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The Silmarillion [Illustrated] [Hardcover]

J. R. R. Tolkien , Ted Nasmith
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (280 customer reviews)
RRP: £25.00
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Book Description

6 Sep 2004

This sumptuous, oversized hardback beautifully presents a revised and reset edition of The Silmarillion, illustrated by way of almost 50 full-colour paintings by celebrated Tolkien artist Ted Nasmith – designed to match and complement the illustrated Hobbit and Lord of The Rings.

J R R Tolkien’s SILMARILLION is the core work of the Middle-earth canon. It is in this dense and often neglected masterpiece that the entire cosmology for the background for THE HOBBIT and, particularly, THE LORD OF THE RINGS is documented.

This revised and reset volume contains fabulous tales of heroes and monsters, and the history of the Elves and of the Silmarils – the magical jewels produced by the Children of Iluvatar, or Elves (humans being the Younger Children of Iluvatar); it tells of the creation of Middle-earth, and the coming of Men into the world; it chronicles the early battles between good and evil, forces of light and dark, which foreshadow the great conflict with Sauron, the Dark Lord, in LORD OF THE RINGS.

These tales of Middle-earth were published posthumously in 1977. Tolkien worked on THE SILMARILLION all his life – long before THE HOBBIT or LORD OF THE RINGS – and his son and literary executor Christopher Tolkien edited the material he left behind into its current form.

With the close collaboration of Christopher Tolkien, THE SILMARILLION has now been completely reset, using the Second Edition text, and redesigned and repackaged to complement the stunningly illustrated hardbacks of THE LORD OF THE RINGS and COMPLETE GUIDE TO MIDDLE-EARTH, providing the reader with a definitive text.

Furthermore, acclaimed Tolkien artist Ted Nasmith has been commissioned to provide 28 breathtaking new paintings, making this new illustrated edition of THE SILMARILLION the most sumptuous and desirable ever published.


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 386 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Revised, Illustrated edition edition (6 Sep 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007173024
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007173020
  • Product Dimensions: 20 x 25.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (280 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 204,054 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

J.R.R. Tolkien was born on 3rd January 1892. After serving in the First World War, he became best known for The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, selling 150 million copies in more than 40 languages worldwide. Awarded the CBE and an honorary Doctorate of Letters from Oxford University, he died in 1973 at the age of 81.

Product Description

Amazon Review

Although The Silmarillion takes place in the same imaginary world as J.J.R Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, and was originally published four years after the author's death and over two decades after the former book, it is set much earlier, in the First Age of the World. The tales and the book which reads as a fusion between a story collection and historical chronicle, are a matter of legend even to the characters of The Lord of the Rings:
In the beginning Eru, the One, who in the Elvish tongue is named Ilúvatar, made the Ainur of his thought; and they made a great Music before him
Tolkien wrote the heart of this material very early in his career, and continued to work on it throughout his life. It fell to his son, Christopher Tolkien, to edit it into book form, and such proved the unquenchable public appetite that he subsequently oversaw 12 volumes of The History of Middle-Earth. This edition features 20 highly evocative colour plates by Ted Nasmith, themselves worth the price of admission, while reinforcing the sense of a historical work are genealogical tables, an extensive index, appendix and colour map. Far removed from the genial style of The Hobbit, this is Tolkien at his most formal, his prose austere, poetically beautiful, his storytelling capturing the epic scale, high drama and melancholy wonder of myth. These stories of elves and heroes and old gods are quite literally the foundation of the entire modern fantasy-publishing revival, and are therefore essential reading. --Gary S. Dalkin --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

‘How, given little over half a century of work, did one man become the creative equivalent of a people?’ The Guardian

‘Demanding to be compared with English mythologies… at times rises to the greatness of true myth’ Financial Times

‘A creation of singular beauty… magnificent in its best moments’ Washington Post


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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
84 of 85 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The bible of Middle-Earth 28 Feb 2006
By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
It's more than slightly staggering to consider: the epic fantasy "Lord of the Rings" to be the tail end of Tolkien's invented history. The "Bible" of Middle-Earth, the "Silmarillion" stretches from the beginning of time to the departure of the Elves from Middle-Earth.
A complete summary is impossible, because the book spans millennia and has one earth-shattering event after another. But it includes the creation of Tolkien's invented pantheons of angelic beings under Eru Iluvatar, also known as God; how they sang the world into being; the creation of Elves, Men, and Dwarves (hobbits are, I think, not really covered); the legendary love story of Beren and Luthien, a mortal Man and an Elf maiden who gives up her immortality for the man she loves; the demonic Morgoth and Sauron; Elves of just about any kind -- bad, mad, dangerous, good, sweet, brave, and so forth; the creation of the many Rings of Power -- and the One Ring of Sauron; the Two Trees that made the sun and moon; and finally the quest of the Ringbearer, Frodo Baggins.
Many old favorites will pop up over the course of the book, such as Elrond, Galadriel, Gandalf, and so on. Fans of Elves will find plenty to feed their hunger; fans of Hobbits or Dwarves will not find as much here. It will also answer some questions that "Hobbit" and LOTR may raise, when references to long-ago incidents and people are made -- what is Numenor? Who are the Valar? This includes those things, and much more.
The writing style of Silmarillion is more akin to the Eddas, the Bible, or the Mabinogian than to "Lord of the Rings." It's more formal and archaic in tone; Tolkien did not get as "into" the heads of his characters in Silmarillion as he did in LOTR, and there is no central character.
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274 of 282 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fills out Middle-Earth 28 Dec 2001
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
When you read Lord of the Rings there are innumerable references, some of them too puzzling and important to ignore, to events from the past; people, battles, places, names. It occurs in The Hobbit as well, but to a much lesser degree.
If you read either of those and don't like them, or found them hard going, so be it, and don't bother with this. But, if you read them and like them, you will be wanting to know what it was all about. Where did dragons come from? Who are Elrond and Gandalf? What is the Balrog? Where did Sauron come from? Who are the Men of Westernesse? What was the Last Alliance? Where did the One Ring come from?
Tolkien did that deliberately. He created a complete world, with a history from start to finish. Lord of the Rings is only the end of the tale that starts in the Silmarillion, with the beginning of Middle Earth. He wanted LotR to be the story, the compelling tale, but what happens in it, and the places it happens in, is all part of a great history.
That history is told in this book. From creation of Middle Earth to beyond the end of LotR, it covers everything that happened. It genuinely is a complete mythology.
For that reason, the Silmarillion is an inferior *story* to LotR, but tells you the *history*. It doesn't read like a story at all, but like a history, a bible of Middle Earth. Many, many happenings, places and especially names, will put off the casual reader, and rightly so. It is the stuff of legend, too dense for anyone without an interest in getting to the heart of Middle Earth and, therefore, LotR and the Hobbit.
One of the best things is the glossary in the back, which has in it every term, name, thing and place in Middle Earth, and what they are. Of course, even though it is technically a prequel to LotR, don't attempt reading it first. Like I say, it fills out the world that LotR and the Hobbit create.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As good as it could have been 18 Feb 2006
Format:Paperback
This is NOT an easy read, and can seem a bit like a list of names or the old testament at times. You have to study this book - work at it, with the Return of the King's appendix and this books appendix at hand to constantly be refered to. It took me two attempts to get through it the first time, but now I honestly enjoy dusting this off at least as much as the lord of the rings. It's now impossible for me to read one without the other.
The sense of history, depth and grandeur that's apparent in the lord of the rings is so MUCH more convincing than any other fantasy novel for a reason. That history has been written. It's real (if you follow me!).
Tolkien created a series of languages, a world, all of its history, all of it's peoples, all of its geography, its gods, its conception, its weather, its plants, its trees, its animals, its seasons, its calendars etc etc. He created everything. The lord of the rings is not just a little fantasy story flung against some backdrop reminescent of medieval europe. Sadly most "epic fantasy" stories are just that.
However, the lord of the rings is really just a side track, and one that tolkien was loathe to take himself. As a story it's epic enough. It really only deals with a very short, fleeting piece of something so much larger. The Silimarillion is your first chance to appreciate this, and I suggest you enjoy it!
This book is flawed, Christopher Tolkien admits as much himself in the history of middle earth and the foreword to unfinished tales. CT indulged in some "editorial meddling" (his words) to make a coherent story from a collection of disparate, contradictory writings. The result is, in spite of this, still rather convoluted and taxing.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars This has to be one of the hardest of the ...
This has to be one of the hardest of the Tolkien books to read. I keep putting it down and going back to it, have a feeling it's going to take me a very long time to read this... Read more
Published 2 days ago by Smudge 633
4.0 out of 5 stars The voice isn't as good as previous audio books I have bought (such as...
The voice isn't as good as previous audio books I have bought (such as The Hobbit) but the material is decent enough!
Published 3 days ago by Andygd
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
My husband loves I get a peaceful night when he is reading it
Published 9 days ago by Eileen
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
:D
Published 22 days ago by Kasey
2.0 out of 5 stars Not for everyone
Not for me. I like the lord of the rings series and loved the hobbit though this I simply couldn't get into. Read more
Published 25 days ago by Matthew
3.0 out of 5 stars spot on
spot on
Published 26 days ago by gwilmo
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my Favourite books
Explains much of Lord of the Rings. One of my Favourite books
Published 1 month ago by Mr. J. Mrs F. Petersen
3.0 out of 5 stars THE SILMARILLION
IT IS VERY HARD READING, NO WAY CAN ONE REMEMBER ALL THE NAMES AND PLACES, SO IT IS QUITE CONFUSING IN PARTS. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Dorothy Tomlinson
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful
The rich lore of Arda always astonishes me. I absolutely lost myself in the tale of the silmarils, the Valar, and everything in between.
Published 2 months ago by Mark
3.0 out of 5 stars KINDLE EDITION REVIEW!
The Silmarillion is truly indispensable for any Tolkien fan. I need not spend vast amounts of time praising it here when so many others have done so. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mr. J. L. Burns
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