The Scream Auction: Edvard Munch's Painting Sells For $119.9 Million, Sets A World Record (LIVEBLOG)

Will 'The Scream' Set A World Record Tonight?

Edvard Munch's iconic work, "The Scream," broke a world record tonight, becoming the most expensive artwork sold in an auction.

Estimates for the sale varied from $80 million to $200 million. The artwork -- which is not a painting but is pastel on board -- ended up selling for $119,922,500, surpassing the previous record-holder, Picasso's "Nude, Green Leaves, and Bust," which sold for $106.5 million in 2010. Cezanne's "The Card Players" has the honor of going for the highest price, period (meaning not at auction) -- it was sold in a private sale to Qatar (yes, the country) for $250 million last year.

Check out our liveblog below of the highs and, well, higher highs, of the Sotheby's auction. Learn about the oft-stolen other versions of "The Scream" that Munch painted, as well as the exalted company of record-breakers he now keeps. And because nothing sets the mood for an ex post facto liveblog quite like blood and tongues, do read the text below of Munch's inscription, which appears on tonight's history-making work:

"I was walking along a path with two friends - the sun was setting - suddenly the sky turned blood red - I paused, feeling exhausted, and leaned on the fence - there was blood and tongues of fire above the blue-black fjord and the city.

My friends walked on, and I stood there trembling with anxiety - and I sensed an infinite scream passing through nature."

Correction: An earlier version of this article stated that this particular version of "The Scream" was a painting; it is in fact pastel on cardboard. We regret the error.

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