Professor J. R. R. Tolkien

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Professor J. R. R. Tolkien

Unread postby Shi Jing Xu » Fri Aug 16, 2002 3:02 am

Professor John Ronald Reuel Tolkien is one of, if not, my favorite author of all time. His books (including 'The Silmarillion', 'The Hobbit', and of course, the ever famous, 'Lord of the Rings' trilogy), have changed literature considerably. Of course, Tolkien's imaginitive books are mostly found in the 'Fantasy' or 'Science Fiction' section of most book stores (if they are not already on the Top 10 or Featured Books shelf), these books represent alot more than they are meant to be.

I know many people have not even picked up a book because of the Sci-Fi type read of it, and some have because of the recent trilogy being released by Director Peter Jackson. I admit, I was prone to reading 'Lord of the Rings' at first, due to the movie, and enjoyed it so much. Actually, I read 'The Hobbit' first because I figured it was the first in the list. So, after reading it, I was confused. I didn't enjoy the book as much as I should have because I was so eager to read 'Lord of the Rings'. So, I received 'The Fellowship of the Ring' for Christmas, and worked my way through. Reading throughout school, I finished all 1000+ pages in about 3 months. That's a long time, but hey, I was in school!

So, now that I have experienced more of Tolkien's world, I have found more and more information that leads to more understanding of Middle-Earth. If you read 'The Silmarillion', you will find out there is alot more to the world of Tolkien besides Middle-Earth. Arda, being the name of the world Middle-Earth exists in, is amazing. So, I highly recommend reading 'The Silmarillion' before 'The Hobbit' or 'Lord of the Rings'; you will understand the world alot better.
For anyone who would like to know which order is best to read the series in, it would be:
1.) The Silmarillion- Edited by Christopher R. Tolkien
2.) The Hobbit
3.) The Lord of the Rings Trilogy
- The Fellowship of the Ring
- The Two Towers
- Return of the King
4.) The Unfinished Tales of Numernor and Middle-Earth
5.) The Book of Lost Tales 1 (Book 1 of the History of Middle Earth)
6.) The Book of Lost Tales 2 (Book 2 ---)
7.) The Lays of Beleriand (Book 3 ---)
8.) The Shaping of Middle-Earth (Book 4 ---)
9.) The Lost Road and Other Writings (Book 5 ---)
10.) The Return of the Shadow (Book 6 ---)
11.) The Treason of Isengard (Book 7 ---)
12.) The War of the Ring (Book 8 ---)
13.) Sauron Defeated: The End of the Third Age (Book 9 ---)
14.) Morgoth's Ring: The Later Silmarillion (Book 10 ---)
15.) The War of the Jewels: The Later Silmarillion (Book 11 ---)
16.) The Peoples of Middle Earth (Book 12 ---)

This is just suggested, yet recommended. I want to know if any of you have read these books or have similar experiences or comments off of mine.
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Unread postby Phlegyas » Fri Aug 16, 2002 3:05 am

Been there done that. Well worth it.
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Hope nevermore to look upon the heavens;
I come to lead you to the other shore,
To the eternal shades in heat and frost.
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Withdraw thee from these people, the dead"
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Unread postby Guo Si » Fri Aug 16, 2002 3:11 am

I've read The Silmarillion, Lord of the Rings, and The Hobbit (not in that order, mind you) and consider them all to be some of my favorite books. Just curious, but have you read all of the Histories of Middle-Earth? I've only read a snippet of the sixth one I believe, the part that delt with the souls of Orcs and such.

Actually, now that I think about it, does anyone else notice some similairities of the writing styles in The Hobbit and Romance of the Three Kingdoms? It seemed to me like The Hobbit was almost written the way a Romance of the Three Kingdoms childrens' book should be.
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Unread postby Phlegyas » Fri Aug 16, 2002 3:14 am

The writings of J.R.R. Tolkein are more advanced than those of Luo Guanzhong. It is higher quality work than the Three Kingdoms. His writings are more discriptive and imaginary. He created his won languages and came up with most of the things in Middle-Earth. Guanzhong based Three Kingdoms on history.
"Woe unto you, ye souls depraved
Hope nevermore to look upon the heavens;
I come to lead you to the other shore,
To the eternal shades in heat and frost.
And thou, that yonder standest, living soul,
Withdraw thee from these people, the dead"
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Unread postby Guo Si » Fri Aug 16, 2002 3:20 am

Zu Mao wrote:The writings of J.R.R. Tolkein are more advanced than those of Luo Guanzhong. It is higher quality work than the Three Kingdoms. His writings are more discriptive and imaginary. He created his won languages and came up with most of the things in Middle-Earth. Guanzhong based Three Kingdoms on history.


I think you may have misunderstood me. What I meant was I found that The Hobbit and Romance of the Three Kingdoms's writing style seemed the same. Both are pretty easy reads for the same reason; they both sort of "ramble". I'd try to quote parts of both of The Hobbit and Three Kingdoms to prove my point, but I recently lost my copy of The Hobbit. :oops:
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Unread postby Lu Xun » Fri Aug 16, 2002 3:24 am

I do not suggest reading the Simarillion first, it rathe long, complex, and confusing. The bible of Middle-Earth should be read after the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. I read the Hobbit and the trilogy in elementry school and the Simarillion in middle school. The Simarillion is the history and doesn't need to be read in order to understand the other books, and I suggest reading it if you can't get enough Tolkien.

On the subject Guanzhong and Tolkien...while both great writers, I have to apprectiate Tolkien more because his is a work of imagination and being a professor of linguistics helps as well (he made Elvish, an entire language). ^_^
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Unread postby Phlegyas » Fri Aug 16, 2002 3:31 am

Yes the Hobbit and TK do ramble. The Silimarion is the history of the Elves. It does not need not need to be read before the other books.
"Woe unto you, ye souls depraved
Hope nevermore to look upon the heavens;
I come to lead you to the other shore,
To the eternal shades in heat and frost.
And thou, that yonder standest, living soul,
Withdraw thee from these people, the dead"
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Unread postby Guest » Fri Aug 16, 2002 4:06 am

In my opinion, Tolkien was a creative genius. His mother taught him Latin, French and German. However, by the time Tolkien started on his great works, he knew Old, Middle and Modern English, Middle
Welsh, Finnish, Gothic, Old, Middle, and Modern High and Low German,
Norse, French, Spanish, Latin, Greek, and Russian.

When he developed his two most complex languages, the Elvish languages of Sindarin (based on Welsh) and Quenya (based on Finnish), he created not only a "present" vocabulary and grammar; he also
constracted their historical roots.

He never was happy with a new word untill he had reconstructed its
history to his academic satisfaction.

Here is a lecture written about Tolkien's life. Hope anyone finds it helpful. I really enjoyed it.
Link was breaking the margins.
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Unread postby animetayl » Fri Aug 16, 2002 4:08 am

Sorry, that last message was me. I forgot to log in.
If anyone is interested in learning the Quenya language, I would be happy to show you some very interesting tutorials that not only teach the language, but also offer some interesting knowledge on linguistics. I find reading it highly enjoyable and informative.
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Unread postby futch » Fri Aug 16, 2002 4:29 am

I like reading the Lord of the ring, especially the fellowship of the ring, as you know, this book is about the ring that everyone wants to have it, except for Frodo. Apart from the ring, i'd like the history about this book is they have to work together in order to destroy the ring, but in fact, one of them try to get the ring, and finally the group breaks up. and so on.

I think the second movie of the lord of the ring coming soon. I can't wait to watch it.
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