Thursday, January 16, 2020


Christopher Tolkien died today; he was 95. J. R. R. Tolkien's third child, he inherited 70 boxes of his father's paper, and resigned his university position to curate and edit it. His most important contribution is like the publication of The Silmarillion, which required some creative editing and occasional rewriting, since the different parts of the work were at very different stages of revision. In an interview once he said that after The Silmarillion was published, he had a dream in which he was in his father's office when his father came in, looking for something, and when Christopher realized that he was looking for The Silmarillion, he panicked at what his father might say at his having tampered with it. He then set out to handle the material in a different way by working through the history of its writing, and thus came about the multivolume History of Middle Earth.

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