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Old 11-07-2001, 08:36 PM   #1
peregrine
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Tolkien The creations of the Tolkiens

Tolkiens creations in Middle-earth are all linked, from the Silmarillion to the LOTR. From what I can make out, LOTR was written at the request of the publishers after reading the Hobbit, wanting "more about Hobbits".
It seems to me that JRRTolkien's greatest works were in the works of UT, BLT1, BLT2, yet most people know him for LOTR (not that this is a minor achievement). Was JRRT's greatest work LOTR or everything before that? And how much do we owe to Christopher Tolkien? And what do we think of what he has done with his father's material?
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Old 11-08-2001, 09:31 AM   #2
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Personally speaking, my favourite work is the Silmarillion, though LOTR is probably more palatable to the general public.

As far as Christopher Tolkien`s History of Middle-earth series, I think they are of varying quality. The first four and the last three I enjoyed, but I found the volumes detailing the conception of LOTR to be fairly turgid.
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Old 11-08-2001, 12:23 PM   #3
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Tolkien

I think all Tolkien's writings are great to read. They all have their special kind of greatness.
Of HoME I've only read Vols I & II so far. I don't think one can blame Chris for the fact tha one feels the volumes are turgid. If that's what one feels about them, one feels that about JRRT's writings. Chris edited his father's works to the best of his abilities. I don't think Chris made the writings turgid, if that's what they are.
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Old 11-08-2001, 06:03 PM   #4
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Tolkien

i seem to have done it all backwards - maybe that's just a reflection of the availability of the books. I read LOTR, then the Hobbit, the the Silm, and have only recently finished UT, BLT1 and BLT2. I am hoping to score the rest of HoME for Xmas and find a quiet place for the next few months. Maybe i prefer the older books because they have a grandeur, whereas LoTR is on a grand scale but told quaintly? i dunno
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Old 11-08-2001, 10:16 PM   #5
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I go with Peregrine, although my order was Hobbit, LOTR, Sil. The tales in the Sil and the unfinished ones have stories as grand and greater than LotR, but weren't written as much as narrated, and if the Prof was to have done them all he would have had to have lived for several hundred years [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] I have only just started delving into HoME and UT and man is it exciting!
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Old 11-09-2001, 07:13 PM   #6
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I usally start with the Sil first, then Hobbit, LOTR,and UT. Since the Sil covers the beginning and the ages it just seemed a natural way to read them. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 11-10-2001, 07:48 AM   #7
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Silmaril

I read the Hobbit and then LOTR...I still haven't read Sil :/
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Old 11-11-2001, 04:47 PM   #8
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Tolkien

I guess everyone has their favourites and for me it sometimes depends on what mood i'm in. There is so much material, in many different forms, which leads even more than usual with fiction, to everyone having their own view of the creation as a whole or of it's individual parts.

Which brings me to the LOTR movies. Watch them because you can't help yourself, or abstain and keep your own mental picture?
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Old 11-12-2001, 03:36 AM   #9
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I don't think the movies could replace my own mental picture. It's too tied in with beautiful nostalgia, which is partly what keeps me rereading the books: trying to regain a lost feeling from childhood. I read most of the lord of the rings on a memorable family holiday and much of the scenary I see in my head is still taken from the landscape of West Cork (where the holiday was). This is also probably why the lord of the rings will always be my favourite of the books.
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Old 11-12-2001, 06:54 AM   #10
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Silmaril

Peregrene we seem to have a shared favorite character. or did you just pick that name randomly?

I agree, nothing can relace the images in your mind. it will be interesting to see the interpretations of another, in this case, it's a director. I have recently seen the stage production of The Hobbit in London. The story stayed mainly the same (except for there being five dwarves...Thorin, Bombur, Fili, Kili and Balin) and they only put one song out of the book to music. this was so that the songs that you have your own personal tune for in your head were not ruined or replaced by someone elses interpretation. I think this was clever. Has anyone else seen it?

There is an inn, a merry old inn
beneath an old grey hill
and there they brew a beer so brown
the man in the moon himself came down
one night to drink his fill

This has to be one of my favourite songs out of the whole book, others being the story of Tinuviel, the road goes ever on, and of course all of Sam's poetry. I'd be interested in everyone else's preferences
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Old 11-12-2001, 06:56 AM   #11
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Silmaril

sorry peregrine, I mis-typed your name
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Old 11-12-2001, 12:55 PM   #12
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I think that Chris Tolkien is just trying to cash in on his fathers works but hey each man to his own.

If u were talkin about poems then my favourite is that in the Fellowship of The Ring:

Gil Galad was an elven King
of him the harpers sadly sing
the last whose realm was fair and free between the mountains and the sea.
His sword was long his lance was keen
his shining helm afar was seen
the shining stars of mirrormere
were mirrored in his silver shield.
ECT.
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Old 11-13-2001, 03:19 AM   #13
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Sting

I think you have to take into account the extraordinary amount of work that Cristopher Tolkien put into the HoME series that becomes apparent while reading it. He doesn't just stick together whatever manuscripts he can find from his fathers study, he takes time to read them through carefully giving notes on the most insignificant contradictions with something else in the myth. Not to mention the indexes. It may not have been his genius who wrote the material but without him we wouldn't have the Silmirillion and then where would we be. I think he deserve whatever success he's had. He's also done his father a favour by publishing the changes he had planned to make to the Sil and would have made had he been immortal.
Kudos to him
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Old 11-13-2001, 05:00 AM   #14
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Peregrine, I think you are reading the Books in much the same order as most of us.
You are in for a treat when you get to volumes 10-12!
The contain large amounts of finished and not fin. Silmarliion material.
I would also suggest getting the Osanwe -Kenta essay from the journal Vinyar tengwar.
an internet search should turn it up.an amazing bit of a planned Silm appendix that never made it.

The Silmarillion forum also contains a wealth of discussion on just what a final 'integrated' HoME/Silm/UT could look like.

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Old 11-13-2001, 04:32 PM   #15
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Tolkien

Please excuse having several messages in this reply. If it's not the go, let me know.

To Kin Strife - I couldn't agree with you more about mental pictures. The first time I read LOTR was in three days when I had chicken pox. However, my mental pictures are still of mountains and green fields - although maybe different from yours because a lot of mine is influenced by Australian landscapes, which admittedly don't lend themselves to all aspects of Middle-earth geography. And I agree with the Chris Tolkien thing. Where would we be without him? Having access to all this background material might spoil it for some, but not me. I can't get enough.

To Pippin - Peregrine seemed a natural choice. I guess I like Tolkien's angle of great things being done by (so-called) little people, while other characters strive in excess pride or love to no avail. I like simple things. The little Hobbits are also cheeky. * So, you'll be off to see the movies? * The Hobbit stage show appeared here, to lukewarm reviews. I didn't see it.* The first time I read the LOTR and the Hobbit I skipped over the songs and poems (I was thirteen and regret it now). Now I am having trouble deciding if prose or poetry was Tolkien's strong point. And I have read other works like Tree and Leaf, Finn and Hengest, Smith of Wootton(?) Major etc.. As for favourite songs I have none because I like them all now. Some quotes are fantastic. "The road goes on..." and "It's a dangerous business going out your door".

To lindil - I can't read fast enough. I hope to get books 4-12 for christmas (listen to me - I'm 28 and still as excited as a child. That's Tolkien for you). I will try and track the Osanwe-Kenta essay down. Thanks for the tip.
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Old 11-14-2001, 04:30 AM   #16
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Silmaril

peregrine:
Yep, I read LotR at an early age-I think I was also thirteen, or perhaps twelve. i read the Hobbit when I was seven but didn't understand it as much. i re-read it when I was ten, and I vaguely remember getting in trouble with my teacher for already knowing the answers to gollum's riddles. it was a sad day....
I read some of the smaller stories-Leaf by Niggle, Farmer Giles of Ham, etc.
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Old 11-15-2001, 10:09 PM   #17
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Tolkien

To Pippin,
I went back and read the Hobbit just recently, and found it strange i guess, coming back to it after the style of LOTR and the Silm. Being directly addressed by the author/narrator, and all the odd little references was quite strange. Sometimes, especially when dealing with the elves or dwarves there was a grimness, or a deadly seriousness about it too, which worked well against the quaint little story telling style in other parts of the book. And I laughed out loud at some points.
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Old 11-15-2001, 11:27 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by peregrine:
<STRONG>
It seems to me that JRRTolkien's greatest works were in the works of UT, BLT1, BLT2, yet most people know him for LOTR (not that this is a minor achievement). Was JRRT's greatest work LOTR or everything before that? And how much do we owe to Christopher Tolkien? And what do we think of what he has done with his father's material?</STRONG>
Hi! I'm new here and if this has all been discussed to death, please forgive me cos its all new to me. *Smile*

While I havent read ALL of Tolkien's works...I would suggest that perhaps, because he is most well known for the Lord of the Rings trilogy (and the Hobbit), these are probably his greatest. The reason I say that is because when we think of Tolkien, most of us probably think of these novels.

I plan to read the Silmarilion soon after I finish the trilogy (the second time after my 1st experience with Middle Earth in 20 years). But I think of LotR rather than the other stuff that he did and so I would have to suggest that these are what he is most well known for.

I dont know how much we owe Christopher Tolkien, but I think he was instrumental in keeping his father's work alive. If that is so, then we owe him our heartfelt gratitude. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

What do I think of what he has done with his father's material? Hmm....what has he doen with it? If he has altered it in any way, then I'd love to see the original stuff. If he has added other works to it, I cannot comment as I have not read them.

[img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 11-16-2001, 04:59 AM   #19
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Silmaril

Hawk that sounds like a good attitude to me.
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Old 11-20-2001, 02:34 PM   #20
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I think Chris T is just takin advantage of his dad.
I think the films will reinforce Tolkien as being a great author. It will inspire people to read the Hobbit and the Sil. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 11-20-2001, 09:27 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by Tarlondeion Of Gondolin:
<STRONG>I think Chris T is just takin advantage of his dad.
I think the films will reinforce Tolkien as being a great author. It will inspire people to read the Hobbit and the Sil. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]</STRONG>
If christopher tolkien didn't take on the daunting task of bringing the remaining works of his father to the fans, who would? And who better? I just read that Prof Tolkien sold the movie rights back in 1968 for 10,000 British pounds, the Tolkien family does not profit from any of the former films (TV or cinema) or any of the upcoming films. The Tolkien family are very charitable people according to reports, so to say money is the only reason the publish and continue to release their fathers work, I think you need to find the facts before making such accusations.

[img]smilies/rolleyes.gif[/img] [img]smilies/rolleyes.gif[/img] [img]smilies/rolleyes.gif[/img]
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