By Melissa Locker
February 25, 2015

Looking for the perfect present for the history buff who has everything? A vial of Sir Winston Churchill’s blood is going up on the auction block.

Churchill famously said he had nothing to offer but “blood, toil, tears and sweat” and now some of that blood is to be auctioned off to the highest bidder by Duke’s Auctioneers on March 12.

The blood was collected when Churchill was in the hospital for a fractured hip in 1962. Typically vials of blood are discarded when they are no longer medically necessary, but the nurse who collected it, an apparent fan of the former Prime Minister, received special permission to keep the vial. Upon the nurse’s death, it was bequeathed to a friend who decided to sell the historical medical waste to mark the 50th anniversary of Churchill’s death.

The market value of the vial “is a very difficult thing to estimate,” Timothy Medhurst, an auctioneer and appraiser at Duke’s, told the New York Times. The vial is “the most poignant and unique memorabilia we’ve ever had,” he adds, saying that the blood sample “is the closest you can get to Churchill.”

Keeping all that in mind, he expects the blood to sell for at least 1,000 GBP ($1,550 U.S.) The blood will be sold together with a signed declaration by the nurse detailing the circumstances in which she acquired it.

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