Tolkien Collector's Guide
What do people think of this item

What do people think of this item

Jul 2, 2010 (edited)

From Bloomsbury Auction Sale on 8th July

450. Tolkien (J.R.R.) The Lord of the Rings, 3 vol., first deluxe edition, signed by the author on each title-page, folding maps, original black buckram, spines gilt, t.e.g., original paper covered slip-case, illustration designed by Pauline Baynes, a fine set, 8vo, 1963. est. £3000 – £4000 One of only 1000 sets.


http://www.bloomsburyauctions.com/detail/725/450.0

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Jul 2, 2010
It looks lovely to me. Signed on all three title pages? Wow! Pity I can't afford it.

I'd like to know its story - that is, who it was signed for, and how it comes to be for sale.
Jul 2, 2010
very interesting copy, already brought out my absentee bid... got a condition report and extra images. This is a wonderful copy overall. Trying to find more info now... but so far no success.
Jul 2, 2010
The books also look to be in wonderful condition for this printing, probably the best I've seen.
Jul 2, 2010
Actually, my FR and RK look pretty much the same as those in the picture. (and the titles page of my FR is as crisp as the one in that set, too. But it ain't signed).

But the spine of my TT is slightly faded. Ridiculous - but so are those of other sets I've see. This one looks unfaded.

Unfaded _and_ signed? Unfair!

Jul 3, 2010
Can't afford to buy this, but I'll hopefully be able to go and have a look at it on Tuesday.

My copies also looked the same as these, sadly that was in 1963 not 2010
Jul 5, 2010
(edited)
I think we may have seen this one before but I'm unsure about the letter for two reasons

1 - That it is not on headed paper, (GA&U had fairly elaborate headed paper at this time which I'm sure would have been used for correspondence of this nature), or is this an example that was only used for Professor Tolkien's correspondence.

2 - I have never seen Tolkien sign his initials like this before.

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/RARE-TOLKIEN-LE ... ks_UK&hash=item255bb2a674

On the other hand Tolkien must have known Brian Miller as you can see from his obituary here, which gives it some provenance.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/obi ... /brian-miller-728943.html

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Jul 5, 2010
(edited)
I don't know any more about the notepaper (or the sig) than you do, Trotter. But my gut feeling is that this item is 'right'.


I've had correspondence with the vendor before, years ago. I think he's sound. As far as I can see, someone paid a fair price for a nice little associate item. (still a little rich for my blood at the moment, though).
Jul 5, 2010
(edited)
Tolkien was supplied this letterhead by Allen & Unwin, so that his correspondence would be channeled through them and he could keep his home address private. We've seen examples before. Also, the font matches that of Tolkien's usual typewriter of the period (but the deep indents suggest secretarial typing), and although the form of initials is unusual, we have no doubt that the handwriting is Tolkien's.

B.D.H. Miller was one of Tolkien's B.Litt. students, 1952-1956, working on the Middle English fabliau Dame Sirith - see Chronology, first reference p. 382, last p. 486.

Wayne & Christina
Jul 5, 2010
(edited)
Thanks for your invaluable comments garm and Wayne & Christina.

I decided myself that my doubts were wrong and I bought the item

Dame Sirith is in Middle English (1275-1300) and I can recommend that you consult A Middle English (Glossary or Vocabulary) by J.R.R. Tolkien when reading it.

http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=UH ... e&q=Dame%20Sirith&f=false
Jul 5, 2010
Cool item, Trotter.
I'd have to agree with Garm: (still a little rich for my blood at the moment, though).
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