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eBay impulse buyers STAY AWAY: Holy Grail Superman comic book to fetch $2m+

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One of the rarest comic books of all time is going under the hammer – well, a virtual hammer.

Online auction house Web tat bazaar eBay has said dealer Darren Adams will use the website to sell a nearly pristine copy of Action Comics #1. The legendary 1938 edition from DC Comics features the first appearance of Superman.

The auction will take place from August 14 to 24, and is expected to shatter the previous record sale price, set by another Action Comics #1 copy, of $US2.16m.

While the book itself has been reprinted a number of times, estimates on the number of extant copies from the first 1938 print run range from 50 to 100.

According to the Certified Guarantee Company (CGC), which sets the quality grades that profoundly impact a comic's value, the book Adams is selling is particularly remarkable for its quality. Where the 2011 comic was scored at a 9.0, this copy was graded at a pristine 9.6, making it the highest-graded known copy of Action Comics #1.

"The quality and preservation of the Adams’ Action #1 is astounding," CGC primary grader Paul Litch said in a release.

"The book looks and feels like it just came off the newsstand. It is supple, the colors are deep and rich and the quality of the white pages is amazing for a comic that is 76 years old."

CGC has made a digitized copy of the book available for browsing online.

eBay is not disclosing what its cut from the likely $2m to $3m auction will be, but the company said that a portion of the proceeds from the sale will be donated to the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation. ®

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