The Ring of Words: Tolkien and the Oxford English Dictionary

Tolkien’s most memorable work, on getting back from The Second Great War, was as an aide on the staff of the Oxford English Word reference. He later said that he had “learned more in those two years than in some other equivalent piece of his life.” The Ring of Words uncovers what his expert work on the OED meant for Tolkien’s imaginative utilization of language in his made-up world.
Here three senior editors of the OED offer an interesting investigation of Tolkien’s profession as an etymologist and enlighten his innovativeness as a word client and word maker. The focal point of the book is a magnificent assortment of “word studies” which will please the core of Ring fans and word sweethearts all over the place.

The editors view at the beginning of such Tolkienesque words as “hobbit,” “mithril, “Smeagol,” “Ent,” “halfling,” and “worm” (signifying “winged serpent”). Perusers find that a word, for example, “mathom” (anything a hobbit had no quick need for, however was reluctant to discard) was really normal in Early English, yet that “mithril,” then again, is a finished development (and the first “Elven” word to have a section in the OED). Furthermore, devotees of Harry Potter will be shocked to see that as “Dumbledore” (the name of Hogwart’s director) was a word utilized by Tolkien and numerous others (it is a lingo word signifying “honey bee”).


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