J.R.R Tolkien

"Not all those that wander are lost."
In 1892 John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born in South Africa. When he was three years old his mother brought him and his brother to England for what was supposed to be a long family visit. They planned on their father coming, but he got sick and died in South Africa.
Tolkien's mother rented a cottage in England. Tolkien was taught how to read and write by his mother before he was four years old. Tolkien loved fairy tales and languages. He tried to write a story about a "great green dragon" when he was seven.

When Tolkien was twelve his mother died and he and his brother lived in a boarding house. Here Tolkien became even more interested in languages. Later on he was inspired to write a poem called "The voyage of Earendel, The Evening Star". In 1911 Tolkien went to Switzerland with his brother for a vacation and later he based some of the places in Bilbo's journey on what he remembered from his trip.

When Tolkien was 16 he met 19 year old Edith Mary Bratt at the boarding hosue where he lived. Tolkien's guardian, Father Francis Morgan didn't want Tolkien to see her or talk to her until he was 21 because he thought Edith was a distraction from Tolkien's schoolwork. When Tolkien turned 21 he wrote a letter to Edit and asked her to marry him. She told him she was already engaged because she thought Tolkien forgot about her. She and Tolkien met again and Edith decided to marry Tolkien instead. In 1916 Tolkien married Edith. They had four children: John, Michael, Christopher and Priscilla. Tolkien fought in World War I, which of course made Edith very nervous. 

In 1926 Tolkien met C.S Lewis and they became good friends. Tolkien's arguments brought Lewis to believe in God. Tolkien and Lewis were in a group called "the Inklings". These men all encouraged Tolkien to keep writing his books "The Silmarillion" and "The Lord of the Rings".

When Tolkien was 32 he became a professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford University. Tolkien had learned a lot of languages including Latin, French and German that he learned from his mom, and also Spanish, Greek, Italian, Dutch and a lot more. Later on Tolkien invented a language of his own that he called Quenya (or High-Elvish or Elf-Latin).

In 1937 The Hobbit was published and was very popular with both children (who it was intended for) and adults. Tolkien wanted to finish The Silmarillion but got caught up in the war of the ring. He spent ten years working on The Lord of the Rings and got a lot of support from the Inklings. The Lord of the Rings was soon published and also very popular. This was made for children at first, but became more serious and more for adult readers than children.

Edith died in 1971. Tolkien had his son Christopher Tolkien finish the Silmarillion. J.R.R Tolkien died in 1973. A few years later, in 1977, the Silmarillion was published by Christopher Tolkien. To this day Tolkien's books are some of the most well known works of literature in the world.

Read more about J.R.R Tolkien on wikipedia.