Synopses & Reviews
A number-one New York Times
bestseller when it was originally published, The Silmarillion
is the core of J.R.R. Tolkien's imaginative writing, a work whose origins stretch back to a time long before The Hobbit
Tolkien considered The Silmarillion his most important work, and, though it was published last and posthumously, this great collection of tales and legends clearly sets the stage for all his other writing. The story of the creation of the world and of the First Age, this is the ancient drama to which the characters in The Lord of the Rings look back and in whose events some of them, such as Elrond and Galadriel, took part. The three Silmarils were jewels created by Feanor, most gifted of the Elves. Within them was imprisoned the Light of the Two Trees of Valinor before the Trees themselves were destroyed by Morgoth, the first Dark Lord. Thereafter, the unsullied Light of Valinor lived on only in the Silmarils, but they were seized by Morgoth and set in his crown, which was guarded in the impenetrable fortress of Angband in the north of Middle-earth. The Silmarillion is the history of the rebellion of Feanor and his kindred against the gods, their exile from Valinor and return to Middle-earth, and their war, hopeless despite all their heroism, against the great Enemy.
"Majestic!....Readers of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings...will find in The Silmarillion a cosmology to call their own, medieval romances, fierce fairy tales, and fiercer wars that ring with heraldic fury....It overwhelms the reader." Time
"A creation of singular beauty...magnificent in its best moments." The Washington Post
"Heart-lifting...a work of power, eloquence and noble vision....Superb!" The Wall Street Journal
"It is beautiful...an enchanting tale of tragedy and triumph....The Silmarillion is magical in the grand old style." The Philadelphia Inquirer
Those interested in J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle Earth should not be without this grand volume that tells the tragic tale of the struggle for control of the Silmarils, a struggle that would determine the history of the world long before the War of the Ring.
The background to the entire Lord of the Rings epic, and the world of middle-earth. The Silmarillion is Tolkien's first book and his last, the core of his imaginative work that underlies all his writings about Middle-earth. Here are the legends of the Elder Days, the central stories that give meaning to the events of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. Tolkien began The Silmarillion in 1917 and worked on it, changed it, and continued it throughout his life. Edited by his son, Christopher Tolkien, the book finally appeared four years after the author's death, in 1977. The three Silmarils were jewels created by Feonor, the most gifted of the Elves, and within them gleamed the light of the Two Trees of Valinor. But they were stolen by Morgoth, the first Dark Lord, setting off the major war of the First Age. The Silmarillion includes several other works besides the main story: Ainulindale, the myth of Creation; Valaquenta, on the nature and power of the gods; Allakabeth, recounting the downfall of Numenor; and "Of the Rings of Power and the third Age," the link to The Lord of the Rings. As Christopher Tolkien describes it: "The entire history is set forth from the Music of the Ainur in which the world began to the passing of the ringbearers from the Havens of Mithlond at the end of the Third Age."
About the Author
John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born on January 3rd, 1892 in South Africa. Tolkien was educated and taught Anglo-Saxon at Oxford University. Tolkien's other works include The Hobbit and The Simarillion, which are both available on audio from Random House.