Tolkien Gateway

The Road Goes Ever On (disambiguation)

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Revision as of 12:32, 21 November 2007

"The Road Goes Ever On" is a walking song by J.R.R. Tolkien, fictionally written by Bilbo Baggins; verses of it are sung at various places in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

Sections of the poem are sung in the 1977 animated movie version of The Hobbit.

The song can be heard in the 1981 BBC radio version, sung by Bilbo (John Le Mesurier) to a tune by Stephen Oliver.

Parts of it are also sung in Peter Jackson's The Fellowship of the Ring by Gandalf in the opening scene, and also by Bilbo as he leaves Bag End.

The Road Goes Ever On, taking its name from the above, is a collection of sheet music by Donald Swann for poetry presented by Tolkien in his Middle-earth literature. It was first published in 1967.

Although the book can at first sight seem mostly useful by musicians (particularly piano and guitar players), it has been found to have a wider use than this, allowing readers to understand the cultures of the various mythological beings presented in Middle-earth better, and helping linguists analyse Tolkien's poetry. For example, it contains one of the longest samples of the language Quenya.

The second edition of The Road Goes Ever On, published in 1978, included the poem Bilbo's Last Song.

The third edition, published in 1993 and likely the last, comes with additional poetry and also a CD with recordings for the entire song cycle.