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Letter 51

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The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien
Letter 51
RecipientChristopher Tolkien
DateOctober 27, 1943
Subject(s)A visit with C.E.M. Joad

Letter 51 is a letter written by J.R.R. Tolkien and published in The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien.


The night before C.S. Lewis and Tolkien had dined with C.E.M. Joad at Magdalen College, who had just published The Recovery of Belief. Tolkien said that except for his face Joad was very like a toad, and in character closely resembled Mr. Toad of Toad Hall. He found him intelligent, kindly, and they agreed on many fundamental points. Joad had been in Russia and loathed it. Its “new towns” did not rise above Willesden level, the country did not "rise" at all, and he claimed that if you were in a train and looked out the window, read a book for a few hours, then looked out again it would appear that the train had not moved at all.