Difference between revisions of "The Silmarillion"

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'''The Silmarillion''', by Professor [[J.R.R._Tolkien]], is a novel exploring the mythos and the linguistic background against which the action of [[The Lord of the Rings]] and [[The Hobbit]] take place.<ref>"The Silmarillion" may refer both to the published work and earlier versions of the story. When ''italicized,'' it refers specifically to the published work. In other cases, it refers more generally to the story.</ref> Indeed, those books could be said to have sprung from the creation of the [[mythology]] rather than vice versa.
 
'''The Silmarillion''', by Professor [[J.R.R._Tolkien]], is a novel exploring the mythos and the linguistic background against which the action of [[The Lord of the Rings]] and [[The Hobbit]] take place.<ref>"The Silmarillion" may refer both to the published work and earlier versions of the story. When ''italicized,'' it refers specifically to the published work. In other cases, it refers more generally to the story.</ref> Indeed, those books could be said to have sprung from the creation of the [[mythology]] rather than vice versa.
  
[[Image:Silmarillion.jpg]]
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[[Image:Silmarillion.jpg|thumb|left|200px|<center>The cover of The Silmarillion, depicting the Lake of Awakening.</center>]]
  
 
The narrative material of ''The Silmarillion'' is divided into five sections:
 
The narrative material of ''The Silmarillion'' is divided into five sections:

Revision as of 19:26, 6 May 2007

The Silmarillion, by Professor J.R.R._Tolkien, is a novel exploring the mythos and the linguistic background against which the action of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit take place.[1] Indeed, those books could be said to have sprung from the creation of the mythology rather than vice versa.

The cover of The Silmarillion, depicting the Lake of Awakening.

The narrative material of The Silmarillion is divided into five sections:

  1. The Ainulindalë, a creation myth. It describes the creation of spirit-beings called Ainur by Eru (God), their joint creation of Arda (the world), and the origin of evil.
  2. The Valaquenta, a description of those Ainur that entered Arda.
  3. The Quenta Silmarillion, the bulk of the narrative, which is primarily concerned with the history of Men and Elves in Middle-earth, and their war with the Dark Lord Morgoth.
  4. Akallabêth, the downfall of an Atlantis-like society of Men.
  5. Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age, which describes the events leading up to The Lord of the Rings.

Appended to the narrative are genealogical tables, an index of names, a list of Eldarin name roots, and a map of Beleriand.

The writing of The Silmarillion was started by Tolkien during World War I and continued until his death in 1972. It provides a great deal of the back-drop to his other popular novels, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Originally conceived as a setting for the Elvish languages of Quenya and Sindarin that Tolkien had devised, The Silmarillion can be seen as the 'Old Testament' to the Lord of the Rings' 'Gospels.' Tolkien was first and foremost a philologist, which is a historian of languages and their development so the creation of his own languages was a development of this.

Notes

  1. "The Silmarillion" may refer both to the published work and earlier versions of the story. When italicized, it refers specifically to the published work. In other cases, it refers more generally to the story.