JRR Tolkien, one of the most famous authors in history, was more interested in creating particular mythology for Great Britain more than having literary success.
A man with an interesting story that wrote one of the most interesting sagas in history in The Lord of the Rings certainly had plenty of interesting things going through his mind from a very young age. Here, we present you with e10 facts about Tolkien’s life.
10. British, Are We?
John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born in 1892 in what then was called Bloemfontein in the Orange Free State. Nowadays, the Orange Free State is a province of South Africa. The plan was to stay in Africa, but when Tolkien was three years old his father died while he and his mother were visiting in England; that changed the plans drastically.
9. An Early Reader
Tolkien learned to read at the age of four. By the time he read “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and later he would remember the book as “amusing and disturbing”. I wonder if that’s the way some people felt after reading The Hobbit.
8. A Children’s Book
“The Hobbit” was originally written by Tolkien for his own kids. It wasn’t until an employee at London publishing firm George Allen & Unwin insisted that Tolkien considered its publication. “The Hobbit” went public in 1937 and the rest is history.
7. An Accidental Trilogy
Tolkien first intended “The Lord of the Rings” to be one single book. When he took it to the publishing, they suggested dividing it into three books in order to make it easier to read. He didn’t like the decision, but history proved him wrong after all.
6. God Between Lines
When Tolkien was 12 years old he had already lost his father and his mother. As per his mother’s will, he and his brothers were raised by a catholic priest, in order to not be raised as protestants. Tolkien became a devout catholic and incorporated what he loved about religion into his writings.
5. An Eccentric Teacher
Tolkien taught at Oxford University for over 30 years. He wasn’t your regular Oxford teacher, though. He attended parties dressed as a polar bear, chased neighbors in an Anglo-Saxon costume, and even attended classes with some of those eccentric outfits.
4. A Language Nerd
Tolkien invented languages for fun, it was a way in which he kept his mind exercised. He wrote poems and songs in many of those created languages. Some of them even saw life in his work, like Quenya and Sindarin. It takes some creativity to do that.
3. Real War Experiences
Tolkien was a veteran of World War I, serving as a second lieutenant in the 11th Battalion of the British Expeditionary Force in France. Some of the experiences he lived in the trenches were put in his books. He also helped in World War II as a code breaker.
2. Pricey Signature
Writing was a hobby for Tolkien. With his literary work, he was trying to create a body of mythology more than a source of entertainment. He didn’t connect that much with his fan’s admiration for his books. He rarely signed any copy of his work, that’s why a 1937 signed copy of “The Hobby” was offered for sale at the price of $85,000.
1. Not A Friend Of The Nazis
Tolkien was openly against Hitler’s politics, even though the Nazis praised his academic writings on Old Norse and Germanic history. The animosity raised when the german government asked Tolkien for proof that he was truly Aryan in order to publish his work in Germany.