Sunday, 3 January 2010

On this day...

Fantasy author J.R.R. Tolkein was born in 1892. His full name John Ronald Reuel, Tolkein was an orphan by the age of 12, yet the early experiences with his mother, although brief, stayed with him throughout his life. Love of botany, languages and reading were all inspired by her, and later expressed themselves in his writings. Shortly after graduating from Oxford in 1915, Tolkein volunteered for military service, and was stationed at the Somme. Although later declared unfit for military service after a bout of Trench Fever, Tolkein was considered as a possible codebreaker in the second World War. Tolkein first foray into the literary world came when he accepted a job for the Oxford English Dictionary, studying the etymology of Germanic words beginning with 'W'. It was this interest in the nuances of language that led to the creation of Elvish and subsequently the Middle-Earth world with which he has become synonymous.His most famous works, in more recent times adapted for the big screen, are 'The Lord of the Rings' trilogy, and its prequel 'The Hobbit'.

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