J.R.R. Tolkien, one of the world’s most celebrated fantasy writers, was inspired by time spent on the bloodsoaked battlefield. John Garth, author of Tolkien and the Great War reports.
A world away from subtle, magnificent Smaug of The Hobbit, Tolkien’s first dragons are surreal hybrids of beast and machine. They lumber against the elf-city of Gondolin, spouting fire and clanking, with orctroops hidden inside. Continue reading “The Somme and the ‘animal horror’ that inspired J.R.R. Tolkien”