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TCG Letter #566

J.R.R. Tolkien
Mr. Richard Potts
15 August 1964
Autograph Letter Signed
Tolkien replies to a letter which included a questionaire. Tolkien's reply is priceless. Richard Potts sent Professor Tolkien a questionnaire whilst working on his dissertation on children's literature, hoping that he would shed some light on his craft. A copy of the questions that caused so much ire does not survive but Potts remembers "I was taken back by his letter. It was not what I had expected. I had asked a number of questions, how and when he wrote, what was the source of his writing. I greatly admired his work but found the length daunting. I may have made reference to this reservation and it was perhaps this that prompted the angry tone of his letter". Richard Potts went on to be a successful children's author in his own right, with titles such as A Boy and his Bike and Haunted Mine and Tod's Owl.
Bonham's auction 19 August 2020, Sold for £3,187 inc. premium

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