The Lord of the Rings

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The fantasy novel The Lord of the Rings is the most well-known and certainly the most elaborate among those written by English author John Ronald Reuel Tolkien. It is set in Middle-earth, a continent of our own planet, many millennia ago, in a past that is heroic but has numerous points of contact with our own time. It is a true tale of Quest in the mediaeval tradition, though not to find a precious object, but rather to destroy one.

The Story

The tale begins with the old hobbit - a member of the human race, although of much smaller stature - Bilbo Baggins, who bequeathes to his cousin Frodo a ring he has found during a previous adventure (told by Tolkien in The Hobbit). Gandalf, the wizard, recognises it as the One Ring, forged in the remote past by Sauron, a personification of evil. Whoever possesses that Ring will wield absolute power; in particular, he will dominate the nine rings of Men, the seven of the Dwarves and the three of the Elves, members of a melancholy immortal race, as ancient as the world. Therefore the Ring must be destroyed, which can only be done at the Mountain of Doom where it was created.

Secretly, Frodo and his three hobbit companions - his faithful gardener Sam and his friends Merry and Pippin - leave the comfort of the Shire for the wilderness, taking the Ring with them. On the way they meet a mysterious man called Strider, who proposes to help them. Menaced along all the way by the Ringwraiths - the nine Men Sauron has already dominated through their rings - they reach Rivendell, one of the last Elvish refuges in Middle-earth. There is held the council of the Elf-sage Elrond, and the Fellowship of the Ring is formed: the four hobbits, Aragorn (Strider), Gandalf, the Man Boromir, Legolas the Elf and Gimli the Dwarf. Together they set out to destroy the burden that has been entrusted to them.

In Moria, the ancient underground realm of the dwarves, they fight against orcs, deformed soldiers of Sauron, and the balrog, a monster from the Ancient Days that has woken. Escaping from that danger after having lost a member of the group, they rest in Lórien, an Elvish woodland realm where the powerful queen Galadriel provides them with counsel and gifts that will be useful to them later. The Fellowship descends the Great River Anduin, and a renewed orc attack robs them of another companion. At this point the Fellowship separates, and we follow now Frodo and Sam, who enter Mordor, Sauron's land, now their friends, who have strange adventures among the ents (treeherds), with the Rohirrim (horse-lords of the Riddermark) and against Saruman, a wizard of Gandalf's order who has turned towards evil and covets the Ring.

At last the War of the Ring begins, where the realm of Gondor and its allies - some of them quite unexpected - fight against the hosts of Sauron, while Frodo and Sam advance through the very land of Mordor towards the Mountain of Doom. When they reach it, a dramatic climax occurs in the tale.

The final chapters recount the resolution of several crises that arose as a consequence of the search for the Ring and the Quest to lead it to its destruction. The tale ends at the Grey Havens, whence for centuries the Elves have been setting sail for the Uttermost West. The work concludes with appendices rich in additional information on Middle-earth: its history, languages and writing systems, its peoples and calendars...

Book of the Century

The Lord of the Rings has been acclaimed as "the Book of the 20th Century" and J.R.R. Tolkien as "the Author of the 20th Century". A plunge into Tolkien's work and world will show the reader that these epithets have not been awarded in vain.

The Ring-verse

One of the main pieces of poetry in The Lord of the Rings - among many - is the

Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky,
Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,
Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,
One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

The Lord of the Rings and the Ring-verse have been translated into many languages, for instance:

Harmein a Anul
Çers Anuli fro reqi a elvi sup hail,
Seft fro friheqi a nani in tenen açiri a saqi,
Nou fro omi morçali ad morç hunnammuti,
On fro Açer Friheq in tei açer seitil
In Çer Mordor upi ummiri iahenn.
On anul ot çoti imfrar, on anul ot immenir tem,
On anul ot çoti aver ac in halici iuncer tem
In Çer Mordor upi ummiri iahenn.
Trze jądle pro rzeżór elfór z kłaru czału, 
Sieć pro duczór naninór en kębrar sasiejar,
Nów pro ludzi mrotałór judkatór o mroć,
Wyn pro doniu cembruzu sur tronu ośkieru,
En pazie Mordoru wądź wąbrze sie kiebtą.
Wyn jądeł prokód rzeżer łosz tutór, wyn jądeł prokód łosz jęwnier,
Wyn jądeł prokód kolżer łosz tutór, i o cembartać olegar,
En pazie Mordoru wądź wąbrze sie kiebtą.

Film Adaptation

(Atlanta, Jacobia, NAL) - Amid great fanfare, executives at Metropolitan Moving Pictures announced that director Hadrian Voermann has been giving the go-ahead to make two motion pictures based on the classic fantasy novel "Lord of the Rings" by Sir John R.R.Tolkien.

Voermann is a veteran filmmaker who once before attempted to make a big-budget fantasy epic, titled "Mythos" but which never left the development stage. His previous movies include a wide range of hits and misses, including the science fiction "Glaive Runner," the explicit noir thriller "Instincts Basic," the feminist road picture "Louise and Thelma" and the almost hallucinatory "The Sapphire Forest." He has also adapted novels to screen before, most famously "Lotilda" based on the scandalous work by Vlad Nabokhev. His most recent film was "Not Faithful," a drama about adultery.

According to studio spokesmen, the preproduction of "Fellowship of the Ring" has already commenced, with casting expected to be finished within the next three months. Filming is scheduled to begin this summer on location in Oregon. Zahir 17:54, 29 November 2005 (PST)