Tolkien

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Hobbit Holes look incredibly cozy and now one man has built a Hobbit Hole in his own backyard. It was built by Ashley Yeates of Torii Gardens and it looks like it could easily be Frodo’s new home. It took him over a year to build with roughly four months of solid work to complete. Now they are considering requests for custom builds.

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Better late than never. We’re finally going to get to see Tolkien’s translation of Beowulf which he completed way back in 1926. It might sound odd that the noted fantasy author took to translating Old English but he was also a gifted linguist who enjoyed the study of language.

The translation wasn’t something lost that’s suddenly been found, but rather it’s been sitting on a shelf collecting dust for all these years and is finally getting a chance at being read. Although many translations exist, reading Tolkien’s version will surely be a thrill for his fans. The publication of his translation will be made available through Harper Collins on May 22nd.

(The Guardian via Geekosystem)

Middle Earth town

“Can you give me directions to the closest grocery store?”
“Yes, go one mile down Saruman, make a right on Palantir, and a left on Elrond.”

That’s a conversation you could actually have if you lived in Geldrop. The Dutch town has a population of 28,000 people and has street names that would be right at home in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth. They’ve taken names from the Lord of the Rings as well as The Hobbit. You could live on Fangorn or even Thorin. It’s a fun idea, but I have to wonder how often street signs get stolen.

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Tolkien drew very detailed maps of Middle-Earth so readers could easily see where his characters traveled. Now those maps have been used to create images of what Middle-Earth would look like viewed from space. It’s all part of The Middle Earth Digital Elevation Model Project which used the Outerra graphics engine to make detailed images with every tree, field and stream included. They’ve also made these beautiful renderings of how the world would look from space.

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We’ve all become very accustomed to Peter Jackson’s vision of Tolkien’s world, but Dresden Codak illustrator Aaron Diaz is giving us his unique interpretation. It’s all part of The Silmarillion Project which he undertook in order to provide a more diverse representation of Tolkien’s works.

A second motivation is to provide a greater representation of women and people of color in the narratives. While Tolkien made more than a few missteps regarding race and gender, the “everyone is white” trend in adaptations is a symptom of other people ignoring what’s in the texts. Additionally, all of Tolkien’s writings are presented as if they’re written from a limited and flawed historical perspective (LoTR and The Hobbit were “written” by Hobbits, etc). The position of my adaptation is to present what “actually” happened- the events upon which the flawed or biased history is based. Just like with real historians, the presence of women and people of color, and their achievements, are frequently ignored.

The results offer a beautiful alternative view of Middle-Earth.

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Take a break from your day and escape into the world of Middle Earth. Artist Kinko-White uses watercolors, inks, and acrylics to create enchanting images from J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. She’s painted them inside a book, and it’s an absolute treasure. The likenesses are spot on but more than that, they’re emotional. Her drawings capture moments so well that I expect the characters to start moving and talking. Just incredible.

See more of the stunning pieces after the break.

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Artist Otis Frampton really embraced the whole “Christmas is about giving” thing. He’s worked on such popular web series as Stan’s Rants and How It Should Have Ended, and now he’s released a number of original Tolkien-themed Facebook cover pictures. But the best part? The denizens of the Internet can use them, free of charge. All he asks is that you give him proper credit in the description portion of the pic.

Thanks a bunch, Otis!

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Fans of J.R.R. Tolkien and Middle Earth can probably be broken down into a handful of categories, and it’s easy to classify people into different types. Andy Kluthe has ccreated a comic illustrating eight different types of Tolkien fans and, as far as I can tell, he’s not far from the truth. They’re exaggerated stereotypes for humor, but hey, I’ve met most of these people. You’ve got casual movie fans to folks who know The Silmarillion by heart. It takes all sorts.

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It’s important to start kids early if you want them to grow into big, strong adult geeks and this Lord of the Rings quiet book is a perfect beginning. It tells the story with little felt figures and even lets kids dress up Aragorn. You can download the pattern for the book and make one for your precious, just in time for the holidays.

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It’s just about six months until the December 13th release of the second installment in The Hobbit trilogy and we’ve got our first poster for the film. Poor Bilbo. He knows going through that door is just as dangerous as it looks, yet he’s going to do it anyway and none of us can stop him.

(via Kotaku)