walking_tree_publications

Walking Tree Publications

The Walking Tree Publishers is a volunteer-run association closely maintaining friendly links and co-operations with other Tolkien societies and interest groups throughout the world.

Our founding principle is a not-for-profit operation. Further to not paying dividends, the company does not pay salaries. All work is done by us in our free time — we all have demanding full-time jobs that we do on the side! This low-overhead approach allows the company to print very small numbers for niche products, as well as larger runs of interest to a greater audience.

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Eduardo Segura (ed.), Myth and Magic

Art According to the Inklings

Walking Tree, 2007. 1st edition. Paperback. This volume presents papers by Tom Shippey, Verlyn Flieger, Colin Duriez, Patrick Curry, John Garth, Martin Simonson, Dieter Bachmann, Devin Brown, Miryan Librán-Morena, Eugenio Olivares-Merino, Margarita Carretero-González, Fernando J. Soto & Marta Garcia de la Puerta, Eduardo Segura and Thomas Honegger. The essays focus on the use of Myth, Magic and Art in the work of the
Inklings and explore the interconnectedness of these concepts in the thinking of the members of this group.

Roberto Arduini (ed.), The Broken Scythe

Death and Immortality in the Works of JRR Tolkien

Walking Tree, 2012. 1st edition. Paperback. What is the central theme of The Lord of the Rings? J.R.R. Tolkien's answer to this apparently simple question may surprise some readers: "I do not think that even Power or Domination is the real centre of my story [...] The real theme for me is about something much more permanent and difficult: Death and Immortality" (Letters no. 186). Despite this very clear statement, only a small number of published studies have focused on these two themes. This collection of essays by Italian scholars aims at filling this lacuna in the critical scholarship. The nine papers, introduced by Verlyn Flieger's preface, are the result of a two-year interdisciplinary project that concentrated on death and immortality and provide a fascinating, multi-facetted exploration of these fundamental aspects of Tolkien's work.

A Eulogy of Finitude:
Anthropology, Eschatology and Philosophy of History in Tolkien
Franco Manni

Tolkien's Legendarium as a meditatio mortis
Claudio A. Testi

Tolkien, Death and Time: the Fairy Story within the Picture
Roberto Arduini

On the Edge of the Perilous Realm
Lorenzo Gammarelli

The Wrong Path of the Sub-creator:
from the Fall to the Machine and the Escape from Mortality
Alberto Ladavas

"In the Mounds of Mundburg":
Death, War and Memory in Middle-earth
Simone Bonechi

Death, Immortality and their Escapes:
Memory and Longevity
Andrea Monda

Logic and Theology in Tolkien's Thanatology
Claudio A. Testi

A Misplaced Envy:
Analogies and Differences between Elves and Men on the Idea of Pain
Giampaolo Canzonieri *

Roberto Arduini (ed.), Tolkien and Philosophy

Walking Tree, 2014. 1st edition. Paperback. Cover by Anke Eissmann.

"Tolkien and Philosophy" is a theme that has not yet been studied with the "philological" accuracy and the textual knowledge that are required to avoid squeezing the Professor's works inside conceptual frameworks that, rather than exposing their intrinsic value, risk losing both their profound meaning and their inherent beauty. What is the relationship between Tolkien's work and Philosophy? The question, if taken seriously, is by no means trivial. For these reasons we wish this book to become, in both method and content, an essential point of reference for anyone interested in better understanding the significant elements that sometimes link, sometimes divide, the "philologist" Tolkien from proper speculative philosophy.*

Liam Campbell, The Ecological Augury in the Works of JRR Tolkien

Walking Tree, 2011. 1st edition. Paperback.

This new study, in a clear and engaging tone, explores and unfolds the environmental dimension of Tolkien's work and worldview, not only in terms of the themes observable in his masterwork The Lord of the Rings, but also across his wider fiction, essays and private papers.

With discerning recourse to the work of leading ecologists and ecothinkers, this book argues that Tolkien – in his unfolding narratives of machine against nature, where regimes of power ruthlessly move against the land – holds up a mirror to the ecological crisis of the primary world and offers a vivid depiction of (and thus a warning against) where the reckless abandonment of concern for the green face of the planet may lead. Tolkien, Campbell argues, by virtue of his consistent adherence to such striking and compelling environmental themes, was a visionary defender of nature who, before the emergence of any organised Green Movement, may have anticipated the scale of the environmental emergency that was yet to dawn. In the exploration of Tolkien's green themes and the critical analysis of his tales of Middle-earth and wider fiction, Campbell re-evaluates Tolkien as a contemporary writer, and offers new insights into Tolkien's work and new perspectives on the literature of the fantastic. *

Stratford Caldecott (ed.), Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings: Sources of Inspiration

Walking Tree, 2008. 1st edition. Paperback. Cover by Anke Eissmann.

In the year after his graduation from Exeter College, Oxford, the great mythopoeic work for which he would become famous was already germinating in Tolkien’s mind. In August 2006 the College offered a week of seminars and papers by leading international specialists on Tolkien’s Exeter years, the influence of the Great War, the healing power of his narrative, and its relevance to religious and linguistic studies, comparative mythology, and history. Priscilla Tolkien, C.S. Lewis’s secretary and friend Walter Hooper, Tolkien’s friend the Jesuit priest Robert Murray SJ, and grandson Simon Tolkien attended as special guests, representing the family and those who knew Tolkien personally. The conference was intended to encourage the growth of Tolkien Studies through international and interdisciplinary collaboration.

The papers from this conference have been selected, edited, and supplemented by other essays on complementary themes especially for this volume, in order to reveal the dynamic growth of Tolkien Studies around the world. This book explores the spiritual, poetic, personal, and academic sources of inspiration for what is widely regarded as the greatest book of the twentieth century.*

Patrick Curry, Deep Roots in a Time of Frost

Essays on Tolkien

Walking Tree, 2014. 1st edition. Paperback.

In this collection of his published essays, Patrick Curry explores two themes in Tolkien’s great work: enchantment, the Elves and Faërie, and the natural world of Middle-earth. He considers their different effects on both readers and literary critics, and brings to light the deep connections between these two subjects, as well as between them and Tolkien's ultimate concern, 'Death and the desire for deathlessness.' Also illuminated, in contrast, is magic, as epitomised by the One Ring. Finally, he argues that the hobbits are exemplars of how to live in relation to enchantment: neither pursuing, nor avoiding, but honouring it.*

Julian Eilmann & Allan Turner, Tolkien's Poetry

Walking Tree 28. 2013. 1st edition. Paperback. Cover by Anke Eissmann. J.R.R. Tolkien is best known for his prose work, especially his novels The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Although there are many poems included in his novels that add depth to the narrative, Tolkien's talent as a writer of poetry has scarcely been appreciated and in-depth studies of Tolkien's verses are rare. This collection edited by Julian Eilmann and Allan Turner presents ten papers and an introduction by Michael Drout that deal with specific aspects of Tolkien's poetry. Some papers focus on one particular poem, while others examine a group of poems with a specific thematic approach. Among other topics, this collection highlights Tolkien's development as a writer of alliterative verse, the relationship between poetry and faith, or the function of poems in the narrative of The Lord of the Rings. In addition this volume takes a critical look at the use of poetry in Peter Jackson's movie trilogy, illustrating how Tolkien's verses contribute to a contemporary adaptation of this literary classic. *

Thomas Honegger (ed.), Tolkien and Modernity 1

Walking Tree, 2006. 1st edition. Paperback.  The current volume, being the first of two dedicated to ‘Tolkien and Modernity’, grew out of the wish to further the exploration of Tolkien as a ‘contemporary writer’, i.e. an author whose literary creations can be seen as a response to the challenges of the modern world. It comprises papers that focus on the following themes: Tolkien and the 20th century, feminist theory, time, creativity, and freedom. Although one could argue that most of these topics have been discussed since the beginning of literature, it is with the shaping events of the first half of the 20th century – the World Wars, Einstein’s theory of relativity, totalitarianism and the atomic bomb – that they gained a new and immediate relevance.
Nine articles.

Thomas Honegger (ed.), Tolkien and Modernity 2

Walking Tree, 2006. 1st edition. Paperback.  The current volume, being the second of two dedicated to ‘Tolkien and Modernity’, grew out of the wish to further the exploration of Tolkien as a ‘contemporary writer’, i.e. an author whose literary creations can be seen as a response to the challenges of the modern world. It comprises papers that focus on the following themes: Tolkien and the 20th century, feminist theory, time, creativity, and freedom. Although one could argue that most of these topics have been discussed since the beginning of literature, it is with the shaping events of the first half of the 20th century – the World Wars, Einstein’s theory of relativity, totalitarianism and the atomic bomb – that they gained a new and immediate relevance.
Seven articles.

Thomas Honegger (ed.), Root and Branch: Approaches Towards Understanding Tolkien

Walking Tree, 1994. Contains: "The Monster, the Critics, and the Public: Literary Criticism after the Poll", "The Man in the Moon: Structural Depth in Tolkien", "Tolkien and His Critics: A Critique", "Re-enchanting Nature: Some Magic Links between Margaret Atwood and J.R.R. Tolkien" and "Love Song of the Dark Lord: Some Musings on the Reception of Tolkien in an Indian Context". Only 150 copies printed. 1st edition. Paperback.

Thomas Honegger (ed.), News from the Shire and Beyond - Studies on Tolkien

First Edition

Walking Tree, 1997. 1st edition of this book, which contains an extra article, not reprinted in the second edition ("The Meeting of the Istari"), so six articles on Tolkien and the Middle-earth: The Wizards cardgame. Paperback. Signed by the editors, Thomas Honegger and Peter Buchs.

Thomas Honegger (ed.), News from the Shire and Beyond - Studies on Tolkien

Second Edition

Walking Tree, 2004. Five articles on Tolkien and the Middle-earth: The Wizards cardgame. Paperback.

Thomas Honegger (ed.), Tolkien in Translation.

 

Walking Tree, 2011. Reprint with a new cover. Paperback. Six essays: "A Theoretical Model for Tolkien Translation Criticism" by Allan Turner, "A Question of Style. On Translating The Silmarillion into Norwegian" by Nils Ivar Agoy, "Traduire Tolkien en France: On the Translation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Works into French and their Reception in France", "Begging your pardon, Con el perdon de usted: Some Socio-Linguistic Features in The Lord of the Rings" by Sandra Bayona, "The Treatment of Names in Esperanto Translations of Tolkien’s Work" by Arden R. Smith and "Nine Russian Translations of The Lord of the Rings" by Mark T. Hooker.*

Thomas Honegger (ed.), Translating Tolkien: Text and Film

Walking Tree, 2011. Reprint with a new cover. Paperback.Twelve essay's on translating Tolkien's work and visions on the Jackson movies.*

Thomas Honegger (ed.), Reconsidering Tolkien

Walking Tree Publication, 2005

Nine essays, mainly dealing with Tolkien as a linguist. "Reconsidering the Linguistics of Middle-earth: Invented Languages and Other Linguistic Features in The Lord of the Rings" - Marion Gymnich, "Tolkien as Philo-Logist" - Eduardo Segura en Guillermo Peris, "Tolkien Through the Eyes of a Mediaevalist" - Thomas Honegger, "Thoughts on The Lord of the Rings and History" - Paul E. Kerry, "The Knife, the Sting and the Tooth: Manifestation of Shadow in The Lord of the Rings" - Natasa Tucev, "Mythic Space in Tolkien's Work" - Jean-Christophe Dufau, "Language, Lore and Learning in The Lord of the Rings" - Dirk Vanderbeke, "The Lord of the Rings in the Wake of the Great War: War, Poetry, Modernism and Ironic Myth" - Martin Simonson,  "'A Man, lean, dark, tall': Aragorn Seen Through Different Media" - Connie Veugen. 1st edition. Paperback.

Thomas Honegger (ed.), From Peterborogh to Faëry

The Poetics and Mechanics of Secondary Worlds

Walking Tree, 2014. 1st edition. Paperback. Cover by Anke Eissmann.

Table of contents

Introduction 
i

List of Publications by Allan Turner 
vii

Wolfram R. Keller
Geoffrey Chaucer's Mind Games:
Household Management and Aesthetics in the Prologue to the Legend of Good Women
1

Andrew 'Chunky' Liston
Burns's Bogles
25

Julian Eilmann
Romantic World Building:
J.R.R. Tolkien's Concept of Sub-creation and the Romantic Spirit
37

Tom A. Shippey
Jack Vance: Il ottimo fabbro
57

Doreen Triebel
Stories that Last:
Storytelling in Terry Pratchett's The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents
75

James Fanning
Thursday Next, or: Metalepsis Galore – and More
99

Thomas Honegger
From Faëry to Madness:
The Facts in the Case of Howard Phillips Lovecraft
113

Dirk Vanderbeke
The Sub-creation of Sub-London:
Neil Gaiman's and China Miéville's Urban Fantasy*

Margaret Hiley and Frank Weinreich (ed.), Tolkien's Shorter Works

Essays of the Jena Conference 2007

Tolkien’s Middle-earth and its legendarium have drawn extensive scholarly attention. But there is more to Tolkien than the history and legends of Middle-earth, and there has hitherto been a certain lack of academic criticism focused primarily on his shorter fictional works Farmer Giles of Ham, Smith of Wootton Major, Roverandom and his poetry. Although scholarly evaluations of these works exist, they often deal with the shorter texts more as an afterthought, as footnotes to the ‘major’ texts rather than as demanding attention in their own right. This dearth of studies suggests that it is time for a closer look at Tolkien’s 'Shorter Works'. The current volume collects the findings of a joint conference of Walking Tree Publishers and the German Tolkien Society at the Friedrich Schiller University in Jena, Germany in 2007. Various interesting aspects, details and connections are unearthed which are likely to broaden not simply the understanding of Tolkien’s Shorter Works, but also of the author’s overall fictional work as well as the man and author J.R.R. Tolkien himself. *

Christopher Garbowski, Recovery and Transcedence for the Contemporary Mythmaker

The Spiritual Dimension in the Works of J.R.R. Tolkien

Walking Tree, 2004. Paperback. Second Edition.

Judith Klinger (ed.), Sub-creating Middle-earth

Construction of Authorship and the Works of JRR Tolkien

Walking Tree 27. 2013. 1st edition. Paperback. Cover by Anke Eissmann. Authorship in the works of J.R.R. Tolkien is a subject of many facets. Within the mythology and history of Middle-earth, many story-tellers, bards, annalists and poets contribute to the weaving of an enormous tapestry of tales. Sub-creation, as Tolkien practiced it, involves an abundance of traditions, including different modes of authorship and literary creation – and some depart strikingly from the common modern notions. Instead of proposing a unified perception, the six articles in this collection therefore examine the web of authorial presence and authorship concepts in Tolkien's works from diverse angles, to trace a polyphonous dialogue between the writer of the texts and the many voices within that shape Middle-earth in concert. *

Barbara Kowalik, O What a Tangled Web

Tolkien and Medieval Literature. A View from Poland

Walking Tree, 2013. 1st edtion. Paperback. The nine articles of stimulating literary criticism collected in this volume view Tolkien's work from a variety of medieval perspectives: the device of entrelacement employed in Arthurian romances is used to throw light on the narrative design of The Lord of the Rings; the cultures of Middle-earth are described with the aid of medieval orality and literacy studies; the epic figure of the queen is recalled to reveal the significance of women in Tolkien's trilogy; the character of Éowyn is analyzed in terms of the epic warrior code and the romance chivalric ethos; the role of Elbereth is shown to correspond with the position of the Virgin Mary in the world of medieval believers; the nature of evil is explored through a comparison of Melkor to John Milton's Satan; allusions to medieval Icelandic sagas are detected in Tolkien's works for children; The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth is read in the light of The Battle of Maldon; and Tolkien's literary art is illuminated by way of his own critical essays on Beowulf and fairy-stories. Since all the contributors come from Poland, the phenomenon of Tolkien's prompt and enthusiastic Polish reception is briefly discussed in the introductory chapter. *

Adam Lam (ed.), How We Became Middle-earth

A Collection of Essays on The Lord of the Rings Movies

Walking Tree, 2007. 1st edition. Paperback.

Following the release in 2001 of the first film of Peter Jackson's adapted trilogy of J.R.R. Tolkien's /The Lord of the Rings: the Fellowship of The Ring/, a wave of "Ring Fever" swamped the world, with reprints of the novel, guidebooks, Internet sites, memorabilia and toys, video and computer games, location tours and extended DVDs. Taking a Cultural Studies perspective, this collection of essays examines the cultural issues generated by Tolkien's novel and Jackson's films. In particular, by applying a variety of cultural, media and literary theories, the essays in this collection attempt to answer the question: How did we in New Zealand become Middle-earth? Topics covered range from fan culture in an age of IT, globalization, transnational capitalism and consumerism to the local socio-political implications of the Rings tale, and the formation of a Middle-earth in our real (or, as argued by the French philosopher Jean Beadrillard, our no-longer real but hyperreal) world.

This book includes a total of twenty-four chapters, as well as foreword, index, filmography and photo illustrations.*

Christopher MacLachlan, Tolkien and Wagner

The Ring and Der Ring

Walking Tree, 2011. 1st edition. Paperback. Tolkien famously rejected comparison of his Ring with Wagner's, though there is good evidence that Tolkien knew much more about Der Ring des Nibelungen than he let on after the publication of The Lord of the Rings. Analysis of that work from a Wagnerian point of view enables consideration of it in a new way. By exploring the parallels between Wagner's Ring and Tolkien's, a fresh interpretation of Tolkien's work emerges, one that hinges on associating Gandalf with Wotan. Like Wagner's god, Gandalf has to find a way of solving the problems posed by the Ring and like Wotan he cannot succeed without other people. When the plots of The Lord of the Rings (and The Hobbit) are examined in this way it becomes apparent how much they owe to Wagner's music-drama, and the role of Gandalf is opened to new explanation. *

Rainer Nagel, Hobbit Place-names

A Linguistic Excursion through the Shire

Walking Tree, 2012. 1st editon. Paperback. J.R.R. Tolkien's giving of names has garnered considerable attention in the linguistic analysis of Tolkien's works. Usually, however, the focus has been on singling out particular names of important individuals and places. Thorough analyses of names (place-names or personal ones) are usually reserved for Elvish names only.

Thus, this book centres on the place-names as found in the Shire as well as Breeland. All those names that are referenced on Tolkien's map of the Shire, plus those few that are not found on the map but men- tioned in the text, as well as four from The Adventures of Tom Bombadil, are analysed as to their possible "etymologies" against the theoretical backdrop of real-world English place-name research. Tolkien's "own" (in-world) etymologies, insofar as they differ from the real-world ones, are also taken into consideration. Finally, all extant German translations (Scherf and Krege for The Hobbit, Carroux and Krege for The Lord of the Rings) of these names are given and, where necessary, com- pared. Other media (the films and the Hobbit graphic novel, in particular) are also covered. *

J.S. Ryan, Tolkien's View

Windows into his World

Walking Tree, 2009. 1st edition. Paperback. Illustrated.

Tolkien's View: Windows into his World contains a number of selected essays by Professor J.S. Ryan, for their most part originally published over three decades from the 1960s to the 1990s, on the theme of J.R.R. Tolkien and his works. Having himself studied under Professor Tolkien at the time of the publication of his masterwork The Lord of the Rings, Professor J.S. Ryan is uniquely well-placed to comment on some aspects of Tolkien's academic environment in Oxford, the subject matters J.R.R. Tolkien studied and brooded upon in his regular professional work and the people he personally knew, cherished and was influenced by as a student and then as a professor of Old and Middle English, a writer and a person.*

J.S. Ryan, In the Nameless Wood

Explorations in the Philological Hnterland of Tolkien's Literary Creations

Walking Tree, 2013. 1st edition. Paperback. Illustrated. Professor J.S. Ryan in this latest collection of essays pursues Professor Tolkien's narrow path through the Nameless Wood of uncharted territory between academic research and mythcreation culminating in the writing of the 20th century's masterpiece, The Lord of the Rings.

Having himself studied under Professor J.R.R. Tolkien and having written for no less than 50 years on his inspirational teacher, his sources and the applicability of his writings, J.S. Ryan is uniquely placed to reflect not only on Tolkien the Scholar or Tolkien the Author, but equally on Tolkien the Man.*

Richard Sturch, Four Christian Fantasists.

A study in the fantastic writings of George MacDonald, Charles Williams, C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien

"This book is a study of the close relationship between the faith and the fiction in four writers. It seeks to look at their use of other worlds and other beings; at their attitudes towards ‘escapism’; at the presence of symbolism and myth in their writings". Walking Tree, 2001. 1st edition. Paperback.

Heidi Steimel (ed.), Music in MIddle-earth

Walking Tree, 2010. 1st edition. Paperback.

From the Grand Theme that the Ainur played before Ilúvatar at the beginning of the world, to the various songs encountered or sung by the characters of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, the world that J.R.R. Tolkien created contains numerous references to song and music. Indeed, musical elements form an integral part of his narratives. It is therefore surprising that, until now, discussion of this aspect of Tolkien's sub-creation has been sparse in secondary literature. The 14 papers presented in this volume set out to address this important gap.

Besides musical references found in Tolkien's own works, the scope of Middle-earth music has over the years been further extended by various attempts to either set Tolkien's song texts to music, or to create derivative musical works. Such creations range from the songs and music of the various films and radio adaptions to such phenomena as Tolkien-inspired Black Metal. Besides the musical refences found in Tolkien's own writings, this volume also looks at these works.*

Ross Smith, Inside Language

Linguistic and Aesthetic Theory in Tolkien

Walking Tree, 2007. 1st edition. Paperbackl. `aimed at the general reader who wants an informed introduction to Tolkien´s views on language and their historical relevance.`

Martin Simonson, The Lord of the Rings and the Western Narrative Tradition (27/2)

Walking Tree, 2008. 1st edition. Paperback. Cover by Anke Eissmann.

When The Lord of the Rings was published in the 1950’s it did not sit comfortably among any preconceived notions of literary genre. The critical responses reflected the confusion: for some, it was an unwelcome reappearance of narrative standards that modernism was supposed to have done away with, or just a bad novel. Others considered it a refreshing work in the epic and romance traditions.

Ironically, much of the critical prejudice regarding the question of genre in The Lord of the Rings has been motivated by the same kind of blindness that Tolkien denounced in his famous 1936 lecture Beowulf: the monsters and the critics. Like Beowulf, Tolkien’s work has also failed to be properly appreciated and assessed due to a general refusal to accept the centrality of monsters, because despite its ‘monstrous’ originality and fantastic setting, it is very clearly, and not only chronologically, at the centre of twentieth-century literature.

The Lord of the Rings and the Western Narrative Tradition is an attempt to account for the particular genre interaction that governs Tolkien’s tale and put it in a meaningful relationship with the contemporary literary context. At the same time, it is a quest to track down one of the most famous and elusive literary monsters of the past century by filling out a long-neglected white space on the map of comparative literature and genre criticism.*

Martin Simonson (ed.), Representations of Nature in Middle-earth

Walking Tree, 2015. 1st editon. Paperback. Contains 9 articles.

Tolkien's portrayal of nature in Middle-earth has been interpreted in a variety of ways, often depending on the context of the reading. Some have seen Middle-earth and its potential destroyer, the Ring, as an allegory of the European continent under the threat of the atomic bomb, while others have embraced it as an artistic expression of the Green movement's agenda in the face of industrial abuse. Some have read nature in Tolkien's work in terms of myth and religion; yet others take the exhaustive descriptions of the physical environment as a sign that Middle-earth itself is the central protagonist of the stories. All in all, nature in Middle-earth plays a crucial role not only in the creation of atmospheres and settings that enhance the realism as well as the emotional appeal of the secondary world; it also acts as an active agent of change within the setting and the story. This collection of essays explores Middle-earth as an ecological entity, a scene for metaphysical speculation, an arboreal depository of cultural memory and a reflection of real-world natural and imperialistic processes.*

Tom Shippey, Roots and Branches

Selected Papers on Tolkien

Walking Tree, 2007. 1st edition. Paperback. 23 papers and lectures, some published here for the first time.

Allan Turner (ed.), The Silmarillion - Thirty Years On

Walking Tree, 2007. 1st edition. Paperback.

The six articles in this collection commemortate the thirtieth anniversary of the long-awaited publication in 1977 of Christopher Tolkien's edition of The Silmarillion, the first opportunity for most readers to learn more about the detailed mythology and history which underlie, explicitly or implicitly, the narrative of The Lord of the Rings. In view of the long and complex publication history of the texts relating to the legendarium, even thirty years
is perhaps too short a time to form a critical consensus about the work. Nevertheless, the articles presented here hope to give a picture of some of the areas of investigation that have established themselves in that period: mythopoeia, theology, the legacy of the ancient North, and the ways in which a text is created. The
contribution of Rhona Beare is a completely re-written version of a section from her now out of print introduction to The Silmarillion; the other have all been written specially for the occasion.*

Renée Vink, Wagner and Tolkien: Mythmakers

Walking Tree, 2012. 1st edition. Paperback. "Both Rings were round and there the resemblance ceases", wrote J.R.R. Tolkien about the rings in his epic The Lord of the Rings and Richard Wagner's opera cycle The Ring of the Nibelung. Or did he? The answer is not as straightforward as many Tolkien fans believe, whether they agree with the statement or consider it misguided. Nor is the statement itself as transparently defensive as some Wagner buffs suggest.

Much has been said and written about Wagner and Tolkien, a subject that tends to generate a certain amount of heat, mostly due to the former's controversial status as Hitler's favourite composer. But until now the various, often contradictory opinions and the facts and perceptions on which they are based were rarely discussed at length or analysed in depth. The publication in 2009 of Tolkien's The Legend and Sigurd and Gudrún with its partly Wagnerian content reinforced the need for a systematic treatment of the subject. This book offers one.

There is more to both Rings than their common roundness, and the resemblance between Tolkien and Wagner goes beyond a Ring of Power and some narrative elements: they shared a number of preoccupations and interests – Nature, nation, the North, death and immortality, language and above all, myth. This is a book about the two great mythmakers of their times, and about what they have in common despite everything that separate them. *