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This book addresses two categories of readers: those that do not know Tolkien and are interested in knowing him and his works; and those who already know and are interested in deepening and updating their knowledge.

In fact the book (written by 31 Italian and English specialists) is a systematical "introduction" dealing with all the topics concerning Tolkien and pays attention to The History of Middle-Earth volumes, to the recent scholarly studies and to the news from the Tolkien fandom.
All of them collaborate to a fanzine entirely devoted to Tolkien. The fanzine born in 1992 with the name Terra di Mezzo and then changed its name to Endòre.

Table of contents
  1. Foreword
  2. A brief account of Tolkien's life
  3. Tolkien & the Tolkienian People
    • Which kind of people do love Tolkien ?
    • To the Reader
    • The Tolkien Reader at a crossroads
    • Tolkien and the mode "fantastic" in literature
    • Two points of view
    • Fandom (fans' kingdom)
    • Tolkien present and absent
    • Reread The Lord of the Rings
    • A "little job still to do"
  4. Main Works
    • The Hobbit
    • The Lord of the Rings
    • The Silmarillion
    • Unfinished Tales
    • The History of Middle-Earth
    • Essays
  5. Characters
    • Gandalf
    • Frodo
    • The Ring
    • Tom Bombadil
    • Turin
    • The Villains
    • Loved and not loved characters
    • The Elves
    • The Hobbits
    • The Dwarves
  6. Literary themes
    • The emotions of a Tolkien Reader
    • The Lord of the Rings as a XX Century novel
    • The Shire
    • A Tolkien Chronology
    • The Supernatural in Tolkien
  7. Philosophical themes
    • Manicheism and Augustinianism
    • Religion
    • Cosmology
    • Tolkien the Anti-totalitarian
  8. Tolkien compared with other writers of "fantasy genre"
    • Tolkien and George Lucas
    • Tolkien and Howard
    • Tolkien versus Terry Brooks
    • Tolkien and Moorcock
    • Tolkien and Eddison
    • Tolkien and Dragonlance
    • Tolkien as a Post-war writer
  9. "Other hands" fiction in a tolkienian setting
    • The Last King of the North
    • The Letter
    • Chronicles from the University of Umbar
    • Branch and Root
    • Poems
  10. The critics
    • The critical response to Tolkien's fiction
    • A selection of books on Tolkien
  11. Tools & accessories
    • Atlas
    • Artwork
    • Documentary
    • Movies
    • Tolkien's voice
    • Comics
    • Quiz
    • Gadgets
    • Gags
    • Miniatures
    • Internet
    • Music
    • Games
  12. Extended Bibliography (books and papers of Tolkien and on Tolkien)
  13. About the Authors
  14. Text notes
  15. Artwork of the book (by Lorenzo Daniele)
    • The Argonaths
    • Dragon's helmet
    • Palantir
    • Dragons
    • One door of Barad-ur
    • Mithrim Lake (front cover)
    • Tom Bombadil (back cover)
  The Authors
  • Alex Lewis
  • Fiorenzo Delle Rupi
  • Tom Shippey
  • Alberto Quagliaroli
  • Franco Manni
  • Elena Grecchi
  • Wayne Hammond
  • Beppe Roncari
  • Paolo Barbiano di Belgiojoso
  • Nancy Martsch
  • Carlo Stagnaro
  • Riccardo Moretti
  • Edoardo Sbaffi
  • Jessica Yates
  • Edoardo Vitto
  • Lorenzo Daniele
  • Gianni Cavallari
  • Denis Collins
  • Roberto Di Scala
  • Michele Ballarini
  • Gregorio Trebucchi
  • Ruth Lacon
  • Agostino Maiello
  • Andrea Alberici
  • Filippo Rossi
  • Catherine Thorn
  • Massimo Renaldini
  • Francesco Mazzotti
  • Enrico Imperatori
  • Walter Scolese
  • Nicola Farinelli

The Editor

Franco Manni, with degrees in Philosophy (Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa) and Theology (Pontificia Universitas Gregoriana, Rome), has been the editor of "Terra di Mezzo" (1992-1998) and of "Endòre" (1999-nowadays), tolkienian journals of which Gary Hunnewell wrote on Tolkien Society's newsletter "Amon Hen": "I have never seen more professional publications ... Its size and content remind one of the glory days of 'Niekas'. A translation of some of these into English is definitely in order."

The Publisher

Simonelli Editore is a Publishing House located in Milan (Italy). "Introduzione a Tolkien" may be purchased directly from the Publisher clicking on


last update: September 20th, 2002 © Elena Grecchi