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Songs for the Philologists, by J.R.R. Tolkien, E.V. Gordon & others.
4to. Colophon device. Wire stitched (without rusting) in orig. blue printed wraps. Inscription on red ink on front wrapper: 'please return to K. Tillotson'. v.g. 30, (2)pp.From the collection of Kathleen and Geoffrey Tillotson. 30 humorous poems in Old English, Latin and Old Norse, &c., 13 by Tolkien 'printed by G. Tillotson, A.H. Smith, B. Pattison and other members of the English Department ...'. Neil Halford, remarks that 'Songs for the Philologists is perhaps the rarest and most difficult to find Tolkien-related book'. Whilst at Leeds, J.R.R. Tolkien and E.V. Gordon established a club for undergraduates devoted largely to reading Old Norse sagas and drinking beer. It was in this environment that Tolkien and Gordon wrote their Songs for the Philologists, a set of duplicated typescripts containing a mixture of traditional songs and original verses translated into Old English, Old Norse and Gothic to fit traditional English tunes. It was published in this form when Dr A. H. Smith of University College London, former student at Leeds, gave a copy of one of the typescripts to a group of students, including Geoffrey Tillotson, to print at their private press. Smith, it transpired, had not asked for permission from Tolkien or Gordon, so the copies printed, of which the number is not known, were not distributed. What is known is that most of the copies were destroyed in a fire at the college where the press and copies of the book were stored. Four copies are recorded on Copac at the British Library, Oxford, Sheffield and UCL; no copy is recorded in the Library of Congress, only one copy has appeared at auction, in 2003.
      [Bookseller: Jarndyce]
Last Found On: 2016-10-02           Check availability:      PBFA    


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