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J. R. R. Tolkien - Author

About the Author

John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born on the 3rd January, 1892 at Bloemfontein in the Orange Free State, but at the age of four he and his brother were taken back to England by their mother. After his father’s death the family moved to Sarehole, on the south-eastern edge of Birmingham. Tolkien spent a happy childhood in the countryside and his sensibility to the rural landscape can clearly be seen in his writing and his pictures.

His mother died when he was only twelve and both he and his brother were made wards of the local priest and sent to King Edward’s School, Birmingham, where Tolkien shone in his classical work. After completing a First in English at Oxford, Tolkien married Edith Bratt. He was also commissioned in the Lancashire Fusiliers and fought in the battle of the Somme. After the war, he obtained a post on the ‘New English Dictionary’ and began to write the mythological and legendary cycle which he originally called The Book of Lost Tales  but which eventually became known as The Silmarillion.

In 1920 Tolkien was appointed Reader in English Language at the University of Leeds which was the beginning of a distinguished academic career culminating with his election as Rawlinson and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford. Meanwhile Tolkien wrote for his children and told them the story of The Hobbit. It was his publisher, Stanley Unwin, who asked for a sequel to The Hobbit  and gradually Tolkien wrote The Lord of the Rings, a huge story that took twelve years to complete and which was not published until Tolkien was approaching retirement. After retirement Tolkien and his wife lived near Oxford, but then moved to Bournemouth. Tolkien returned to Oxford after his wife’s death in 1971. He died on 2 September 1973 leaving The Silmarillion  to be edited for publication by his son, Christopher.

Featured books by J. R. R. Tolkien

The Colour Illustrated Hobbit

The Colour Illustrated Hobbit

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Paperback Release Date: 21/09/2017

Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit who enjoys a comfortable and quiet life. His contentment is disturbed one day when the wizard, Gandalf, and the dwarves arrive to take him away on an adventure. Smaug certainly looked fast asleep, when Bilbo peeped once more from the entrance. He was just about to step out on to the floor when he caught a sudden thin ray of red from under the drooping lid of Smaug's left eye. He was only pretending to sleep! He was watching the tunnel entrance! Whisked from his comfortable hobbit-hole by Gandalf the wizard and a band of dwarves. Bilbo Baggins finds himself caught up in a plot to raid the treasure hoard of Smaug the Magnificent, a large and very dangerous dragon...

Beren and Luthien

Beren and Luthien

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/06/2017

The tale of Beren and Luthien was, or became, an essential element in the evolution of The Silmarillion, the myths and legends of the First Age of the World conceived by J.R.R. Tolkien. Returning from France and the battle of the Somme at the end of 1916, he wrote the tale in the following year. Essential to the story, and never changed, is the fate that shadowed the love of Beren and Luthien: for Beren was a mortal man, but Luthien was an immortal Elf. Her father, a great Elvish lord, in deep opposition to Beren, imposed on him an impossible task that he must perform before he might wed Luthien. This is the kernel of the legend; and it leads to the supremely heroic attempt of Beren and Luthien together to rob the greatest of all evil beings, Melkor, called Morgoth, the Black Enemy, of a Silmaril. In this book Christopher Tolkien has attempted to extract the story of Beren and Luthien from the comprehensive work in which it was embedded; but that story was itself changing as it developed new associations within the larger history. To show something of the process whereby this legend of Middle-earth evolved over the years, he has told the story in his father's own words by giving, first, its original form, and then passages in prose and verse from later texts that illustrate the narrative as it changed. Presented together for the first time, they reveal aspects of the story, both in event and in narrative immediacy, that were afterwards lost.

ebook of the month
The Hobbit Facsimile First Edition Boxed Set

The Hobbit Facsimile First Edition Boxed Set

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Hardback Release Date: 22/09/2016

This sumptuous gift set includes a replica of the very rare first edition of The Hobbit, the only edition where one can now read the original version of the story before Tolkien re-edited it nearly 30 years later. The Hobbit was published on 21 September 1937 with a print run of 1,500 copies. With a beautiful cover design and nearly a dozen black & white drawings by the author himself, the book proved to be popular and was reprinted shortly afterwards, and history was already being made. The scarcity of the first edition has resulted in copies commanding huge prices, way beyond the reach of most Tolkien fans. In addition, subsequent changes to the text - particularly those to chapter five when Tolkien decided to expand the text to marry it up to events in The Lord of the Rings - mean that the opportunity to read the book in its original form and format has become quite difficult. This special printing reprints the first edition, so that Tolkien's story may be enjoyed in its original form.

The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings Boxed Set

The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings Boxed Set

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Paperback Release Date: 20/11/2014

Immerse yourself in Middle-earth with Tolkien's classic masterpieces behind the films, telling the complete story of Bilbo Baggins and the Hobbits' epic encounters with Gandalf, Gollum, dragons and monsters, in the quest to destroy the One Ring. When they were first published, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings became instant classics. Treasured by readers young and old, these works of sweeping fantasy, steeped in unrivalled magic and otherworldliness have sold more than 150 million copies around the world. This new boxed gift set, published to celebrate the release of the first of Peter Jackson's three-part film adaptation of JRR Tolkien's The Hobbit, THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY, contains both titles and features cover images from both films. It offers readers a new opportunity to discover Tolkien's remarkable world of Middle-earth and to follow the complete story of Bilbo Baggins and the Hobbits' part in the epic quest for the Ring - beginning with Bilbo's fateful visit from Gandalf and culminating in the dramatic climax between Frodo and Gollum atop Mount Doom.

Hobbitus Ille The Latin Hobbit

Hobbitus Ille The Latin Hobbit

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Hardback Release Date: 13/09/2012

Fascinating for Latin learners and for Tolkien fans of all ages, The Hobbit has been translated into Latin for the first time since its publication 75 years ago. In foramine terrae habitabat hobbitus. ('In a hole in the ground, there lived a hobbit.') The Hobbit, is one of the world's most popular classic stories, appealing to adults as much as to the children for whom J.R.R. Tolkien first wrote the book. Translated worldwide into more than 60 modern languages, now Hobbitus Ille is finally published in Latin, and will be of interest to all those who are studying the language, whether at school or at a higher level. In the great tradition of publishing famous children's books in Latin, professional classicist and lifelong Tolkien fan Mark Walker provides a deft translation of the entire book. His attention to detail, including the transformation of Tolkien's songs and verses into classical Latin metres, will fascinate and entertain readers of all ability, even those with only a minimal acquaintance with the language.

ebook of the month

Other books by J. R. R. Tolkien

Letters from Father Christmas

Letters from Father Christmas

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Hardback Release Date: 17/10/2019

This revised edition of Tolkien's famous illustrated letters from Father Christmas to his children includes a number of pictures and letters that have not been seen in print before. The perfect Christmas gift for Tolkien lovers of all ages. This classic festive book of Tolkien's amazing Father Christmas letters written to his children between the 1920s and the 1940s has been reworked into a new and attractive edition. It contains brand new high-quality digital reproductions of his amazing letters and pictures, including a number them that have never been printed before. `My dear children, I am more shaky than usual this year. The North Polar Bear's fault. It was the biggest bang in the world, and the most monstrous firework there has ever been. It turned the North Pole black!' Every December an envelope bearing a stamp from the North Pole would arrive for J. R. R. Tolkien's children. Inside would be a letter in strange spidery handwriting and a beautiful coloured drawing or some sketches. The letters were from Father Christmas. They told wonderful tales of life at the North Pole: * How all the reindeer got loose and scattered presents all over the place. * How the accident-prone Polar Bear climbed the North Pole and fell through the roof of Father Christmas's house into the dining-room * How he broke the Moon into four pieces and made the Man in it fall into the back garden * How there were wars with the troublesome horde of goblins who lived in the caves beneath the house! Sometimes the Polar Bear would scrawl a note, and sometimes Ilbereth the Elf would write in his elegant flowing script, adding yet more life and humour to the stories. From the first note to Tolkien's eldest son in 1920 to the final poignant letter to his daughter in 1943, this book collects all the remarkable letters and pictures in one enchanting edition. No reader, young or old, can fail to be charmed by the inventiveness of Tolkien's Letters from Father Christmas.

A Secret Vice Tolkien on Invented Languages

A Secret Vice Tolkien on Invented Languages

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/10/2019

First ever critical study of Tolkien's little-known essay, which reveals how language invention shaped the creation of Middle-earth and beyond, to George R R Martin's Game of Thrones. J.R.R. Tolkien's linguistic invention was a fundamental part of his artistic output, to the extent that later on in life he attributed the existence of his mythology to the desire to give his languages a home and peoples to speak them. As Tolkien puts it in `A Secret Vice', `the making of language and mythology are related functions''. In the 1930s, Tolkien composed and delivered two lectures, in which he explored these two key elements of his sub-creative methodology. The second of these, the seminal Andrew Lang Lecture for 1938-9, `On Fairy-Stories', which he delivered at the University of St Andrews in Scotland, is well known. But many years before, in 1931, Tolkien gave a talk to a literary society entitled `A Hobby for the Home', where he unveiled for the first time to a listening public the art that he had both himself encountered and been involved with since his earliest childhood: `the construction of imaginary languages in full or outline for amusement'. This talk would be edited by Christopher Tolkien for inclusion as `A Secret Vice' in The Monsters and the Critics and Other Essays and serves as the principal exposition of Tolkien's art of inventing languages. This new critical edition, which includes previously unpublished notes and drafts by Tolkien connected with the essay, including his `Essay on Phonetic Symbolism', goes some way towards re-opening the debate on the importance of linguistic invention in Tolkien's mythology and the role of imaginary languages in fantasy literature.

Hobbit (Essential Modern Classics)

Hobbit (Essential Modern Classics)

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: eBook Release Date: 13/10/2019

The Hobbit

The Hobbit

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: CD-Audio Release Date: 28/08/2019

Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit who enjoys a comfortable and quiet life. His contentment is disturbed one day when the wizard, Gandalf, and the dwarves arrive to take him away on an adventure. Smaug certainly looked fast asleep, when Bilbo peeped once more from the entrance. He was just about to step out on to the floor when he caught a sudden thin ray of red from under the drooping lid of Smaug's left eye. He was only pretending to sleep! He was watching the tunnel entrance! Whisked from his comfortable hobbit-hole by Gandalf the wizard and a band of dwarves. Bilbo Baggins finds himself caught up in a plot to raid the treasure hoard of Smaug the Magnificent, a large and very dangerous dragon...

The Lord of the Rings

The Lord of the Rings

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/08/2019

This special 50th anniversary hardback edition of J.R.R. Tolkien's classic masterpiece includes the complete revised and reset text, two-fold out maps printed in red and black and, unique to this edition, a full-colour fold-out reproduction of Tolkien's own facsimile pages from the Book of Mazarbul that the Fellowship discover in Moria. Since it was first published in 1954, The Lord of the Rings has been a book people have treasured. Steeped in unrivalled magic and otherworldliness, its sweeping fantasy and epic adventure has touched the hearts of young and old alike. Over 100 million copies of its many editions have been sold around the world, and occasional collectors' editions become prized and valuable items of publishing. This one-volume hardback edition contains the complete text, fully corrected and reset, and features for the very first time the pages from the Book of Mazarbul, illustrations done by Tolkien and intended for inclusion in the famous `Bridge of Khazad-dum' chapter. Also appearing are previously unpublished family trees and two, full-size fold-out maps. Sympathetically packaged to reflect the classic look of the original, this revised edition of the bestselling hardback will prove irresistible to collectors and new fans alike.

The Silmarillion

The Silmarillion

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Hardback Release Date: 05/08/2019

A new hardback edition with a cover design by Tolkien himself, to complement the popular Hobbit and Lord of the Rings hardbacks. Includes new Preface by J.R.R. Tolkien unique to this edition. The Silmarillion is an account of the Elder Days, of the First Age of Tolkien's World. It is the ancient drama to which the characters in The Lord of the Rings look back, and in whose events some of them such as Elrond and Galadriel took part. The tales of The Silmarillion are set in an age when Morgoth, the first Dark Lord, dwelt in Middle-Earth, and the High Elves made war upon him for the recovery of the Silmarils, the jewels containing the pure light of Valinor. Included in the book are several shorter works. The Ainulindale is a myth of the Creation and in the Valaquenta the nature and powers of each of the gods is described. The Akallabeth recounts the downfall of the great island kingdom of Numenor at the end of the Second Age and Of the Rings of Power tells of the great events at the end of the Third Age, as narrated in The Lord of the Rings.

Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit: Collector's Edition

Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit: Collector's Edition

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: CD-Audio Release Date: 01/08/2019

These magical adaptations became instant classics when they were first broadcast on BBC Radio 4, and continue to delight today. Tolkien's epic tale of Middle-earth has all the classic ingredients of fantasy and adventure: dwarves, elves, goblins and trolls, a terrifying dragon, a great wizard, a fearsome evil, a perilous quest and a dramatic climax. With an all-star cast including Ian Holm, Michael Hordern, Robert Stephens, John le Mesurier and Bill Nighy, these enchanting dramatisations are a must for all Tolkien fans. 'For those who find the books too long-winded and the films too noisy, this is the perfect way to assimilate the myth and magic of Middle-earth' - Guardian.

Unfinished Tales

Unfinished Tales

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Hardback Release Date: 29/07/2019

Classic hardback edition of this fascinating collection of stories, featuring Tolkien's own painting of the dragon Glaurung on the cover, which continues the tales of The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion and contains an alternative version of The Children of Hurin. Unfinished Tales is a collection of narratives ranging in time from the Elder Days of Middle-earth to the end of the War of the Ring, and provides those who have read The Lord of the Rings with a whole collection of background and new stories from the twentieth century's most acclaimed popular author. The book concentrates on the realm of Middle-earth and comprises such elements as Gandalf's lively account of how it was that he came to send the Dwarves to the celebrated party at Bag-End, the emergence of the sea-god Ulmo before the eyes of Tuor on the coast of Beleriand, and an exact description of the military organization of the Riders of Rohan. Unfinished Tales also contains the only story about the long ages of Numenor before its downfall, and all that is known about such matters as the Five Wizards, the Palantiri and the legend of Amroth. The tales were collated and edited by JRR Tolkien's son and literary heir, Christopher Tolkien, who provides a short commentary on each story, helping the reader to fill in the gaps and put each story into the context of the rest of his father's writings.

Sauron Defeated

Sauron Defeated

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 22/07/2019

The final part of The History of The Lord of the Rings, an enthralling account of the writing of the Book of the Century which contains many additional scenes and includes the unpublished Epilogue in its entirety. In the first section of Sauron Defeated Christopher Tolkien completes his fascinating study of The Lord of the Rings. Beginning with Sam's rescue of Frodo from the Tower of Cirith Ungol, and giving a very different account of the Scouring of the Shire, this section ends with versions of the hitherto unpublished Epilogue, in which, years after the departure of Bilbo and Frodo from the Grey Havens, Sam attempts to answer his children's questions. The second section is an edition of The Notion Club Papers. These mysterious papers, discovered in the early years of the twenty-first century, report the discussions of an Oxford club in the years 1986-7, in which after a number of topics, the centre of interest turns to the legend of Atlantis, the strange communications recevied by other members of the club from the past, and the violent irruption of the legend into the North-west of Europe. This series of fascinating books has now been repackaged to complement the distinctive and classic style of the `black cover' A-format paperbacks of The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales.

The Children of Hurin

The Children of Hurin

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 18/07/2019

Painstakingly restored from Tolkien's manuscripts and presented for the first time as a fully continuous and standalone story, this paperback of the epic tale of The Children of Hurin will reunite fans of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings with Elves, dragons, Dwarves and Orcs, and the rich landscape and characters unique to Tolkien. It is a legendary time long before The Lord of the Rings, and Morgoth, the first Dark Lord, dwells in the vast fortress of Angband in the North; and within the shadow of the fear of Angband, and the war waged by Morgoth against the Elves, the fates of Turin and his sister Nienor will be tragically entwined. Their brief and passionate lives are dominated by the elemental hatred that Morgoth bears them as the children of Hurin, the man who dared to defy him to his face. Against them Morgoth sends his most formidable servant, Glaurung, a powerful spirit in the form of a huge wingless dragon of fire, in an attempt to fulfil the curse of Morgoth, and destroy the children of Hurin. Begun by J.R.R. Tolkien at the end of the First World War, The Children of Hurin became the dominant story in his later work on Middle-earth. But he could not bring it to a final and finished form. In this book Christopher Tolkien has constructed, after long study of the manuscripts, a coherent narrative without any editorial invention.

The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun

The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/07/2019

The world first publication of a previously unknown work by J.R.R. Tolkien, which tells the epic story of the Norse hero, Sigurd, the dragon-slayer, the revenge of his wife, Gudrun, and the Fall of the Nibelungs. In the Lay of the Voelsungs is told the ancestry of the great hero Sigurd, the slayer of Fafnir most celebrated of dragons, whose treasure he took for his own; of his awakening of the Valkyrie Brynhild who slept surrounded by a wall of fire, and of their betrothal; and of his coming to the court of the great princes who were named the Niflungs (or Nibelungs), with whom he entered into blood-brotherhood. In that court there sprang great love but also great hate, brought about by the power of the enchantress, mother of the Niflungs, skilled in the arts of magic, of shape-changing and potions of forgetfulness. In scenes of dramatic intensity, of confusion of identity, thwarted passion, jealousy and bitter strife, the tragedy of Sigurd and Brynhild, of Gunnar the Niflung and Gudrun his sister, mounts to its end in the murder of Sigurd at the hands of his blood-brothers, the suicide of Brynhild, and the despair of Gudrun. In the Lay of Gudrun her fate after the death of Sigurd is told, her marriage against her will to the mighty Atli, ruler of the Huns (the Attila of history), his murder of her brothers the Niflung lords, and her hideous revenge.

The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun

The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 30/05/2019

Unavailable for more than 70 years, this early but important work is published for the first time with Tolkien's `Corrigan' poems and other supporting material, including a prefatory note by Christopher Tolkien. Set `In Britain's land beyond the seas' during the Age of Chivalry, The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun tells of a childless Breton Lord and Lady (`Aotrou' and `Itroun') and the tragedy that befalls them when Aotrou seeks to remedy their situation with the aid of a magic potion obtained from a corrigan, or malevolent fairy. When the potion succeeds and Itroun bears twins, the corrigan returns seeking her fee, and Aotrou is forced to choose between betraying his marriage and losing his life. Coming from the darker side of J.R.R. Tolkien's imagination, The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun, together with the two shorter `Corrigan' poems that lead up to it and are also included here, was the outcome of a comparatively short but intense period in Tolkien's life when he was deeply engaged with Celtic, and particularly Breton, myth and legend. Written in 1930, this early but seminal work is an important addition to the non-Middle-earth portion of his canon alongside Tolkien's other retellings of myth and legend, The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun, The Fall of Arthur and The Story of Kullervo, a small but important corpus of his ventures into `real-world' mythologies, each of which would be a formative influence on his own legendarium.

The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings Boxed Set

The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings Boxed Set

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Mixed media product Release Date: 08/03/2019

Immerse yourself in Middle-earth with Tolkien's classic masterpieces behind the films, telling the complete story of Bilbo Baggins and the Hobbits' epic encounters with Gandalf, Gollum, dragons and monsters, in the quest to destroy the One Ring. When they were first published, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings became instant classics. Treasured by readers young and old, these works of sweeping fantasy, steeped in unrivalled magic and otherworldliness have sold more than 150 million copies around the world. This new boxed gift set, published to celebrate the release of the first of Peter Jackson's three-part film adaptation of JRR Tolkien's The Hobbit, THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY, contains both titles and features cover images from both films. It offers readers a new opportunity to discover Tolkien's remarkable world of Middle-earth and to follow the complete story of Bilbo Baggins and the Hobbits' part in the epic quest for the Ring - beginning with Bilbo's fateful visit from Gandalf and culminating in the dramatic climax between Frodo and Gollum atop Mount Doom.

The Fall of Gondolin

The Fall of Gondolin

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 18/10/2018

In the Tale of The Fall of Gondolin are two of the greatest powers in the world. There is Morgoth of the uttermost evil, unseen in this story but ruling over a vast military power from his fortress of Angband. Deeply opposed to Morgoth is Ulmo, second in might only to Manwe, chief of the Valar. Central to this enmity of the gods is the city of Gondolin, beautiful but undiscoverable. It was built and peopled by Noldorin Elves who, when they dwelt in Valinor, the land of the gods, rebelled against their rule and fled to Middle-earth. Turgon King of Gondolin is hated and feared above all his enemies by Morgoth, who seeks in vain to discover the marvellously hidden city, while the gods in Valinor in heated debate largely refuse to intervene in support of Ulmo's desires and designs. Into this world comes Tuor, cousin of Turin, the instrument of Ulmo's designs. Guided unseen by him Tuor sets out from the land of his birth on the fearful journey to Gondolin, and in one of the most arresting moments in the history of Middle-earth the sea-god himself appears to him, rising out of the ocean in the midst of a storm. In Gondolin he becomes great; he is wedded to Idril, Turgon's daughter, and their son is Earendel, whose birth and profound importance in days to come is foreseen by Ulmo. At last comes the terrible ending. Morgoth learns through an act of supreme treachery all that he needs to mount a devastating attack on the city, with Balrogs and dragons and numberless Orcs. After a minutely observed account of the fall of Gondolin, the tale ends with the escape of Tuor and Idril, with the child Earendel, looking back from a cleft in the mountains as they flee southward, at the blazing wreckage of their city. They were journeying into a new story, the Tale of Earendel, which Tolkien never wrote, but which is sketched out in this book from other sources. Following his presentation of Beren and Luthien Christopher Tolkien has used the same 'history in sequence' mode in the writing of this edition of The Fall of Gondolin. In the words of J.R.R. Tolkien, it was `the first real story of this imaginary world' and, together with Beren and Luthien and The Children of Hurin, he regarded it as one of the three 'Great Tales' of the Elder Days.

The Fall of Gondolin

The Fall of Gondolin

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/08/2018

In the Tale of The Fall of Gondolin are two of the greatest powers in the world. There is Morgoth of the uttermost evil, unseen in this story but ruling over a vast military power from his fortress of Angband. Deeply opposed to Morgoth is Ulmo, second in might only to Manwe, chief of the Valar. Central to this enmity of the gods is the city of Gondolin, beautiful but undiscoverable. It was built and peopled by Noldorin Elves who, when they dwelt in Valinor, the land of the gods, rebelled against their rule and fled to Middle-earth. Turgon King of Gondolin is hated and feared above all his enemies by Morgoth, who seeks in vain to discover the marvellously hidden city, while the gods in Valinor in heated debate largely refuse to intervene in support of Ulmo's desires and designs. Into this world comes Tuor, cousin of Turin, the instrument of Ulmo's designs. Guided unseen by him Tuor sets out from the land of his birth on the fearful journey to Gondolin, and in one of the most arresting moments in the history of Middle-earth the sea-god himself appears to him, rising out of the ocean in the midst of a storm. In Gondolin he becomes great; he is wedded to Idril, Turgon's daughter, and their son is Earendel, whose birth and profound importance in days to come is foreseen by Ulmo. At last comes the terrible ending. Morgoth learns through an act of supreme treachery all that he needs to mount a devastating attack on the city, with Balrogs and dragons and numberless Orcs. After a minutely observed account of the fall of Gondolin, the tale ends with the escape of Tuor and Idril, with the child Earendel, looking back from a cleft in the mountains as they flee southward, at the blazing wreckage of their city. They were journeying into a new story, the Tale of Earendel, which Tolkien never wrote, but which is sketched out in this book from other sources. Following his presentation of Beren and Luthien Christopher Tolkien has used the same 'history in sequence' mode in the writing of this edition of The Fall of Gondolin. In the words of J.R.R. Tolkien, it was `the first real story of this imaginary world' and, together with Beren and Luthien and The Children of Hurin, he regarded it as one of the three 'Great Tales' of the Elder Days.

The Fall of Gondolin

The Fall of Gondolin

Author: J. R. R. Tolkien Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/08/2018

In the Tale of The Fall of Gondolin are two of the greatest powers in the world. There is Morgoth of the uttermost evil, unseen in this story but ruling over a vast military power from his fortress of Angband. Deeply opposed to Morgoth is Ulmo, second in might only to Manwe, chief of the Valar. Central to this enmity of the gods is the city of Gondolin, beautiful but undiscoverable. It was built and peopled by Noldorin Elves who, when they dwelt in Valinor, the land of the gods, rebelled against their rule and fled to Middle-earth. Turgon King of Gondolin is hated and feared above all his enemies by Morgoth, who seeks in vain to discover the marvellously hidden city, while the gods in Valinor in heated debate largely refuse to intervene in support of Ulmo's desires and designs. Into this world comes Tuor, cousin of Turin, the instrument of Ulmo's designs. Guided unseen by him Tuor sets out from the land of his birth on the fearful journey to Gondolin, and in one of the most arresting moments in the history of Middle-earth the sea-god himself appears to him, rising out of the ocean in the midst of a storm. In Gondolin he becomes great; he is wedded to Idril, Turgon's daughter, and their son is Earendel, whose birth and profound importance in days to come is foreseen by Ulmo. At last comes the terrible ending. Morgoth learns through an act of supreme treachery all that he needs to mount a devastating attack on the city, with Balrogs and dragons and numberless Orcs. After a minutely observed account of the fall of Gondolin, the tale ends with the escape of Tuor and Idril, with the child Earendel, looking back from a cleft in the mountains as they flee southward, at the blazing wreckage of their city. They were journeying into a new story, the Tale of Earendel, which Tolkien never wrote, but which is sketched out in this book from other sources. Following his presentation of Beren and Luthien Christopher Tolkien has used the same 'history in sequence' mode in the writing of this edition of The Fall of Gondolin. In the words of J.R.R. Tolkien, it was `the first real story of this imaginary world' and, together with Beren and Luthien and The Children of Hurin, he regarded it as one of the three 'Great Tales' of the Elder Days.