Geoffrey Bache Smith

From Tolkien Gateway

Lieutenant Geoffrey Bache Smith (October 18th, 1894 - December 3rd, 1916 lo) was a friend of J.R.R. Tolkien. Tolkien and Smith attended King Edward's School in Birmingham together. Smith would also become one of the core members of the T.C.B.S., but not until after Vincent Trought's death. He was at that time already enrolled at Corpus Christi College, Oxford, close to Tolkien's Exeter College. The two became close friends there, because most other Edwardians went to Cambridge.

Smith joined the 19th Service Battalion of the Lancashire Fusilliers, the "3rd Salford Pals", and participated in the Battle of the Somme. He was hit by shrapnel on November 29, 1916, and died four days later.[1]

In 1918, a collection of poetry by Smith, titled A Spring Harvest, was published. Tolkien wrote the preface.

In the biographical drama film Tolkien, he was played by actor Anthony Boyle.

Quote[edit | edit source]

“My chief consolation is that if I am scuppered tonight there will still be left a member [of our School group] to voice what I dreamed and what we all agreed upon. For the death of one of its members cannot, I am determined, dissolve [the group]. Death can make us loathsome and helpless as individuals, but it cannot put an end to the immortal four! May God bless you my dear John Ronald and may you say things I have tried to say long after I am not there to say them if such be my lot".[2]

External links[edit | edit source]


  1. "J.R.R. Tolkien, The Somme, Geoffrey Smith", 'Carte de Route' (accessed 12 August 2022)
  2. Tolkien and the Great War, Chapter 6; Too long in slumber, Page 118