The Nature of Middle-earth

From Tolkien Gateway
Revision as of 12:24, 6 August 2021 by LorenzoCB (talk | contribs) (Added table of contents)
The Nature of Middle-earth
AuthorJ.R.R. Tolkien
EditorCarl F. Hostetter
Released26 October 2021[1]

The Nature of Middle-earth is a forthcoming book by J.R.R. Tolkien, edited by Carl F. Hostetter.[2]

From the publisher

The first ever publication of J.R.R. Tolkien’s final writings on Middle-earth, covering a wide-range of subjects, and the perfect next read for those who have enjoyed Unfinished Tales and the History of Middle-earth series and are hungry for more.

The Nature of Middle-earth will comprise numerous late (c. 1959-73) and previously unpublished writings by J.R.R. Tolkien on the “nature” of Middle- earth, in both chief senses of that word: both metaphysical and natural/historical.

It is for Tolkien fans, readers, and scholars interested in learning more about Tolkien’s own views on Middle-earth. It will appeal in particular to those readers who enjoyed Unfinished Tales, and some of the later volumes of the History of Middle-earth. Indeed, many of the texts to be included are closely associated with materials published in those places, and were sent to Hostetter, specifically, in photocopy by Christopher Tolkien for potential publication.

Much as Unfinished Tales forms an unofficial thirteenth volume of the History of Middle-earth, this new book will sit very nicely alongside as an unofficial 14th volume. Of particular note, given the impending Amazon series, are several texts detailing the lands, flora, and fauna of Númenor, and the lives of Númenóreans.[2]


  • Foreword
  • Editorial Practices
  • Abbreviations & Conventions
Part One: Time and Ageing
  • Introduction
  1. The Valian Year
  2. Valinorian Time-Divisions
  3. Of the Time in Arda
  4. Time-scales
  5. Natural Youth and Growth of the Quendi
  6. The Awaking of the Quendi
  7. The March of the Quendi
  8. Eldarin Traditions Concerning the "Awakening"
  9. Time-scales and Rates of Growth
  10. Difficulties in Chronology
  11. Ageing of Elves
  12. Concerning the Quendi in their Mode of Life and Growth
  13. Key Dates
  14. Calculation of the Increase of the Quendi
  15. A Generational Scheme
  16. Note on the Youth of Growth of the Quendi
  17. Generational Schemes
  18. Elvish Ages & Númenórean
  19. Elvish Life-cycles
  20. Time and its Perception
  21. Notes on Elvish Time-reference
  22. A Fragment from The Annals of Aman
  23. A Fragment from The Grey Annals
Part Two: Body, Mind and Spirit
  • Introduction
  1. Beauty and Goodness
  2. Gender and Sex
  3. Eldarin Hands, Fingers, and Numerals
  4. Hair
  5. Beards
  6. Descriptions of Characters
  7. Mind-Pictures
  8. Knowledge and Memory
  9. Ósanwe-kenta
  10. Notes on Órë
  11. Fate and Free Will
  12. The Knowledge of the Valar
  13. Spirit
  14. The Visible Forms of the Valar and Maiar
  15. Elvish Reincarnation
  16. From The Statute of Finwë and Míriel
  17. Death
Part Three: The World, its Lands, and its Inhabitants
  • Introduction
  1. Dark and Light
  2. The Primal Impulse
  3. Powers of the Valar
  4. The Making of Lembas
  5. Note on Elvish Economy
  6. Dwellings in Middle-earth
  7. The Founding of Nargothrond
  8. Manwë's Ban
  9. Elvish Journeys on Horseback
  10. Rider to "The White Rider"
  11. Lives of the Númenóreans
  12. The Ageing of Númenóreans
  13. Of the Land and Beasts of Númenor
  14. Note on the Consumption of Mushrooms
  15. The Númenórean Catastrophe & End of "Physical" Aman
  16. Galadriel and Celeborn
  17. Silvan Elves and Silvan Elvish
  18. Note on the Delay of Gil-galad and the Númenóreans
  19. Note on Dwarvish Voices
  20. Note on the Dwarf Road
  21. From The Hunt for the Ring
  22. The Rivers and Beacon-hills of Gondor
  1. Metaphysical and Theological Themes
  2. Glossary and Index of Quenya Terms
  • Index


  1. "The Nature of Middle-earth", HarperCollins (accessed 31 May 2021)
  2. 2.0 2.1 HarperCollins, "Frankfurt Bookfair Fiction Rights Guide 2019", (accessed 21 June 2020)