the final text of the Constitution, as accepted in Philadelphia and submitted for scrutiny to the Continental Congress.

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