Difference between revisions of "The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion"

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* A newly transcribed version of ''"Nomenclature of The Lord of the Rings"''. A less complete version of it was published as "[[Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings|''Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings'']]" in ''[[A Tolkien Compass]]'' (1975).
 
* A newly transcribed version of ''"Nomenclature of The Lord of the Rings"''. A less complete version of it was published as "[[Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings|''Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings'']]" in ''[[A Tolkien Compass]]'' (1975).
 
* Two versions of a formerly unpublished index of poems, characters, places, and names or things in ''LotR'': "[[Index questions]]" and "[[The Lord of the Rings Index]]". Notes regarding characters and etymologies have been preserved.
 
* Two versions of a formerly unpublished index of poems, characters, places, and names or things in ''LotR'': "[[Index questions]]" and "[[The Lord of the Rings Index]]". Notes regarding characters and etymologies have been preserved.
* The unpublished part of Tolkien’s [[Letter 131|1951 letter to Milton Waldman]], regarding the events of ''LotR''. The other part, regarding ''The Silmarillion'', have been published as [[Letter 131]].
+
* The unpublished part of Tolkien’s [[Letter 131|1951 letter to Milton Waldman]], regarding the events of ''LotR''. The other part, regarding ''The Silmarillion'', has been published as [[Letter 131]].
 
* The scheme used by Tolkien to summarise the events of the entire book, including new contents and notes.  
 
* The scheme used by Tolkien to summarise the events of the entire book, including new contents and notes.  
 
* Several early versions, drafts, and schemes of ''LotR'', most of them unpublished in ''[[The History of Middle-earth]]''.
 
* Several early versions, drafts, and schemes of ''LotR'', most of them unpublished in ''[[The History of Middle-earth]]''.

Revision as of 15:31, 14 July 2022

The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion
A Reader's Companion 2005 hardcover.jpg
AuthorWayne G. Hammond, Christina Scull
IllustratorJ.R.R. Tolkien (cover)
PublisherHarperCollins (UK)
Houghton Mifflin (US)
ReleasedDecember 2005
FormatHardcover; paperback
Pages976
ISBN000720308X

The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion is a scholarly book published in 2005, by Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull. It is an annotated reference to J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings.

The Reader's Companion was designed to accompany the revised one-volume 50th anniversary edition of The Lord of the Rings. It is available in both hardcover and paperback.

The book contains many hard-to-find or previously unpublished material by Tolkien. Among those materials is a significant text "Nomenclature of The Lord of the Rings", (previously known as Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings, first published in A Tolkien Compass,) in which Tolkien explains the source or meaning of many of the names in the book, to aid translators in rendering his work into foreign languages.

Contents

Hammond and Scull proceed chapter-by-chapter from the original foreword through to the end of The Lord of the Rings. Appendices, examining the evolution of the text, changes, inconsistencies, and errors, often using comments from Tolkien's own notes and letters. Other sections cover the numerous maps of Middle-earth, chronologies of the story and its writing, and notes on the book and jacket design of the first editions of 1954–1955.

  • Preface
  • A Brief History of The Lord of the Rings
    • (The development and publication history of the book)
  • Chronologies, Calendars, and Moons
    • (Time scheme used by Tolkien, utilising lunar calendar)
  • Preliminaries
    • (Dust-jacket design (1954-55 edition) and Title-page design of The Lord of the Rings)
  • The Maps of The Lord of the Rings
    • (Details on the maps appearing in most editions)
  • Foreword to the Second Edition
    • (Notes to Tolkien's Foreword to the second edition of The Lord of the Rings, 1956)
  • The Reader's Companion
    • Prologue
    • The Fellowship of the Ring
    • The Two Towers
    • The Return of the King
    • Appendices
  • Extracts from a Letter by J.R.R. Tolkien to Milton Waldman, ?late 1951
    • (Tolkien giving an account of the structure of the whole book)
  • Nomenclature of The Lord of the Rings, by J.R.R. Tolkien
    • (Notes by Tolkien explaining the ways in which the names should be translated)
  • Changes to the Editions of 2004-5
    • (Text changes made during the 2004 and 2005 edition of The Lord of the Rings)
  • Index

Rare or new materials

  • A newly transcribed version of "Nomenclature of The Lord of the Rings". A less complete version of it was published as "Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings" in A Tolkien Compass (1975).
  • Two versions of a formerly unpublished index of poems, characters, places, and names or things in LotR: "Index questions" and "The Lord of the Rings Index". Notes regarding characters and etymologies have been preserved.
  • The unpublished part of Tolkien’s 1951 letter to Milton Waldman, regarding the events of LotR. The other part, regarding The Silmarillion, has been published as Letter 131.
  • The scheme used by Tolkien to summarise the events of the entire book, including new contents and notes.
  • Several early versions, drafts, and schemes of LotR, most of them unpublished in The History of Middle-earth.
    • A reproduction of a manuscript page showing a synoptic time scheme used while writing LotR. It summarizes the movements of characters between 8 March and 12 March.
  • Unpublished parts of "The Hunt for the Ring", in particular "The Hunt for the Ring: Time Scheme - Black Riders" and other missing manuscripts, schemes, or drafts.

Cover art

The art on the cover of this book was drawn by Tolkien in 1954 for an experimental dust-jacket for The Fellowship of the Ring. It shows a ribbon running behind the central Ring of Sauron, around which is written in Tengwar the Ring inscription in the Black Speech. The runic letters on the ribbon read, from the Ring Verse, 'In the land of shadows where the Mordor lie', shadows and Mordor inverted in error. Above this, in symbolic opposition to the One Ring, is Narya, the Ring of Fire worn by Gandalf. The complete design of the experimental dust-jacket is reproduced in J.R.R. Tolkien: Artist and Illustrator, fig. 176.

Reception

The book won the 2006 Mythopoeic Scholarship Award in Inklings Studies.

David Bratman, reviewing the work for Tolkien Studies, described it as "simply ... an Annotated Lord of the Rings that for reasons of space omits the text of the work being discussed", by contrast with Douglas A. Anderson's The Annotated Hobbit. He notes that the omission makes keying the notes to the text difficult: page numbers are given for the three-volume Allen and Unwin 1954-1955 edition, and the HarperCollins/Houghton Mifflin one-volume 2004 edition. Since many readers have neither of those, it also provides the first words of every cited paragraph, which in his view is at least workable. As an annotated edition, it succeeds "admirably", Bratman writes, in documenting many words and phrases "worthy of specific relevant commentary", and in providing a scholar capable of doing such a task justice. He notes that at 900 pages "of small type" it is similar in length to the text, while the comments range from brief glosses to "a five-page essay" on the Elf-lady Galadriel, which he calls "by itself a major essay on the subject".[1]

Publication history and gallery

2005 first edition hardcover  
2005 first edition paperback  
2008 first revised edition  
2014 second revised edition  

See also

External links

References

A J.R.R. Tolkien book guide
Books by Tolkien or based on his writings
Of Arda Authorized by
J.R.R. Tolkien
The Hobbit · The Lord of the Rings
(i.The Fellowship of the Ring · ii.The Two Towers · iii.The Return of the King) ·
The Road Goes Ever On · Bilbo's Last Song
Edited by Christopher Tolkien The Silmarillion · Unfinished Tales · The History of Middle-earth series
(i.The Book of Lost Tales: Part One · ii.The Book of Lost Tales: Part Two · iii.The Lays of Beleriand ·
iv.The Shaping of Middle-earth · v.The Lost Road and Other Writings · vi.The Return of the Shadow ·
vii.The Treason of Isengard · viii.The War of the Ring · ix.Sauron Defeated · x.Morgoth's Ring ·
xi.The War of the Jewels · xii.The Peoples of Middle-earth · Index) ·
The Children of Húrin · Beren and Lúthien · The Fall of Gondolin
Edited by others The Annotated Hobbit · The History of The Hobbit · The Nature of Middle-earth · The Fall of Númenor
Not of Arda Short stories
and poems
Leaf by Niggle · Farmer Giles of Ham · Smith of Wootton Major · The Adventures of Tom Bombadil ·
Letters from Father Christmas · Mr. Bliss · Roverandom ·
Tree and Leaf (compilation) · Tales from the Perilous Realm (compilation)
Fictions The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún · The Fall of Arthur · The Story of Kullervo · The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun
Translations and academic works Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Pearl, and Sir Orfeo · Finn and Hengest: The Fragment and the Episode ·
Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary · The Monsters and the Critics, and Other Essays ·
Tolkien On Fairy-stories · A Secret Vice: Tolkien on Invented Languages
Other The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien
Books by other authors
Reference book The Complete Guide to Middle-earth
Scholarly books containing Tolkien's writings J.R.R. Tolkien: A Biography · The Inklings · The Road to Middle-earth ·
A Question of Time · Tolkien and the Great War ·
The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion · The J.R.R. Tolkien Companion and Guide
Scholarly journal containing Tolkien's writings Tolkien Studies various issues
Other published works by Tolkien
Linguistic journals Vinyar Tengwar issues 1-50 · Parma Eldalamberon issues 1-22
Collections of artwork
and manuscripts
Pictures by J.R.R. Tolkien · Tolkien: Life and Legend · J.R.R. Tolkien: Artist and Illustrator ·
The Art of The Hobbit · The Art of The Lord of the Rings · Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth ·
Tolkien: Treasures · J.R.R. Tolkien: The Art of the Manuscript
This list only includes the major published works, for the full bibliography of Tolkien, see here or here