This is the place for discussion concerning the History of Middle-Earth series and general ME subjects.
In what was the single largest work of literary archaeology ever undertaken, J.R.R. Tolkien's son and literary executor, Christopher Tolkien, edited the vast collection of manuscripts and illustrations and these were posthumously published in twelve volumes as The History of Middle-earth.
Although J.R.R. Tolkien is well-known for The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion, the material which laid the groundwork for what must be the most fully realised sub-creation ever to spring from a single imagination was begun many years before the publication of The Hobbit, and indeed Tokien continued to work upon its completion until his death in 1973.
The twelve volumes include...
The Book of Lost Tales (1+2): "The Book of Lost Tales" stands at the beginning of the entire conception of Middle-Earth and Valinor, for the Tales were the first form of the myths and legends that came to be called "The Silmarillion". The second part includes the tale of Beren and luthien, Turin and the Dragon, and the only full narratives of the Necklace of the Dwarves and the Fall of Gondolin. (1983/84)
The Lays of Beleriand: A treasure trove of lore for old and new friends of Middle-Earth. (1985)
The Shaping of Middle-Earth: In this fourth volume of "The History of Middle-Earth", the shaping of the chronological and geographical structure of the legends of Middle-Earth and Valinor is spread before us. (1986)
The Lost Road and other writings: At the end of 1937, J.R.R. Tolkien reluctantly set aside his work on the myths and heroic legends of Valinor and Middle-Earth and began "The Lord of the Rings" This fifth volume of "The History of Middle-Earth" completes the examination of his writing up to that time. (1987)
The Return of the Shadow: "The Return of the Shadow" is the first part of the history of the creation of "The Lord of the Rings", a fascinating study of Tolkien's great masterpiece, from its inception to the end of the first volume, "The Fellowship of the Ring". (1988)
The Treason of Isengard: "The Treason of Isengard" continues the account of the creation of "The Lord of the Rings" started in the earlier volume, "The Return of the Shadow". (1989)
The War of the Ring: "The War of the Ring" takes up the story of "The Lord of the Rings" with the battle of Helm's Deep and the drowning of Isengard by the Ents, continues with the journey of Frodo, Sam and Gollum to the Pass of Cirith Ungol, describes the war in Gondor, and ends with the parley between Gandalf and the ambassador of the Dark Lord before the Black Gate of Mordor. (1990)
Sauron defeated: In the first section of "Sauron Defeated" Christopher Tolkien completes his fascinating study of "The Lord of the Rings". Beginning with Sam's rescue of Frodo from the Tower of Cirith Ungol, and giving a very different account of the Scourcing of the Shire, this section ends with versions of the hitherto unpublished Epilogue, in which, years after the departure of Bilbo and Frodo from the Grey Havens, Sam attempts to answer his children's questions... (1992)
Morgoth's Ring: In "Morgoth's Ring", the first of two companion volumes, Christopher Tolkien describes and documents the later history of "The Silmarillon", from the time when his father turned again to 'the Matter of the Elder Days' after "The Lord of the Rings" was at last achieved. (1993)
The War of the Jewels: In "The War of the Jewels" Christopher Tolkien takes up his account of the later history of "The Silmarillion" from the point where it was left in "Morgoth's Ring". (1994)
The Peoples of Middle-Earth: When J.R.R. Tolkien laid aside "The Silmarillion" in 1937 the extension of the original "mythology" into later Ages of the world had scarcely begun. It was in the Appendices to "The Lord of the Rings" that there emerged a comprehensive historical structure and chronology of the Second and Third Ages, embracing all the diverse strands that came together in "The War of the Ring". (1996)
For complete overviews of the twelve volumes, visit these pages:
Books 6 to 8 and the first half of Book 9 (individually published as "The End of the Third Age") are also sometimes refferred to as "The History of The Lord of the Rings".
I recommend "The History of Middle-Earth Index" by Christopher Tolkien (every index from each of the twelve volumes published together in a single volume) or Robert Foster's "Complete Guide to Middle-Earth" as companion to the HOME series. It's an A-Z guide to the names, places and events in the fantasy world of J.R.R. TOLKIEN and it's the most detailed one I know.
[ 01-10-2004, 01:07 PM: Message edited by: Quendil Gondolindrim ]
From: Japan | Registered: Jan 2002
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NOTE: This forum is also the place for discussion concerning Unfinished Tales (of Númenor and Middle-Earth).
J.R.R.Tolkien's Unfinished Tales is a collection ranging from the time of The Silmarillion – the Elder days of Middle-earth – to the end of the War of the Ring in The Lord of the Rings. Its many treasures include Gandalf's lively account of how he came to send the Dwarves to the celebrated party at Bag-End, the emergence of the sea-god Ulmo before the eyes of Tuor on the coast of Beleriand, and a description of the military organisation of the Riders of Rohan. Lovers of Tolkien's mythology will be fascinated to read the only story from the long ages of Numenor before its downfall, and all that is known of such matters as the Five Wizards, the Palantiri, and the legend of Amroth.
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Scramble(Gandalf the White) - In this you take a person, place, object etc. and 'scramble' the letters in it. Other people must then try and 'unscramble' it and ge the original word. If you get the answer right then you can then post one.
Q. LAGADILRE A. GALADRIEL
[ 06-07-2004, 07:33 AM: Message edited by: Quendil Gondolindrim ]
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