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26 May
2024-5-26 3:38:54 PM UTC
As inspired by Carl, I used "Tolkein" as the search term, and find a few interesting items.

The Varsity (University of Toronto Student Newspaper ), Feb 20, 1956. Review of The Return of the King , with an illustration that was later used on a fanzine (IIRC)


The 1937 Note and Queries article that featured in Cilli's recent blog: ... age/46/mode/2up?q=tolkein

Mr. Tolkein has lent me the extracts which he made at the time when Mr. Ellis showed the work to him, and has kindly suggested that I publish them

Sister M. Madeleva Wolff's biography: ... age/56/mode/2up?q=tolkein

I registered for Father D’Arcy’s lectures in philosophy at Baliol, Mr. Tolkein in fields of Old English. The friendships of these great scholars are now a part of life at Saint Mary’s: Father D’Arcy as a most welcome guest, Mr. Tolkein in his absorbing romances.
27 May
2024-5-27 5:24:23 PM UTC
Thanks! That illustration in The Varsity issue is an extract from the Houghton Mifflin 1st edition dustjacket art.

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28 May
2024-5-28 2:38:26 AM UTC
Oops, I should have known better! Thanks!
22 June
2024-6-22 6:09:41 PM UTC
I think this article could be mentionned here : ... s-narnia-cs-lewis-oxford/

The document, which was hidden away in the records of Magdalen College in Oxford, indicates that Tolkien spoke his secretly invented Elvish tongues and told stories about Middle Earth for the first time at a previously unknown meeting with Lewis and other members of the Magdalen’s elite, intellectual Michaelmas Club, who were mostly undergraduates.


Describing the genius displayed in the poems that Tolkien read aloud in his invented tongues, the secretary of the club wrote in the meeting minutes: “It was a language of noticeably fluid, labial characteristics, especially suited to verse. It is impossible to describe by catalogue or summary the content and temper of this paper. To those reading the above account it might appear but a brilliant intellectualist pastime, a higher development of the odious crossword mind. No impression could be more false.”

The new evidence unearthed in the Michaelmas Club archive now signifies that speaking openly about his hobby for the first time in 1930 and receiving praise for it was a real turning point in Tolkien’s career.
23 June
2024-6-23 4:40:20 AM UTC
The article is a little off when it says "...and told stories about Middle Earth for the first time" in 1930, in that The Fall of Gondolin had been read in 1920 at Exeter College's Essay Club.

I think the import is that this is (almost surely) the first time Tolkien presented his languages, earlier than his lecture 'A Hobby for the Home' aka 'A Secret Vice' the following year, hitherto considered their first outing.
23 June (edited)
2024-6-23 4:30:52 PM UTC
I don’t remember where I got the information about the magazine but I have Life (June 13 1969) with an interview with Ringo Starr by Jim Hicks. The contents of the issue on p. 3 called it ‘Who else but Ringo?’ but the actual title on p. 59 is ‘Is that YOU in there, Ringo’. The article is dedicated mostly to his role in the upcoming film ‘The Magic Christian’ and his previous roles like in ‘Hard Day’s Night’. On the top of p. 68 it is written ‘He wants to play a gunslinger and a hobbit’, and below the actor says,

“One role I would like to play, seriously, is in Lord of the Rings, you know the Tolkien books. We – The Beatles – wanted to make that movie, but somebody else got the rights. I’d still like to play the part of Sam, who is Frodo’s pal.” He addresses the microphone again. “Hey, whoever produces Lord of the Rings, are you listening? I would like to play that part. If anybody’s thinking about it, please let me know. <…>”

Five years ago I took part in a discussion where my opponent said that everything we knew about the attempt of ‘The Beatles’ to shoot the movie was known only from Peter Jackson, and neither Sir Paul McCartney and Sir Richard Starkey, nor his biographers did not confirm the director’s claims.

‘Ringo doesn't remember much’, said Peter Jackson in 2021 (‘Peter Jackson on how Tolkien stopped a Beatles LOTR film’, This magazine is the first-hand contemporary evidence of Ringo’s enthusiasm back in 1969.

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23 June
2024-6-23 4:36:03 PM UTC
That's brilliant! Thank you for the write-up.

(perhaps in a parallel universe somewhere, John Lennon got in a lot of trouble with Tolkien fans for claiming he was "more popular than Frodo")
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