John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (1892-1973), courtesy of popularity of the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy has received tons of fanfare recently. His books are selling, the movies are making millions of dollars, and new fans are being made.
A Brief History of Tolkien & The Lord of the Rings
Tolkien grew up in England. By the time he was 12, both of his parents had died and his younger brother were taken in by a priest. He attended King Edward’s College and there he began to experience other languages and develop his linguistic abilities. After World War 1, he spent most of his adult life writing fiction, the most famous of which are The Hobbit and the LOTR(Lord of the Rings) trilogy. The LOTR is by far his most expansive work and incorporates previous creations. The Silmarillion, edited and published posthumously by his son Christopher Tolkien, was the back-story for LOTR which he’d been working on for quite a while. Tolkien also created several languages (including a couple elfish dialects) which appear in poems and dialogue throughout the books. The inclusion of this amount of work is an indication of how grandiose the tale is.
The LOTR series was originally meant to be a sequel to The Hobbit, which it is, but he became more excited about the project than he initially was and it grew into the trilogy and took him twelve years to complete. He never expected it to become popular and was surprised when it was. Based on the sales of the books, the money made by the movies, and the number of fans his works have spawned, it is one of the most incredible successes of twentieth century literature.
Tolkien merchandise (at Amazon)
Tolkien Inspired Poetry