The BBC reports that a commemorative plaque has been installed at the former Gedling Railway Station in Nottinghamshire to honour a visit by J.R.R. Tolkien in 1914 during which he wrote the first draft of a poem called The Voyage of Éarendel the Evening Star.
This poem, which can be found in the second volume of The History of Middle-earth, forms Tolkien’s earliest writings on the subject of Eärendil the mariner. He then later incorporated those ideas into his growing mythology.
Local Gedling resident Paul Farrell said to the BBC that he thought the station setting was apt as it was “the start of Tolkien’s journey”.
In one of his letters, Tolkien wrote that he had been inspired by inspired by a line from the Crist of Cynewulf.
I wrote a ‘poem’ upon Earendel who launched his ship like a bright spark from the havens of the Sun. I adopted him into my mythology – in which he became a prime figure as a mariner, and eventually as a herald star, and a sign of hope to men. Aiya Eärendil Elenion Ancalima (II 329) ‘hail Earendil brightest of Stars’ is derived at long remove from Éala Éarendel engla beorhtast.Letter #297, The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien
“I thought let’s do something for the old railway station,” Mr Farrell said. “It’s a fascinating link between the village and one of our most creative writers.”
Blue plaques are often used as a way to honour a link between a location and a famous person or event in the United Kingdom.
Read the full story on the BBC.