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The Professor's Bookshelf Set of Books 1 - 10

tolkiens bookshelf

The Professor’s Bookshelf is a collection of books that inspired the imagination of Professor J.R.R. Tolkien, author of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. The first ten titles are here presented as a matching set.

If you bought each book separately you would be spending up to $250.00. Save lots!

All our titles have informed the professor’s writings in one way or another. Either the man himself revealed their influence in his essays or interviews, or his biographers and researchers uncovered the evidence, or the books were widely obtainable and popular in his literary circles, so that he certainly knew of them and there is little doubt he read them.

Tolkien’s own drawings adorn the pages of The Hobbit and it is easy to imagine him as a boy, long before the invention of television, poring for hours over the images in his favourite volumes - images that helped shape his creation of Middle-earth.

Where possible we have selected illustrated editions available in his lifetime. Both texts and pictures have been reproduced, and most of our books are copies of the editions the professor held in his own hands.

Visit The Professor's Bookshelf, the home of books that inspired JRR Tolkien.

Our books are not affiliated with the Tolkien Estate or Tolkien Enterprises.


You receive these illustrated classics:

the song of the nibelungs the red fairy book the book of wonder retro cookbook the princess and the goblin
THE SONG OF THE NIBELUNGS - illustrated

Translated by Margaret Armour, illustrated by W.B. MacDougall.


The Song of the Nibelungs, a thirteenth century Germanic Epic, greatly inspired JRR Tolkien.
Scholars have noted the influence of its pre-Christian heroic motifs - drawn from historic events and people of the 5th and 6th centuries - on his writing of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.
This classic saga, drenched in blood and tragedy, heroism and
honour, beauty and nobility, gives us a glimpse into the literature
that helped inform Tolkien’s imagination, ultimately flowering in
his most popular work - The Lord of the Rings.


THE RED FAIRY BOOK - illustrated

By Andrew Lang. Illustrated by H.J. Ford and Lancelot Speed.

Andrew Lang's Fairy Books captured the imagination of a generation of children and were sold worldwide in the 1880s and 1890s. J.R.R. Tolkien read and enjoyed every book in the series, and they had a marked influence on his imagination.
THE BOOK of WONDER & THE LAST BOOK of WONDER - illustrated

Written by Lord Dunsany, illustrated by S. H. Syme.

Tolkien frequently mentioned Dunsany’s works in his letters.
In one letter he spoke of Dunsany’s character-naming abilities.
Later in life Tolkien wrote affectionately about Dunsany’s story
"Chu-Bu and Sheemish", and also remarked on "The Distressing Tale
of Thangobrind the Jeweller", both of which are contained in The Book of Wonder.
"Tolkien also once presented a scholar, Clyde S. Kilby with
a copy of The Book of Wonder to help prepare him for his role working on Tolkien’s 'The Silmarillion.'" So says Rebecca Joines
Schinsky in "The Top Ten Books That Influenced J.R.R. Tolkien."
THE STORY of the GLITTERING PLAIN - illustrated

William Morris, illustrated by Walter Crane.

Fantasy and medieval literature specialist Douglas A. Anderson
writes, "William Morris was an enormous influence on Tolkien in terms
of the general shape of his literary interests. Tolkien discovered
Morris’s translations in his teens, and his interest in Morris
deepened at Exeter College, Oxford, where Morris had also been
an undergraduate. Tolkien’s earliest stories of his Middle-earth legendarium, published posthumously as The Book of Lost Tales,
show a decided influence of Morris in their archaism and style."
This edition includes Morris's essay collection 'The Art and Craft of Printing'.
THE PRINCESS and the GOBLIN - illustrated.

George MacDonald, illustrated by Jessie Wilcox Smith.

J.R.R. Tolkien was a great admirer of George MacDonald’s fairy-stories.
When his children were young, he used to read The Princess and the Goblin to them in the
evenings, before they went to bed.
In a 1938 letter to the Observer newspaper Tolkien stated that some ideas in The Hobbit "...derived from
(previously digested) epic, mythology, and fairy-story—not,
however, Victorian in authorship, as a rule to which George
MacDonald is the chief exception".
‘Tolkien knew well MacDonald’s children’s books "The
Princess and the Goblin" and "The Princess and Curdie", both of which influenced Tolkien’s depiction of goblins in
The Hobbit,’ writes literary expert Douglas A. Anders.

the poetic edda the-worm-ouroboros
eric brighteyes grimms fairy tales king arthur
THE POETIC EDDA - illustrated

Translated by Olive Bray, illustrated by W G Collingwood

A magnificent and magical collection of thirty-four Icelandic poems, interwoven with prose, dating from the 9th century to the 12th. J. R. R. Tolkien readily acknowledged his debt to this source

THE DRAGON OUROBOROS- illustrated

Written by E.R. Eddison, illustrated by Keith Henderson

J.R.R. Tolkien read this story, and praised it in print. Eddison, he stated, was ‘the greatest and most convincing writer of “invented worlds”’ he had ever read.
THE SAGA of ERIC BRIGHTEYES - illustrated

Written by H. Rider Haggard, illustrated by Lancelot Speed, first published 1891.

Rider Haggard is one of a handful of Victorian and Edwardian writers whom Tolkien acknowledged by name.
GRIMMS' FAIRYTALES - illustrated

Translated by Lucy Crane, illust. Walter Crane.

Tolkien mined the folklore of the Grimm brothers for literary gems

THE STORY of KING ARTHUR and HIS KNIGHTS - illustrated

Written and illustrated by Howard Pyle.
J.R.R. Tolkien greatly enjoyed Arthurian stories, which he called ‘powerful’

Visit The Professor's Bookshelf


 
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Product Details
  • Number of books in set: 10
  • Paperback
  • Language: English
  • Product Dimensions: Each book measures 6 x 9 inches
More About the Creators
19th century and early 20th century authors Authors, Editors and Translators

Margaret Armour, Olive Bray, William Morris, Andrew Lang, George MacDonald, H. Rider Haggard, E.R. Eddison, Lord Dunsany, Howard Pyle, Lucy Crane.
19th century and early 20th century illustrators Illustrators

W. B. MacDougall, W G Collingwood, Walter Crane, H.J. Ford, Lancelot Speed, Jessie Wilcox Smith, Keith Henderson, S. H. Syme, Howard Pyle.


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Leaves of Gold Press publishes international, premium quality fiction and non-fiction in hardcover, paperback and ebook format. Our books are printed on high grade, acid-free, book-grade, opaque paper stock sourced from responsibly managed forests. Our printers are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council™, the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification™. Utilizing POD technology decreases the number of returns and reduces paper waste, thereby cutting down greenhouse emissions and conserving valuable natural resources. Our books are not endorsed by or affiliated with the Tolkien Estate or Tolkien Enterprises.
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