Approaching Tolkien: The Story of Kullervo

The Story of Kullervo (header)

In what has become something of a tradition in posthumous Tolkien publications, The Story of Kullervo is an unfinished literary work by the author, as he attempts to rewrite an account from the Finnish legend of the Kalevala into the short story format. Continue reading

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Approaching Tolkien: The Lay of Aotrou & Itroun

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Tolkien’s poetic skills are undisputed: eloquent, beautiful, moving.

I am in no way an expert on poetry. However, I like to read the odd verse or two every now and then. So what I look for in a poem is a consistent rhyming pattern, the clever construction of words and meaning in a restrictive format, and all this through an easy and clear read.

This is why I have enjoyed Tolkien’s poems above any other author’s. He is capable of saying so much, in such a beautiful way, without reverting to the abstract or metaphorical that is typical of so many poems. His pacing is progressive and the content itself is both meaningful and straight to the point. Continue reading

Approaching Tolkien – Beowulf: A Translation & Commentary

The Anglo-Saxon Epic Receives Treatment from the Anglo-Saxon Professor

If you’ve read your fair share of Tolkien, at some point in your reading you would certainly have comes across numerous references highlighting the author’s fascination towards Anglo-Beowulf cover by JRR TolkienSaxon culture and literature.

Beowulf, made up of three thousand lines written in the Old English metre, remains the single most important work of the period.

But as expressive and fluent as the language is in the original language, many scholars have attempted to translate it into Modern English in the hope of capturing the same spirit and style of the poem: as it was intended to be read. Continue reading

Approaching Tolkien: The Fall of Arthur

The Fall of Arthur might not appeal to every reader interested in the stories and realms from Middle-earth. The poem, considering its subject matter and unfinished state, might put off some people attempting to tackle this slightly academic book.

The reason for this post is for me to try and convince you in giving it a go!
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Approaching Tolkien: Tales from the Perilous Realm

Wondering through the enchanted paths of Middle-earth and the lands of Faërie …Tales from the Perilous Realm cover

Tales from the Perilous Realm is a collection of four independent works written by J.R.R. Tolkien. Whilst exploring Tolkien’s style of writing in different lands other than those of Middle-earth, it is interesting to see how these short works inspired or, in turn, were influenced by the author’s more famous works.

The following post shall briefly tackle each major work; outlining the general storyline/content and providing some reflections on each of them and their context within Tolkien’s other work.
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Approaching Tolkien: ‘The Children of Húrin’

– The stand-alone storycoh

‘The Children of Húrin’ is one of the oldest narratives in Tolkien’s legendarium, being also one of the three Great Tales of the First Age – along with ‘Beren and Lúthien’ and ‘The Fall of Gondolin’.
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