A Man's War and a New World

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A mysterious world full of adventure was created by a man who went by the name of John Ronald Tolkien. He populated this mystifying world with beings such as elves, dwarves, and hobbits. This world created in the realm of literature and was esteemed by many, and criticized by others. His story remains one of the most well created pieces of literature to date. Many events throughout J.R.R. Tolkien’s life had an impact on his writing, such as his interest in philology, his life as an orphan, and his service in the First World War.
According to Harold Bloom on Bloom’s Literature, Tolkien was interested in philology since his early teenage years, an interest that led him to stumble upon Beowulf and Anglo-Saxon mythology. Anglo-Saxon mythology presents itself in many ways throughout The Hobbit. “…an old man with a staff. He had a tall pointed blue hat, a long grey cloak, a silver scarf over which his long white beard hung down below his waist, and black immense boots.” (The Hobbit, pg. 13) This description of Gandalf seems to bear a very close resemblance to the Anglo-Saxon God, Odin, who was often depicted as an old man who wore a long cloak, with a long white beard. Gandalf also brings help to Bilbo along the way, as Odin did with great heroes.
Another piece of Anglo-Saxon mythology comes from the story of Beowulf. Near the end of the story of Beowulf, a thief steals a gold cup from a dragon, causing it to be angry and seek destruction of the creature who might have taken it. (Elements of Literature, pg. 42) In almost identical circumstances, Bilbo sneaks up on a sleeping dragon and burgles a large golden cup from underneath him. (The Hobbit, pg. 185)
Following Tolkien’s passion for philology, he was very interested in language...

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...xperience as an orphan, and his participation the Battle of Somme. No matter the influence on his writing, Tolkien is by far one of the best authors of the 20th century.

Works Cited

Stade, George, and Karen Karbiener. "Tolkien, J. R. R." Bloom's Literature. Facts On File, Inc. Web. 20 Nov. 2013 .

Bloom, Harold, ed. "Tolkien, J. R. R." Bloom's Literature. Facts On File, Inc. Web. 20 Nov. 2013 .

Gaydosik, Victoria. "Tolkien, J. R. R." Bloom's Literature. Facts On File, Inc. Web. 20 Nov. 2013 .

Tolkein, J.R.R. The Hobbit. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1973. Print.
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