Gandhi's glasses fetch over $340,000 at auction

Gandhi’s glasses have fetched a tidy sum

of over $340,000 at a recent auction

Location: Bristol, England, UK

The gold-colored wire spectacles

were left in an auction house's letterbox

by a man whose uncle was given the glasses

by Gandhi during the 1920s

(SOUNDBITE) (English) AUCTIONEER AT EAST BRISTOL AUCTIONS, ANDREW STOWE, SAYING:

"They belonged to one of the most important figures in modern history, so you know they're going to be worth something. But after we did some research and some digging and realized that these were actually a really important historical find and we discovered that they were probably worth between 10 and 20 thousand pounds - I nearly fell off of my chair."

Within 24 hours of being listed online

they attracted bids of over $65,000

They were eventually sold to an American collector

and exceeded their vendor's expectations

(SOUNDBITE) (English) AUCTIONEER AT EAST BRISTOL AUCTIONS, ANDREW STOWE, SAYING: "They've been in the same family for 100 years and at no point in that 100 year lifetime did anyone ever think they were worth anything. When I first spoke to the vendor, his exact words to me were, 'Well if they're no good, just throw them away'."

Video Transcript

- They're [INAUDIBLE]

- You can move, and you're like, don't. You didn't want to be filmed or anything.

- It's really weird.

ANDREW STOWE: They belonged to one of the most important figures in modern history. So you know they're going to be worth something. But after we did some research and some digging and realized that these were actually a really important historical find, and we discovered that they were probably worth between 10,000 and 20,000 pounds, I nearly fell off of my chair.

- That's it. You just keep-- gently.

- OK, maybe ready. [INAUDIBLE]

- I just made this like--

- Yeah, what you were just doing makes it [INAUDIBLE]. I think kind of twirling them a little bit I think might be--

ANDREW STOWE: [INAUDIBLE] They have been in the same family for 100 years. And at no point in those-- in that 100-year lifetime did anybody ever think they were worth anything. When I first spoke to the vendor, his exact words were to me, well, if they're no good, just throw them away.