In an ironic twist of fate, the handwritten lyrics to Bob Dylan’s Like A Rolling Stone have sold at at Sotheby's auction house in New York. The song is one of the most popular pieces of music of the 20th century. The sale was made on Tuesday to an anonymous bidder, who paid $2.045 million for the privilege of owning the historic rough draft. Sotheby's described the buyer as a long-time fan of Dylan, who "met his hero in a non-rock context and bought directly from Dylan."

Bob Dylan, Royal Albert Hall
Bob Dylan performing at the Royal Albert Hall in November 2013

They come from much more humble beginnings, scrawled on stationary from The Roger Smith hotel in Washington, D.C. back in 1965. The writing is a piece of musical history – with doodles - a hat, a bird, an animal with antlers - andcrossed-out words, it gives some insight into Dylan’s creative process at work. Dylan was 24 when he recorded the song in 1965 about a debutante who becomes a loner when she's cast from upper-class social circles..

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The item is "the only known surviving draft of the final lyrics for this transformative rock anthem," said a statement from Sotheby's reported by the Associated Press. According to the auction house, the sale price constitutes a record for a for a popular music manuscript. The previous record was set by John Lennon's handwritten lyrics for A Day in the Life, which sold in 2010 for $1.2 million.

Bob Dylan
Dylan penned the iconic lyrics on hotel stationary in 1965,