John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, CBE ( /ˈtɒlkiːn/; 3 January 1892 – 2 September 1973) was an English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor, best known as the author of the classic high fantasy works The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion.
Tolkien was Rawlinson and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon at Pembroke College, Oxford, from 1925 to 1945 and Merton Professor of English Language and Literature there from 1945 to 1959. He was a close friend of C. S. Lewis—they were both members of the informal literary discussion group known as the Inklings. Tolkien was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II on 28 March 1972.
After his death, Tolkien’s son Christopher published a series of works based on his father’s extensive notes and unpublished manuscripts, including The Silmarillion. These, together with The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings form a connected body of tales, poems, fictional histories, invented languages, and literary essays about a fantasy world called Arda, and Middle-earth within it. Between 1951 and 1955, Tolkien applied the term legendarium to the larger part of these writings.
While many other authors had published works of fantasy before Tolkien, the great success of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings led directly to a popular resurgence of the genre. This has caused Tolkien to be popularly identified as the “father” of modern fantasy literature—or, more precisely, of high fantasy. In 2008, The Times ranked him sixth on a list of “The 50 greatest British writers since 1945”. Forbes ranked him the 5th top-earning dead celebrity in 2009. Read more here.
1936 Songs for the Philologists, with E.V. Gordon et al.
1937 The Hobbit or There and Back Again, ISBN 0-618-00221-9 (HM).
1945 Leaf by Niggle (short story)
1945 The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun, published in Welsh Review
1949 Farmer Giles of Ham (medieval fable)
1953 The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth Beorhthelm’s Son (a play written in alliterative verse), published with the accompanying essays Beorhtnoth’s Death and Ofermod, in Essays and Studies by members of the English Association, volume 6.
The Lord of the Rings
1954 The Fellowship of the Ring: being the first volume of The Lord of the Rings, ISBN 0-618-00222-7 (HM).
1954 The Two Towers: being the second volume of The Lord of the Rings, ISBN 0-618-00223-5 (HM).
1955 The Return of the King: being the third volume of The Lord of the Rings, ISBN 0-618-00224-3 (HM).
1962 The Adventures of Tom Bombadil and Other Verses from the Red Book
1964 Tree and Leaf (On Fairy-Stories and Leaf by Niggle in book form)
1966 Bilbo’s Last Song (poem)
1966 The Tolkien Reader (The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth Beorhthelm’s Son, On Fairy-Stories, Leaf by Niggle, Farmer Giles of Ham, and The Adventures of Tom Bombadil)
1967 The Road Goes Ever On, with Donald Swann
1967 Smith of Wootton Major (short story)
This is a list of poems written by J. R. R. Tolkien (years are the date of composition, if not stated otherwise)
The Battle of the Eastern Field 1911
From the many-willow’d margin of the immemorial Thames 1913
The Voyage of Eärendel the Evening Star (The Book of Lost Tales 2 267–269) 1914
The Bidding of the Minstrel 1914 (The Book of Lost Tales 2 261f.,269f. )
Tinfang Warble 1914 (The Book of Lost Tales 1 107f.)
Goblin Feet 1915
You and Me / and the Cottage of Lost Play 1915 (The Book of Lost Tales 1 27f.)
Kôr 1915, published as The City of the Gods in 1923 (The Book of Lost Tales 1 136)
Kortirion among the Trees 1915 (revised in 1937 and in the 1960s, The Trees of Kortirion)
Over Old Hills and Far Away 1915
A Song of Aryador 1915
The Shores of Elfland 1915
Habbanan beneath the Stars 1916
The Sorrowful City 1916
The Song of Eriol 1917 (The Book of Lost Tales 2 298ff.)
The Horns of Ulmo 1917
The Happy Mariners, published in 1920, composed in 1915
The Children of Húrin (begun in 1920 or earlier, continued to 1925) (The Lays of Beleriand)
The Clerke’s Compleinte 1922
Iúmonna Gold Galdre Bewunden 1923
The Eadigan Saelidan 1923
Why the Man in the Moon Came Down Too Soon 1923
Enigmata Saxonic – a Nuper Inventa Duo 1923
The Cat and the Fiddle: A Nursery-Rhyme Undone and its Scandalous Secret Unlocked 1923
An Evening in Tavrobel 1924
The Lonely Isle 1924
The Princess Ni 1924
Light as Leaf on Lindentree 1925
The Flight of the Noldoli from Valinor 1925 (The Lays of Beleriand)
The Lay of Leithian 1925–1931 (The Lays of Beleriand)
The Lay of Eärendel 1920s (The Lays of Beleriand)
The Nameless Land 1926
Adventures in Unnatural History and Medieval Metres, being the Freaks of Fisiologus 1927:
Tinfang Warble, published in 1927, composed in 1914
Mythopoeia, circa 1931 (published in Tree and Leaf)
Progress in Bimble Town 1931
Songs for the Philologists, with E.V. Gordon et al., published 1936:
Éadig Béo þu!
From One to Five
I Sat upon a Bench
Lit and Lang
Natura Apis: Morali Ricardi Eremite
Ofer Wídne Gársecg
The Root of the Boot
The Dragon’s Visit 1937
Knocking at the Door: Lines induced by sensations when waiting for an answer at the door of an Exalted Academic Person 1937
The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun, published in Welsh Review, December 1945
Imram (The Death of St. Brendan) 1946 (published in Time and Tide, December 1955, Sauron Defeated 261ff,296ff)
Elvish translations of Catholic prayers (ed. Wynne, Smith, Hostetter in Vinyar Tengwar 43, 44, 2002), composed in the 1950s:
Ataremma versions (Quenya Pater Noster) versions I-VI
Aia María (Quenya Ave Maria) versions I-IV
Litany of Loreto in Quenya
Ortírielyanna (Quenya Sub tuum praesidium)
Alcar i Ataren (Quenya Gloria Patri)
Alcar mi tarmenel na Erun (Quenya Gloria in Excelsis Deo)
Ae Adar Nín (Sindarin Pater Noster)
The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth Beorhthelm’s 3
The Adventures of Tom Bombadil published in 1962:
The Adventures of Tom Bombadil
Bombadil Goes Boating
Little Princess Mee
The Man in the Moon Stayed Up Too Late
The Man in the Moon Came Down Too Soon
The Stone Troll
The Last Ship
Once upon a time 1965
Bilbo’s Last 6 (first published as a poster in 1974)
For W. H. A. in 1967 in Shenandoah
King Sheave in The Lost Road in 1987 in The Lost Road and Other Writings
Narqelion published in 1988 in Mythlore
Academic and other works
1922 A Middle English Vocabulary, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 168 pp.
1925 Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, co-edited with E.V. Gordon, Oxford University Press, 211 pp.; Revised edition 1967, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 232 pp.
1925 Some Contributions to Middle-English Lexicography, published in The Review of English Studies, volume 1, no. 2, pp. 210–215.
1925 The Devil’s Coach Horses, published in The Review of English Studies, volume 1, no. 3, pp. 331–336.
1929 Ancrene Wisse and Hali Meiðhad, published in Essays and Studies by members of the English Association, Oxford, volume 14, pp. 104–126.
1932 The Name ‘Nodens’, concerning the name Nodens, published in Report on the Excavation of the Prehistoric, Roman, and Post-Roman Site in Lydney Park, Gloucestershire, Oxford, University Press for The Society of Antiquaries.
1932–34 Sigelwara Land parts I and II, in Medium Aevum, Oxford, volume 1, no. 3 (December 1932), pp. 183–196 and volume 3, no. 2 (June 1934), pp. 95–111.
1934 Chaucer as a Philologist: The Reeve’s Tale, in Transactions of the Philological Society, London, pp. 1–70 (rediscovery of dialect humour, introducing the Hengwrt manuscript into textual criticism of Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales)
1937 Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics, London, Humphrey Milford, 56 pp. (publication of his 1936 lecture on Beowulf criticism)
1939 The Reeve’s Tale: version prepared for recitation at the ‘summer diversions’, Oxford, 14 pp.
1939 On Fairy-Stories (1939 Andrew Lang lecture) – concerning Tolkien’s philosophy on fantasy, this lecture was a shortened version of an essay later published in full in 1947.
1944 Sir Orfeo, Oxford, The Academic Copying Office, 18 pp. (an edition of the medieval poem)
1947 On Fairy-Stories (essay – published in Essays presented to Charles Williams, Oxford University Press) – first full publication of an essay concerning Tolkien’s philosophy on fantasy, and which had been presented in shortened form as the 1939 Andrew Lang lecture.
1953 Ofermod and Beorhtnoth’s Death, two essays published with the poem The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth, Beorhthelm’s Son in Essays and Studies by members of the English Association, volume 6.
1953 Middle English “Losenger”: Sketch of an etymological and semantic enquiry, published in Essais de philologie moderne: Communications présentées au Congrès International de Philologie Moderne (1951), Les Belles Lettres.
1962 Ancrene Wisse: The English Text of the Ancrene Riwle, Early English Text Society, Oxford University Press.
1963 English and Welsh, in Angles and Britons: O’Donnell Lectures, University of Cardiff Press.
1964 Introduction to Tree and Leaf, with details of the composition and history of Leaf by Niggle and On Fairy-Stories.
1966 Contributions to the Jerusalem Bible (as translator and lexicographer)
1966 Foreword to the Second Edition of The Lord of the Rings, with Tolkien’s comments on the varied reaction to his work, his motivation for writing the work, and his opinion of allegory.
1966 Tolkien on Tolkien (autobiographical)
See Tolkien research for essays and text fragments by Tolkien published posthumously in academic publications and forums.
1975 Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings (edited version) – published in A Tolkien Compass by Jared Lobdell. Written by Tolkien for use by translators of The Lord of the Rings, a full version, re-titled “Nomenclature of The Lord of the Rings,” was published in 2005 in The Lord of the Rings: A Reader’s Companion by Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull ISBN 0-618-64267-6.
1975 Translations of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Pearl and Sir Orfeo
1976 The Father Christmas Letters
1977 The Silmarillion ISBN 0-618-12698-8 (HM).
1979 Pictures by J. R. R. Tolkien
1980 Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-earth ISBN 0-618-15405-1 (HM).
1980 Poems and Stories (a compilation of The Adventures of Tom Bombadil, The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth Beorhthelm’s Son, On Fairy-Stories, Leaf by Niggle, Farmer Giles of Ham and Smith of Wootton Major)
1981 The Letters of J. R. R. Tolkien (eds. Christopher Tolkien and Humphrey Carpenter)
1981 The Old English “Exodus” Text translation and commentary by J. R. R. Tolkien; edited by Joan Turville-Petre. Clarendon Press, Oxford
1982 Finn and Hengest: The Fragment and the Episode
1982 Mr. Bliss
1983 The Monsters and the Critics (an essay collection)
Beowulf: the Monsters and the Critics (1936)
On Translating Beowulf (1940)
On Fairy-Stories (1947)
A Secret Vice (1930)
English and Welsh (1955)
1983–1996 The History of Middle-earth:
The Book of Lost Tales 1 (1983)
The Book of Lost Tales 2 (1984)
The Lays of Beleriand (1985)
The Shaping of Middle-earth (1986)
The Lost Road and Other Writings (1987)
The Return of the Shadow (The History of The Lord of the Rings vol. 1) (1988)
The Treason of Isengard (The History of The Lord of the Rings vol. 2) (1989)
The War of the Ring (The History of The Lord of the Rings vol. 3) (1990)
Sauron Defeated (The History of The Lord of the Rings vol. 4, including The Notion Club Papers) (1992)
Morgoth’s Ring (The Later Silmarillion vol. 1) (1993)
The War of the Jewels (The Later Silmarillion vol. 2) (1994)
The Peoples of Middle-earth (1996)
1995 J. R. R. Tolkien: Artist and Illustrator – a compilation of Tolkien’s art
2002 A Tolkien Miscellany – a collection of previously published material
2002 Beowulf and the Critics ed. Michael D.C. Drout (Beowulf: the monsters and the critics together with editions of two drafts of the longer essay from which it was condensed.)
2005 Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings (full version) – published in The Lord of the Rings: A Reader’s Companion by Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull ISBN 0-618-64267-6. Re-titled to “Nomenclature of The Lord of the Rings” in this book. Written by Tolkien for use by translators of The Lord of the Rings, an edited version had been published in 1975 in A Tolkien Compass by Jared Lobdell.
2007 The Children of Húrin
2007 The History of The Hobbit by John D. Rateliff – contains substantial text fragments
2008 Tales from the Perilous Realm (a compilation of Roverandom, Farmer Giles of Ham, The Adventures of Tom Bombadil, Leaf by Niggle and Smith of Wootton Major)
2009 The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún
1967 Poems and Songs of Middle-earth, Caedmon TC 1231
1975 J. R. R. Tolkien Reads and Sings his The Hobbit & The Lord of the Rings, Caedmon TC 1477, TC 1478 (based on an August, 1952 recording by George Sayer)
See: J.R.R. Tolkien at Wikipedia.