The Fall Of Arthur

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The Fall Of Arthur

by Jrr Tolkien

Harpercollins (uk) | May 26, 2014 | Trade Paperback

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The world first publication of a previously unknown work by J.R.R. Tolkien, which tells the extraordinary story of the final days of England''s legendary hero, King Arthur.

The Fall of Arthur, the only venture by J.R.R. Tolkien into the legends of Arthur King of Britain, may well be regarded as his finest and most skilful achievement in the use of the Old English alliterative metre, in which he brought to his transforming perceptions of the old narratives a pervasive sense of the grave and fateful nature of all that is told: of Arthur''s expedition overseas into distant heathen lands, of Guinevere''s flight from Camelot, of the great sea-battle on Arthur''s return to Britain, in the portrait of the traitor Mordred, in the tormented doubts of Lancelot in his French castle.

Unhappily, The Fall of Arthur was one of several long narrative poems that he abandoned in that period. In this case he evidently began it in the earlier nineteen-thirties, and it was sufficiently advanced for him to send it to a very perceptive friend who read it with great enthusiasm at the end of 1934 and urgently pressed him ''You simply must finish it!'' But in vain: he abandoned it, at some date unknown, though there is some evidence that it may have been in 1937, the year of the publication of The Hobbit and the first stirrings of The Lord of the Rings. Years later, in a letter of 1955, he said that ''he hoped to finish a long poem on The Fall of Arthur''; but that day never came.

Associated with the text of the poem, however, are many manuscript pages: a great quantity of drafting and experimentation in verse, in which the strange evolution of the poem''s structure is revealed, together with narrative synopses and very significant if tantalising notes. In these latter can be discerned clear if mysterious associations of the Arthurian conclusion with The Silmarillion, and the bitter ending of the love of Lancelot and Guinevere, which was never written.

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 240 pages, 3.4 × 2.22 × 0.31 in

Published: May 26, 2014

Publisher: Harpercollins (uk)

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 000748996X

ISBN - 13: 9780007489961

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– More About This Product –

The Fall Of Arthur

by Jrr Tolkien

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 240 pages, 3.4 × 2.22 × 0.31 in

Published: May 26, 2014

Publisher: Harpercollins (uk)

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 000748996X

ISBN - 13: 9780007489961

From the Publisher

The world first publication of a previously unknown work by J.R.R. Tolkien, which tells the extraordinary story of the final days of England''s legendary hero, King Arthur.

The Fall of Arthur, the only venture by J.R.R. Tolkien into the legends of Arthur King of Britain, may well be regarded as his finest and most skilful achievement in the use of the Old English alliterative metre, in which he brought to his transforming perceptions of the old narratives a pervasive sense of the grave and fateful nature of all that is told: of Arthur''s expedition overseas into distant heathen lands, of Guinevere''s flight from Camelot, of the great sea-battle on Arthur''s return to Britain, in the portrait of the traitor Mordred, in the tormented doubts of Lancelot in his French castle.

Unhappily, The Fall of Arthur was one of several long narrative poems that he abandoned in that period. In this case he evidently began it in the earlier nineteen-thirties, and it was sufficiently advanced for him to send it to a very perceptive friend who read it with great enthusiasm at the end of 1934 and urgently pressed him ''You simply must finish it!'' But in vain: he abandoned it, at some date unknown, though there is some evidence that it may have been in 1937, the year of the publication of The Hobbit and the first stirrings of The Lord of the Rings. Years later, in a letter of 1955, he said that ''he hoped to finish a long poem on The Fall of Arthur''; but that day never came.

Associated with the text of the poem, however, are many manuscript pages: a great quantity of drafting and experimentation in verse, in which the strange evolution of the poem''s structure is revealed, together with narrative synopses and very significant if tantalising notes. In these latter can be discerned clear if mysterious associations of the Arthurian conclusion with The Silmarillion, and the bitter ending of the love of Lancelot and Guinevere, which was never written.

About the Author

A writer of fantasies, Tolkien, a professor of language and literature at Oxford University, was always intrigued by early English and the imaginative use of language. In his greatest story, the trilogy The Lord of the Rings (1954--56), Tolkien invented a language with vocabulary, grammar, syntax, even poetry of its own. Though readers have created various possible allegorical interpretations, Tolkien has said: "It is not about anything but itself. (Certainly it has no allegorical intentions, general, particular or topical, moral, religious or political.)" In The Adventures of Tom Bombadil (1962), Tolkien tells the story of the "master of wood, water, and hill," a jolly teller of tales and singer of songs, one of the multitude of characters in his romance, saga, epic, or fairy tales about his country of the Hobbits. Tolkien was also a formidable medieval scholar, as evidenced by his work, Beowulf: The Monster and the Critics (1936) and his edition of Anciene Wisse: English Text of the Anciene Riwle. Among his works published posthumously, are The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún and The Fall of Arthur, which was edited by his son, Christopher.

Editorial Reviews

Praise for The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún: "This is the most unexpected of Tolkien''s many posthumous publications; his son''s Commentary is a model of informed accessibility; the poems stand comparison with their Eddic models, and there is little poetry in the world like those" - Times Literary Supplement

"The compact verse form is ideally suited to describing impact. elsewhere it achieves a stark beauty" - Telegraph

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