Debating Tolkien’s Magnum Opus

The Silmarillion_4

Stephen King has The Dark Tower series. George Orwell has 1984. Dante Alighieri’s The Divine Comedy is the author’s own unparalleled piece of writing.

“Magnum Opus” (translated from Latin as “masterpiece”) is a term that can be applied to virtually any piece of art or literature that has somehow had a significant impact upon those who experience it, and was brought about by a sophisticated, high standard and excellent creative impulse on the part of its creator. Continue reading

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Tolkien Reading Day 2017!

Reading stick figure man

The sun has risen on yet another 25th of March, and that means it’s the start of Tolkien Reading Day!

This day, marking the destruction of the One Ring in The Lord of the Rings, is meant to praise the author’s works and encourage people to read Tolkien by quoting favourite passages.

Besides being a prolific writer, J.R.R. Tolkien was also quite the poet. I’ve mentioned numerous times my love for his poetry and, instead of focusing on the more popular and praised Middle-earth works, today I’ve decided to provide you with four beautiful extracts of these metrical compositions. Continue reading

Northern Courage, Ofermōde and Thorin Oakenshield’s last stand

Thorin 1

Northern Courage

Tolkien was fascinated by the concept he called “the theory of courage”, which exemplified one of the highest qualities in the literary Northern hero: that of unflinching courage, steadfast resolve and sheer determination of will in the face of impossible odds. Continue reading

Beowulf: The Lost King of Rohan

Beowulf A Translation and Commentary (header)

An Anglo-Saxon Connection

The Anglo-Saxon epic has been acknowledged many times as one of the major sources of inspiration for J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. The world in the poem is easily comparable to Rohan and beyond. The character of Beowulf himself has been placed under scrutiny and analysed alongside other characters from Middle-earth, including Aragorn and Bard the Bowman.

The Geat hero, however, shares a close affinity with the majority of the kings of Rohan. Indeed, one could argue that many of the qualities and characteristics found in the House of Eorl can be attributed to Beowulf as an individual. The events that shape his life can be gleamed from the lives of Théoden’s ancestors.

For the purpose of this article, I will be using Tolkien’s recently published: Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary, in order to reference specific passages in relation to the character. I have also compared them with the text in The Lord of the Rings, with strong emphasis on ‘The House of Eorl’ in Appendix A. 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

A good day to love Tolkien!

Exciting news ahead …

I smell the covers of a new Tolkien book on the way! 🙂

Such a phrase is rarely heard nowadays. However, it seems like a feast considering we’ve just had The Fall of Arthur released barely a year ago.Beowulf cover by JRR Tolkien

Indeed, word had just come out that the Tolkien Estate (in association with Harper Collins) will publish J.R.R. Tolkien’s own translation of the Anglo-Saxon epic, Beowulf.

The book will be available on May 22nd, this year.
Continue reading