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Archive for the ‘LotR Books’ Category

Tolkien’s annotated Middle-earth map on display at Bodleian

Courtesy of

Courtesy of

We reported earlier here that a map of Middle-earth, annotated by J.R.R. Tolkien while working with Pauline Baynes was to go on display at the Bodleian Libraries. Well, that day was today! However, it proved to be so popular that they added one more day and will also have it on display tomorrow, Friday, June 24. So, if you’re anywhere near the area, you still have a chance to catch it. According to the Bodleian website, the map was a working document that Tolkien and acclaimed illustrator Pauline Baynes both annotated in 1969 when Baynes was commissioned to produce a poster map of Middle-earth. The map will be on display from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.. Admission is free.

Posted in Events, Exhibits, J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Tolkien

Spanish Tolkien Society’s 12th annual AElfwine Awards

AELfwine Awards LogoOur friends at La Sociedad Tolkien Española (STE) have informed us that they are now taking submissions for their 12 annual Ælfwine Awards contest. Held every year to further the study of the works and life of J.R.R. Tolkien, the contest is open to anyone who has an interest in writing about Tolkien and/or his writings, from amateurs to professionals. Essays may be submitted in either Spanish or English and are due no later than October 1, 2016 to the following email address:

The winning essays will be published on their website in November, 2016. First prize includes 120 Euros and a year’s free membership in the Spanish Tolkien Society. Second prize is a year’s free membership in their Tolkien Society. Keep reading for the complete rules.


Posted in Contests, Creations, Events, Fans, Hobbit Book, J.R.R. Tolkien, LotR Books, Community

Hand-written annotations by Tolkien adorn map acquired by Bodleian Libraries

Courtesy of

      Photo courtesy of

The Bodleian Libraries, home to the largest collection of Tolkien manuscripts and drawings in the world, has acquired a recently discovered map of Middle-earth annotated by J.R.R. Tolkien and artist Pauline Baynes during her early preparations to produce a poster map of Middle-earth that was later published in 1970. The fold-out map was pulled from one of Baynes’ copies of The Lord of the Rings. In order to help her represent Middle-earth as accurately as possible, Tolkien made notes on the map (those in green ink and pencil) regarding the climate of various areas, often equating them to real places in England and Europe, in order to give Baynes an accurate idea of the area’s flora and fauna.

The map was kept by Baynes, who passed away in 2008. It resurfaced in 2015 and was acquired by the Libraries. According to the Libraries:

“The annotated map went unseen for decades until October 2015 when Blackwell’s Rare Books in Oxford put the map on display and offered it for sale. The purchase of the map was funded with assistance from the Victoria & Albert Purchase Grant Fund and the Friends of the Bodleian.

This working document reveals that the creatures which enliven the final poster map – wolves, horses, cattle, elephants and camels – were all suggested by Tolkien and that Baynes drew the animals in the exact locations he specified. ‘Elephants appear in the Great battle outside Minas Tirith (as they did in Italy under Pyrrhus) but they would be in place in the blank squares of Harad – also Camels,’ wrote Tolkien.”

The Bodleian Libraries hopes to put the map on display to the public in the near future – a great reason to plan a special trip! In the meantime, read the fascinating full article here.

Posted in Fellowship of the Ring, J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Return of the King, The Two Towers, Tolkien

Today in Middle-earth, May 1

The Crowning of ElessarThe following event(s) took place in Middle-earth on May 1st:

  • Gandalf and Bilbo reach Rivendell (1342)
  • Sarn Ford where Gandalf and Aragorn met (1418)
  • Crowning of King Elessar (1419)
  • Elrond and Arwen set out from Rivendell (1419)
  • Samwise marries Rose (1420)


Posted in Calendar, Hobbit Book, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, The Hobbit, Today in Middle-earth

A [Middle-] Earth Day Tribute

Tolkien sitting under his favourite tree Pinus nigra

In celebration of Earth Day, here is a collection of Middle-earth moments in a special BS (Book Spoiler) post in the Main Discussion Board… for a moment of Tolkien-zen.


[TIME and BS entries are maintained and updated by fans of The Lord of the Rings, and are in no way affiliated with Tolkien Enterprises or the Tolkien Estate. Copyrights and trademarks for the books from which dates and short quotes are taken are held by their respective owners and their use is allowed under the fair use clause of the Copyright Law.]

Posted in Earth Day, Fellowship of the Ring, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Return of the King, The Two Towers, Community, Today in Middle-earth

Lord of the Rings vs. Game of Thrones

thelordoftheringstrilogyWith the sixth season of The HBO series Game of Thrones just around the corner, are comparisons between it and The Lord of the Rings inevitable? The Irish Times seems to think so. In this provocative article, author Ed Power explores the irresistible urge of some fans to rank them against each other.

“Central to the whispering campaign against Tolkien is the idea that he peddled a reductive world view. While George RR Martin’s A Song Of Ice And Fire sequence is regarded as mature, complex and reflective of real human life, Lord of The Rings is felt to be fusty, puritanical and cheesily moralistic. Nobody in Game of Thrones is truly good or bad”

The Lord of the Rings is cheesy and puritanical? Oh dear. Of course, devoted fans of J.R.R. Tolkien would never describe it that way, but devoted fans of George R.R. Martin (who haven’t read LOTR?) might – and some apparently do. Can Jaime Lannister hold a candle to Aragorn, or vice versa? Are Gollum, Eowyn or John Snow one-dimensional?

As a devoted fan of both (yes, it’s quite possible), I personally think that the difference between the two is a good thing. Both approaches can be enormously entertaining, cringe-worthy at times, yet pierce the heart with both beauty and tragedy. What about you? Do you have a preference or do you enjoy both? Read the full article, and let us know!

Posted in J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, LotR Movies, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, Television, Tolkien

Free tickets available for a FOTR Extended Edition screening in So Cal

NBFF_NazgPeter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring” turns 15 years old this year and the Newport Beach Film Festival in Southern California is planning a fun little celebration next week. In fact, I’m quite sure will be celebrating this fact all year long at various events. Anyhow, if the FOTR Anniversary screening goes well, the Festival will host one for The Two Towers next year, and again in 2018 for The Return of the King.

On Sunday, April 24 there will be a full afternoon of Tolkien fun, starting first with a lunchtime Moot at the Corner Bakery Cafe at 1621 W. Sunflower Ave in Santa Ana. This is in a little shopping center across the street from the theater and very near to the South Coast Plaza. There will be some opportunity for fun and games at 2pm over at the theater where we plan on having our Barrel and backdrop for photo ops, some trivia and most importantly, a costume contest. Below is a little timeline to help you organize your day.

*Moot – Noontime till 2pm at the Corner Bakery Cafe
*Line Party fun – 2pm till 3pm – Regency South Coast Village theater
*Film – 3pm start, should finish around 6:30pm or so

LordOfTheRings_FOTRNormally, a retrospective film like this only costs $5 per person and tickets can be purchased at the Film Festival website, but has secured a Barrel full of Tickets to share with local fans, especially those in costume.

All you have to do to secure a pair of tickets is email me at and tell me what costume you plan to wear. It can be a full on fancy costume with prosthetics, or a costume lite variation, or even a mash-up or gender bender, anything even remotely Tolkien related, including Tolkien himself. After all, not only will there will be a costume contest, but really, who needs an excuse like a free ticket or prize to wear a costume, don’t we all live for this?

One note, for those of you with costumes that have weaponry or large accessories, you can wear that for the contest, and then it must be returned to your car before entering the theater for the film.

Costumed attendees, or those with a companion in costume should RSVP to me by Monday at noon. If we still have tickets left after that, I will open it up to those who do not wish to wear a costume. All updates and announcements will be made on our Facebook Event page.

So come join and a load of local Tolkien fans at what should be a lovely day at the theater.

Posted in Contests, Events, Fans, Fellowship of the Ring, Film Screenings, J.R.R. Tolkien, Line Party, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Meet Ups, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Tolkien

Today in Middle-earth, April 12

Frodo Gandalf and the RingThe following event(s) took place in Middle-earth on April 12th:

  •  Gandalf reaches Hobbiton (3018) (more…)
Posted in Calendar, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Today in Middle-earth

Today in Middle-earth, April 8

Field of Cormallen by Tolman Cotton

The following event(s) took place in Middle-earth on April 8th:

  • The Ring-bearers are honoured on the Field of Cormallen (3019)
  • The Ring-bearers revisit fair Ithilien (3019)


Posted in Calendar, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Today in Middle-earth

Today in Middle-earth, March 25

map Battle of Morannon and Mt Doom March 25

The following event(s) took place in Middle-earth on March 25th:

  • Thorin and Gandalf’s chance meeting at the Prancing Pony (2941)
  • The Host is surrounded on the Slag-hills (3019)
  • Downfall of Barad-dûr and the passing of Sauron (3019)
  • Frodo and Samwise reach the Sammath Naur (3019)
  • Gollum seizes the Ring and falls in the Cracks of Doom (3019)
  • Minas Tirith (3019)
  • Frodo comes home  (3020)
  • Birth of Elanor the Fair, daughter of Samwise (3021) 


Posted in Calendar, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Today in Middle-earth

Today in Middle-earth, March 15

Gandalf faces the Witch-king The following event(s) took place in Middle-earth on March 15th:

  • In the early hours the Witch-king breaks the Gates of the City (3019)
  • The horns of the Rohirrim are heard at cockcrow (3019)
  • Denethor burns himself on a pyre (3019)
  • Battle of the Pelennor (3019)
  • Aragorn raises the standard of Arwen (3019)
  • Théoden is slain (3019)
  • Frodo and Samwise escape and begin their journey north along the Morgai (3019)
  • Battle under the trees in Mirkwood; Thranduil repels the forces of Dol Guldur (3019)
  • Second assault on Lórien (3019)
  • The realm of King Brand of Dale is attacked (3019)
  • Evening in the Morgai (3019)
  • The wounded come to the Houses of Healing (3019)
  • The wounded come to the Houses of Healing (3019)
  • Aragorn comes to the City (3019)


Posted in Calendar, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Today in Middle-earth

Today in Middle-earth, March 13

Sam battles ShelobThe following event(s) took place in Middle-earth on March 13th:

  • Frodo captured by the Orcs of Cirith Ungol (3019)
  • The Pelennor is overrun (3019)
  • Faramir is wounded (3019)
  • Aragorn reaches Pelargir and captures the fleet (3019)
  • Théoden in Druadan Forest (3019)
  • Frodo is taken ill (3020)


Posted in Calendar, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Today in Middle-earth