With original illustrations as published in J.R.R. Tolkien's lifetime
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Nibelungs Poetic Edda Glittering Plain Red Fairy Book Princess & Goblin
Eric Brighteyes Ourobouros Book of Wonder King Arthur Grimms Fairy

Tolkien 1916

Tolkien's Letters1

Tolkien's Letters 2

Tolkien's letters to Rhona Beare

Sources: How we verify our books

Every book in Tolkien's Bookshelf has been shown to have informed Professor J.R.R. Tolkien. Our research has taken us among his published letters, his essays, and the literary scholars who specialise in studying his work.

Our main sources are the words of the man himself, as printed in The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien and in his essay On Fairy Stories.

The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien is a selection of J. R. R. Tolkien's letters published in 1981, edited by Tolkien's biographer Humphrey Carpenter assisted by Christopher Tolkien. The selection contains 354 letters, dating between October 1914, when Tolkien was an undergraduate at Oxford, and August 29, 1973, four days before his death. (Wikipedia)

On Fairy-Stories
is an essay by J. R. R. Tolkien which discusses the fairy-story as a literary form. It was initially written (and entitled simply "Fairy Stories") for presentation by Tolkien as the Andrew Lang lecture at the University of St Andrews, Scotland, in 1939. The essay is significant because it contains Tolkien's explanation of his philosophy on fantasy and thoughts on mythopoiesis. Moreover, the essay is an early analysis of speculative fiction by one of the most important authors in the genre. (Wikipedia)

Literary Sources

Tales Before Tolkien: The Roots of Modern Fantasy. Douglas A. Anderson, ed.

Tolkien's Art: A Mythology for England, by Jane Chance.

The Annotated Hobbit. Douglas A. Anderson, ed.

J. R. R. Tolkien: Author of the Century, by Tom Shippey

Splintered Light: Logos and Language in Tolkien's World, by Verlyn Flieger.

J. R. R. Tolkien and His Literary Resonances: Views of Middle-Earth.
Clark, George; Timmons, Daniel, eds. (2000)

Online Sources:

The Top Ten Books That Influenced J.R.R. Tolkien.

Tolkien influences all of us, but who influenced Tolkien?

Tolkien & the New Art: Visual Sources for The Lord of the Rings, by Mary Podles.

Wikipedia: J. R. R. Tolkien's influences.

Tolkien on Fairy Stories 2 Tolkien on Fairy Stories 1


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