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New publication: Tolkien on Fairy-stories
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Tolkien on Fairy-stories is a new publication co-authored by Verlyn Flieger and Douglas A. Anderson that contains the entirety of J.R.R. Tolkien's essay On Fairy-stories. This is a new expanded edition of Tolkien's most famous, and most important essay, which defined his conception of fantasy as a literary form, and led to the writing of The Lord of the Rings. The first version of this essay was published in Tree and Leaf (1964); however, this is a new expanded version comprising of 18,000 words and also contains many more pages of his views that were originally condensed into or cut from the published proper version. An estimate is difficult, but these unpublished passages perhaps amount to half again as much writing as the essay itself (Harper Collins **) . Currently, there is only publishing information from Harper Collins on the UK Amazon site. The tentative release date is set for October 1st, 2007. You can read more here.

Posted on: 2007/5/4 10:33
_________________
Surely that is a Silmaril that shines now in the West?


New publication: The History of The Hobbit
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Rateliff's new two part publication coming out this year is commissioned work by Christopher Tolkien and the Tolkien Estate. This is *NOT* related to Doug Anderson's The Annotated Hobbit, but is an entirely new and thorough study of all things as it relates to Hobbits and Arda, and is meant to supplement The History of Middle-earth series. If you wish to find out more about this work, this interview is an excellent place to start.

What I have ascertained about the work:

During the mid 90s, John Rateliff and Taum Santoski were approached by Christopher Tolkien and granted all resources to exhaust in the compiling of this new in depth study about Hobbits, including Tolkien's manuscripts that relate to them. They were also given access and privileges at several major universities, which catalog Tolkien's work for research publication and peer review. Unfortunately, the project was delayed many years due to Santoski becoming terminally ill and Rateliff's obligations to his dissertation work. Rateliff was able to return to the project several years ago and see the work through to its completion. The History of the Hobbit comes in two parts, the first of the UK edition is currently available through Harper Collins, while the second is to be released in July. The Houghlin Mifflin U.S. edition will be published as a three-piece boxed set on September 9th. This box set includes volumes I and II of The History of the Hobbit; and additionally, a new edition of The Hobbit with a short introduction by Christopher Tolkien, a reset text incorporating the most up-to-date corrections, and all of Tolkien’s own drawings and color illustrations, including the rare "Mirkwood" piece. You can check out the Houghlin Mifflin version here.

The History of the Hobbit is said to include early unpublished drafts of The Hobbit, and is intended to be a full explanation with respect to hobbit-related subject matter. Much to my excitement, this will also feature drafts for an unpublished 3rd edition of The Hobbit that never came to be and that Tolkien wrote *after* the release of The Lord of the Rings! Rateliff specifically states it is not intended to build upon Doug Anderson's The Annotated Hobbit, though he acknowledges it and concedes reference to Doug's edition. This new work is commissioned by the Tolkien Estate as a textual study deliberately modeled on Christopher Tolkien’s example with The History of Middle-earth series.

I am very excited about this work and I now have both parts preordered. Though I will obviously need to read the entire work before making a true assessment, I suggest it will be just as important, if not a proper continuation of Christopher Tolkien's The History of Middle-earth volumes; a must own for the serious Tolkien enthusiast.

The following is my own personal thoughts about what this new work means in the greater scheme:

The History of the Hobbit publication marks a sign of things to come. This is the beginning of the end with respect to Christopher carrying on as his father's sole literary executor. I think The Children of Húrin will stand as the last major work he publishes, at least that is related specifically to Arda/Middle-earth. Adam Tolkien seems like the logical choice to carry on with the legalities of the Estate once Christopher finally retires or passes beyond the Walls of the World; however, if required further, I suspect a few very lucky and, more importantly, worthy individuals will be carefully selected and commissioned by the Estate to work on similiar projects like the The History of the Hobbit. I am not sure Adam will publish like his father. We might also consider, realistically, to be nearing the end of a long road as far as publications go from the Estate itself. What remains that can be published as a stand-alone work? What future beholds Tolkien's works as they relate to Arda, I cannot be certain.

I am aware that Christopher is still working on some of his father's unpublished literary texts, but I am unaware if this involves Arda-related material for publication. Will these other literary texts see the light of day? I hope so, but you must consider Christopher's age and admit we may be seeing the beginning of the end with respect to his own work. Also, be sure that I am not stating he is stepping down right now! I am only considering his age and what appears to be steps taken with the Estate's future in mind. It is difficult for me to imagine Christopher not doing The History of the Hobbit himself, considering his manner of work through the 70s, 80s and 90s. I may be entirely wrong, but such a tremendous work load combined with his age might have convinced him to commission someone else to undertake The History of the Hobbit. I know if in my senior I had a number of projects I wished complete under my tenor, but felt I could not with so much already on my shoulders, I might consider carefully an outside expert to take on such a task. Christopher does not appear to have slowed down, afterall, he did take the time to prepare the cohesive, stand-alone version of The Children of Húrin. But maybe he felt he would not have sufficient time to complete The History of the Hobbit himself? Again, I am only speculating at this point. Understand, it is my hope that Christopher continues to write about, edit and publish his father's work on his own if able and intent on doing such! But also realize he is not going to be around forever.

Posted on: 2007/5/4 10:02
_________________
Surely that is a Silmaril that shines now in the West?


Re: Children of Hurin Bookplates (Quantities and Editions)
Shirrif
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Beren has posted a very interesting article on this subject The Children of Hurin facts and figures , which seems to agree in most matters with this thread. However, the main difference appears to be US Deluxe Editions with bookplates with Beren's article stating that these were sold in NY.

However, it appears that the US Deluxe copy has still not been seen in the wild.

So I have two questions, does anyone yet have a US Deluxe Copy and if not were UK Deluxe Copies sold in New York?

Posted on: 2007/5/3 4:56


Re: Bloomsbury auction update - 1st Eds, signed letters
Shirrif
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This auction house is very close to my office, so I will probably go and have a look at lunch-time on the 22nd at the lots, if anybody is interested in these items and wants any more info, then let me know.

Posted on: 2007/5/2 11:19


Bloomsbury auction update - 1st Eds, signed letters
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"Modern First Editions, Manuscripts and Autograph Letters, English and Continental Literature & History"

24 May 2007 at 10.30am & 2.00pm

Viewing beforehand on
Tuesday 22 May from 9.30am to 5.30pm
Wednesday 23 May from 9.30am to 8.00pm
Thursday 24 May from 9.30am to 10.30am

247. Tolkien (J.R.R.) .The Lord of the Rings, 3 vol., first editions, first impressions, vol.III second state with sagging text and number ‘4’ on p.49, folding maps, oblated signature on front free endpaper of vol.III, all internally in very good condition, original cloth, dust-jackets, some light surface marking, spines slightly browned and dulled, vol.I & II with small closed tears to fore-corners, vol.III slightly chipped at lower fore-corners, closed tears and slight fraying to spine ends with some loss to vol.I & II, overall however very good examples, 8vo, 1954-55.
Estimates £5000 - £7000



248. Tolkien (J.R.R.) .The Lord of the Rings, 3 vol., first editions, first impressions, vol.III second state with sagging text and number ‘4’ on p.49, folding maps, no inscriptions, original cloth, minor sunning to spine ends, otherwise fine, dust-jackets, uniformly dulled at spines, some surface marking, particularly to lower panel of vol.II, vol.I splitting at upper joint with resultant closed tear to upper panel, vol.I & III slightly frayed at head of spine, all torn at foot of spines with some loss, 8vo, 1954-55.
Estimates £4000 - £5000



249. Tolkien (J.R.R.) .The Lord of the Rings, 3 vol., first editions, vol.I second impression, vol.III second state with sagging text and number ‘4’, folding maps, vol.I lacking front free endpaper and with minor running from red edging affecting top edge of map and last text f., spotting to vol.II & III endpapers and a few ff., ink inscription on front endpaper of each vol., original cloth, cocked, 1954-55; and a jacketed copy of The Silmarillion, 8vo (4)
Estimates £300 - £400



250. Tolkien (J.R.R.) .The Hobbit, eighth impression, colour frontispiece and plain illustrations by the author, map endpapers, lacking most of 1 preliminary blank f., tape mark to upper hinge, original pictorial cloth, minor edge sunning, dust-jacket, signed by the author near foot of inside front panel [see lot 490], tape marks to inside front flap, clipped at lower corners of inside flaps, small chips from corners of head of spine, 2 vertical creases, otherwise a very good example, 8vo, 1956.
Estimates £750 - £1000



493. Tolkien (J.R.R., author and philologist, 1892-1973) .Autograph Letter signed to Elsie Honeybourne, 2pp. & envelope (stamp removed), 8vo, Headington, Oxford, 18th September 1967, responding warmly to a present Miss Honeybourne has sent him, “If I dare say so a very hobbit-like kindness to send a present on you own birthday!”, and answering her questions about The Lord of the Rings, “As I said in the ‘Foreword’ to the American paperback..., I wrote The Lord of the Rings because I wished ‘to try my hand at a really long story that would hold the attention of readers, amuse them, delight them, and at times maybe excite them & deeply move them’. As a guide I had only my own feelings for what is appealing or moving; and it has been a great pleasure (and a surprise) to find that so many other people have similar feelings. But no one has written me a letter more warm, and few have come near it. I am specially grateful for your pleasure in the names: I took a great deal of trouble with them”, complimenting her on her surname, “Your own name is a delightful one, and brings to me suggestion of kinship. It’s such a good name that I must, in any future more complete map of the Shire (often asked for), find a place for it. It is one of the comparatively rare place-names that means what it says: a stream, of sweet water and/or flowing through flowery-meads”, folds (2)
Estimates £1000 - £1500



494. Tolkien (J.R.R., author and philologist, 1892-1973) .Autograph Letter signed to Elsie Honeybourne, 2pp., 8vo, Headington, Oxford, 21st December 1967, discussing her surname, “I think it still probable that your father’s name nonetheless comes from near Evesham. It must be derived from a place-name; and though -Bourne (stream) is widespread in England, and occurs in Kentish names, Honeybourne is found only in Cow H. and Church H. near Evesham. There was a considerable movement and interchange between Kent and Worcestershire, largely because of the industries of fruit-growing. I hall certainly put Honeybourne on the Shire Map as soon as an opportunity of revision (much needed) occurs”, and commenting on the end of The Lord of the Rings, “I was deeply interested in your choice of passages, and quite agree about Pippin’s ride. An easing of tension was needed at the end of the ‘Book’ (but of course provided instinctively and not by planning). To ride with Gandalf must have been like being borne by a Guardian Angel, with stern gentleness a most comforting combination to children (as we all are)”, and sending a newly published story”, folds; and a small quantity of ephemera relating to Tolkien including 2 T.Ls.s. from Joy Hill, 1968, informing Miss Honeybourne that Professor Tolkien had moved from Oxford and that he was recovering from a “minor accident”, folds (sm. qty)
Estimates £800 - £1200



495. Tolkien (J.R.R., author and philologist, 1892-1973) .Autograph letter signed to an aptly Shire-sounding Mr Burrows, 1p., 16mo, n.p., 1st August 1969, discussing the signing of a copy of The Hobbit and Tolkien’s change of address & recent health issues.
Estimates £300 - £400

Posted on: 2007/5/2 10:50
_________________
- Jeremy



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