Selection of Stephen Hawking’s personal items to be sold at auction

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The wheelchair being auctioned was used by Stephen Hawking from the end of the 1980s until the early years of the 1990s, before he became unable to use his hands to drive a wheelchair.

But it's not the only kind of legacy the legendary physicist left behind, as a new auction of some of his most interesting personal effects is set to show.

Medals, awards, scientific papers and the script for one of Prof Hawking's appearances on The Simpsons will also be going under the hammer as part of the sale, entitled On the Shoulders of Giants.

Proceeds from the wheelchair's sale will be donated to the Motor Neurone Disease Association and The Stephen Hawking Foundation.

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"He was diagnosed with ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) just as he arrived in Cambridge to begin his Ph.D. studies", Venning said.

In addition, the London-based auction house will also put up a copy of "A Brief History of Time", a 1988 best-seller, that is signed with Hawking's thumbprint.

The auction house said the thesis is signed in Prof Hawking's distinctively shaky handwriting, with the statement: "This dissertation is my original work".

Venning told the AP that Hawking's wheelchair symbolizes the scientist's "puckish sense of humor".

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Remembering renowned physicist and author Stephen Hawking in his own words. This is one of five known copies of Hawking's 117-page thesis, and its estimated value is between $126,000 and $189,000. A leather bomber jacket and a copy of the script of the 22nd season premiere of "The Simpsons", entitled "Elementary School Musical", for which Hawking lent his voice.

Prof Hawking's daughter, Lucy Hawking, said: "We are very pleased to have the assistance of Christie's to help us with the important matter of managing our beloved father's archives and his unique and precious collection of personal and professional belongings, chronicling his life and work". "Hawking threw a lavish party on 28 June 2009 for the benefit of time travellers", Christie's observes, "with the invitation, logically enough, being issued after the party had been held...'I sat there a long time, ' reported Hawking, 'but no one came'".

All pieces will be on display in London, and officially for sale October 31 through November 8. Hawking will take his place among Britain's greatest scientists when his ashes are buried in Westminster Abbey, Friday June 15, 2018, between the graves of Charles Darwin and Isaac Newton, during a service of thanksgiving for the physicist who died in March 2018.

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