Literary listing: Estate asks $3.2M for New York apartment of late author Philip Roth

The Pulitzer Prize winner's two-bedroom, three-balcony condo on the Upper West Side could be combined with an adjacent studio listed for $675,000

Feb.February 24, 2019 02:30 PM

Author Philip Roth (Credit: Medium, Getty)

A Manhattan apartment owned by the late Pulitzer Prize-winning author Philip Roth is hitting the market with a $3.2 million asking price.

The listing agent, Lisa Lippman of Brown Harris Stevens, told the Wall Street Journal that Roth merged two units in a building on West 79th Street to form his two-bedroom condo with three balconies. Roth died in 2018 at age 85.

His Upper West Side residence is a storied place that is almost exactly as he left it. During a recent tour of the apartment, his 1998 Pulitzer Prize for “American Pastoral” was on one of his desks.

A thesaurus and the Samuel Scheffler book “Death and the Afterlife” were on a stand-up writing desk that Roth used to ease his chronically painful back.

In 1989, Roth bought his first unit at the Upper West Side building, which he initially used as a writing studio while residing several blocks away with his wife at the time, Claire Bloom.

After they separated and she published a harsh memoir about their failed marriage, Roth resided mainly at his home in Connecticut for several years, when he wrote three books known as the American Trilogy: “American Pastoral,” “The Human Stain” and “I Married a Communist.”

Roth moved back to New York City after publishing the trilogy, bought an apartment next to his studio, and combined them into the residence his estate is now selling, which spans about 1,500 square feet.

Roth owned and rented out two other units in the building. One is listed for sale, a studio next to his apartment that could be combined with the apartment if purchased together. The asking price for the next-door studio is $675,000. Roth paid $525,000 in 2008.

Roth paid $1.375 million in 2007 for the other unit, located one floor below the listed units, which is being sold to a resident of the building. [Wall Street Journal]Mike Seemuth

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