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The One Ring Forums: Off Topic: The Pollantir:
Have you read the History of Middle-Earth series?
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Poll: Have you read the History of Middle-Earth series?
Yes, all of the books
Yes, some of the books
No, but I'd like to
No, and am not interested in
No, because I find the same info from the Internet
View Results (54 votes)
 

Faenoriel
Tol Eressea


May 1 2012, 10:50am

Post #1 of 43 (477 views)
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Have you read the History of Middle-Earth series? Can't Post

Pretty simple, no? How deep is your Tolkien-fu? Are you willing dig into outdated versions of the lore, scrapped poems, linguistic ponderings and rewritten annals? And if you do, do you enjoy it?


Xanaseb
Tol Eressea


May 1 2012, 10:57am

Post #2 of 43 (253 views)
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Sadly I haven't.... just haven't managed to get a hold of them :( [In reply to] Can't Post

I kinda vaguely know what's in them due to the magical internet.... but what are the key things I'm missing from them Faenoriel do you think?


DanielLB
Immortal


May 1 2012, 11:01am

Post #3 of 43 (230 views)
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The History of Middle-Earth [In reply to] Can't Post

I like to think that I have read (the majority anyway) of what Tolkien wrote. Iíve read through the HOME series, and will re-read areas of particular interest to me from time to time (The Fall of Gondolin, for instance). Whether I remember any of it is another matter. Yes, it can be a very laborious task (especially when it comes to things that Iím not interested in Ė mainly linguistic pondering) Ė not that I donít appreciate it though. I would rather know more about forgotten, unfinished and altered stories and lore, than how he constructed the languages. Itís still interesting nonetheless. But, at the end of the day, I canít get enough of it! I want to know absolutely everything to do with Tolkienís vision. Thatís what drives me.

Based on this, and as Tolkien would say:

ďI donít remember half of it half as well as I should like, and I dislike less than half of it half as well as it deservesĒ


(This post was edited by DanielLB on May 1 2012, 11:02am)


sador
Half-elven


May 1 2012, 11:51am

Post #4 of 43 (232 views)
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Yes. [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, apart of the Old English version of The Annals of Aman,


In Reply To
do you enjoy it?


A great majority of it.


Faenoriel
Tol Eressea


May 1 2012, 1:58pm

Post #5 of 43 (210 views)
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Hmmm [In reply to] Can't Post

Is it because you can't find them in any book shop (Then I recommend you order them either from the internet, or ask some large book store to order them for you: that's what I did) or because you don't want to read them in English and they haven't been translated to your native language. (Then I can't help, I only know of the Swedish translation. Is there any other translations out there?)

If I have to name one single good thing about the series, it's seeing how the mythology evolved through the decades it was being written. The books (1-12) are numbered in the order of the year the material in them was written, more or less, so that the oldest stuff is in the first books, and the latest writings are the end of the last books. The very last writings of the book 12 are from just some months before Tolkien's death, I believe. The first books are vey magical and have this fairy tale / saga feeling to them. You can really feel the creative passion the young Tolkien had. Then through the years he sort of becomes a stranger to the world he created, and confines to merely observing the painting he painted years ago instead of stepping into it anymore. The last writings are mostly philosophical and linguistic; he's no longer creating new significant narratives, but deepening what he's already created, seeing new meanings in previously built frames.

My favourite parts are

-The Book of Lost Tales (books 1 and 2), which has (almost) the whole story of the Silmarillion in very rich detail. It's much more detailed and vivid, more "present" than the published Silmarillion. It also has much more fairy tale like feeling.
- Morgoth's Ring (book 10), the War of the Jewels (book 11) and the Peoples of Middle-Earth (12) , which contain the final writings Tolkien wrote. They have many interesting insights into the world he created, and to its peoples.

My favourite singular parts must be Laws and Customs of the Eldar (book 10), Myths Transformed (book 10), The Sibboleth of FŽanor (book 12) and the Last Writings (book 12).


Xanaseb
Tol Eressea


May 1 2012, 2:21pm

Post #6 of 43 (210 views)
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haha Faenoriel, thanks so much :D that's convinced me indeed, [In reply to] Can't Post

um the actual reason to be honest is monetary...
Frown just never could put aside enough to buy it...... even though actually it's not that much.....

hey just checked and it's £25 off amazon!!!....
OK I know now what I'm getting for my Birthday!!!

thanks people for inspiring me to do take this decision lol Wink


DanielLB
Immortal


May 1 2012, 2:23pm

Post #7 of 43 (196 views)
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The next step is finding the time to read it :-D / [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Xanaseb
Tol Eressea


May 1 2012, 2:40pm

Post #8 of 43 (221 views)
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Ah.... wait... that's just the first 5 books...>_> [In reply to] Can't Post

Unimpressed darn...

the others are going to cost me dear.....

may have to re-think my Birthday present me-thinks people


Darkstone
Immortal


May 1 2012, 2:42pm

Post #9 of 43 (205 views)
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Yep. / [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Faenoriel
Tol Eressea


May 1 2012, 3:22pm

Post #10 of 43 (216 views)
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You won't be reading them all in one night anyway [In reply to] Can't Post

So buy them one at the time. You might want to consider which books you'd be most interested in, and then buy them first. 1-5 are of the first stages of Silmarillion, before he started to write LotR. 6-9 are about creating LotR, mostly different early versions. 10-12 are post-LotR, where he returns to Silmarillion; they're mostly philosphical rather than narrative. But you can find full info of what each of the books contain from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_History_of_Middle-earth


DanielLB
Immortal


May 1 2012, 4:14pm

Post #11 of 43 (213 views)
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Birthday and Christmas ;-) / [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Aunt Dora Baggins
Half-elven


May 1 2012, 5:57pm

Post #12 of 43 (215 views)
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About half of them, I guess. [In reply to] Can't Post

I've read the volumes that are the rough drafts of LotR. Also Book of Lost Tales I and II. I guess Unfinished Tales isn't part of the series, but I've read that too. I don't really enjoy the other stuff; I've delved into some of the other volumes but they're just too dry for me. But the ones I've mentioned are very good reading.


sevilodorf
Gondor


May 1 2012, 11:38pm

Post #13 of 43 (237 views)
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I would like to... but [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't want to get too bogged down in the multiple versions .... I have read Unfinished Tales and like what it adds to Middle Earth....


malickfan
Gondor

May 2 2012, 10:35am

Post #14 of 43 (211 views)
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I'm reading them at the moment... [In reply to] Can't Post

...fascinating stuff!, but I've got to agree with some other posts, the linquistic side of things dosen't particularly interest me, and some of the earlier work is a bit hard to follow, but I defintely don't regret the purchase.

The drafting of LOTR is particulalry interesting- Aragorn as a hobbit with wooden feet?? Bilbo 144! I never really appreciated the way tolkien worked before...


HappyHobbitess
Rohan


May 2 2012, 6:02pm

Post #15 of 43 (155 views)
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So, here's a question... [In reply to] Can't Post

...for all of you who have done your reading. Smile

Say a person, who shall be nameless, has tried to read the Silmarillion a few times and hasn't made it through. Would you recommend that person try the HOME books instead? Or should the Sil really be the next thing to tackle?


DanielLB
Immortal


May 2 2012, 6:11pm

Post #16 of 43 (152 views)
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The Silmarillion [In reply to] Can't Post

Are you this nameless person? Or Voldemort?

In my opinion, if the person has read LOTR and TH, and wishes to expand their reading of Tolkien's world, then I would recommend they really try and get through the Silmarillion before tackling HOME.

The HOME would be far too difficult to understand without having already read The Silmarillion. Of course, it's not vital (just my opinion) that one has read The Silmarillion and then wishes to read HOME. But I couldn't imagine it. I'll be honest here - the first time I read The Silmarillion I had no idea what was going on (would have been 11ish in age, maybe). All these strange names and places that I couldn't pronounce. HOME would be 5 times worse Laugh

If you (or whoever) doesn't want to try The Silmarillion again, try Children of Hurin. Then either move onto The Silmarillion or something like the Unfinished Tales.


DanielLB
Immortal


May 2 2012, 6:13pm

Post #17 of 43 (195 views)
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I'm surprised (ish) how many people [In reply to] Can't Post

have read or have read a few of the HOME. Then again, some people have voted and may not have commented.

Not so much surprised, just expected numbers to be different


Darkstone
Immortal


May 2 2012, 6:16pm

Post #18 of 43 (163 views)
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It has the name "JRR Tolkien" on it. [In reply to] Can't Post

I remember when I first finished LOTR I ran out and bought every single book I could find with his name on it.

(Of course at the time the only books I could find were "The Tolkien Reader" and "Smith of Wootton Major & Farmer Giles of Ham".)


(This post was edited by Darkstone on May 2 2012, 6:19pm)


DanielLB
Immortal


May 2 2012, 6:20pm

Post #19 of 43 (159 views)
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That was me as well! [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm still really bad! If I walk into a book shop and see a different edition of one of the books for sale, I'll pick it up Cool Over the years, I've acquired 6 versions of the Hobbit Crazy


Darkstone
Immortal


May 2 2012, 6:26pm

Post #20 of 43 (164 views)
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Me too. [In reply to] Can't Post

I got a copy of The Hobbit in French I occasionally read.


ArdamŪrŽ
Valinor


May 2 2012, 7:42pm

Post #21 of 43 (149 views)
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All of them! [In reply to] Can't Post

Morgoth's Ring, The War of the Jewels, and The Peoples of Middle-earth are my favorites, but all of them are very interesting. I'm particularly fond of The Wanderings of Hurin, the Athrabeth (sp?), and Laws and Customs (with the story of Finwe and Miriel interspersed in there - all versions). The Shibboleth of Feanor is also a good one! Oh rats, I'd better stop before my list includes everything in HOME!


HappyHobbitess
Rohan


May 2 2012, 8:11pm

Post #22 of 43 (159 views)
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Not Voldemort... ;) [In reply to] Can't Post

Ha! No, I meant me. I had a really hard time with the Silmarillion last time I tried it.

I sense it may be like when I read Goethe's *Faust, Part II* for a class in college. Part I was fantastic, and I still love it and return to it. Part II (written decades later and rarely read or performed today) was...challenging. There were a couple of places where I had no idea what was going on, so since I was reading it in German, I found a translated copy, and I STILL had no idea what was going on. But when I was done, I was really glad I'd read it.

Which is to say, I think for me, I will be very happy to have read the Sil once I finish it. I'll be glad to have a better understanding of Tolkien's world and of the context for LOTR. Based on my previous attempts, the process could be a bit challenging, though. Smile


DanielLB
Immortal


May 2 2012, 8:38pm

Post #23 of 43 (175 views)
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My first attempt was challenging too! [In reply to] Can't Post

I can only suggest to take a chapter at a time, or a couple of pages. You will get through it Smile


zarabia
Grey Havens


May 3 2012, 7:26am

Post #24 of 43 (182 views)
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Yes, some ( *Spoilers* in retrospect) [In reply to] Can't Post

 I have read, and very much enjoyed, Return of the Shadow, The Treason of Isengard, and The War of the Ring. I loved the insight into Tolkien's writing process such as writing on the back of students essays etc. It was so shocking and amazing to read that Strider was going to be a hobbit, Frodo was going to be Bingo...so much funLaugh

I had intended to read more of them but I got sidetracked and have not got back on track since. I think I'll have to read The Silmarillion and these three volumes again before moving on.




sador
Half-elven


May 3 2012, 8:17am

Post #25 of 43 (146 views)
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Not that it didn't interest me, I don't know the language. // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

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