The founding text of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, otherwise known as the Book of Mormon has officially set the record for being the most expensive manuscript to be sold in history. It was recently purchased for a jaw-dropping price of $ 35 m by the church, thus making it one of the most talked about sale for the year.
The iconic document is a handwritten copy of the original manuscript dictated by Joseph Smith. As per legend, Smith translated the sacred script from ‘reformed Egyptian’ engravings found on golden plates that were buried in a hill in upstate New York. The Book of Mormon, thus is said to include writings of ancient American prophets and other mystical tales of Jesus’s appearances after resurrection. As per the church historian, Steven E. Snow, “The printer’s manuscript is the earliest surviving copy of about 72 percent of the Book of Mormon text, as only about 28 percent of the earlier dictation copy survived decades of storage in a cornerstone in Nauvoo, Illinois.”
Previously the record for the most expensive manuscript sold was owned by the Codex Leicester (a 16th century collection of scientific writings by Leonardo da Vinci) which was purchased by Microsoft founder Bill Gates for $30.4m. For now, the holy Book of Mormon with a tag of $35m stands triumphant in the most preserved nooks of the Mormon Church.