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Beano - bibliography

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A Beano #1 recently sold for 12,100 at auction making it the highest price paid for a British comic.
In March 1951 Dennis the Menace first appeared in a small half page strip two years before Rodger the Dodger entered the fray.

"A recent survey in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland showed that the Beano was still the most popular comic among eleven year olds. If a similar survey was carried out among comic collectors, I am sure that the results would be the same - with Beano at the top of the list, closely followed by Dandy. At their peak in the mid 1950s their circulation was said to be over two million copies per week each. If each copy was read only by two or three children, the total readership was staggering. One of the reasons for the scarcity of early copies in the better grades of condition is that very few survived their readers' attention - an indication of their popularity at the time."

Read more on the history of The Beano and The Dandy at the Official Beano Web Site.

A number of DC Thompson comics have given away this free gift, but I believe the most recent instance was on the Beano's 50th anniversary in 1988. (The editor of the Beano demonstrated this toy on Wogan.) It was a couple of cardboard triangles hinged together with a paper flap which you tucked in, and then you waved the device through the air and the paper shot out making a banging noise. The best free gift ever given away in a comic. - Clive Huggett

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Beano Characters

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