The rare photos are expected to sell for more than $12,000

By Tierney McAfee
Updated May 25, 2015 07:45 PM
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Credit: Heritage Auctions/Splash News Online

Rare photos of Marilyn Monroe taken just weeks before her untimely death are going to auction in London, according to multiple reports.

The stunning snapshots were taken by her friend, photographer George Barris, on Santa Monica beach on July 13, 1962, just three weeks before she was found dead at 36 in her Los Angeles bedroom. The set also includes photos of Monroe in her Brentwood, California, home.

Eight of the prints, several of which show Monroe romping on the beach in a towel or bikini, are expected to sell for 8000 (more than $12,000) at Dreweatts & Bloomsbury Auctions in London on June 4, according to Metro.co.uk.

Barris, who met Monroe in 1954 on the set of her hit film The Seven Year Itch, originally intended to use the pictures for a book he was working on about the iconic actress, but he scrapped it after her death, reports Metro.co.uk.

Barris did not publish the photos, billed as the last professional ones ever taken of Monroe, until 25 years later, in 1987, when he released 99 limited edition prints.

In 2001, Barris finally published a book called Marilyn: Her Life in her Own Words: Marilyn Monroe’s Revealing Last Words and Photographs.

“What I particularly liked about Marilyn was that she didn’t act like a movie star,” he wrote in the book. “She was down to earth. Although she was then twenty-eight, she looked and acted like a teenager.

“Sure, she was beautiful and sexy,” he added, “but there was an almost childlike innocence about her.”